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New book tells the story of Lime Rock Park’s six decades

Published in blog.hemmings.com

Photos courtesy Lime Rock Park, unless otherwise noted.

Opened in Lakeville, Connecticut, in 1957, Lime Rock Park has played host to driving greats, unforgettable races, and memorable moments too numerous to count. A new book, Lime Rock Park: Six Decades of Speed, Beauty and Tradition honors the storied track’s 60-plus years of history, and it’s being released in time for an autograph session with notable contributors.

Written as a compilation of stories and edited by motorsport journalist Gordon Kirby, Lime Rock Park: Six Decades of Speed includes a forward from track president (and driving-school founder) Skip Barber. In between the covers, there are stories about track notables like Paul Newman, John Cooper Fitch, Briggs Cunningham, and Sam Posey. Jim Haynes’ 20-year stint as track manager, from the 1960s-’80, is discussed, as is P.J. Jones’ 1993 qualifying lap in the 900-horsepower Toyota Eagle Mk III IMSA GTP car. His lap time of 43.112 seconds, at an average speed over 123 mph, remains a track record today, 25 years after it was set.

John Cooper Fitch. Book photo courtesy Rich Taylor Collection.

Six Decades of Speed, Beauty and Tradition also discusses the glory years of the Trans-Am series at the track, from 1966-’74, as well as NASCAR’s K&N Pro Series East years, from 1993-2011. Other chapters cover the venue’s early and middle history, open-wheel racing at the track, the Vintage Sports Car Club of America (VSCCA) and its history at Lime Rock, the rivalry between Mario Andretti and Mark Donohue, the Skip Barber Racing School, and even the future of IMSA Sports Car racing.

Sam Posey and Paul Newman enjoy a quiet moment at the track. Book photo courtesy David Livshin Images.

Of the new effort to document the track’s history, Barber said,

As fans know, Lime Rock Park is a beautiful place with a rich history. There’s a special spirit that exists here and we hope this book paints a vivid picture of the track for those who have never visited, as well our fans and competitors who have enjoyed many years of spectating and racing at Lime Rock.

Priced at $69.95, the book is available for preorder at LimeRockStore.com. Buyers can opt to pick up the book at the track on Friday, August 31, at 3:00 p.m., and then attend an autograph session with Gordon Kirby, Skip Barber, Rich Taylor, Judy Stropus, David Hobbs, Sam Posey, and Murray Smith. Those attending this year’s Lime Rock Historic Festival who are unable to attend the autograph session can pick up pre-ordered copies at the track’s store, and buyers can also opt to have the book shipped at the end of the weekend.

IMSA GT Le Mans racing at Lime Rock Park. Book photo by Casey Keil, courtesy Lime Rock Park Collection.

For additional information on Lime Rock Historic Festival 36, taking place from Friday, August 31, through Monday, September 3, visit LimeRock.com.