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SevenStock7 - A Great Success
Submitted by Dan Mazzella on Monday, September 13, 2004 - 9:59am

SevenStock 7, the largest Rotary Event in the world, was a huge success.
More than 600 rotary cars, 5000 people, and dozens of vendors showed their support of the Rotary Engine and Mazda. Rotorheads from as far as New Zealand, Australia, Norway, and Japan made their way to Southern California, their expectations were blow away by the number of other fans, and their enthusiasm for the RX series of cars. Mazda senior management also took notice, with Sr. Vice President Robert Davis (fellow rotorhead) thanking us for the support, and telling us to watch for new product Mazda in the next couple years!

Some important historic rotary race cars made and appearance, with their drivers. In 1984, Some important historic rotary race cars made and appearance, with their drivers. In 1984, Mazda Rotaries powered two Lola Race Cars. 1984 the Lola T616 Mazda race cars made motorsports history. When the Lola T616 Mazda first took to the track, it featured a modified 13B rotary engine and was rated at 300-horsepower. As with all rotary engines, the T616 lacked the displacement of competitors' engines, but more than made up for this short-coming with incredible, high-revving reliability and the engine's small size and low weight. BFGoodrich Tires entered two Mazda Lola T616s in the 1984 24 Hours of Le Mans C Junior (C2) group. Car 68, driven by Americans John Morton and John O’Steen, with Japanese driver Yoshami Katayama, took first in class and placed tenth overall. The Number 67 car was piloted by Americans Jim Busby and Rick Knoop as well as Dutchman Boy Hayje and placed third in its class, twelfth overall. These drivers and team mates were reunited at SevenStock for the first time in 20 years. At the banquet, a special documentary presentation taught those in attendance the importance of these wins.

We have 542 photos from the weekend's event in a large gallery or, if you have about 45 minutes, you can watch a slideshow here. We will have a set of choice photos by Stephen Chiang posted soon, and a full accounting of events later in the week.

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OC Register Article
September 14, 2004 - 10:41am
The Orange County Register

IRVINE – They're called "rotor-heads." They're members of a power-worshipping cult. And they gathered here Saturday - perhaps for the last time - to celebrate the annual rite they call SevenStock.

The four pillars of the rotor-head faith are intake, compression, combustion and exhaust - but only when those four strokes are produced by a Wankel rotary engine.

Never heard of a Wankel rotary engine? Perhaps it's because only one company - Mazda, the Japanese car maker whose North American operations are based in Irvine - has ever sold production vehicles powered by it.

Rotor-heads shake their heads a lot in disbelief. They don't understand why more car companies haven't followed Mazda's lead. And they don't understand why car buyers prefer the conventional piston engine, the engine that powers 99 percent of the cars on the road today, with its valves, lifters and dozens of moving parts.

"All those things break down," said Jon Hosea, a Newport Beach mortgage banker who owns six Mazdas. "A rotary engine is virtually indestructible because it only has five real moving parts."

SevenStock is the world's largest single-day gathering of these automotive eccentrics and their misunderstood Mazdas. Thesign greeting them outside Mazda's R&D facility on Red Hill Avenue said it all: "Rotor Heads welcome. You are among friends."

The rotary engine was conceived in the mid-1920s by Felix Wankel, a German tinkerer. Unlike a conventional engine, in which pistons moving up and down turn a crankshaft, a rotary engine uses rotors spinning inside special housings to provide cranking power.

Many automakers, including Mercedes-Benz and GM, tried to commercialize the technology. Only Mazda succeeded. Its first rotary-powered production car was the 1967 Cosmo Sport, a low-slung Ford Thunderbird-like vehicle. But the most successful was the Mazda RX-7, which it introduced to the United States in 1978 and discontinued in 1995 because of declining sales. It's from the RX-7 that SevenStock derives its name.

SevenStock began seven years ago, when about a dozen RX-7 owners who met on the Internet decided to get together for a barbecue in San Dimas.

Berny Herrera, the executive director of the Southern California RX Club and the organizer of SevenStock, explains what happened next.

"The second year, we had 30 people at the barbecue," Herrera said. "The third year we had over 100. The fourth year, that was the watershed year where we joined forces with Mazda, it just blew up."

On Saturday, Herrera expected 5,000 people to stop by to view the 400 or so cars on display at SevenStock 7, which he and his fellow rotor-heads continue to call "the barbecue."

These should be days of rejoicing for rotor-heads. After not offering an rotary powered vehicles for almost a decade, Mazda last year introduced the RX-8, a four-door sedan powered like the RX-7, by a rotary.

Instead, the talk at SevenStock 7 was whether there would be a SevenStock 8.

"They say this one might be the last," said Glenn Price of Desert Hot Springs, who rebuilt the highly modified engine on his 1987 RX-7 in just five days after blowing a seal last week just so he could drive thecar to SevenStock.

The trouble is that, unlike the rotary engine, which never caught on, SevenStock has taken off big time. It's become so big - attracting rotor-heads from as far away as Europe and Japan - that the members of Herrera's group, who organize it in their spare time, are feeling overwhelmed.

"The event is on the verge of killing itself by its own success," said Herrera. "It started as a grassroots event. Now it's huge."

The Southern California RX Club is talking about scaling the event back and returning it to its roots if it can't get Mazda to pick up the cost of the event.

"Either we have to cut back and make it a little barbecue again," said Hosea, "or Mazda needs to get more involved."
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Wow! But where's the Cosmo's?
No Rotor
September 13, 2004 - 5:12pm
Looks like a fantastic show. Very, very sorry I had to miss it.

Were there any 1976-78 Cosmo's there? Didn't see any in the pictures. Maybe it's time to finally dust mine off and get it rolling...
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Sevenstock - Cosmo's
No Rotor
September 15, 2004 - 10:04pm
For the Cosmo fans, there was a rare treat. An L10A Cosmo + JCES Cosmo.

The latter got plenty of attention as the image of the triple rotor engine in its factory location left lasting smiles on all the eager viewers.

The CD23 Cosmo (75-81) was sadly missing, spotted Atkins rotary guys around but their Cosmo wasn't.
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No 76 cosmos
September 14, 2004 - 10:42am
There weren't any late 70's cosmos there, as in years past. . . Atkins didn't bring theirs down.
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JDRF SevenStock7 Fundraiser brought in $10,145.00!!
September 13, 2004 - 2:34pm
Thank you all for your help in this important cause. In total we raised $10,245.00!!
A big thanks to all of the Mazda Technical Services Staff for their hard work.
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