Imagine a place so flat it appears you can see the curvature of the Earth, so barren not even the simplest of life forms can exist. Imagine a place where land speed records are made, and where they are most certainly broken. A place for where the last 69 years, thousands of people have come from all over the world to see cars race through the brine. Got it? No need to imagine…it’s actually exists.
The Bonneville Salt Flats of western Utah is one of the most unique natural features in the world. Stretching over 30,000 acres, it’s located along I-80 near the Utah-Nevada border and can easily be seen as you drive between Salt Lake City and Wendover, NV.
Every August, the Southern California Timing Association and Bonneville Nationals Inc. organize Speed Week, the largest meet of the year, attracting several hundred drivers who compete to set speed records across a range of categories. Speed Week consists of six days of racing (Sat – Fri) and people from all over the world come to participate in the week long event.
The famous Bonneville Speedway is located in the western portion of the flats, near Wendover. It is perfectly flat and has a thick crust of salty soil, formed when Lake Bonneville, a prehistoric lake that covered much of the eastern part of North America’s Great Basin region, dried up and left only salt deposits behind.
That was nearly 14,000 years ago…bad for anything living there, great for car racing. The 69th Annual Speed Week at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah was just held a few weeks ago. Reader William Weston was there and sent us these great photos of him with his 1972 BMW 2002. For the last 5 years, William has been working diligently to bring back to life an iconic 02 that, prior to his purchase, sat alone in an open field baking in the sun for nearly 12 years.
Since then, he’s been hard at work…he “slightly” lowered it on coilovers with OZ Racing Alpina style wheels, installed Recaro seats, installed dual 40dcoe Weber carbs and an Ireland engineering Alpina Style Tri-Y exhaust header. He has brought it up to a daily driver in fact…last year he trailered it to the salt flats and Monterrey car week, but this year he was able to drive it. A true mark of a second daily and a committed enthusiast.
The patina will stay William says…paint is only original once no matter the condition. Just be sure to wash off that salt William…we’ve seen the before pictures and they weren’t pretty! Thanks to William Weston for the story and these amazing photos. Have any pictures from salt week? Send them our way, we’d love to add them to the post.
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