A Weekend at the Blackhawk Vintage Classic XVIII
I made the trip down to the VSCDA’s Blackhawk Farms event this past weekend and had a wonderful time. This was, somehow, my first visit to the track and I enjoyed the laid-back environment and comfortable size of the place. This smaller track might be less suited to the big bangers than Road America, but as a spectator it is nice to be able to comfortably wander from corner to corner in the infield and easily take in a variety of vantage points. The adjoining airstrip was hosting a vintage event of their own on this particular weekend. Few things add to the atmosphere of a vintage race weekend than a steady flow of biplanes flying low overhead—it was our own miniature Goodwood!
Also fantastic about this particular weekend is the large numbers of vintage Formula Vees that arrive. Their numbers are such that they have their own grid, without the larger Formula Fords and Bs in the mix. Their event was the highlight of the action on-track of the weekend, with front runners Garrett Van Camp, Frank Newton, and Mike Kitsmiller trading positions at nearly every lap.
Making a return to competition was the H-Mod Crosley Special that we saw at the Intermarque car show in St. Paul, MN a few weeks back. It was an absolute treat to see her back on the track Saturday competing amongst the pre-war group after a very long dormancy.Even better, I was offered a ride in her for the Sunday touring sessions! Unfortunately it simply wasn’t meant to be; the rotor came apart and a replacement couldn’t be sourced in time to get her on the track on Sunday. C’est la vie.Often the racing community focuses on the large races: the KIC at Road America, The Lime Rock Historic Festival, the Monterey Historics. The biggies certainly bring out the crowds. Their high profile draws the exotic machinery. Do yourself a favor and try to make it out to the smaller vintage events in your area. The atmosphere is more familial, the smaller crowds means you’ll have better opportunity to chat with the drivers, and the tracks themselves feel somehow cozier.