MARCH 2015


 The Chihuahua Express, April 24-26, is one of the best-kept secrets in the racing world.  The Express offers about 1000 miles of running, of which 300 miles are at unlimited of top-speed, mainly on beautiful mountain roads.   Got a decent handling car, modern or vintage, with a six-point rollcage?  Come on down and have a blast.

Not ready to go 160 MPH?  Try the Express Tour, a time-to-distance rally that follows the same route as the full-competition cars.  It is the best way to experience Mexico for the first time and learn to rally Mexican style.  You will see some beautiful landscapes, including the famous Copper Canyon, and have some low-pressure fun.   Meet some nice racing folks.  The weather is usually dry, sunny, and not hot.

Come on down.   Registration is open until April 23.  Just arrive and sign up.  Don’t want to bring your GT3 down?  Just rent a car from Hertz in Chihuahua.  The Tour experience is cheap at $1350 USD and you will miss only two or three days of work.   Fly into Chichuahua on Thursday and out on Sunday. 

The Express is affiliated with the Silver State Classic Challenge.


The good news is – the Pan Am will start in Tuxtla Gutíerrez, the traditional starting city.  Tuxtla is the capital of the state of Chiapas, a modern city of 500,000+population.   When the original race started there in 1951 the population was only 20,000.  Another bonus is -- the pre-qualification stage will be run on the old highway from Tuxtla to the beautiful colonial city of San Cristobal de las Casas.  (I have been to Tuxtla many time but never had the time to visit that famous city.) 

 From Tuxtla, October 16, the Pan Am will stop for the night in:  Oaxaca, Mexico City, Toluca, Morelia, Guanajuato, and Zacatecas.  The event ends in Durango as it did last year on October 22,

 The “preferred” (discounted) entry fee is valid until April 30.  In May it will increase by $500 USD. Applicants may apply on the official web site: ;


 The 2015 LCP rules for the Original Pan Am class have been amplified and to a large degree, clarified.  Any OPA car will be allowed to use three or four-speed manual or automatic transmissions.  More modern rear axles, like a Ford 9” or GM 12 bolt, and posi-traction are authorized.  King-pin front steering may be replaced by ball joints, as long as the suspension geometry stays the same, but no rack and pinion.  Radiators, electrics, and brakes may be improved.

 The rules also create a new class for vintage FIA-certified  race cars.   Hot rods (1932-1954) and replicas are also invited to participate. 


 Want to keep up with news about vintage racing?  Stephen Page, the President and CEO, of the Vintage Racing League and a survivor of LCP has invited all followers of CARRERAS NEWS to sign up for the VRL and my blog at:


 A new stage rally, the Rally Histórico Transpeninsular, will be held May 21-24, 2015.  It is a four-day rally from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  The first day is for registration and inspection, followed by three days of racing.  There will be two overnights on the road.

 The Organizer is Pedro Vargas Valdez.   Historic cars will run in three broad classes on paved roads.   There will also be an Exhibition class for modern and exotic cars. The rally is sanctioned by the Federation of Mexican Auto Sports (FEMADAC).  It seems to be a natural for the California, USA market.

 The cars may be coupes, sedans, or sports cars manufactured 1945-1973.  At least 2500 cars must have been produced.  They will be divided among four classes:

  1.  Four cylinder engines up to 2500 cc.
  2. Six cylinder engines up to 4000 cc.
  3. Eight cylinder or more engines above 4001 cc.

Exhibition class:  Cars newer than 1973 and proto-types.

 In all classes the engines may be naturally aspirated, turbo-charged, or supercharged.  They can be 4 x 4 if they came from the factory like that.  Engines and transmissions should be the models associated with the car.   The usual safety requirements are specified.  All cars must use an aluminum-boxed fuel cell.

 This is only a summary of the rules pertaining to the cars and event.  Read the entire set of rules before signing up or building or modifying a car for the event.  For more info, go to  ; Suerte,  Pedro Vargas Valdez!


