1951 Indianapolis 500
The 35th International 500-Mile Sweepstakes was held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Wednesday, May 30, 1951. The event was part of the 1951 AAA National Championship Trail, was race 2 of 8 in the 1951 World Championship of Drivers. For the second year in a row, no European Formula One-based teams entered the race. Duke Nalon, who had suffered serious burns in a crash in 1949, who missed the 1950 race, made a comeback at Indy by winning the pole position in a Novi. Heavy attrition saw only eight cars running at the finish. Winner Lee Wallard's car lost its brakes, suffered a damaged exhaust pipe, broke a shock absorber mounting. In addition to the unbearably uncomfortable ride, Wallard had worn a fire retardant outfit, created by dipping his uniform in a mixture of borax crystals and water. Due to not wearing an undershirt, Wallard suffered serious chafing, required treatment at the infield hospital after the victory lane celebration, it was estimated. Wallard's winning car had the smallest displacement in the field.
About a week after winning the race, Wallard suffered severe burns in a crash at Reading, which ended his professional racing career. Three-time winner Mauri Rose, in his 15th Indy start and flipped on lap 126, it was his final 500. Time trials was scheduled for six days. Rain, pushed qualifying into a seventh day. Saturday May 12 – Pole Day time trials Sunday May 13 – Second day time trials Saturday May 19 – Third day time trials Sunday May 20 – Fourth day time trials Saturday May 26 – Fifth day time trials Sunday May 27 – Sixth day time trials Monday May 28 – Seventh day time trials Notes^1 – Includes 1 point for fastest lead lap First alternate: Bob Sweikert Pole position: Duke Nalon – 4:23.74 Fastest Lead Lap: Lee Wallard – 1:07.26 Ayulo and McGrath shared the same car. Points for 3rd position were shared between the drivers. World Drivers' Championship standingsNote: Only the top five positions are listed. Only the best 4 results counted towards the Championship; the race was carried live on the radio through a network arrangement set up by 1070 WIBC-AM of Indianapolis.
Mutual, which had carried the race for several years, had raised its advertising rates for 1951, lost its primary sponsor for the event, Perfect Circle Piston Rings. As a result, Mutual dropped the coverage altogether. Local station WIBC stepped in to cover the race, provided its feed to various Mutual affiliates. A total of 26 stations carried the broadcast. WIBC personality Sid Collins served as booth announcer, the remainder of the crew consisted of WIBC talent. Jim Shelton reported from his familiar turn four location, Collins interviewed the winner in victory lane. Like the Mutual broadcasts, WIBC featured live coverage of the start, the finish, 15-minute live updates throughout the race. Indianapolis 500 History: Race & All-Time Stats – Official Site Van Camp's Pork & Beans Presents: Great Moments From the Indy 500 – Fleetwood Sounds, 1975 1951 Indianapolis 500 at RacingReference.info
Auto racing is a motorsport involving the racing of automobiles for competition. Auto racing has existed since the invention of the automobile. Races of various sorts were organised, with the first recorded as early as 1867. Many of the earliest events were reliability trials, aimed at proving these new machines were a practical mode of transport, but soon became an important way for competing makers to demonstrate their machines. By the 1930s, specialist racing cars had developed. There are now each with different rules and regulations; the first prearranged match race of two self-powered road vehicles over a prescribed route occurred at 4:30 A. M. on August 30, 1867, between Ashton-under-Lyne and Old Trafford, a distance of eight miles. It was won by the carriage of Isaac Watt Boulton. Internal combustion auto racing events began soon after the construction of the first successful gasoline-fueled automobiles; the first organized contest was on April 28, 1887, by the chief editor of Paris publication Le Vélocipède, Monsieur Fossier.
It ran 2 kilometres from Neuilly Bridge to the Bois de Boulogne. On July 22, 1894, the Parisian magazine Le Petit Journal organized what is considered to be the world's first motoring competition, from Paris to Rouen. One hundred and two competitors paid a 10-franc entrance fee; the first American automobile race is held to be the Thanksgiving Day Chicago Times-Herald race of November 28, 1895. Press coverage of the event first aroused significant American interest in the automobile. With auto construction and racing dominated by France, the French automobile club ACF staged a number of major international races from or to Paris, connecting with another major city, in France or elsewhere in Europe. Brooklands, in Surrey, was the first purpose-built motor racing venue, opening in June 1907, it featured a 4.43 km concrete track with high-speed banked corners. One of the oldest existing purpose-built automobile racing circuits in the United States, still in use, is the 2.5-mile-long Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana.
