The F1 legend will drive the vintage racer at Laguna Seca for the Rolex Monterey Motorsport Reunion.
There are many glorious events that take place during Monterey Week. Everybody knows about the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, but racing aficionados will be watching the Rolex Monterey Motorsport Reunion taking place August 17 - 20. This year’s event honors the 60th anniversary of nearby Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca and its infamous corkscrew, while also recognizing the 70th anniversary of Ferrari and the Diamond Jubilee of Formula Junior – the first formula to be revived as an historic racing series back in 1975.
It should be no surprise, then, that the reunion takes place at Laguna Seca. And to help make the event even sweeter, Formula 1 legend Mika Häkkinen will drive Formula 1 and Indy Car legend Emmerson Fittipaldi’s McLaren M23 F1 car. Yes, that would be the same McLaren he drove to claim his second F1 championship in 1974. Häkkinen will pilot the vintage racer in a pair of 15-minute exhibition runs on both Friday and Saturday during the event.
Häkkinen and the vintage McLaren will join hundreds of other classic racers at the track for the reunion, though strictly in an exhibition capacity. Jenson Button had originally been on the docket to drive Fittipaldi’s ride but was forced to cancel. Still, that’s rather like having Pink Floyd on hand as a backup band to Led Zepplin.
“Though we were looking forward to having Jenson Button at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, we are delighted that a driver of Mika’s caliber is able to take his place,” said Gill Campbell, Senior Vice President of Event Operations at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. “Formula 1 is the pinnacle of racing advancement, and Mika will be able to showcase a car with great racing history during his spirited exhibition laps. Fans will surely enjoy the link between past and present during the exhibitions and throughout the event. Thank you to McLaren for making this happen.”
Source: Mazda, McLaren via YouTube