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Old 06-16-2009, 08:11 AM   #1
Ryan
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Default Marchese Special



I had heard of Carl Marchese before. He was the rookie of the year in '29 at Indy and in the early 50's he designed his own chassis for the same race. He was widely known to be a bit of a loon with more intelligence that he knew what to do with... In...

To read the rest of this blog entry from The Jalopy Journal, click here.
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Old 06-16-2009, 08:33 AM   #2
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Default Re: Marchese Special

You say "loon" like it's a bad thing....
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:02 AM   #3
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Ryan:

Look at all the great people that were "ahead of the curve"....ie - Frank Lloyd Wright, Einstein and Columbus were thought of as loony as well.

Dallas
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:09 AM   #4
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Default Re: Marchese Special

I am not going to say that's its the best looking car I have seen in the history of Indy but there is definitely something there. I reminds me of Mad Max for some reason. There are a couple things that look like a engineer built the car and not a designer but I think thats probably why it must have been forward thinking. There probably were advancements in it's crude looking design that no one thought of before.

Then on the same hand, the car looks like it was a precursor to what Indy cars would soon become. The overall style is there even though it's buried in a bunch of other things.

Cool.
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:23 AM   #5
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosurf View Post
You say "loon" like it's a bad thing....
There's a fine line between genius and loon,some people just live right on the line.
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:38 AM   #6
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Default Re: Marchese Special

I couldn't believe the year of this photo. Ahead of the game is putting it mildly, thanks for sharing some very cool history with a brilliant builder!! ~Sololobo~
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:45 AM   #7
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Default Re: Marchese Special

It seems that most people who are ahead of their time are considered looney.... but probably are legitimately looney...
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Old 06-16-2009, 11:38 AM   #8
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Hay View Post
It seems that most people who are ahead of their time are considered looney.... but probably are legitimately looney...
Any chance of explaining this to my wife??
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:17 PM   #9
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Beats me where you come up with this stuff Ryan but cool nonetheless.
A little history lesson,
Carl Marchese is one half of the famous Marchese Bros. from Milwaukee,the other half being his brother Salvatore. Carl raced a T Ford at Indy in the 20s and shortly after built the first tube chassis midget,the first race being at Chicago's Soldier Field in 1936. The car above was also a tube frame and yes that is the radiator{both sides}. Carl thinking the aero nose was good for speed in and out of corners. This car finished the race 7th.
They also invented centrpoint knockoff magnesium wheels and fielded other cars at Indyover the years aways with their own little touches.
Another thing the brothers were good at was promoting races especially Sal.
Loon? hmm....what does that make of us then?
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:23 PM   #10
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Default Re: Marchese Special

You have to look deep into the history, and it's not always easy to find, but there was more than a few "loons" building inovative cars in the early days. Unfortunatly many were DNFs or DNQs and didn't rate much of a second look and little was recorded about them.
While the offset roadster configuration is generally considered to be a late 40s early 50s innovation, consider the Eldridge Spl. from 1926. While most of the rest of the field was stradling the drive line, high up in the air, teetering on springs under the rails, E.A. Eldridge had a different idea and brought 2 of his cars over from England, one for him and one for W. Douglas Hawkes. Both suffered mechanical problems, with Hawkes being credited with 14th place.
Add a tube frame, torsion bars and swoopier body work and you would have, essentialy, a 1950s Watson, Kurtis et. al. roadster.
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:31 PM   #11
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Looney and genius are almost the same thing......one is when alive, the other comes with death....
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:32 PM   #12
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Default Re: Marchese Special

That car was pretty successful at Brooklands. Some of the British cars were just a little more spectacular looking to me,obviously more forwrd thinking too.
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:43 PM   #13
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Default Re: Marchese Special

I find it cool as hell to go back and look at the stuff car builders would try to go fast. And the best part was that there were no rules as to the crazy shit you could do !! >>>>.
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:52 PM   #14
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Quote:
Originally Posted by SinisterCustom View Post
Looney and genius are almost the same thing......one is when alive, the other comes with death....
This is true..
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Old 06-16-2009, 02:56 PM   #15
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Default Re: Marchese Special

FWIW- The Marchese car was sold at auction a couple of yrs. ago for $100 large there's more pics and history here:

http://www.rmauctions.com/CarDetails...O07&CarID=r145
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Old 06-16-2009, 07:35 PM   #16
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Quote:
Originally Posted by SinisterCustom View Post
Looney and genius are almost the same thing......one is when alive, the other comes with death....
Life is often shorter than how advanced the ideas of such men are. After their death and with a perspective gained with the passage of time, the "Loon's" genius is revealed and their ideas vindicated.
Weather Loon or Genius then, is often no more than a matter of perspective.
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Old 06-16-2009, 09:40 PM   #17
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Default Re: Marchese Special

This year the brothers were inducted into the midget hall of fame. I had the pleasure of being at the event. Must I say that I learned alot about the brothers at this event. If you would like to know more about them I would love to email you a short bio written for the hall of fame. As far as racing goes I have seen alot wether its midget sprint or modified, But nothing sparks my attention more that to hear stories of the great legends that paved the way for many drivers!
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:03 AM   #18
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rootie Kazoootie View Post
FWIW- The Marchese car was sold at auction a couple of yrs. ago for $100 large there's more pics and history here:

http://www.rmauctions.com/CarDetails...O07&CarID=r145
So what's going on here?

That looks way more 'conventional' than the original pic. Was it modified later in its career?
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:18 AM   #19
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Default Re: Marchese Special

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brootal View Post
. Was it modified later in its career?
Yes.
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Old 06-17-2009, 12:50 PM   #20
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Default Re: Marchese Special

i saw this post and heres some more infomation on this car from a book i have "132 most unusual car that ran at indy"....
RIGHT Harry McQuinn's 1938 Marchese Special was equipped with a frame made of aircraft tubing and was fitted with a radiator mounted outside the hood, to the lower left of the driver. This allowed an enclosed, streamlined nose. The car was suspended on special transverse springs. It was powered with an eight-cylinder Miller engine, and qualified at an average speed of 119.492 miles per hour for the '38 classic. Only five racers completed the full 500 miles in 1938, with this Marchese Special being withdrawn on lap 197. This was good enough to win seventh place for driver McQuinn.
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