Although Chevrolet introduced the Corvette to great acclaim at the 1953 Motorama, few realized it would, in time, become America’s iconic sports car.
The sporting transformation didn’t come until 1956, a year after Chief Engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov inserted a 265-ci V8 into the previously sluggish 6-cylinder-powered fiberglass two-seater.
For 1956, Arkus-Duntov improved the car’s handling and braking system. He and veteran driver John Fitch took honors in the flying mile at Daytona Speedweek, and Ray Crawford and Max Goldman finished first-in-class at Sebring.
Development of the racing models SS and SR-2 abruptly ended when General Motors signed the 1957 Automobile Manufacturers Association ban on motorsports. This left competition to privateers like Jeff Jeffords, Don Yenko and Dr. Dick Thompson, albeit with tacit corporate support in engineering and parts supply. GM did not return to racing until the 1980s with the Corvette GTP.
In 1965, Fred Yeakel bought this 1957 Corvette and immediately took it racing, running in B Production at the Memorial Day races in Santa Barbara. He also raced it at Willow Springs and Riverside that year.
In 1979, Yeakel opened a new chapter in the Corvette’s life with vintage races at Portland and Monterey. Since then, it has competed regularly at Monterey, as well as Westport, British Columbia, Sebring, Kansas City, Riverside, Palm Springs, and the La Carrera Classic.
This is one of the quickest Corvettes in the country. Fred Yeakel won the always-tough Corvette class at the 1982 Monterey Historics, and Dick Guldstrand drove it to victory in 1987—the year Corvette was the featured marque. That defined how well the car performed, considering that all the fastest Corvettes in the world were on hand to compete.
Although ’57 ’Vettes are plentiful, and many have competition history, this car is unusual in its bulletproof pedigree and extensive documentation. It comes completely equipped for vintage racing and road use. The newly rebuilt engine has only break-in mileage, and the car is ready for tech inspection. This is a rare opportunity to buy one of the fastest Corvette race cars in the country with a long and distinguished heritage and a race-winning record.