Seems hard to believe, but this issue marks the 7th anniversary of Vintage Racecar Journal. What started as a seemingly delusional, one-man, Don Quixote–style obsession out of the back bedroom of my house has, seven years later, become the magazine that you now hold in your hands, which now reaches thousands of enthusiasts in more than 16 different countries.
The other day I had an opportunity to thumb through our very first, all black-and-white issue—I have to confess that I cringe every time I look at where we started from! However, as those who have been with us from the start can attest, we have steadily expanded and improved the depth and quality of the magazine over the years. As such, with this issue marking our seventh year of publication and the end of a record year for us, it seemed only fitting that we do something special.
As you browse through this issue, you’ll immediately see that our art director, Kristin Miller, has done a beautiful job updating the overall look and layout of the magazine. After seven years, it seemed high time that VRJ got a fresh “face-lift.” However, there is much more to VRJ’s new look than just an elegant design; in our ongoing effort to provide you with more real content, we’ve also expanded the size of the magazine and added four new regular columns, with more to come! These new columns include:
Fast Exposure—Through a special partnership with the world-famous Klementaski Collection, each month we will now feature a rare historic photograph from the Klementaski archives. Brought to you in a stunning two-page format, this column will highlight some of the best, and rarest, photographs taken by such legends of the art as Louis Klementaski, Rodolfo Mailander, Peter Coltrin, Robert Daley, Edward Eaves, Nigel Snowdon and many others. This month we kick it off with a fabulous Klementaski image of Dan Gurney and the Porsche F1 effort.
Heroes—Long-time readers will be very familiar with the work of our Robert Newman. As our man in Italy, Bob has brought you some fascinating stories over the years, including “Absent Friends,” “Silberfeile Rennen” and marvelous profiles of drivers such as Caracciola, Fagioli and Nuvolari. However, what may not be well known is that prior to writing for us, Bob served for 31 years as the press officer for Pirelli. Within this role, he worked with some of the greatest names in motorsport, including Gigi Villoresi, Juan Manuel Fangio, Stirling Moss, Tony Brooks, Phil Hill, Piers Courage, Niki Lauda, Clay Regazzoni, Eddie Cheever, John Surtees, Sandro Munari, Jacques Laffite, Nigel Mansell and many more. Now, in “Heroes” each month, Bob will bring you the behind-scenes stories of these legendary figures, starting this month with “Gigi” Villoresi.
Fabulous Fifties—For many years now, we’ve been fortunate to have a close working relationship with ’50s racing stalwart Art Evans. Art was an active and enthusiastic West Coast racer in the ’50s and, among other things, was the publisher of Sports Car Journal; worked as a representative for companies like Devin Enterprises, MG Mitten and Gough Industries; and served as a director for the Los Angeles Region of the SCCA. Through all this, and the years that followed, Art became close friends with most of the legends from the ’50s and ’60s—people like Shelby, Gurney, Brabham, Fangio, Daigh, Moss, Hill, Ward and many others. These close friendships, and connections with those events in the ’50s, led to the creation of a very unique club known as the Fabulous Fifties, which enabled drivers, participants and like-minded individuals to get together socially to reminisce about “the good ol’ days.” Because of this close “social” relationship, Art has a plethora of fantastic stories about the times, both on and off the track, during those important formative years. This month, Art leads off his new column with an amusing story about a party at the house of a guy named Lance Reventlow.
Greatest Racecars—It’s all well and good for magazine writers or editors to talk about what they think are the world’s greatest racecars, but let’s face it, who are they to say? Instead, what we’ve chosen to do in this new column is go to the legends themselves to get their expert opinions on what are the greatest cars and why. And what better expert to kick off this new monthly feature than one of the most talented racecar designers of all time, Adrian Newey?
In a nutshell, that gives you an overview of some of the changes to be found in this anniversary issue, but not to fear, while things may look a little different, we haven’t taken anything away. You still have all the same great profiles, features and columns that you’ve come to expect from VRJ. We just decided that, in honor of our birthday, we’ll now give you even more! Thanks again for your continued support and please enjoy!