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History Help! Chrysler 300 Racecar (Daytona Beach)

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Hyfire, Aug 11, 2015.

  1. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    Hello guys,

    I'm looking for leads and information on a car I've got. It's a 1955 Chrysler C-300 that was custom built by the factory and shipped down to Daytona Beach to compete in the NASCAR SpeedWeek Time Trials. The car was run by Vicki Wood and won the Woman's National Speed Trial Championship for '55. It also placed 2nd in the men's class when driven by Brewster Shaw.

    I'm looking for ANY information. No matter how insignificant it seems...

    Also, any possible leads or if you can point me in the right direction of people to ask???

    THANK YOU GUYS!

    Josh




    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2015
  2. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    Thanks for the reply. Your first link is actually a clone. It's a cool car, but isn't real.

    Chrysler only built 2 production Chrysler 300s by Daytona. Vin# 001 and Vin# 002. #002 was later converted into a 1956 300B racecar and then scrapped. Leaving Vin# 001 the only known surviving car. I'm hoping to find information on this car....

    I appreciate any leads you guys can give... THANK YOU!
     
  3. Gotgas
    Joined: Jul 22, 2004
    Posts: 6,271

    Gotgas
    Member
    from DFW USA

    "Found?" Spill the details...

    It's funny, but if someone was to ask me for info about a factory prepared Chrysler 300 race car, I would have sent them to YOU ;) or StillOutThere. Have you reached out to him already?

    I'm sure you've seen this article: http://bringatrailer.com/2015/06/07/the-first-ever-1955-chrysler-c-300-001/

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,504

    falcongeorge
    Member
    from BC

    what an amazing find.
     
  5. alphabet soup
    Joined: Jan 8, 2011
    Posts: 1,051

    alphabet soup
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Just wondering, how big is your garage that you lost a '55 Chrysler 300 in it??
     
    Hyfire likes this.
  6. Gotgas
    Joined: Jul 22, 2004
    Posts: 6,271

    Gotgas
    Member
    from DFW USA

    Are you certain your car was at Daytona? An excerpt from the book, "Proving Ground" by Jim Schild:

    "Kiekhaefer's team pulled into Daytona Beach in February 1955 with big white trucks labeled "Kiekhaefer Mercury Outboard Motors" on the side. His crew wore bright white uniforms, and he watched over the operations in his white shirt, bow tie, and cigar. Carl Kiekhaefer knew all too well the promise of the monstrous 4,005-pound Chrysler C-300. He had worked closely with Chrysler the past three years and followed the development of the new Hemi V-8 engines. Carl Kiekhaefer brought a single C-300 (#3N551002) with him for the 1955 event."

    There is a nice front 3/4 angle photo of that #300 car with the caption, "Warren Koechling in Carl Kiekhaefer's white C-300 no. 300 at Daytona Beach in February 1955. His record-setting two-way average in the Flying Mile was 127.58 miles per hour."

    You might contact the author for any additional information.

    http://www.amazon.com/Proving-Ground-History-Chrysler-Plymouth/dp/B00AK39ZEE
     
  7. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    Found is definitely a liberal use of the word (Haha). Just like most 300 guys, I've known about the car for a long time... as car #1. The previous owner had the car stored in an open port for 45 years. After he passed away the family put it up for sale in a few places. The condition is rough but manageable. Rusty in the back end, but better than I thought everywhere else.

    Yeah, Wayne and John were my first contacts. They have been great. Especially in pointing out the pre-production factory parts and info (The car was actually a pre-production pilot car). I'm hoping to find guys here with Daytona Beach contacts or old obscure magazine info? Anything really...
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2015
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  8. Gotgas
    Joined: Jul 22, 2004
    Posts: 6,271

    Gotgas
    Member
    from DFW USA

    I just re-read my post. I hope it doesn't come across as negative. I hope you find all the racing documentation you are looking for. How's your 300D doing these days? :)
     
  9. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    Positive it was in Daytona. VIN#002 was the Kiekhaefer car. This is the Brewster Shaw car (VIN#001). Chrysler rushed these two Pilot cars through manufacturing on Feb 9th-10th. They didn't build VIN#003 until March 1955 (after Daytona). I've been over all the factory build sheets with Gil and we have confirmed delivery information and specifics. Also, the build sheet shows that this car was sent to San Juan Motors in Daytona (Owned by Brewster Shaw) and Vin#002 was sent to Munroe-Zeder Inc of Miami (to be indirectly sold to Kiekhaefer).

    Here's a photo of both cars at Daytona, on the beach in Feb 1955.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2015
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  10. Gotgas
    Joined: Jul 22, 2004
    Posts: 6,271

    Gotgas
    Member
    from DFW USA

    Great! I guess I assumed the Daytona cars were both prepared by Kiekhaefer.

