The man who created the Watkins Glen race track has died, aged 87. In 1948 as a young law student and racing enthusiast he persuaded the sleepy town in New York State to allow a road race to run through its streets; it soon became an institution. With its bridges and level-crossing it was known as a highly scenic circuit, but safety concerns caused Argetsinger to create a purpose-built track nearby in 1956. In 1961 he ran his first US Grand Prix, and it remained a favourite for 20 years. Despite going broke in the 1980s, The Glen recovered to become a premier circuit once again, and single-seater racing has recently returned there.
Argetsinger went on to become the president of the US bar association, and later was president of the Motor Racing Research Centre at Watkins Glen.
This sports car, Le Mans and Grand Prix driver has died, aged 85. A skilled engine builder, he moved into stock cars in the 1950s, building cars for the Carrera PanAmericana and NASCAR racing, and had success driving a Kurtis. Joining Lance Reventlow’s Scarab outfit he both engineered and competed, bringing several victories for the US team’s sports cars.
Number one driver through the team’s disastrous 1959/60 F1 project, he also drove for Cooper in the 1960 British GP. He had several wins in sports car events, racing in Ferrari, Chaparral and Lotus, made three attempts to qualify for Indy, and shared a Maserati T61 with Masten Gregory at Le Mans in 1960. In recent years he rebuilt several of the Scarab desmo engines and was working on a Bonneville record car.
Designer and wheel maker Max Boxstrom has died, aged 64. Perhaps best known for founding, with Mike Knight, the Dymag wheels firm, whose magnesium rims were used by F1, Indy and sports-racing teams, he had previously designed single-seaters, including the Nemo F3 and the successful Martini F2 design, and worked on early Williams suspension.
He returned to racing car design with the Ecosse C2 sports cars which took the C2 championship in 1986, before creating the promising Aston Martin AMR1 sports-prototype in 1987, which he described as “a Formula 1 car with a roof”. He later designed a new road car for Bristol Cars and ran the Calloway Corvette Le Mans team. A keen sailor, he also designed an ocean-going yacht.