While sipping a good red as we looked out over the Pacific, we would start to reminisce about the past years of the Historics at Laguna Seca.
What had happened to the manufacturers that once sponsored the Historics? Ford celebrating Shelby? Lauda piloting an F1 Ferrari while wearing a red baseball cap? Fangio in a Mercedes and, of course, Sir Stirling Moss in a Jaguar? Cars that we saw only at the Historics.
For the past years, it seemed the Historics were no more than a big club event. There were some nice cars for sure, but cars we had seen at other tracks or another event earlier in the year. The paddock seemed like a CSRG or HMSA event, only more so.
Then early in 2019, I started to hear rumors about the Sonoma Speed Festival and Jeff O’Neill. O’Neill’s event was going to bring the Magic back to historic racing, and his 2019 Sonoma Speed Festival was held to rave reviews.
Now two years later after a Covid 19 delay, O’Neill has moved his circus 152 miles south to Monterey’s WeatherTech Laguna Seca Raceway for the newly named Velocity Invitational at Laguna Seca on Nov 11-14, 2021.
Sports Car Digest had the pleasure of sitting down with Jeff to discover more about the man and the inspiration behind the event.