DANA POINT, Calif. – June 22, 2012
The Dana Point Concours d’Elegance© is proud to announce the 1979 Porsche 935 K3 that captured the 24 Hours of Le Mans overall win will debut on Sunday, June 24, on the golf links of the St. Regis Monarch Beach resort during the 30th anniversary celebration of automotive heritage. After 30 years at the Indianapolis Hall of Fame Museum, the historic Porsche will be shown to the public at the Concours for the first time since it was donated to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Foundation in 1982. The Porsche was the last production based car to win Le Mans overall.
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“We’re celebrating the great cars that raced at Le Mans and this Porsche certainly is one of the most important to win that prestigious race,” said Jeff Spellens, Dana Point Concours d’Elegance president. “It’s an honor that Bruce Meyer will display the race-winning Porsche along with the first Corvette to compete at Le Mans, a Ferrari that won the Manufacturer’s Championship for the marque in 1961 and the first production Shelby Cobra built. The lineup of Le Mans cars is simply incredible.”
The ‘79 Porsche was originally a production-based racecar that upgraded to racing specs for the esteemed 24 hour endurance race. Driven by Klaus Ludwig and Don and Bill Whittington, the Kremer Porsche 935 K3 features a Twin Turbo engine that generates up to 700 horsepower.
“This beautiful sports car was an underdog in 1979,” noted Bruce Meyer, owner of the Porsche and the 2012 Dana Point Concours d’Elegance Automotive Icon Award recipient. “The purpose built racecars were beginning to really dominate, leaving production based cars to fight for class wins. No one expected it to cross the finish line ahead of the, much faster prototypes. The story of how this Porsche won Le Mans is incredible and I’m thrilled to share this piece of history with fellow enthusiasts.”
The tale behind the restoration of this Porsche was prepared for the Concours is equally compelling. On March 15, 2012, Meyer sent the Porsche #00900015 to the team at Canepa Motorsports after he acquired the car in less than ideal condition. Poorly prepared for its museum stay in the early ‘80s, many of the critical parts of the Porsche had been lost, overlooked or recreated.
Canepa Motorsport conducted a complete tear down of the 935, while research was undertaken to find period correct parts of the legendary racer. No detail went unnoticed during the complete nut-and-bolt restoration of the car. To ensure the 935 would look and drive as it did in June of ‘79, all the mechanicals were rebuilt, including the flat-six engine and transmission. After just 92 days, the Porsche roared out of the Canepa facility and onto the road ready to take on any competitor.
Visitors and enthusiasts can see the ‘79 Porsche for the first time on display in California this weekend as it participates in the Legends of Le Mans Racecars class during Southern California’s premiere celebration of automotive elegance. There, other Le Mans cars will once again compete, this time for the hearts of the public.
As part of the weekend, the Dana Point Concours d’Elegance, in association with EventWerks, will host the family-friendly Beach Cruisers Show, on Saturday, June 23, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. PDT, which is free to the public. The Concours is currently accepting tickets online for the exclusive Private Collection Tour and Concours Reception, scheduled Saturday evening.
Gates open at 9 a.m. on Sunday, June 24, for the main event, the Dana Point Concours d’Elegance. Guests can purchase a general admission ticket for $30 online or $35 at the gate. For more information about the event, visit www.danapointconcours.org.