I recently learned about the new ALMS: Unlimited Racing Championship series coming in 2012. This series is supposed to be a throw back to Can-am and features big block powered cars with 60’s Can-Am styling, but with modern safety standards. But to me, this series seems disappointing before it has even begun.
The original Can-Am series of the 60’s and early 70’s was as close to unlimited racing as there has ever been. The series had the highest payout in racing at the time and thus attracted the best drivers even if they were already participating in the Le Mans series or Formula One. Can-Am saw the first use of the wing on a race car with the Chaparral 2E, and the use of fan assisted ground effects on the 2J, which was immediately banned. The fastest race cars on earth at that time were Can-Am cars.
So anything claiming that its Can-Am inspired has a lot to live up to. I personally don’t think that we will ever see anything as exciting as the original Can-Am again simply due to the costs of running such a series; so I knew this new Unlimited Racing Championship could not possibly be that great.
The most upsetting thing about this new series is that even though it has “Unlimited” in the name, its actually a spec series using cars modeled after the old Mclaren M8F. There is nothing unlimited about this series at all! Rather, it seems to be for amateur racers with the cars being designed for drivers ‘of many different skill levels’.
You can read about the cars and their series on the Unlimited Racing Championship website here: http://www.unlimitedracingchampionship.com/home.htm