 1954 Volvo 444 -- High Speed Rally & Road Racing Car


Automotive Restorations is proud to offer a race car that is as much at home on the La Carrera Panamericana Road Rally as it is on the track at Lime Rock Park. This race car comes with an extensive list of modifications, beginning with custom made wide body includes front fenders, trunk and hood. Included is a La Carrera legal roll cage, OMP race seats, Brontz rally computer, fire suppression system, quick release steering, full rally instrumentation, 18 gal.  Fuel Safe cell (bladder replaced in 2010).  A race-built Volvo B-20 engine with dual 45 side-draft Weber carburetors, Stahl headers, aluminum radiator, oil cooler, Tremec T-5 close-ratio 5 speed transmission with custom overdrive and Hurst shifter, Wilwood disc brakes on all four corners, limited slip differential, Tilton pedal assembly, single plate rally clutch, Koni shocks with coil-overs in the rear, dual battery system, Mallory ignition, two sets of Panasport 15X7 alloy rims. Total vehicle weight is 960 Kg dry. This is a three-owner car and was purpose built for Bill Shanahan, famous rally car owner and driver. In 2010 this car took second place in class (Turismo Produccion) and 12th overall.  Car has competed in 10 Carreras. The car comes with the following spare parts package, tailored to support a car running in the Carrera or a similar event:

  • B-20 Race Engine
  • Complete limited slip rear axle
  • Complete front cross member suspension assembly
  • Spare set of Koni shock absorbers
  • 8 gallon fuel cell (suitable for track racing)
  • Gearbox with custom over drive and short throw shifter
  • Clutch and flywheel
  • Spare radiator, alternator and steering rack
  • Engine dynamometer sheet and race photos available

Total price of $45K for car and this complete spare parts package. For further information please call David 203-377-6745 EXT: 37 (  Automotive Restorations Inc., 100 Lupes Drive, Stratford, CT 06615, USA.

1954 Lincoln Capri – Classic Pan Am Vet

La Carrera, Chihuahua Express & Pikes Peak history
360 Ford Racing engine with 650cfm. Holley carb., remote oil cooler, aluminum radiator
H.D. T-5 5 speed close ratio trans, Ford 9" rear axle, 4:10 Detroit locker diff.
Coi-llover front and rear, rear torque arm, 3 link with Panard bar rear suspension,
NASCAR power steering, 6 piston Wilwood front calipers, 4 piston Wilwood rears,
Tilton pedal box assy. with adj. brake bias. 28 gallon fuel cell, FIA approved Racetech seats
Monit Rally computer, Peltor intercom, Fast A/F meter, 2 on board fire systems.
fiberglass bumpers and inner fenders, Lexan windows, glass windshield, skid plate, rear difuser
extensive spares package, including molds, jigs and spare rolling body with frame. Body has a Mylar “patina” wrap.  contact Bill Richert tel. 602-548-9368 e-m


 1964 Ford Falcon Monte Carlo Lightweight.  A race/rally car with FIA papers, extremely lightweight with legal fiberglass fenders, front hood, doors, rear deck lid and bumpers.  Car raced in Europe and won the Nurburgring and Hamburg among other places.  This is Bill Shanahan’s rally car which placed second in the Carrera Panamericana Historic C in 2008, first in Historic C in 2009 and first in the Classic Division of the Targa Newfoundland in 2010.

The car comes with a complete set of spares including front and rear suspension, transmission (T10), two 305 cubic inch Ford race prepared/rally engines.  Also included is a fully developed 6 cylinder 4.5 liter Ford engine which qualifies to run in Historic B in the Carrera Panamericana, all of the FIA spec pieces including a 289 FIA engine and the original suspension parts.  The suspension parts of the Carrera/Targa car have been significantly strengthened given the difficult road conditions in those rallies at high speeds.  Finally, the car comes with a complete set of molds to build, if necessary, fiberglass fenders, hood, doors and trunk.  The car has not been raced since 2011 due to owner business commitments; it has been continually track tested and is race ready.

Call David Bate – 203-377-6745 ext 37 or Michael Silverstein – 203-377-6745 ext 14  100 Lupes Drive, Stratford, CT  06614


 Classic Mustangs – Pan Am, Chihuahua, Pikes Peak – Todd Landon

Mats Hammarlund Racing – in Mexico, all Mexican races, Studebakers, Falcons, Mustangs –

Euro-Latino Racing – in Mexico, all races, a wide variety of cars --


 As most of you know, auto racing is inherently dangerous and unless you drive prudently, like a reasonable person (who races), it can be seriously injurious to your health.  Rallying through the mountains of Mexico can also be addictive and ruin your career on the round-and-round tracks Stateside.  Also note that the opinions expressed herein are the editor’s and do not represent the views of any race organizer on either side of the border.


 Gerie Bledsoe, North American Coordinator

La Carrera Panamericana and Chihuahua Express

San Miguel de Allende, Mexico 1-650-525-nine one 90, until April 20


LCP Main Office

Mexico City +52-55-5586-6898

US Number 1-310-86zero-6959 (entries, general info)

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