World Sports Racing Prototypes

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1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 1956 1957 1958 1959 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 Drivers Teams SCCA Nationals (info)

SCCA National Sports Car Championship

SCCA National Championship was formed in 1951 by selecting several existing race meetings that had emerged over the last couple of years in the U.S. In the first three seasons drivers were given points for finishing positions in their respective classes, which differed from race to race and since most of the events consisted of more than a single race, drivers who raced most regularly in less supported classes had most chances for a good place in the championship because all points accumulated in all races and classes of all selected National meeting were counted together for overall championship. So from 1951 to 1953 there was only one National Champion.

That was changed in 1954 when each class had its own champion. Cars were divided into Modified and Production sports car categories. Both modified and production cars were further divided into many classes according to engine capacities. Thus SCCA recognized champions in CP, DP, EP, FP and GP classes for production cars and in BM, CM, DM, EM, FM, GM and HM champions among modified car drivers. Since the performance of production cars with an increasing recognition of GT class in Europe was less and less dependent on just engine capacity because specially built GT models were much quicker than true production cars destined for general market, originally SCCA started to change size limits for class (first change was moving traditional 1100 cc G class to 1300 cc to allow aging T-series MGs with 1250 cc engine continue for another couple of season running competitively but a new Alfa Romeo Giuliettas replaced them soon anyway. But specials like Porsche 356 Carrera, Mercedes-Benz 300 SL or some Bristol-engined 2-litre production cars were usually much quicker than cars like Austin-Healey 100 despite many of them fielded lower classes, SCCA continously replaced engine displacement formula with their own class structure when individual models were placed according to their performance only, and from time to time some cars were moved up or down a class, as the new and more competitive cars were appearing. Additional class BP was added in 1957 for Corvettes after Mercedes-Benz was moved from DP to CP to race against Jaguar and Aston Martin to allow slow Austin-Healey drivers race themselves for the championship. When newer and quicker Ferrari GTs and more powerful Corvettes appeared in the early 1960s, a new top class AP was created for them. Also for smallest production cars new classes were added, originally just HP but later also IP and JP were recognized in some races for really small capacity cars.

Modified cars became during 1950s more and more proper sports cars rather then modified production cars so SCCA made an attempt to rename the class to Sports category in 1957 but it was not much popular among drivers and fans so they returned to Modified class the next year despite were few really modified cars started at all. Unlike Production classes, sports car were always divided based only on engine size, though the limits changed from time to time. A real change of the class came in the mid-1960s when real Group 7 Can-Am cars were also used in some National events, so the old name Modified was finally dropped in order to call the cars Sports-Racing, SR classes. While in the early 1950s most of the cars belonged to the modified category, soon the modified cars were more rare, so their numbers were lower then in production classes, so they usually raced together. Into the late 1960s it was getting harder and harder to put together a decent entry for so many Sports-Racing classes, so that SCCA merged them into just 4 classes called ASR, BSR, CSR and DSR.

SCCA National Championship continued in this original form until 1965 when a new system was adopted. No more there were just about dozen of national events per year as used to have been before but rather each region had its own SCCA National Championship. That produced extremely large number of National Champions. Also number of races increased several times but their importance fell down very dramatically and races had merely a club level statut. At the end of 1965 an American Road Race of Champions was held. It invited best drivers of each region from all classes. This race was held for the first time in 1964 but with no championship status. For the 1966 season National Championships in each region were dropped and only Race of Champions that invited best drivers of Regional Championships decided National Champions in each class. The American Road Race of Champions became soon known as SCCA Run-Offs. This system is more or less used until present days. To maintain results of all those club races until present days would be nearly impossible and would hardly exceed boundaries of other people's interest than those who really participate in them, so they are not included here. This section contains only results from beginning 1951 until the end of the true championship in 1964. Some other more important races along with the AARC race results are shown in the US National races section.

Presented by WSRP Martin Krejci.
Last update: 19.7.2009