David Swig of MotoringJStyle teamed up with the Z Owners of Northern California (ZONC) to bring us “Turn Z” during the Historic Races held at Infineon Raceway last Sunday. It was a fantastic day with incredible weather and a very impressive showing of classic Datsuns and Nissans.
ZCarGarage once again was the meeting place for the morning caravan up to Sonoma. I highly recommend joining us when we caravan to an event because it is a fun experience. Motoring up the freeways with a group of fellow car nuts is not to be missed. This group included a nice mix of old/new: two 240z cars, a ’67 roadster, a twin-turbo 370z and 350z, a twin-turbo G35 coupe, and 2 more z33s.
Here we are enjoying an on-ramp to highway 80 going to Sonoma:
Morning fog burned off and gave way to a sunny sky with light breeze when we arrived at Infineon Raceway…I love the sound of engines blaring and the smell of race fuel in the air.
As we drove through the ticket gate I was joined by 3 other Datsun roadsters and we were escorted Nascar-style by an Infineon ring taxi to Turn 7, appropriately designated “Turn Z” where the Datsun/Nissan car corral was being held. To my surprise this corral was completely paved, and had a stunning view of the track. In fact, we were so close to the Turn 7 run-off that we had to re-park a few cars for safety!
Big thanks to ZONC and David Swig for giving us a great corral, it was much better than the corral we have at Laguna Seca which leaves your freshly detailed ride covered in a nice thick layer of dust with bits of hay in the interior.
There were plenty of cool old-school Japanese rides in the corral mixed with modern ones too. At the peak there were close to 50 cars! Some notables:
Super clean period-restored 240z cars:
Datsun 510 with a turbocharged KA24DE drivetrain:
A ZG-flared SR20DET-powered 240z with a very JDM paint color:
A Toyota S800!
More Old-School Toyotas:
Lou’s RHD FairladyZ(Yes, those badges came from the factory!) with some killer 17″ Panasports(custom offset) and 255mm wide tires:
This fully restored 1967.5 Datsun 2000 roadster was just plain pretty:
After looking at cars in Turn Z we toured the paddock area to check out vintage race cars from all eras. Lots of high-dollar, exotic and American muscle cars that left us all drooling and dreaming. Attention to detail, craftsmanship and cleanliness were at ever corner, in addition to some serious and frantic wrenching by race crews.
We found 1 Datsun that was actually competing in the races, this 240z complete with light beer livery and some interesting flares:
The garage area had some impressive IMSA/Can-AM cars, below is just a sample of what the paddock had to offer:
Once the paddock area was thoroughly inspected it was time to watch some racing! Datsun/Nissan racing legend John Morton was driving in 2 races so we had to watch our hero! John was driving a Scarab and Sunbeam Tiger. Things got more interesting when we noticed that David Swig was in the same races as Morton, piloting the Monsterati and Shelby Mustang.
After watching a few races the end of the day was capped off with a parade lap around Infineon Raceway, where participants in the Turn Z corral could take their own cars out on the track! This was 3-4 laps of pure bliss for folks, and I am still hearing good things about it. What a great way to also show off our Japanese rides to the crowd too!
I really hope that this event reaches yearly status, and with more advance notice I’m positive turnout will be even greater. Thanks again to David Swig and ZONC. Turn Z was a success, here’s to the 40th Anniversary of the Z!
Click below for more pictures!