Velvet Gloved Street Fight
For decades Porsche was known exclusively as a sports car manufacturer which eventually painted it into a corner. Unable to tap new buyers, it introduced the Cayenne and Panamera and so with the introduction of the second gen Panamera, we revisited Porsche’s racing heritage and the place which gave the model its name, Mexico’s Carrera Panamericana Rally.
The Carrera Panamericana Rally is Mexico’s answer to the famed Mille Miglia of northern Italy and the equally treacherous Targa Florio that ran through the streets of Sicily until the mid 1970’s.
It is 3114kms of open road where competitors once raced from Tuxtla to Juarez, but it also added a touch of the German Nurburgring and the LeMans 24-Hour races to it as well.
The race began in a tropical climate where the temperature was high and humid and extended along a road that goes from sea level to 3000m with temperatures ranging from 34 degrees C down to zero.
Run from 1950 to 1954, the border-to-border race started as a five-day enduro by the government to celebrate the completion of the Pan-American Highway, but much like the Mille Miglia and the Targa Florio, it was also dangerous, claiming the lives of competitors and spectators alike. [To be continued...]