How did Zora Arkus Duntov’s tube-frame 1963 Grand Sport stack up against a 1989 tube-frame Trans-Am Corvette?
Dateline 2.16.21, Story by Paul Van Valkenburgh, Photos by Mark Harmer – To download the free PDF E-book, CLICK HERE – Of all of the five original 1963 Grand Sport Corvettes, GS #002, known today as the “Wintersteen Grand Sport” is the only Grand Sport to have big-block, 427 L88 power. Sports car racing was evolving so fast that by 1965/1966 the Grand Sport was obsolete, despite copious amounts of horsepower and torque. Like all of the Grand Sport Corvettes, after George Wintersteen was done racing the car, it was bought and sold many times.
Today, the car resides at The Simeone Museum, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Occasionally the car is brought out into Simeone’s two-acre courtyard for their monthly Saturday “Demonstration Days”. If you are in the Philly area, check Simeone’s schedule to see when you can see, hear, and smell a classic American beast race car.
Late in 1989 Corvette Quarterly (formerly “Corvette News”) arranged a special event. Grand Sport #002 was brought together at Sebring International Raceway for a side-by-side comparison test with the then “state-of-the-art” tube chassis Trans-Am C4 Corvette. Twenty-six-years separate the two cars, they are both tube-frame cars with replica bodies and powered by Chevrolet engines. But that’s where the similarity ends, and the difference is startling.
The Grand Sport’s lap time was 1.34.22 and the Trans-Am Corvette’s lap time was 1.22.45. Technologies across the board all added up to a much-improved race car. Enjoy the comparison. – Scott
Here are the PDF download links to all 3 of the Duntov Files…