It’s not very often that you see several million dollars of retired race cars just sitting around in the rain, but here they were, caught out in a shower after being organized, more or less, for a group picture at Daytona in 2007. The event was, of course, Rennsport Reunion, that always grand tribute to all things Porsche with the emphasis on Porsche motorsports.
It seems particularly appropriate to have another look at these veterans, most especially that red #23 in the foreground, in light of Porsche’s recent win at Le Mans, their 17th. (It would have been pretty neat to have their #17 car pull off the win, with its red livery a tribute to Porsche’s first overall winner; I expect they may have rather thought it would work out that way). I have no doubt, though, that Porsche was pretty delighted with nailing down both first and second spots after the long dry spell. I sure was.
is it just me, or are race cars getting uglier?
The brutal grace of the 917 seems to have been lost as we evolved over the years. Form follows function, sure, but function doesn’t necessarily please the eye of the beholder. That panel behind the 919 cockpit looks like it would be more at home on an Americas Cup boat than on a race car, and those LED headlights—all eight of them, set high in that bulldog-flat front end—haven’t gotten an OK from my aesthetic center. I’m sure it will grow on me over time; lots of other Porsches have. But not just yet. What do you think?
About Leonard Turner and "The Last Turn"
With a background in photography spanning more than 5 decades, Leonard Turner was Porsche Panorama’s chief photographer for some 40 years, shooting several hundred covers for the magazine and countless feature spreads involving racing, new car introductions, portraits, technical illustrations, and a plethora of other topics. In the course of doing this, he has traveled widely over the United States and Europe, visiting the Porsche factories and shooting at many venues, including a portfolio of the world’s greatest race tracks.
Leonard's photographs have been published in many books including Porsche: Portrait of a Legend; Porsche Specials; Porsche, the 4-Cylinder, 4-Cam Sports & Racing Cars; Sebring, the Official History; Carrera RS; and Porsche: Prototype Era 1964 to 1973. His magazine credits, other than Panorama, include Autoweek, Road & Track, Automobile, Christophorus, and Excellence.
It was with this background in mind that we asked Leonard to open up his archives to share with you here on FLATSIXES.com. His personal files, both digital and film, contain tens of thousands of images of Porsches, Porsche people, and events they shaped and which shaped them. Our plan is to share one of Leonard's images with you every other week, and the story behind it, in this newest feature, "The Last Turn" here on FLATSIXES.com.
If you enjoyed this picture and story, please share it with other Porsche fans using one of the buttons below.