Trans-Am Series are races created by SCCA back in 1966. It was first ment for production based and a bit modified vehicles to compete in raceways in two different classes: under 2.0 liter and over 2.0 liter [limited to max 5.0 liter/305 cubics]. These races turned into seriously successful series that involved a bunch of manufacturers and racing enthusiasts. Since those races were formed at a dawn of pony muscle car era, they have strong historical roots so that they are still held and organized with the influence with the same SCCA – Sports Car Club of America.
The races were best known for competition among American V8 sedans such as the Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro, Plymouth Barracuda, Mercury Cougar, AMC Javelin, Pontiac Firebird, and Dodge Challenger, Dodge Dart in the 1960s and early 1970s. These were the days when racing was racing. There was no traction or stability control and no anti-lock brakes. Marques such as Porsche, Alfa Romeo, Datsun, Mini Cooper, Saab, and Volkswagen competed in the series Under 2.0 Liter category. The famous Pontiac Trans Am was actually named after these series ’cause Pontiac managed to win it 7 times.
The Golden Era is said to be 1968-1972, when Mark Donohue dominated these races. Each pony car manufacturer presented factory team with talented drivers – these days were a deep mark of American motoring history. Rules evolved over the years, incorporating FIA touring and grand-touring classes as well as SCCA Club Racing classes. The different classes had restrictions placed on the allowed modifications in an effort to equalize competition between the different cars. Later, in 1980-1988 tube-framed cars based on stock car chassis began to appear together with turbocharged small displacement engines becoming the standard of TA races.
Check out these vintage photos of muscle car battles in Trans Am Series:
Photo credits belong to their respective owners.