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Milwaukee 1952 or 1953


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#1 Rob Miller

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 19:00

My dad took me to my first motor race in '52 or '53, when I was about 7 or 8. It was a stock car event and I think it might have been at the Milwaukee mile. The surface as I remember it was not paved. We were in the stands at the apex of a 180 degree bend marked out with half-buried tires. One of these came loose and flipped over one of the leading cars.

 

What I seem to recollect is that it was run clockwise. Is this at all possible?

 

Rob

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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#2 Michael Ferner

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 19:43

That's about 60 years before I ever set foot on Milwaukee soil, but I don't think I've ever heard of a clockwise oval in the US. There was, however, an infield "road course" at State Fair Park in the fifties, which included a 180 degree right. Then again, that "hairpin" was pretty far away from the stands, near Turn 2 on the big oval. Also, according to the info I have, it was only built after the whole track was paved in 1954, but maybe they ran one or two races before that?



#3 Tom Glowacki

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 20:09

My dad took me to my first motor race in '52 or '53, when I was about 7 or 8. It was a stock car event and I think it might have been at the Milwaukee mile. The surface as I remember it was not paved. We were in the stands at the apex of a 180 degree bend marked out with half-buried tires. One of these came loose and flipped over one of the leading cars.

 

What I seem to recollect is that it was run clockwise. Is this at all possible?

 

Rob

Hales Corners, or Cedarburg maybe?   Stretching it a bit, Slinger? Those were all dirt short tracks.  There probably were a few others. Clockwise is wierd, but just tell the starter to face in other direction and there you are, for maybe some gimmick feature race.



#4 Michael Ferner

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 20:19

Angell Park in Sun Prairie definitely had tire-markers on the bends in the fifties, there's a picture in "America's Speedways" dated 1953!



#5 DCapps

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 20:44

Angell Park in Sun Prairie definitely had tire-markers on the bends in the fifties, there's a picture in "America's Speedways" dated 1953!

I am tending to be very much in agreement with Michael, that the half-buried tires were certainly present and not necessarily all that common works in its favor. (Thank you Al Brown, who was in Watkins at the IMRRC earlier this month doing research.) As for clockwise, now that would have been totally at odds with things. Even for novelty races this seems to be rarely done. While there are certainly a few other candidates, it appears to be a leading possibility.



#6 Tom Glowacki

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Posted 24 March 2020 - 21:47

Sun Prairie would have been quite a schlep from Milwaukee in the pre- Interstate days on the old Highway 30.  Trust me, I know.  I hauled out my copy of Brenda McGee's "The Milwaukee Mile" and on page 56, there is a nice aerial photograph of The Milwaukee Mile, complete with the infield road course, and quarter- mile and half-mile dirt tracks, which had a common front straight away.  There are a number of lively pictures of the Thursday night stock car races.  The aerial photograph was "taken sometime after 1954", and the Green Packers played some games there until 1951, with an aerial photograph of the field showing that the half mile track was not in existence at that time.


Edited by Tom Glowacki, 24 March 2020 - 21:53.


#7 Michael Ferner

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Posted 25 March 2020 - 13:20

Yes, I am aware of that, which is why I neglected to mention Angell Park in my first post - it was the first thing that jumped at me when I opened my copy of Allen (Allan?) Brown's master piece. I still think that the 180 degree right of the road course is the best explanation for the clockwise impression, the catch however is that it was far away from the grandstand. We need clarification, Rob! :)

#8 RA Historian

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Posted 25 March 2020 - 15:52

The Milwaukee Mile was paved for the 1954 season. It was dirt before then. I do not believe that there were half buried tires around its perimeter.

 

The road course was also installed in 1954 concurrent with the paving. Again, no half buried tires recalled. 

 

Tom



#9 Rob Miller

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Posted 25 March 2020 - 19:15

Thanks for all the clarification. I am revising my memories to go left to right and it seems to work ok.

 

The 180 degree bend was not a hairpin, just the curve joining the two straights. The half-buried tires were on the inside of the curve.

 

We lived in Mukwonago at the time so the track would have been not too far away from there.

 

It was definitely a Hudson that flipped over right in front of us.

 

Rob



#10 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 26 March 2020 - 05:30

Here is a link which includes info on the Burlington track which opened in 1954:

 

http://www.burlingto...r-when-volume-2

 

Vince H.