Men began to race cars as soon as they could drive them. The first great automobile race (Paris-Bordeaux, 1895) was won by a 2-cylinder, 4-horsepower Panhard & Levassor, averaging 15 mph. Since then, the urge to drive and win has brought about faster, safer, and sleeker cars both on the track and off. The embodiment of these ideals, the classic racing cars, are not only works of beauty, but with their paints, numerals, decals, and chrome, works of brilliant color too. Here are 45 fabulous racers, from 1895 to 1978, accurately rendered and ready to blaze their colors. Carlo Demand’s vivid drawings feature automotive marvels from the world’s record books: the 1902 Renault, 1908 Locomobile, 1911 Marmon Wasp (first Indianapolis 500 winner), 1913 Peugeot, 1926 Bugatti, 1934 Alfa Romeo, 1937 Mercedes, 1952 Agajanian Special, 1953 Maserati, 1957 Vanwall, 1958 Ferrari, James Hunt’s 1976 McLaren-Ford M 23, Mario Andretti’s 1978 Lotus 79, and many others. Each is manned by a driver in period gear. Accompanying captions give full racing history and other remarks, plus a color code for the entire machine.
Car collectors, racing buffs, and Grand Prix watchers, along with colorists, will want to deck each glorious racer just as it was before the flag went down.