It is the largest capacity sports venue of any variety worldwide, with a top capacity of some 257,000+ seated spectators. NASCAR was founded by Bill France, Sr. on February 21, 1948, with the help of several other drivers of the time. The first NASCAR "Strictly Stock" race was held on June 19, 1949, at Daytona Beach, Florida. From 1962, sports cars temporarily took a back seat to GT cars, with the FIA replacing the World Championship for Sports Cars with the International Championship for GT Manufacturers. From 1972 through 2003, NASCAR's premier series was called the Winston Cup Series, sponsored by R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company cigarette brand Winston; the changes that resulted from RJR's involvement, as well as the reduction of the schedule from 48 to 31 races a year, established 1972 as the beginning of NASCAR's "modern era". The IMSA GT Series evolved into the American Le Mans Series, which ran its first season in 1999; the European races became the related Le Mans Series, both of which mix prototypes and GTs.
Turismo Carretera is a popular touring car racing series in Argentina, the oldest car racing series still active in the world. The first TC competition took place in 1937 with 12 races, each in a different province. Future Formula One star Juan Manuel Fangio won the 1940 and 1941 editions of the TC, it was during this time that the series' Chevrolet-Ford rivalry began, with Ford acquiring most of its historical victories. The two most popular varieties of open wheel road racing are the IndyCar Series. Formula One is a European-based series that runs only street race tracks; these cars are based around technology and their aerodynamics. With the highest speed record set in 2005 by Juan Pablo Montoya hitting 373 kph; some of the most prominent races are the Monaco Grand Prix, the Italian Grand Prix, the British Grand Prix. The season ends with the crowning of the World Championship for constructors. In single-seater, the wheels are not covered, the cars have aerofoil wings front and rear to produce downforce and enhance adhesion to the track.
In Europe and Asia, open-wheeled racing is referred to as'Formula', with appropriate hierarchical suffixes. In North America, the'Formula' terminology is not followed; the sport is arranged to follow an international format, a regional format, and/or a domestic, or country-specific, format. In the United States, the most popular series is the National Championship, more known as the IndyCar Series and known as CART; the cars have traditionally been similar though less technologically sophisticated than F1 cars, with more restrictions on technology aimed at controlling costs. While these cars are not as technologically advanced, they are faster because they compete on oval race tracks, being able to average a lap at 388 kph; the series' biggest race is the Indianapolis 500, referred to as "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" due to being the longest continuously run race and having the largest crowd for a single-day sporting event. The other major international single-seater racing series is Formula 2.
Regional series include Formula Nippon and Formula V6 Asia, Formula Renault 3.5, Formula Three, For
Sanremo or San Remo is a city and comune on the Mediterranean coast of Liguria, in north-western Italy. Founded in Roman times, it has a population of 57,000, is known as a tourist destination on the Italian Riviera, it hosts numerous cultural events, such as the Sanremo Music Festival and the Milan–San Remo cycling classic. The name of the city is a phonetic contraction of Sant'Eremo di San Romolo, which refers to Romulus of Genoa, the successor to Syrus of Genoa, it is stated in modern folk stories that Sanremo is a translation of "Saint Remus", a deceased Saint. In Ligurian, his name is San Rœmu; the spelling San Remo is on all ancient maps of Liguria, the ancient Republic of Genoa, Italy in the Middle Ages, the Kingdom of Sardinia, the Kingdom of Italy. It was used in 1924 in official documents under Mussolini; this form of the name appears still on some road signs and, more in unofficial tourist information. It has been the most used form of the name in English at least since the 19th century.
