NEWS FROM THE U.S.A.
By Our American Correspondent T. MERIWETHER-SMITH.
An American Road Race? Grand Prix road race will
race return to the United States on June 24th of this year, according to plans of Ralph A. Hankinson, promoter, and a group of influential Nassau County, New York, citizens. Plans call for a 350-mile Grand Prix race to be staged over a 20-mile course in Nassau county. The event will be held, primarily, for the benefit of the unemployed of Nassau county, but will be an A.A.A. event. Tazio Nuvolari, and many other foreign race drivers of prominence, will be invited to compete in the contest.
Mr. Hankinson has for years promoted big racing events over many tracks in the United States, including Altoona, Rockingham, Langhorne, and Woodbridge. His bigger events inevitably draw enormous Crowds, and the revival of road racing in this country is expected to be enthusiastically received by all motor racing fans. The Vanderbilt Cup race, held originally on Long Island, just outside New York city, and later in Savannah, Georgia, and in California, attracted huge crowds, and the winner of this race occupied a position similar to the winning pilot in present day Indianapolis 500-mile races.
Two of Argentina’s most famous race pilots are expected to arrive shortly in Indianapolis to prepare their mounts for the 500-mile race, May 30th. Those two men, Raoul Riganti and Juan Gaudino, have both driven the Indianaoplis course in past races, and are expected to be among the favoured drivers when the big race gets under way. Both men will drive American machines, re-built for Indianapolis under their personal supervision. Riganti, also famed as a motorcycle rider, was a member of the Bugatti team at Indianapolis in 1923. Guadino drove a personally entered Chrysler last year.
Definite rumours that Tazio Nuvolari, ace of the Italian drivers, will be at Indianapolis in a ft litre Duesenberg from the famous Ferrari stable, have caused much comment in Yankee racing circles. That he will be a distinct favourite on a Duesenberg is admitted, and American fans are hoping that he will be over for the race. The rumour still persists, also, that Jack Dunfee will be seen in the “500.” ” Babe ” Stapp will drive a new 4cylinder, front-drive Boyle Valve Special in the Indianapolis race. “Wild Bill” Cummings will be at the wheel of a second Boyle Valve at Indianapolis, an 8-cylinder, rear-drive, Miller-powered job. This car won the pole position in Lou Moore’s
hands last year, and led the race for a number of laps.
Among the late entries at Indianapolis are five Studebaker Specials, entered by the Studebaker Company. These are the five cars that made such excellent showings last year, but they have been entirely re-built and fitted with new, superstreamline bodies. According to Indianapolis press dispatches, the cars are modelled closely after English record-breaking cars.
Frank Brisko, Milwaukee veteran driver entered his 4-wheel drive Miller late in April. This is the same 4-wheel-drive that was driven by Bob McDonogh last year. It is an 8-cylinder, V-type job, and handles with extraordinary ease on the bumpy Indianapolis bricks. Brisko, a wealthy garage owner, purchased the car last year, and re-built it during the winter. He is known as an exceptionally clever mechanician and driver.
Young ” Howdy ” Wilcox, who is not related to the 1919 Indianapolis race winner of the same name, will drive the famous Miller 8, rear-drive, machine that carried Carey to the A.A.A. Championship, according to reports. This would make Wilcox one of the outstanding favourites to win the 500-mile grind. Louie Meyer, the National Champion in 1928-9, has worked on the car all winter, and it is in perfect racing condition. Meyer will probably drive a similar Miller, owned by Ralph Hepburn.
Harry Hartz is bringing two MillerHartz cars to the race, one of which will be handled by Fred Frame, while the other had had no driver named at this writing. In view of Hartz’s excellent successes in recent Indianapolis races, one must consider these two mounts among the best.
A Tragic April.
The month of April was marred by the death of two of America’s most famous racing drivers. By a peculiar coincidence, both drivers, Bob Carey and Bryan Saulpaugh, were killed in practice sessions, with nothing on the respective courses other than their .own machines. Carey, A.A.A. National Champion for 1932, died at Los Angeles, California, following a crash on the Ascot 5/8-mile hard-surface speedway. Carey was warming up his quick Miller 4-cylinder machine, preparing to qualify for the Ascot Easter Sweepstakes, when the accident happened. Shooting into one of the very sharp curves at nearly 100 m.p.h., Carey suddenly
found his throttle stuck, and the car, fiat-out, skidded broadside. Carey, a man of tremendous strength, made a desperate effort to right the car, but only succeeded in snapping the steering knuckle. The car struck the outer railings, catapulted 35 feet in the air, turning over and over, with poor Carey pinned in the seat. He was almost instantly killed. Bryan Saulpaugh died following a terrible spill at 103 m.p.h. on the Oakland 1-mile speedway in California, just six days following Carey’s accident. Saulpaugh lost control of his car coming out of the curve into the home straight. It flipped over, throwing young Saulpaugh on to the track, and then smashed on top of him. Saulpaugh was 26 years of age, Carey 29 years. Their loss is a keen blow to American motor racing, both men having been among the finest pilots in the
The Oakland Race.
The 150-mile Championship race scheduled for Oakland on April 23rd was cancelled, and a 150-mile nonChampionship race for single-seat cars held in its stead. Chet Gardner, in a Miller, won the 150-mile event, setting a new American dirt track record of 1 hour, 38 mins 41i secs. ” Stubby ” Stubblefield was second, Rex Mays, third, and Kelly Petillo, fourth. Stapp led the race up to the 127-mile point, when a broken connection rod spoiled his victory hopes. Shaw and Cummings, favourites, were forced out with rear axle troubles.
The race was changed from a Championship event because of the big-time drivers objecting to taking their cars 3,000 miles across the continent, then having to return immediately to prepare for the Indianapolis “500.”
Records Confirmed. records at as
Harry Hartz’s records at Muroc, as reported last month, have now been confirmed by the I.A.R.A.C., as follows :
WORLD’S RECORDS. 50 miles and 50 kilometres, Union 76 Special (4203 c.c.), driven by Fred Frame, at 139.61 m.p.h. and 136.52 m.p.h. respectively. Previous records held by Eyston (Panhard) at 132.01 m.p.h. and Eldridge (Miller)131.16 m.p.h.
INTERNATIONAL CLASS C. 5 kilometres and 10 miles, car as above, driven by H. Hartz, at 145.93 m.p.h. and 146.71 m.p.h. respectively. 5 miles, 50 kilometres and 50 miles, car as above, driven by F. Frame at 147.45 m.p.h., 136.52 m.p.h. and 139.61 m.p.h. Previous records held by Don (Sunbeam) at 130.41 m.p.h., 130.00 m.p.h., 130.28 m.p.h., 123.67 m.p.h. and 124.19 m.p.h.