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Roadrace cars... vintage, nostalgia, historic

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by zman, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. A few years ago, at a gathering of "old racers", I gave Phil a blow up, posterized image of the preceding photo. He graciously and thankfully accepted it. Knowing that Phil appreciated art and photography, I was gratified. He later related to me a "blow by blow" account of that race, the only race held at that site.

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  2. PurHell
    Joined: Dec 17, 2004
    Posts: 375

    PurHell
    Member
    from So Cal

    Old Dawg.. cool photo.. never new they ran a major race at Grand Central... Glad Disney hasn't flattened the terminal building.. such great history there ...

    Any more pictures from the race ?...
     
  3. davedeltadog
    Joined: Aug 8, 2008
    Posts: 173

    davedeltadog
    Member

    Thanks, for the pics. Untill a year ago I lived a few miles from Watkins Glen and have made several laps around the old street course during the Vintage races. I'm told my MG raced some modified SCCA class at WG in the late 60's. I've changed it some with added disc brakes and a SBC 350 with five speed and Corvette rear. I was told it had a 327, 4 speed and was green back then. If I get a chance, will be at this years vintage weekend with the car.
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  4. Yeah! They had closed down the airport a few years earlier, after decades of being the predominant air terminal in Southern California. The California Sports Car Club got the use of the runways and taxiways just once.

    Phil Hill did win the race (main event). I think he told me that the car was so new, that he had to drive it over to Glendale straight from L.A. International.

    I do have more photos. This is one of them. The others I have to dig out of my files and load them.

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  6. evt
    Joined: Nov 12, 2010
    Posts: 22

    evt
    Member
    from so-ore

    This tread is great. Thought I would try to add a little from 2010 @ Laguna Seca. Sorry, I guess not. The administrator blocked them as a security risk. I'm trying to figure out how to report this.
     
  7. evt
    Joined: Nov 12, 2010
    Posts: 22

    evt
    Member
    from so-ore

    Well second try at posting pictures from Laguna Seca.
     

    Attached Files:

  8. I don't know why they'd want to block those fine cars.

    The first one, though not in the race, is a neat Hot Rod, built by a guy just over the hill from me in Atascadero CA. The second, Ford Model A, with a four port Riley cylinder head was built, and is raced by Mike McNally of Sacramento. The third is a Merc V-8 powered special that was built by Willis Baldwin. Baldwin, of Santa Barbara CA, built a number of specials. Again, I don't have my notes handy, but I think this particular one was built and raced in the early fifties (perhaps the late forties). It was driven by Hastings Harcourt in those days (how's that name for a "Gentleman Driver). The late Jim Herlinger restored and ran it for a number of years. It was, and still is, very fast.
     
  9. I haven't yet turned up the rest of the photos I took at the one and only Grand Central Air Terminal Races. However, I had scanned some early pics of my own short, but checkered career in amateur sports car racing in the 50's and early 60's. You'll have to excuse the quality, in that my "pencil-necked" buddies were not accomplished photographers :eek:

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    Though I started racing this MG in 1955, the first recorded on film was at the inaugural race at the Pomona CA Fairgrounds in June of 1956. This year, and a few years after, I used the name of "John Reed". I placed 5th in class in June; but slipped to 13th in the following October race at Pomona. I captured a 1st place at a meet at Willow Springs Raceway in December or 1956.

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    This was probably taken in the late 50's, early 60's at a friends house in Montecito CA, during the Santa Barbara races held at the airport. I'm the tall, skinny guy on the right. The TD is not the same car as the one in the previous pic. This one had a highly modified Mark II engine. For an MG in those days, it was very fast. The '56 Ford "Vicky" that is towing it, belonged to my mother. To this day, I don't know how I got it away from her for this caper.

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    This is a Lotus XI, owned by the fellow on the left in the preceding photo. I drove it for a season, as the guy was scared of it. That should have been a clue for me.:eek: It had been owned and raced by Frank Monise; and been the CSCC class G modified champ for several years. But when Frank was through with a car, it was THROUGH! The photo was taken at the San Luis Obispo CA road races, at the airport, circa 1961.