Once the Roman settlement of Matutia or Villa Matutiana, Sanremo expanded in the Early Middle Ages when the population moved to the high grounds. The nobility built a castle and the walled village of La Pigna to protect the town from Saracen raids. At first subjected to the countship of Ventimiglia, the community passed under the dominion of the Genoese bishops. In 1297 they sold it to the De Mari families, it became a free town in the second half of the 15th century, after which it expanded to the Pigna hill and at Saint Syrus Cathedral. The perfectly preserved old village remains. Sanremo remained independent from the Genoese Republic. In 1753, after 20 years of fierce conflicts, it rose against Genoese hegemonical attempts. At that time the latter polity built the fortress of Santa Tecla, situated on the beach near the port; the fortress was used as a prison until 2002. It is now being transformed into a museum. After the French domination and the Savoy restoration in 1814, Sanremo was annexed to the Kingdom of Sardinia.
From the middle of the 18th century the town grew in part due to the development of tourism, which saw the first grand hotels built and the town extended along the coast. The Empress "Sissi" of Austria, Empress Maria Alexandrovna of Russia, Emperor Nicholas II of Russia vacationed in Sanremo, while Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel made it his permanent home; the San Remo conference, 19–26 April 1920, of the post-World War I Allied Supreme Council determined the allocation of Class "A" League of Nations mandates for administration of the former Ottoman-ruled lands of the Middle East by the victorious powers. The most notable of these was the British Mandate of Palestine. Sanremo's Mediterranean climate and attractive seacoast setting on the Italian Riviera make it a popular tourist destination. Besides tourism, the city is active in the production of extra virgin-grade olive oil, whose regional "designation of origin" is protected, it is one of the agricultural commodities in western Liguria and in particular within the province of Imperia.
Sanremo is known as the City of Flowers, this being another important aspect of the economy of the city. The nearby towns of Arma di Taggia and Ospedaletti are involved in the cultivation of flowers for the international flower market of Sanremo; the Municipal Casino, built in 1905, is an example of Art Nouveau building. The Ariston Theatre offers annual series of concerts and theatre plays; the Symphony Orchestra is one of twelve symphony orchestras recognized by the state of Italy. The city is connected to Genoa and to Ventimiglia, the border city with France, by the A10 motorway, whose last part is known as the Autostrada dei Fiori, it has a large number of elevated sections with viaducts. The A10 joins the French A8 highway at the border between Menton. Together these national routes are part of the European route E80; the A10 motorway is a toll road, the A8 demands a toll in sections, some sections are free of charge. Notably when travelling from Italy into France, there one does not pay until after the towns of Menton and Monaco.
Other roads of importance are the "Aurelia Bis", which connects Sanremo to Taggia. This is a non-toll bypass route; the coast road follows the route of a Roman road. This can be congested when it passes through towns, as it has only one lane in either direction for most of way around Sanremo. A trolleybus line along the via Aurelia links Sanremo with both Ventimiglia; the closest airport to Sanremo is in France, the Côte d'Azur International Airport in Nice, 75 minutes away by car or train. The railway connects the city to the other Ligurian cities like Imperia, Genoa and to Nice, Milan and Rome; the railway line used to be along the coast, running close to the sea, providing a view for travellers. The line has been moved further underground, which allows for faster trains; the city has refurbished the old railway line and converted it into a biking route and pedestrian area. There are several bike hire kiosks along the route and a choice of beaches to visit in either direction from San Remo; the path stretches 24 km between Ospedaletti in the east.
Sanremo experiences a hot-summer Mediterranean climate. The Ariston Theatre hosts the celebrated annual Sanremo Music Festival
Talbot or Clément-Talbot Limited was a London automobile manufacturer founded in 1903. Clément-Talbot's products were named just Talbot from shortly after introduction, but the business remained Clément-Talbot Limited until 1938 when it was renamed Sunbeam-Talbot Limited; the founders, Charles Chetwynd-Talbot, 20th Earl of Shrewsbury and Adolphe Clément-Bayard, reduced their financial interests in their Clément-Talbot business during the First World War. Soon after the end of the war, Clément-Talbot was brought into a combine named S T D Motors. Shortly afterward, S T D Motors' French products were renamed Talbot instead of Darracq. In the mid-1930s, with the collapse of S T D Motors, Rootes bought the London Talbot factory and Antonio Lago bought the Paris Talbot factory, Lago producing vehicles under the marques Talbot and Talbot-Lago. Rootes renamed Clément-Talbot Limited Sunbeam-Talbot Limited in 1938, stopped using the brand name Talbot in the mid-1950s; the Paris factory closed a few years later.
