While Watkins Glen brought sports car racing back to the U.S., it was the Sebring 12-hour race that brought international racing to the States. The race was founded by Russian expatriate Alec Ulmann on an abandoned WWII training air field located in the middle of central Florida orange groves. Because it was run on the old concrete runways, Sebring was extremely hard on drivers as well as cars. It had two very long straights that enabled the cars to reach high speeds, making good brakes essential.
As one of the international races counting towards the Worlds Manufacturers’ Championship, the top drivers and teams in the world came here to race. The Sebring circuit is still used today, with the 12 Hours of Sebring as a major race in the United SportsCar Championship. The two Jaguars shown in this exhibit were actual competitors in the Sebring races.