PRDA Attends McLaren Performance 40th Anniversary party
By Ken McClellan
Chief Web Mechanic ~ PRDAracing.com
Livonia, MI - When McLaren Performance throws a party, they do it in the same high octane style that they build their engines. Fast and Furious only begins to describe the sights and sounds of the one day event held on one of the few sunny days Michigan was gracious enough to bless us with.
To say they throw a mean party would be like saying Rolls Royce makes nice cars. Top notch, high class, first rate all seem to fall short in doing justice in describing the celebration held in Livonia, Michigan on July 30th, 2009 at the McLaren Performance shop.
In 1969 a race car driver by the name of Bruce McLaren from New Zealand founded a company in America to support his Can Am racing efforts. From its humble beginnings, McLaren Performance grew to be a major force in race engine manufacture for all race venues.
Seemingly beating the odds, and today’s economy, McLaren Performance is not only surviving the economy, but expanding as well with a ribbon cutting ceremony opening a new building, and bringing more jobs to the Detroit area.
On hand to celebrate Bruce McLaren’s legacy were such names as Johnny Rutherford, Bobby Rahal, David Hobbs, Oscar Koveleski, and Jack Deren to name just a few of the many stars of auto racing history on hand. All were available for autographs, to chat, and shake hands and pose for pictures. All were the model ambassadors of the racing industry, and spokesmen for their respective rolls in McLaren history.
The drivers and mechanics were not the only celebrities at the gala. On display were many McLaren built or McLaren powered cars from all era's beginning with a 1966 McLaren M1B that had been converted to street legal. Other Can Am Cars represented were the McLaren M8F and McLaren M20. Johnny Rutherford’s 1974 Indy 500 winning car, the McLaren M16C was there as well.
Dozens of other cars, from all era’s and venues were represented, all featuring the McLaren touch. There were several David Hobbs driven BMW represented, as well as many other street legal McLarenized monsters.
Past successes were only part of what makes McLaren what it is. Not resting on it’s laurels, McLaren Performance and Linamar Corporation announced that it recently secured an overseas contract for drivelines that would bring in 200 million dollars per year for the next seven years. This is impressive by any standard.
Racing into the future, McLaren Performance continues to carry on the legacy that Bruce McLaren started 40 years ago. With a rich heritage behind it, and a promising future ahead, old Bruce would be very proud. Very proud indeed.