AAA Champ Car race – Syracuse, N.Y. September 8, 1951
Going back in time to
September 8, 1951 and the AAA Champ Car race at the New York State Fairgrounds
I was a two weeks shy of my 14th birthday that day.
1951 Syracuse AAA Champ Car race – photos by Jack Lehmann
Yes, the track was quite a bit different back then, as you can see, below.
Notice – the pits are on the track. That’s how they were back then.
Bill Schindler’s # 10 Chapman Special after breaking a RF spindle and causing a race stopping multi-car accident on the 67th lap. Bill Vukovich stopped to tell the starter that no one could get through the second turn. This was during the fair and huge tents in the infield blocked vision to a good portion of the track. Schindler was placed 8th after starting 11th.
The # 34 car of. Harry King. He started 18th and finished 5th.
The # 83 of Tommy Hinnershitz. He started 12th and finished 14th.
The race was won by Tony
Bettenhausen in the Belanger # 99.
Second, in the Agajanian # 2 was Walt Faulkner. Third was Bill Vukovich in the John Zink #
4. Eddie Johnson was 4th in
the Iddings # 33. Harry King was 5th
in the Pete Wales # 34. 6th
The top three were the only drivers to complete 67 laps. Fourth thru sixth completed 66 laps. Seventh thru ninth ran only 65 laps, and were involved in the multi-car accident along with the tenth place car which had 64 laps completed.
Bobby Barker, Potsy Goacher and Johnnie Tolan failed to qualify.
Attendance was 60,000. Total purse was $14,918.00. Race was scheduled for 100 laps – 100 miles, but was stopped on the 67th lap due to a multi-car accident. Bettenhausen was the only leader of the race, leading all 67 laps.
Prior to the race there was a “Fly By” by an F-80 Shooting Star Jet plane. He was going a tad faster than the race cars, that’s for sure!
I have no idea as to just how
long it took us to go from
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