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Clash of the Titans

Penske Racing was founded in 1966 and also made its first Tran-Am appearance at Daytona in 1967 with driver Mark Donohue and a lightly modified Chevrolet Camaro Z/28. Donohue later revealed in his book, The Unfair Advantage, that he had guessed at the spring rates and suspension setup. He was too embarrassed to admit to Chevrolet engineers and others that he had no idea what was actually required. (Peter Luongo)

Last year the SCCA marked the 50th anniversary of its inaugural Trans-American Sedan Championship event at Sebring, Florida, on March 25, 1966. Eventually known as simply the Trans-Am, the series became the most closely contested road-racing series in America. The Tran-Am blossomed quickly, reached its zenith in 1970 and then decayed until 1972 when the SCCA implemented drastic rule changes that made eligible cars a far cry from the seemingly stock vehicles that ran in the series’ first seven seasons.

Many teams and drivers competed in the Trans-Am, but none are more inextricably linked to the series than Penske Racing and Bud Moore Engineering. The 2017 season marks the 50th anniversary of both teams’ debut in the series, and so with photos from David Bull Publishing’s recently released Trans-Am Era—The Golden Years in Photographs: 1966-1972 by Daniel Lipetz, we take a pictorial look back at this exciting time in American road racing.

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