For the 1966 race season, the Sports Car Club of America introduced the Trans-American road racing series, also known as TransAm, for “production small sedans.” In an era that championed the “Win on Sunday, sell on Monday” mantra, all of the major American manufacturers were eager to showcase their muscle coupes in the series.
This resulted in brutal, corner carving muscle car racers, like Ford’s Boss 302, Mopar’s Challenger T/A and AAR ‘Cuda, and the Z/28 Camaro – all of which saw substantially tamer, road-going versions sold to the public.
One of TransAm’s pivotal rules required that all competition motors not exceed 305 cubic inches of displacement, so all three manufacturers produced low displacement, high-revving small block screamers for the series, like the Chevy 302 that powers Frank Grimaldi’s 1968 Camaro four-speed in this race on the 1.7 mile road course at Thompson Speedway.
The video description reveals that “the car is basically set up per the 1969 SCCA (Sports Car Club of America) TransAm series specifications and has been upgraded to SVRA (Sports Car Vintage Racing Organization) Group 6 specifications.”
While the TransAm series still exists today, the tubular frame, fiberglass bodied cars that run in the series now bear little resemblance to their modern road car counterparts.
In contrast, the Sportscar Vintage Racing Association’s Group 6 class “consists mainly of large displacement sports cars and sedans that represent the ‘Golden Age’ of club racing in the USA,” according to the SVRA site.
“These cars were the main stay of the SCCA A & B Production and A Sedan classes and the over 2 liter Trans-Am series. Cars are expected to be prepared to the SCCA standards that were in effect at the end of the eligibility period (1972) or earlier.” It is, in essence, the continuation of old school muscle car road racing.
And it’s glorious. Check the video above to see why.