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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. Bob M.
    Joined: Oct 13, 2015
    Posts: 2

    Bob M.

    Vickie Wood is till alive an living in Port St. Lucie, Florida. You may be able to contact her thru the Living Legends of NASCAR in Daytona Beech. She is 95 years old, and last summer drove with her boyfriend from FL to Macungie PA, where she was a special guest of the Chrysler 300 Club at the August Auchfest. She then drove back to FL for a change of clothes, then drove to MI for a family wedding. Vickie married my mothers Uncle Skeeter Wood way back when, who was instrumental in promoting her racing career. Uncle Skeeter has long since passed, but Vicki is still very busy with personal appearances, particularly during Daytona Speed week. She is very personable, and I am sure that she would love to discuss the car with you. On a side note, if anyone out there is looking to write a book, her life story is fascinating, both before her racing career, and after. A remarkable woman.
     
  2. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Hey Bob! Thank you for the post!

    Great info. I have spoken to Vicki and look forward to visiting here really soon. Hopefully in January if she is available. I'm also going to send you a PM.

    .........

    The next couple years are a little sketchy. Phillip Sigmond sold the car in 1975 to a man who is said to be an antique collector in Statesville. I have no clue who this is, but they didn't title or register the car. For whatever reason, they sold the car to Steve McCloud. I'm guessing they were flipping it for money.

    Below is an interesting letter written to the 300 club when Steve found the car almost 40 years ago. The prevailing rumor at the time was that the car was destroyed and crushed. Gloria Moon held onto this letter for all these years and sent me the original.

    [​IMG]
    (missing scanned page)

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    I'm not sure how to really use the information in the letter. I don't know how this info fits in.... If anyone has any thoughts I would appreciate the input.

    I think the timeline Steve mentions about Michigan and a Navy man are a red herring. I think the story was confused with Phil (maybe even Clifford) being in the armed forces and don't know how Michigan fits in anywhere.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2015
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  3. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    And to add a face to the name... James Gilley, the gentleman who bought the car in 1955 from Shaw and drove it until 1968.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2016
  4. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    It looks like we may have an answer to another mystery. I got off the telephone with James Gilley's grandson Rob a few minutes ago. Rob knew the car and has heard stories about it.

    The car was part owned by Gilley when it was raced at Daytona. Rob thinks the car had either two or three owners when it ran. Brewster Shaw, James Gilley and maybe a third one. This would explain the interest and the long road trip to buy it. James was actually at Daytona and Rob tells me he believes he has a photo of the car at Daytona Beach.

    Rob also told me his Grandfather was friends with both Bill France and Lee Petty, which obviously caught my attention. When I brought up that his Grandfather sold the car around 1969 he mentioned that he then bought a 1969 Porsche... which falls right in line with why a VW dealer was selling his Chrysler. As many VW dealers sold Porsches and that is probably why James was having a VW dealer handle the sale of his car.

    Rob is thinking he may have some stuff around the house pertaining to the car. Hopefully something turns up...
     
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  5. foolthrottle
    Joined: Oct 14, 2005
    Posts: 871

    foolthrottle
    Member

    You might try getting in touch with Tim Flocks sons, somewhere around Charlot, also Jack Boxtrom at RM auctions and Haygood Marine in FL.
     
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  6. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Great suggestion, I'll try both of them.
     
  7. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    No luck with Jack. He couldn't offer any suggestions, but I'll try Flock's family in hopes they might have anything related to this other car.
     
  8. BH Pigg
    Joined: Dec 3, 2015
    Posts: 2

    BH Pigg

    Glad to see something's being done with the car. My dad was a friend of Steve McCloud through the 300 club (we bought what has become my Monarch Blue 300K from Steve in '82 and visited from time to time over the years). I remember sitting in the '55 when we were picking up the K and listening to dad and Steve talking about it (I was 10 at the time, didn't know much but I knew I liked old cars). When Steve hosted the joint eastern/western 300 club meet in Gatlinburg, TN in (I believe it was) 1981, he drove the '55 to the meet hotel. I have a pic my dad took of it with George Riehl and Mary Ann Elam (presidents of both clubs) on opposite sides of it with a hand on each fender. Probably as close as those 2 ever got to each other, before or since. I'm told there was no love lost there. I'm pretty sure that was about the last time the car was driven, because when I saw it in '82, Steve had it on blocks up behind his house in the trees with a few other cars. Sometime later he put it in the barn.

    Steve had a knack for finding unusual letter cars. In addition to the documented Hurst convertible, he also owned another Hurst convertible that had the hemi under the hood. He got rid of that one when he couldn't document it as anything other than a 300 convertible with what was most likely a dealer-installed engine. He also apparently owned, or had possession of during the 70's, the 300D known as "Traveler". I never saw this car, but have heard multiple club members over the years confirm that he had it at one point. Add that to his penchant for stick-shift 300Ls (he had 2 or 3), a couple of '58 Furies, and a pair of '78 Magnum GTs, it was quite the car show when dad bought the K.
     
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  9. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Wow! Great information!

    Do you think you could scan that photo for me? I'd love to have a copy for the book of documentation.

