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Need for Speed Award


1966 Chaparral 2E Can-Am Race Car


Owned by The Petroleum Museum, Midland,Texas

Chaparral 2E

According to Wikipedia: "The 2E was based on the Chevrolet designed aluminum 2C chassis and presented Jim Hall's most advanced aerodynamic theories to the racing world in the 1966 inaugural Can-Am championship. The 2E established the paradigm for virtually all racing cars built since.[2] It was startling in appearance, with its radiators moved from the traditional location in the nose to two ducted pods on either side of the cockpit and a large wing mounted several feet above the rear of the car on struts. The wing was the opposite of an aircraft wing in that it generated down-force instead of lift and was attached directly to the rear hubs, loading the tires, for extra adhesion while cornering. A ducted nose channeled air from the front of the car up, creating extra down-force as well. By depressing a pedal that was in the position of the clutch pedal on a car with a manual transmission, Hall was able to feather, or flatten out, the negative angle of the wing when down-force was not needed, such as on a straight section of the track, to reduce drag and increase top speed. In addition, an interconnected air dam closed off the nose ducting for streamlining as well. When the pedal was released, the front ducting and wing returned to their full down-force position. It was a brilliant design. Within two years every sports racing car, as well as Formula One car, had wings on tall struts, although many were not as well designed as Hall's. The resulting accidents from their failures caused movable wings (as movable aerodynamic devices) to be outlawed after the 1967 season by the FIA, which sanctioned most professional road racing."

"The 2E scored only one win in Laguna Seca with Phil Hill driving, but the reason for this may have been the larger engines the other competitors were using. Hall stuck to an aluminum 5.3 liter Chevrolet engine in his lightweight racer, while the other teams were using 6 and sometimes 7 liter iron engines, trading weight for power."

"The 2E was a crowd favorite and remains Jim Hall's favorite car."

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