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13-14 October: This Weekend in Motor Sport History

Discover the momentous motor sporting events that took place this weekend in history …..

~13 October~

1918: Barney Oldfield, driving the “Golden Submarine” for Will Pickens, raced in his last competitive event, an IMCA sanctioned race on the dirt track in Independence, Missouri, US.

1923: Alvis made its racing debut at Brooklands, with Major Maurice Harvey winning the 200-mile race at a record 93.29 mph.

1934: The Brooklands Mountain Championship was won by Willard Whitney-Straight, driving a Maserati 8CM.

1962: Both Carrol Shelby’s Cobra and the Corvete Stingray Z06 made their race debuts at Riverside, California. Dave MacDonald, Bob Bondurant, Jerry Grant, and Doug Hooper drove Z06s and Bill Krause the lone Cobra. At the end, it was Hooper who won the race.

1963: Junior Johnson soared to a dominant victory in the National 400 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, North Carolina, US leading 209 of 267 laps for his 34th win in ’s premier series. Johnson, who started second in a Ray Fox-owned Chevrolet, finished 12 seconds ahead of runner-up Fred Lorenzen, who led 20 laps. Pole-starter Marvin Panch finished third with Fireball Roberts fourth as Fords swept positions two through four.

1968: The first race staged at the two-mile (3.2 km) moderate-banked D-shaped Michigan Speedway in Irish Hills Michigan, US) was won by Ronnie Bucknum in the Weimberger Homes Special. The track is used primarily for NASCAR events. It is sometimes known as a “sister track” to Texas World Speedway, and was used as the basis of Auto Club Speedway. The track is owned by International Speedway Corporation (ISC). Michigan International Speedway is recognized as one of motorsports’ premier facilities because of its wide racing surface and high banking (by open-wheel standards; the 18-degree banking is modest by stock car standards). Michigan is the fastest track in NASCAR due to its wide, sweeping corners, long straightaways, and lack of a restrictor plate requirement; typical qualifying speeds are in excess of 200 mph (320 km/h) and corner entry speeds are

Damon Hill

anywhere from 215 to 220 mph (346 to 354 km/h) after the 2012 repaving of the track.

1991: Nissan’s Geoff Brabham captured an unprecedented fourth consecutive IMSA GTP title.

1996: Damon Hill won the World Championship in Suzuka, Japan and became the first and only son of a Formula One world champion to win the title. That season Hill equalled the record for starting all 16 races of the season from the front row, matching Ayrton Senna in 1989 and Alain Prost in 1993. Despite winning the title, Hill learned before the season’s close that he was to be dropped by Williams in favour of Frentzen for the following season. Hill left Williams as the team’s second most successful driver in terms of race victories, with 21, second only to Mansell. Hill’s 1996 world championship earned him his second BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award, making him one of only three people to receive the award twice – the others being boxer Henry Cooper and Mansell. He was also awarded the Segrave Trophy by the Royal Club. The trophy is awarded to the British national who accomplishes the most outstanding demonstration of the possibilities of transport by land, sea, air, or water.

2002: Jamie McMurray, making his second start since replacing the injured Sterling Marlin, led the final 31 laps for a stunning upset in Charlotte’s UAW-GM Quality 500, North Carolina, US. McMurray became the quickest winner in NASCAR Cup Series history since Johnny Rutherford won in his first start at Daytona in 1963.

~14 October~

Alva Belmont Vanderbilt and other spectators at the Vanderbilt cup race of Mineola (NY), 1905

1905: Following the success of the 1904 Vanderbilt Cup Race, the second race was held. Competing against the five American cars, France, Germany, and Italy started 14 of their greatest cars and drivers including; Vincenzo Lancia, Louis Chevrolet and George Heath. French cars finished first and second place for the second consecutive year. Victor Hemery won in the Darracq, averaging 61.5 mph. The 1904 winner, George Heath, finished in second place by only 3 minutes and 42 seconds. The Locomobile driven by Joe Tracy finished third, averaging 56.9 mph, the first time an American car had ever been placed in an international competition.

1911: The eighth Glidden Tour began in New York City, with a planned route through Atlanta, Georgia to Jacksonville, Florida., US

1911: The first road race staged in Santa Monica, California, the 220 mile Free For All, was won by Harvey Herrick in a National.

1933: Johnny Gerber competed in and won his last race in Bel Air, Maryland, US. Johnny was a top “outlaw” sprint car driver in the 1920s and early 1930s. After giving up driving, he continued to own race cars and build specialised connecting rods for racing engines. His wife Rose kept meticulous records of his racing career. The notes became the basis of his autobiography, “Outlaw Sprint Car Racer” which was published in 1992. That same year Johnny was inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in Knoxville, Iowa.

1951: A total of 106 cars competed in the NASCAR Modified and Sportsman race at Langhorne Speedway, Pennsylvania, US. Dick Eagan, driving in relief of Hully Bunn, was declared the winner after a crash halts the race after 83 laps. Don Black was critically injured in the massive pileup, which unfolds for more than one minute. Fritz Holzhauer was badly burned in an earlier incident. Photos of the big crash appeared in the Dec. 9 issue of This Week magazine, which appeared in Sunday editions of news­papers across the US.

1956: Curtis Turner was declared the winner of the scheduled 100-mile NASCAR Convertible race at Asheville-Weaverville Speedway when a 14-car crash wiped out all but one car running in the event. Turner’s Ford was the only car still in running condition when officials terminated the event after 181 of the scheduled 200 laps.

Tony Roper

1962: Glenn “Fireball” Roberts won the National 400 NASCAR stock car race at Charlotte, North Carolina, US

1973: Jackie Stewart announced his retirement from .

2000: NASCAR Craftsman Truck series driver Tony Roper (35) died in a crash during the O’Reilly 400 at Texas Motor Speedway in Ft. Worth, Texas. Roper’s car brushed another during the 32nd lap and slammed head-on to the wall, bursting into flames and spinning out of control.

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