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    This is what I've been racing in vintage events for the last ten years. I finally have something that goes fast, handles well and is reliable. It actually goes better on paved road courses, probably because, among other things, it doesn't have a locked rearend.
     
  10. I for one would love to see them.
     
  11. evt
    Joined: Nov 12, 2010
    Posts: 22

    evt
    Member
    from so-ore

    Hey Old Daug, thanks for the history behind those beautiful cars. Here's a couple more I stumbled across @ Laguna Seca.
     

    Attached Files:

  12. A couple cars from last year's Mission (BC) Historics. Stan Burnett's group 7 and Bill Sadler's single-seater. That's Sadler himself in his creation.
     

    Attached Files:

  13. Here is another photo from the November running of the race at Grand Central Air Terminal in Glendale CA.

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    This is Jack McAffee in John Edgar's 375, 4.9 Liter Ferrari. The car had won the LeMans 24 hour race in 1954, before Edgar bought it. The car crashed badly in the 1955 Mexican Road Race. McAfee was slightly injured. His co-driver unfortunately was killed. The car was sent back to Italy, repaired; and fitted with a Scaglietti body. A wealthy European collector is said to currently own it. He had the car returned to it's original body style.

    Jack finished third in the main event at Glendale. The scream of the big V-12 was music to one's ears.
     
  14. The first car (the aluminum with yellow trim) is one of the Manning specials. This particular car, I believe, is the Schaghticoke-Manning. Chuck Manning was an aircraft engineer. He designed and built a car with fiberglas body panels (a new concept after World War II). The chassis he conceived is light, and unbelievably strong. It was powered by a highly modified flathead Merc. The car, with Chuck driving, won (I think it was it's first race, or very close to it, at Palm Springs in March 1952.

    Several cars were built by others (from Manning's drawings). The Schaghticoke is one of them. One of our friends (and HAMB'r - "Raceready") is a major "wrench" on the car. The driver, Rob Manson, if not running in first place, is always headed that way. It is very, very fast, with out a bunch of later concepts, like the wide rimmed wheels and late design tires of the car in the second car portrayed.

    I never have seen the second car (the red one); and know nothing about it.(other than it doesn't seem to have "period" wheels and tires).:)
     
  15. Here's another photo of the November 13th, 1955, sports car race at The Grand Central Air Terminal in Glendale, California. Again, excuse the quality of he pics. Not only was it a cloudy day, and I had no light meter; but I was operating an unfamiliar camera (an Argus C-3, borrowed from my brother-in-law). I also had been struggling for a quick fix for a bad clutch in my race car; which eventually led to my dropping out of my race. For that, I was truly detracted.

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    Pete Lovely in the #124 "Pooper" (Porsche powered Cooper) overtaking the Porsche 550 Spyder of Bill Thomas. I say "overtaking" with confidence, in that the "Pooper" was much faster than a customer 550.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2012
  16. Hey! Thinking of camera challenges; I was going to hold off on exhibiting any examples of the group in which this forgoing pic came, until I finished the Grand Central race group. But, I've always thought them special as I shot them with my trusty, BROWNIE "HAWKEYE"! It's the truth. Further, I should tell you that all of these photographs shown here, are being released for public viewing for the very FIRST TIME! I hope you enjoy them.:)

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    This is the late, great Ken Miles aboard John Von Neuman's Porsche powered Cooper Monaco at the Pomona fair grounds in October of 1956. This car was said to be faster than any of the contemporary factory Porsche race cars. It has also been said that Porsche threatened to pull Von Neuman's Porsche distributorship unless he parked the car. I don't remember when they stopped running it.:(
     
  17. Meanwhile, back at Grand Central Air Terminal:

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    This is Richie Ginther, driving Manning Post's 2 Liter Ferrari Mondial. I think I first saw this car in 1954, at the Santa Barbara Road Races; when the well traveled Dominican playboy, Porfirio Rubirossa brought it to race. Rubirossa also brought the, then starlet, Za-Za Gabor. When I saw the two in the paddock area, arm-in-arm; I said to myself: "Self!! You should get rid of that rusted out '34 Ford 5-window, get yourself a sporty car; and come where the fine women are;)".

