No racing car exemplified and exploited the admirable freedom of the Can-Am series rules more than the 1966 Chaparral 2E. It introduced new aerodynamic concepts that were game-changing, though it took a while for others to catch on.
Jim Hall’s Chaparrals were the cars to beat when the Can-Am series was born. In the SCCA’s U.S. Road Racing Championship, the amateur series that predated and later paralleled the Can-Am, the Chaparral 2A had been almost unbeatable. Their outstanding success in 1964 and 1965 in the USRRC helped make them top Can-Am favorites. At that time Hap Sharp, a partner in their company Chaparral Cars in Midland, Texas, shared the driving in the two-car team with Jim. Older than Hall, Sharp was a source of good ideas, which, bounced against Jim’s engineering education at Cal Tech, and produced results.
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