Watkins Glen's International Motor Racing Research Center announced Thursday that it will host motorsports historian, car collector, and retired racer Peter Sachs at its next "Conversations" series event, Saturday, October 5. Mr. Sachs will speak about his racing years and his work with the Klemantaski Collection photography archives.
According to the IMRRC, the free talk will be at 1 p.m. at the Center located at 610 S. Decatur St. It is open to all.
After a first parking lot gymkhana while still in college, Mr. Sachs had a racing career that spanned more than four decades. Today he manages the Klemantaski Collection based in Stamford, Connecticut, one of the world’s largest archives of motorsports photography.
"Peter Sachs’ compassion for motorsports history, coupled with years of competitive racing, promises to make his talk a not-to-be-missed event,” Center President J.C. Argetsinger said. “His personal commitment to preserving racing history meshes perfectly with the Center’s mission and the interests of our supporters.”
Sachs was born in 1939 in New York and has lived most of his life in Stamford, Connecticut. He graduated from Harvard College and later received an MBA from New York University. He says that while at college he got involved in automotive competition, starting by competing against Skip Barber, another Harvard guy, in parking lot gymkhanas.
He drove his first actual race at Silverstone in 1960 in a Turner 950 and continued in racing until 2007. In 1963 he was the SCCA National Champion in F Modified, driving a Lotus 23. He won a divisional title in 1964 with a Brabham BT5. Sachs also raced in IMSA Firehawk, Grand-Am Cup and vintage series.
For some years he was in the automobile business in the Boston area and then spent 37 years as an investment banker at Goldman, Sachs & Co.
He has been retired, from both work and racing, for a few years.
The Klemantaski Collection consists of more than 500,000 motor racing and related automotive photographs. The Collection is based on two major archives: all of the racing images taken by Louis Klemantaski from 1936-1974 and the racing photographs of Nigel Snowdon, covering 1961-1987.
The Collection supplies photos to special order and to authors, publishers and advertisers for reproduction in books, magazines, television and other media.
The popular Center Conversations program has long been a cornerstone of the Racing Research Center’s educational outreach and oral history initiative. Noted authors, race historians, drivers, team owners and track officials have taken listeners behind the scenes of every race series over the years. Speakers have included Donald Davidson, historian at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway; Doug Nye, writer and historian; David Donohue, racer and son of famed driver Mark Donohue; Bobby Rahal, driver and team owner; and the late John Fitch and Bill Milliken, both legendary figures in road racing.
The Racing Research Center is an archival library dedicated to the preservation of the history of motorsports, of all series and all venues, through its collections of books, periodicals, films, photographs, fine art and other materials.
For more information about the Center’s work and its programs, visit www.racingarchives.org or call (607) 535-9044.
Connie Ann Kirk, Ph.D. is the author of several books and is currently at work on a new book about motor sports with an Irish historic racer. See her blog at "Motor Sport Muse."