Road & Track July 2019

Road & Track includes technical features on automotive subjects, wide-ranging feature stories, spectacular automotive art and standard-setting new-car photography, humor, fiction, travel stories, book reviews and the most comprehensive racing coverage offered by a monthly magazine.Bonus: iPad Interactive

United States

in this issue

3 min
finding the human element cars are nothing without people.

FOR THE LAST 15 years, my Mazda Miata has been a terrible moving van and a wonderful partner on back roads. When the car got scratched, it felt personal. When I waxed the car, I thought I was making it happy. The Mazda is too low to handle speed bumps, too stiff to handle potholes, and nearly too small to handle me. It’s perfect. I drove it daily for years. But then life changed. I didn’t need the car every day. I abandoned my pal, left it to become an unimpressive barn find. I got it back on the road last year. All it needed was fresh gas, a new battery, and an oil change. Miatas are good like that. Memories flooded back. A tap on the clutch stopped the throw-out…

2 min
jonathan ward’s classic aesthetic

JONATHAN WARD AGE: 49 OCCUPATION: ICON CEO LOCATION: LOS ANGELES, CA FEW SHOPS do personality quite like Icon. The Los Angeles firm’s exquisitely detailed restorations are unique products of founder Jonathan Ward’s particular imagination and his desire to resolve a long-running conflict within himself. Ask Ward what gives a car character, what makes it more than a tool to weather thankless commuter miles, and he won’t hesitate: “It’s the design, the aesthetic, and hopefully the continuity of it. In a perfect world, you can see what the designer was thinking and that it came out of one mind, instead of a focus group. The conflict for me is that, generally, the cars that define that are going to be of an age of manufacturing where I am just not the guy. I don’t have…

1 min
daily kit

BLUE POINT 300-MILLIMETER DIGITAL CALIPER “Always to the right of my desk. Fast, accurate, and with the 300-mil slide, a really nice range.” 3DCONNEXION MOUSE “A left-hand mouse that gives you 3-D zoom and pan. When you’re doing a 3-D CAD model or render, you can climb inside, way down, look up, zoom in, and isolate a specific part.” MONTBLANC BALLPOINT PEN “A traditional black with a sort-of gunmetalplated trim. To me, it’s a good example of unnecessary elevated quality—the weight, the circumference, the heft.” HORWEEN LEATHER NOTEPAD COVER “I made notepad covers for myself and my managers. Horween looks old and is superorganic, but it gets more funk and patina as you use it, so it’s fun to watch that progression.” SAKURA PIGMA MICRON PENS “On the drawing side, I’m a huge fan of Pigma Micron pens. I…

3 min
your guide to shady deals

MY DAD’S older brother, Uncle Freddy, was handsome, six foot three, and utterly charming. Always superbly dressed, he had an unbridled passion for fast cars and beautiful women. When he was a student at the Sorbonne in Paris, the considerable sums he received for higher education from my well-to-do grandfather were quickly converted into a Bugatti and a lavish apartment. I doubt Uncle Freddy ever attended a class, and he never really worked. He might have served as the inspiration for Michael Caine’s Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, a movie about a handsome con man who skillfully separates wealthy women from their money. His automotive tastes spanned beyond that Bugatti—Alfa Romeos, a coachbuilt 4.0-liter Delahaye coupe, and an immense Packard Custom Super Eight convertible. A consummate car guy but with a moral…

7 min
the problem with driver ratings

SPORTS-CAR racing is the only form of professional motorsport where drivers can be too fast for their own good. David Perel learned this lesson the hard way. The South African was one of the quickest bronze-rated amateurs in European GT competition, and he’d been offered contracts for three paying rides for 2018. Then the FIA informed him that his driver rating had been elevated one level to silver. That changed everything. “About 10 minutes after that email, all three teams withdrew their offers,” Perel recalls. “In fairness, it was probably right that I was upgraded. But nobody wants to be upgraded, because that means fewer opportunities. It’s very strange.” Driver ratings are among the most confounding—and controversial—aspects of professional sports-car racing. The FIA categorizes drivers in four classes: platinum, gold, silver, and bronze.…

1 min
but wait, it gets more complex

IMSA WEATHERTECH SPORTSCAR CHAMPIONSHIP DPi and GTLM are unrestricted. In LMP2 and GTD, only one platinum or gold driver is permitted per car. In the Rolex 24 at Daytona, this allowance increases to one platinum and one gold, or two golds. BLANCPAIN GT WORLD CHALLENGE AMERICA No restrictions in the Pro category. Pro-am requires one bronze driver with a silver, gold, or platinum. The Am category is for two bronzes. Silver Cup is for two silvers. WORLD ENDURANCE CHAMPIONSHIP, LE MANS & THE EUROPEAN LE MANS SERIES No bronzes are permitted in LMP1. LMP2 requires at least one bronze or silver and no more than one platinum. LM GTE Pro is unrestricted. LM GTE Am demands one or two bronzes or silvers, depending on race length.…