Ownership of the marque came by a series of takeovers to Peugeot S. A. which revived use of the Talbot name from 1978 until 1994. In December 1919 A Darracq and Company Limited of London with its factory in Suresnes, bought the entire capital of Clément-Talbot and bought Sunbeam and renamed itself S. T. D. Motors Limited; those initials referred to Sunbeam and Darracq. But in the depth of the Great Depression S T D Motors became unable to pay its debts, its subsidiaries managed to find buyers and in 1936 S T D Motors ceased to exist. Clément-Talbot continued to be famous for the design and quality of its products and it remained profitable during the depression. Clément-Talbot was bought by Rootes Group and renamed Sunbeam-Talbot. Sunbeam alone twenty years after that. In 1920 Suresnes products were branded Talbot-Darracq but the word Darracq was dropped in 1922. If exported to England Paris-made Talbots were rebadged Darracq or Talbot-Darracq Dragged down by the 1924 borrowing to pay for the Sunbeam racing programme S T D Motors and Automobiles Talbot France suffered a financial collapse in late 1934.
Following the financial collapse of its parent, S T D Motors, Clément-Talbot remained financially sound with marketable products. Clément-Talbot was bought by Rootes Securities and continued to manufacture the same catalogue of vehicles introducing components from Hillman and Humber cars; as the genuine Talbot parts bins ran dry a modified Hillman Aero Minx was introduced to the production line and given the Talbot brand name. In 1938 this Talbot Ten and its stable mates were badged Sunbeam-Talbot and owner, Clément-Talbot Limited's, name changed to fit. Following the financial collapse of S T D Motors and Paris's Automobiles Talbot Antonio Lago, the Suresnes' manager, arranged a management buyout of the French operation. Antonio Lago involved Talbot in sports car and Grand Prix racing as well as producing high quality luxury cars. In the postwar world of austerity and socialism the French government introduced punitive annual taxation on cars with engines larger than 2.6-litres and Talbot sales were restricted.
Lago continued the Talbot business until 1958. The dormant Talbot marque was sold to Simca. Simca was bought by Chrysler Europe in 1970. PSA Peugeot Citroën acquired the still dormant Talbot marque when it bought Chrysler in 1978. PSA Peugeot Citroën began to use a Talbot badge on former Simca and Chrysler models Chrysler Europe had struggled to make a profit for much of its existence, had relied on government bailouts to ensure its survival. With mounting pressure on its core North American business, the decision was taken by Chrysler's CEO Lee Iacocca to offload the ailing European operations; the French Government persuaded both PSA Peugeot Citroën to bid for the company. In August 1978, PSA purchased Chrysler Europe for a nominal $1, resurrected the Talbot name — using it to re-badge the former Simca and Rootes models. Although PSA took responsibility for Chrysler Europe's considerable debts and liabilities, the move was a strategic one; the Peugeot takeover saw the end of the Rootes' Chrysler Hunter production, but the Simca-designed 1510, Horizon continued as Talbots.
All former Chrysler products registered in Britain after 1 August 1979 bore the Talbot badge. Talbot's UK branch manufactured the Alpine and Horizon at their aging Ryton plant in Coventry after the British developed cars had all been retired – excepting the UK arm's largest revenue source, building CKD kits of the Hillman Hunter to be sent to Iran where they were assembled as the Peykan; the last remaining car produced by the Rootes group, the Chrysler Avenger, remained in production as a Talbot until the end of 1981. The entry-level model in the Talbot range from 1982 onwards would be the Talbot Samba, a three-door hatchback based on the Peugeot 104. In 1981, Peugeot began producing the Talbot Tagora, a boxy four-door saloon marketed as a Ford Granada or Vauxhall Carlton/Opel Rekord rival, but it was not popular in either Britain or France and production ceased in 1983. At the end of 1984, the Alpine hatchback and its related Solara saloon were rebadged Minx and Rapier depending upon specification rather than body shape.
