September 27, 2008 -
Words/Photos by Ben Hsu
Each year Mazda USA hosts a gathering for its fans at its American headquarters in Irvine, California. Since last year
, many changes have taken place. For one, the HQ shares an office complex with Ford's Premier Auto Group, and last year you could still see Land Rovers and Jaguars in neighboring buildings. That's all gone now, sold off to Tata Motors of India.
But Mazda remains, and Mazdafarians have good reason to rejoice. This year's SevenStock reunited two endurance racers that won the 24 Hours of Daytona nearly 3 decades apart. In 1979, the RX-7
won the IMSA GTU class at Daytona, sweeping in a 1-2 finish. Having dominated that, Mazda attempted entry into the GTP class with the RX-792P
in the early 90s. Unfortunately, changes to IMSA rules led Mazda to cancel the project after just one season. In 2008, this RX-8
won it again.
We also saw some spectacular cars like Glenn Roberts' Cosmo 110 Sports
, midway through its meticulous restoration. Roberts also brought out his Mazda R360
kei car. This RX-2
was a project car for Car and Driver
magazine back in the day.
Our favorite part of the show is seeing all the great nostalgics being brought out of the woodwork: R100s
, and (surprisingly) a good number of Rotary Pickups
. But did they have to be placed right next to the outhouses
? Naturally, being called SevenStock, the most prevalent car was the RX-7
, ranging from mint 30,000-mile
first-gens to full-blown race cars
and JDM FD3Ss
The event also boasted a R/C track
, and a Q&A session with the winning endurance team. We love seeing manufacturers get in touch with their roots and their fans. Thank you, Mazda.