Morton Drives Legendary 1971 BRE Datsun 510 To Class Victory at Monterey Historics GARDENA, Calif. (Aug. 22, 2001) - Thirty years after his first Trans-Am victory at Laguna Seca, with the No. 46 Brock Racing Enterprises (BRE) Datsun 510, John ...
Morton Drives Legendary 1971 BRE Datsun 510 To Class Victory at Monterey Historics
GARDENA, Calif. (Aug. 22, 2001) - Thirty years after his first Trans-Am victory at Laguna Seca, with the No. 46 Brock Racing Enterprises (BRE) Datsun 510, John Morton returned to once again give racing fans a fantastic show with the legendary Nissan.
Driving with the same passion and flair as the early 70s, Morton won his class in the 1966-1972 Historic Trans-Am race at the 28th Annual Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races on Aug. 19. Nissan Motorsports and Morton also received the Rolex Award for Outstanding Presentation and Performance for the preparation of the Datsun 510, which won the 1971 and 1972 Trans-Am 2.5 Challenge Championships.
"It was fun doing it," said John Morton, after the 10-lap race on the 2.24-mile Laguna Seca road course. "This car has never failed to lead a race. It was real good in the corkscrew, the Datsun being so nimble."
Morton started 20th in the field of 32 historic Trans-Am cars, which included two classes of competition: the original big-bore pony cars, and the 2.5 Challenge class designed for cars under 2.5-liters.
Racing against the sister BRE Datsun 510, driven by Tommy Riggins of Jacksonville, Fla., a pair of Alfa Romeos, and a BMW 1600, Morton led the 2.5 Challengers from start to finish. He spent most of the race battling with the larger, more powerful cars in the field.
Automobile Magazine writer Preston Lerner noted, "The Datsun 510 was like a water bug among the big cars, darting through traffic."
Peter Brock, owner and team manager of the original BRE team, also attended the landmark racing appearance of the 1971 Datsun 510. Reunited with John Morton, the pair appeared to be a fan favorite for autograph seekers attending the Monterey Historic Automobile Races in Northern California, which entertained a three-day crowd of 43,500.
"There were so many Datsun 510 owners and fans, it was never-ending all day long," said Ron Stukenberg, corporate manager, motorsports marketing and operations, Nissan North America, Inc.