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Tin Lizzie Derbies


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#1 Don Radbruch

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Posted 30 November 2004 - 16:31

In about 1940 there were races for stock and stripped Model T Fords. The races were usually billed as something like "Tin Lizzie Derbies" I believe there were dozens or a hundred of these races held all over the US and Canada. The races would be put on at a local fairgrounds by wandering promoters or a service club group as a fund raiser. A purse of $500 to $1000 would be offered for a 50 or 100 mile race and publicity would attract a field of a couple of dozen Model Ts with amateur drivers. The "Tin Lizzie Derbies" were a combination of racing and comedy as the Model Ts would boil over, blow tires, shed parts and perform antics that only a Model T Ford could do. The winners would be paid off and everybody was supposed to go home happy. This part of the scenario did not always work as the races were dangerous and there were injuries and fatalities.

This part of racing and Model T history has been almost totally forgotten. I am currently researching the "Tin Lizzie Derbies" for a small book or booklet. I have data and photos on half a dozen racees but need more informaiton. If you have anything on this Model T racinc please contact me. The tiniest bit of information will help. Thank you.

Were "Tin Lizzie Derbies" held in other parts of the world besides the US and Canada?

Don Radbruch
Sagle, Idaho
radbruch@sandpoint.net

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#2 Barrie Hobkirk

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Posted 03 December 2004 - 21:35

Don,
I recall watching these on TV in the early 1950s and was fixated by it. Would this be the first televised motorsport in the US?
Would any of the TV networks have archived material?

The attached link from Brazil reminds me of these races but these went on for many more years.

www.tcarretera.com.ar/historia.htm

Regards,
Barrie

#3 dbw

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Posted 04 December 2004 - 17:14

if you want a peek into the past, check out http://www.pig-n-ford.com ....i also seem to recall "auto polo" or such where stripped T fords punted giant balls around a field,attempting to "score" at one end or the other...

notice; this pig thing is real..you can't make this stuff up...

#4 David McKinney

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Posted 04 December 2004 - 17:39

...and still with 1925 safety equipment :lol:

#5 D-Type

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 00:01

Originally posted by dbw
if you want a peek into the past, check out http://www.pig-n-ford.com ....i also seem to recall "auto polo" or such where stripped T fords punted giant balls around a field,attempting to "score" at one end or the other...

notice; this pig thing is real..you can't make this stuff up...


:) :D :lol: :rotfl: :rotfl:

Thanks for telling us about this :up:

I loved it.