While we were at Road Atlanta for the 14th Annual Petit Le Mans, we had the unique opportunity to talk with one of the most legendary names in racing, Bob Bondurant. Our conversation ranges from Bob’s racing exploits to what new Corvette ZR1 owners learn at his high performance driving school.
Bob began his sports car racing career in 1956 and won the 1959 West Coast “B” Production Championship in a ’56 Corvette. From there he raced in almost every series available including SCCA, Formula 1, FIA and NASCAR. In 1964, Bob was a member of Carroll Sheby’s race team that won the GT class and finished 4th overall at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the Cobra Daytona Coupe.
After recovering from a major crash at Watkins Glenn in 1967, Bob turned his attention to driver instruction with his Bondurant Method and opened the Bondurant School of High Performance Driving in 1968. Today his students range from teens learning basic car control maneuvers to professional drivers like NASCAR’s Tony Stewart who return to the Phoenix, Arizona school periodically to brush up on their racing skills.
At 78 years old, Bob shows no signs of slowing down. Last year he and his wife Pat exchanged wedding vows on the Formula 1 track at Monaco’s Grand Prix (turn 12 to be exact) and today he still enjoys giving his students and guests some very fast hot laps in a Corvette ZR1.
I’d like to thank Bob and his wife Pat for their time at Petit Le Mans. What a great honor it was to speak with a living legend of racing. I urge anyone who is interested in learning more about car control and high performance diving to visit Bondurant.com for a list of upcoming events and scheduled classes.