    John Von Neumann apparently made a deal for the car at the event; and campaigned it for at least another year; before moving on to bigger things (Ferraris and Porsches).
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2012
  18. Speaking of Von Neumann, here he is, in a 750 Ferrari Monza (2.9 Liter); a car of an earlier model of his car that Phil Hill was driving, that won the race.

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  19. PurHell
    Joined: Dec 17, 2004
    Posts: 375

    PurHell
    Member
    from So Cal

    Old Dawg.. thanks for the stories and photos.. look pretty damn good for shooing them with a Brownie.. What a great time to be racing.. keep um coming ...



    Just realized I had talked to you quiet a bit at Cal Speedway last year.. My buddies had brought out a Watson roadster and an Eagle to the race, think you were down a bay or two...
     
  20. PurHell
    Joined: Dec 17, 2004
    Posts: 375

    PurHell
    Member
    from So Cal

    Always fascinated by the history of Grand Central Air Terminal since my days at the WDI campus (Disney) next door...

    Sounds like it the who's who of flying and the studios went thru or were involved there ... Earhart, Hughes, Flynn...
     

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  21. Still_Crazy
    Joined: Sep 30, 2011
    Posts: 351

    Still_Crazy
    Member
    from . .

    Shelby Cobra at Targa Florio 1964

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  22. Still_Crazy
    Joined: Sep 30, 2011
    Posts: 351

    Still_Crazy
    Member
    from . .

    Allen Grant & George Lucas

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  23. Still_Crazy
    Joined: Sep 30, 2011
    Posts: 351

    Still_Crazy
    Member
    from . .

    B Production Corvettes at Road America 1961

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  24. Ain't this thread great! "Pure Hell", the whole area over the hill from where I grew up (Pasdena) is full of aircraft and car lore. It was a fascinating time and place to be.

    We'll be down to Calif. Speedway (if everything stays together), next June with the HCICA, with the HSR GROUP. If you're there, come over and get re-acquainted.
     
  25. Good stuff, "Still Crazy"... Keep it coming!
     
  26. foolthrottle
    Joined: Oct 14, 2005
    Posts: 1,033

    foolthrottle
    Member

    very cool stuff. More please.
     
  27. Beach Bum
    Joined: May 7, 2006
    Posts: 575

    Beach Bum
    Member

    Old Dawg,

    Does the name Merl Francisco ring a bell? He raced an MG-TD with a V8-60 back in that time frame around So. Cal. usually with the number 60 or 160. He was also a member of the RRR. He worked at Northrop and was a member of their sports car club. He was my wife's Dad. Always looking for photos or stories about him. Can't wait to see your other photos.

    Cheers,
    Kurt O.
     
  28. Builtforsin
    Joined: Feb 2, 2007
    Posts: 181

    Builtforsin
    Member

    http://vimeo.com/24844380

    I've posted this in another thread but I'll post it again here. Take a ride in a T37 Bugatti... Its a GoPro vid and in HD, looks freakin' sweet fullscreen. He has a few vids on his Vimeo page.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QMrNqR1B-cs

    Here is another vid, only this time from in a 1930 Miller. Vid quality kinda sucks, but the action (and the sound of those tires) is awesome. Sadly, the engine lets go at about the 8:20 mark.

    Check em out, well worth your time.
     
  29. How's this? Is this a hot enough "Rod" for you?:D

    This old bucket "sucked the goggle's off" of many an unwary driver.

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    It's called "The Eliminator". It was built and driven by Frank "Duffy" Livingston, a Pasadena CA muffler shop owner. "Duffy" has claim to being the innovator of the Go Kart. The car originally had a Merc flathead, which was replaced by a SBC. The car is currently owned by Brock Yates, author and originator of "The Cannonball Run".
     
  30. Gosh, Kurt! I don't. But, I think I know some guys around that may have run with the "triple R". I'm having breakfast down in Burbank with a bunch of them, this Saturday. I'll ask. You doubtless know that the "Triple R" was considered an outlaw group, in those days. But, a lot of guys from the Cal Club ran with them under assumed names.
     

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