Click HERE for Pete Vack's article about Harry Hurst on VeloceToday.

I first went to Sebring in 1965. That was the year of the great downpour and we arrived at sunset, after the rain had stopped. My dad was an accountant in Tampa and this was the height of tax season, but (I now realize) he made the time to take me, my sister and mother on the two-hour drive so I could attend my first race.

It was still light when we arrived and I was able to actually see the cars and drivers I had only read about up to that time. Jim Hall and Hap Sharp in the beautiful Chaparral, Cobra Daytona Coupes, Ford GT-40's, Ferraris 330P's. Unfortunately, Dan Gurney was already out by the time we arrived. We only stayed a few hours, but that was enough for me - I was hooked.

The next year I returned as the guest of family friends and we left at 10 p.m., confident that Dan was firmly in the lead and would win. Some things are just not meant to be. His car broke less than a quarter mile from the finish.

When I turned 18, I joined the SCCA and became a flagman, but being stranded out on the Webster turn and wearing white coveralls wasn't my idea of really being involved. Luckily, I had developed a serious interest in photography and took photos when I flagged. A friend, John Annis, gave some of my shots of the 1969 Daytona 24-hour to John Smiley, the press officer at Sebring at the time, who asked me to take photos for him (in exchange for credentials, of course!).

That was how I happened to be at Sebring in 1970 as track photographer at the ripe old age of 19.

For over thirty years, these photos sat in boxes. Some found their way into other books and Web sites (I had sent prints to the Sebring organizers and they became part of the Ulmann archives, which were later sold). Finally, I decided to put them together into a photo essay; to tell the story of one race and the cars and drivers that made it great.

This book is not intended to be a definitive record of that event; there are ample race reports from that time which document what happened (and conflict in many ways!). Rather, I would like you to regard this book as a trip back in time.

Harry Hurst has been involved with cars and racing most of his life. A native Floridian, he began taking photographs at races in the mid-1960s, at tracks including Sebring, Daytona and Road Atlanta. He studied Fine Arts at Florida State and received his degree in photography/cinematography in 1972.

After graduating, Harry opened his own English sportscar repair/restoration shop in Tallahassee and translated that technical knowledge into a job producing training programs for Jaguar and as East Coast technical representative for the DeLorean Motor Company.

In 1982, Harry went to work for the Philadelphia office of Foote, Cone & Belding, a global advertising agency. Over the last twenty years in advertising, Harry has been instrumental in helping several of his clients become involved in motorsports, including Black & Decker, Exide batteries, SKF bearings and Chilton books.

Today, Harry operates his own advertising and public relations agency in surburban Philadelphia. He has recently re-established his relationship with Sebring and was track photographer for the 2001 and 2002 races.
© 2004 Hurst Communications, Inc.
All Photos ©1970 Harry E. Hurst