September 2001     

Rochester NY team entered in LaCarrera Panamericana

Calling themselves "Los tres viejos locos" (Three crazy old guys), three Rochester, NY, area men plan to compete in the famed LaCarrera Panamericana road race.

They are: J. Edward Diamond, former Rochestarian and Unversity of Rochester graduate who now resides in New York City; John Simonson of Rochester, systems manager at the U of R's School of Engineering and Applied Science; and Brian Fallon of Pittsford, St. John Fisher class of 1961, now retired from the automotive business and the Coast Guard Reserve. Longtime friends all of them have extensive experience in sports car racing and rallying.

LaCarrera Panamericana originally ran five times from 1950 to 1954 as an all-out road race the length of Mexico from Guatemala to Texas. It has been re-run since 1988 as an European type rally with timed, legal speed, open road sections and closed road full speed sections. It is open only to vintage cars built between 1930 and 1965. The event runs over a six day period during the last week of October.

The cars are driven by a two person team of driver and co-driver/navigator. Diamond, Simonson and Fallon plan to share the driving rotating daily between the driver, co-driver and support vehicle seats.

Their 1964 Porsche 356C has been extensively modified for safety and reliability. It has been built to modern Sports Car Club of America safety specifications with a roll cage, Halon fire extinguishing system, five point harnesses, racing seats and fuel cell. The engine, while slightly more powerful than stock, was tuned more with consideration for the rigors of a six day event and the mandated low octane Mexican fuel than all out speed.

The team received some local sponsorship from: Eksten Autoworks, Euclid Foreign Automotive, Genesee Glass, Inc., Nalgene, Nokian Tires, T-Shirt Express and Wilco Sales Corp.

Interestingly, 50 years ago another local driver, Reginald "Speed" McFee drove for the Kiekhaefer Chrysler team in several of the original Pan American road races.

"Los tres viejos locos" have been racing the car in vintage races in the Northeast this season to test it and work out any bugs. It has proved to be very reliable with few problems and finished every event entered.

Team web site:

LaCarrera web site:

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