    Congratulations on the awesome new project and good luck on your search. I'll be watching and hunting any info I can find.
     
  11. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    I appreciate it! Any hunting you're willing to do would be great!


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2015
    guffey, HEMI32, turboroadster and 3 others like this.
  12. Check out Mechanix Illustrated mag of the period . Tom McCahill was keen on Chrysler stuff .
     
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  13. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    Thanks! I'll find all the months around this date.....

    Also found this very interesting photo of Lee Petty in the car. There is a pretty large and complex story about Lee, Richard Petty and this car... but I don't want to get too sideways here.

    [​IMG]

    I'm looking for any of the more obscure magazines from April, May & June 1955. Also, trade magazines and Daytona SpeedWeek souvenir programs ('55 & 56).....
     
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  14. flatheadpete
    Joined: Oct 29, 2003
    Posts: 8,733

    flatheadpete
    Member
    from Burton, MI

    Holy smokes what a piece of history!!!
     
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  15. Watching this with great anticipation.
     
  16. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    I'm not sure how much info we'll get. I'm really hoping someone on here can suggest some good old-school Daytona contacts or have access to some old racing programs.

    I've found this ad, which was a half page ad published in all major market newspapers just after Daytona 1955.... It shows both the San Juan Motors (Vin#001) and the Munroe-Zeder (Vin#002) cars.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2015
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  17. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    Found this as well:

    [​IMG]
     
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  18. Wayne67vert
    Joined: Feb 23, 2012
    Posts: 64

    Wayne67vert
    Member

  19. Really cool thread!!
     
  20. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 7,602

    Atwater Mike
    Member

    When did it get the black top? (all pics of it were all white)
     
  21. Looks like at some point it also acquired an antenna and a rearview mirror on the door.
     
  22. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    The Black paint was put on over the factory White. I have a photo of the car around 1962 with the Black top. So it could have been anytime between 1956-1962. It looks odd now, but it actually looks pretty sharp in the old photos. I'll get them uploaded.

    Regarding the mirror and radio... great eyes. The car was built without either.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2015
  23. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    [​IMG]

    I tracked down the family that owned the car until 1970. This photo is the earliest. The gentleman was a Chrysler collector in West Palm Beach, Florida. His name was Clifford Sigmon. He owned the car until he sold the car for $1.00 to his Son. Judging by the plates and the lettering position I think it was taken in 1961 or 1963.

    I'm guessing that there would be no reason to pose by a car unless it was either new to you, or freshly painted. I'd guess it was taken when he got it?
     
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  24. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    Here is another family member with the car.... I'm guessing the same year. The car was in beautiful condition.

    [​IMG]
     
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  25. Wayne67vert
    Joined: Feb 23, 2012
    Posts: 64

    Wayne67vert
    Member

  26. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    It's hard to tell in the low quality scan, but the copy I have looks Dark Blue. It very well could be Black. Hopefully when I receive some of the vintage ownership paperwork it will clarify. I think 1967/68 would be a better bet, but we'll see.

    Here is my favorite photo of this group. It was taken in 1970. It was suggested the C300 was sold for the newer Road Runner, which makes sense. This photo was taken to send to Clifford's son who was in Vietnam at the time. In 1970 it was sold to Steve McCloud.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2015
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  27. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 21,561

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Back in the early 60's I read every one of a stash of 50's Mechanics Illustrated magazines that were in a closet in a house my family rented and am pretty sure one had an article by To McCahill on doing a test drive and high speed pass in one of those two cars. The magazine lead time was a lot longer then than it is now so you are probably looking at the issue that came out in June or July at the earliest.
     
    Hyfire likes this.
  28. k9racer
    Joined: Jan 20, 2003
    Posts: 3,053

    k9racer
    Member

    Did the contact names I PM to you work out ? Stock Car racing did a article on Vickey wood several years ago. Quite intersting.. One man at the Moonshine Festival in Dawsonville Ga. claims to have a real Mr K 300 . Is it real or a tribute?? Is this the car Tim Flock drove?? In a article about the Flocks Tim said that Mr K was very hard to work for.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2015
    Hyfire likes this.
  29. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,354

    Hyfire
    Member

    Yes, on the names! Glen is an amazing guy! He gave me some info that is priceless. I'll post all that when I'm back at a computer.
    I haven't gotten hold of the other gentleman yet, but will try again soon.

    Regarding Flock, no. Flock drove Vin #002 in 1955. That car was converted to 56 sheet metal later on and then was lost.

    From what I know just one verified K car survives and it's at the Henry Ford. It's a 1956. There are 2 clone cars floating around as well. StillOutThere has a '57 that was experimented with and tested before the racing program was shut down.

    I'll try to locate that Vicki Wood article. She's an amazing lady!

    I REALLY appreciate your help! Thank you!
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2015

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