“The Alta Vista Car”
The Porsche was then raced in the 1999 American Le Mans Series under the Contemporary Motorsports team name, being run by Aasco Performance. Driven by Mike Conte and Bruno Lambert, it finished third at the 12 Hours of Sebring to open the year. It had several more podiums at Las Vegas and Portland, with Conte being joined by Randy Pobst and Joe Varde as a co-driver in those races.
The next year, it raced in the newly formed Grand American Road Racing series, with a terrific new look from title sponsor Alta Vista courtesy of new driver Andy Hajducky, who moonlighted as the CFO of the internet search engine company. Despite a well funded effort for Daytona and the first half of the season, the car didn’t have drivers of quite the caliber it had the year before in ALMS, and never lived up to it’s potential. After a frustrating first half of the season, Hajducky and his co-driver Bobby Oneglia decided they needed a new 996 GT3R to be competitive. After a refresh on it’s motor and gearbox this car was retired and put in storage.
In 2007 the car was sold and it’s new owner went about preparing it for NASA racing. After entering one race weekend, he changed his mind for unknown reasons. Possibly it was just too ambitious to run a full blown GT car, maybe it was considered too valuable, maybe something else altogether, but the car went back into storage. It found it’s way to a collection in Florida around 2011, where it was featured in the Sebring Museum’s “Legends of Sebring” exhibit. It also ran twice in the 24 Minutes of Daytona exhibition before the Rolex 24 at Daytona.
As expected when we got the car to California, the car was a time capsule. Despite looking great, we decided to just go ahead and just go through the car entirely. When we finished, it ran for the first time at the fifth Rennsport Reunion, held at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.