    I've heard about Steve's collection of cars and he sounds like an interesting guy. I can't say enough about his two sons that I've only briefly talked to. They both come across as extremely honest and good people.

    Thank you for the post. Stories like this seem to be minor, but add a great deal to a car's history. When we're dead and gone these cars are going to be owned by people who are far removed from our times. Stories like yours will allow people to relate. Thank you!
     
  10. BH Pigg
    Joined: Dec 3, 2015
    Posts: 2

    BH Pigg

    Sure. I'll try to remember to dig out the 300 club photo albums at my parents' place the next time I go over there and get you a copy. I'll also look through my K album and see if there are any pics that have the '55 in the background we took the day dad bought the K.

    Steve was a character, no doubt. For a guy who basically made his living as a mechanic for K-Mart (when they still had auto centers), he did pretty well for himself. He'd buy old letter cars and basically drive them till they died. My K had been his daily driver for awhile, he'd bought it because it was the first Monarch Blue one he'd ever seen, indeed it was the first one of that color to be entered in the club registry when dad bought it, with the 2nd not showing up for another 15 years or so.
     
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  11. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Finally found a 1956 Daytona Program (The photos were always published in the following year).

    Got a new photo of Lee Petty, on the beach with the car before it was lettered.

    [​IMG]

    And the full page:

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    And a page with Brewster Shaw and Vin# 001:

    [​IMG]
     
  13. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    And Vicki with Vin# 001. Since some of these are in the Daytona Speedway Archives, I'm guessing the other ones must be as well.

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    And my personal favorite. A full page ad for San Juan Motors. Notice the "En Route" lettering is covered on the front fender.

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I received this photo from Russ Hamilton this morning. I love it! Planning on taking it to Daytona with me to get it autographed in a few weeks. I've got a date scheduled with Vicki. Can't wait.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  17. Wayne67vert
    Joined: Feb 23, 2012
    Posts: 74

    Wayne67vert
    Member

    These last 2 photos look like they were taken at Cypress Gardens.
     
  18. verde742
    Joined: Aug 11, 2010
    Posts: 4,537

    verde742
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Lots of differences in these to pictures ie. valve covers biggest difference I see. lots of other..
     
  19. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Great eyes. The note says it is Cypress Gardens... So what is Cypress Gardens?
     
  20. cobra_4
    Joined: Sep 5, 2012
    Posts: 233

    cobra_4
    Member

    A huge botantical garden, just south of Orlando, famous for water ski shows and their gardens. I used to go every year for the NCRS(National Corvette Restoration Society) Winter Meet, very cool place, its closed and reopened a few times since then though.


    Dude, you have all the coolest cars!!
     
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  21. Wayne67vert
    Joined: Feb 23, 2012
    Posts: 74

    Wayne67vert
    Member

    It is now Lego Land. Cypress Gardens closed several years ago then was run by a company out of Valdosta Ga for a bit.

    Kiekhaefer had a test facility near Cypress Garden for their marine engines.
     
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  22. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Thank you guys... You guys are a wealth of knowledge! Sad to see an old local attraction become a LegoLand.

    You guys have any suggestions on places or people in Florida to visit for info on racing in this era? I'll have a rental car and a couple days to dig around...
     
  23. Wayne67vert
    Joined: Feb 23, 2012
    Posts: 74

    Wayne67vert
    Member

  24. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Thanks Wayne! I'll hit up a couple of those for sure!

    Josh
     
  25. cobra_4
    Joined: Sep 5, 2012
    Posts: 233

    cobra_4
    Member

    Racings north turn is a MUST visit!!! Its literally at the old north turn of the beach course. Go hungry, especially if you like seafood, some of the best crab legs ive ever had!! The walls are full of vintage beach history. Every February during speedweeks they have a vintage race car show and then parade down the beach, i know it would be a long haul for you, but man what a photo opp!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  26. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I bought airline tickets and I'm taking my 13 year old daughter. She's looking forward to the crab legs. If they suck, I'll tell her to hold you responsible for the disappointment. ;)

    And here is a photo of the sister car, Vin# 1002. The gentleman in the photo is an Airline pilot (Warren Koechling) who set the Men's record in the Flying Mile. A funny thing, this car was built in Black, but for some reason it was immediately painted white to match #1001.

    Car #1002 won the Men's Flying Mile and then was driven by Flock to win the Grand National. There are some great Chrysler historians around... I'm hoping they can shed light on anything regarding these two cars...

    [​IMG]
     
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  27. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Both of these photos of Warren came out of the Daytona Speedway Archives

    [​IMG]
     
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  28. Hyfire
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 1,404

    Hyfire
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I was able to locate Warren's sister who is an amazing lady. She lives out in Arizona. She is sending over some images from her files. My fingers are crossed and we'll see what she has.

    Is this getting too far off-track for you guys?
     
  29. Wayne67vert
    Joined: Feb 23, 2012
    Posts: 74

    Wayne67vert
    Member

    No, keep it going. Interesting stuff!
     
  30. woodbutcher
    Joined: Apr 25, 2012
    Posts: 2,902

    woodbutcher
    Member

    :D Great story.Keep the updates coming.
    Good luck.Have fun.Be safe.
    Leo
     
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