The new names were inherited
Brussels the Brussels-Capital Region, is a region of Belgium comprising 19 municipalities, including the City of Brussels, the capital of Belgium. The Brussels-Capital Region is located in the central portion of the country and is a part of both the French Community of Belgium and the Flemish Community, but is separate from the Flemish Region and the Walloon Region. Brussels is the most densely populated and the richest region in Belgium in terms of GDP per capita, it covers 161 km2, a small area compared to the two other regions, has a population of 1.2 million. The metropolitan area of Brussels counts over 2.1 million people, which makes it the largest in Belgium. It is part of a large conurbation extending towards Ghent, Antwerp and Walloon Brabant, home to over 5 million people. Brussels grew from a small rural settlement on the river Senne to become an important city-region in Europe. Since the end of the Second World War, it has been a major centre for international politics and the home of numerous international organisations, politicians and civil servants.
Brussels is the de facto capital of the European Union, as it hosts a number of principal EU institutions, including its administrative-legislative, executive-political, legislative branches and its name is sometimes used metonymically to describe the EU and its institutions. The secretariat of the Benelux and headquarters of NATO are located in Brussels; as the economic capital of Belgium and one of the top financial centres of Western Europe with Euronext Brussels, it is classified as an Alpha global city. Brussels is a hub for rail and air traffic, sometimes earning the moniker "Crossroads of Europe"; the Brussels Metro is the only rapid transit system in Belgium. In addition, both its airport and railway stations are the busiest in the country. Dutch-speaking, Brussels saw a language shift to French from the late 19th century; the Brussels-Capital Region is bilingual in French and Dutch though French is now the de facto main language with over 90% of the population speaking it. Brussels is increasingly becoming multilingual.
English is spoken as a second language by nearly a third of the population and a large number of migrants and expatriates speak other languages. Brussels is known for its cuisine and gastronomy, as well as its historical and architectural landmarks. Main attractions include its historic Grand Place, Manneken Pis and cultural institutions such as La Monnaie and the Museums of Art and History; because of its long tradition of Belgian comics, Brussels is hailed as a capital of the comic strip. The most common theory of the origin of the name Brussels is that it derives from the Old Dutch Bruocsella, Broekzele or Broeksel, meaning "marsh" and "home" or "home in the marsh". Saint Vindicianus, the bishop of Cambrai, made the first recorded reference to the place Brosella in 695, when it was still a hamlet; the names of all the municipalities in the Brussels-Capital Region are of Dutch origin, except for Evere, Celtic. In French, Bruxelles is pronounced and in Dutch, Brussel is pronounced. Inhabitants of Brussels are known in French in Dutch as Brusselaars.
In the Brabantian dialect of Brussels, they are called Brusseleirs. The written x noted the group. In the Belgian French pronunciation as well as in Dutch, the k disappeared and z became s, as reflected in the current Dutch spelling, whereas in the more conservative French form, the spelling remained; the pronunciation in French only dates from the 18th century, but this modification did not affect the traditional Brussels' usage. In France, the pronunciations and are heard, but are rather rare in Belgium. See also: History of Brussels The history of Brussels is linked to that of Western Europe. Traces of human settlement go back to the Stone Age, with vestiges and place-names related to the civilisation of megaliths and standing stones. During late antiquity, the region was home to Roman occupation, as attested by archaeological evidence discovered near the centre. Following the decline of the Western Roman Empire, it was incorporated into the Frankish Empire; the origin of the settlement, to become Brussels lies in Saint Gaugericus' construction of a chapel on an island in the river Senne around 580.
The official founding of Brussels is situated around 979, when Duke Charles of Lower Lotharingia transferred the relics of Saint Gudula from Moorsel to the Saint Gaugericus chapel. Charles would construct the first permanent fortification in the city, doing so on that same island. Lambert I of Leuven, Count of Leuven, gained the County of Brussels around 1000, by marrying Charles' daughter; because of its location on the shores of the Senne, on an important trade route between Bruges and Ghent, Cologne, Brussels became a commercial centre specialised in the textile trade. The town grew quite and extended towards the upper town, where there was a smaller risk of floods; as it grew to a population of around 30,000, the surrounding marshes were drained to allow for further expansion. Around
Belgium the Kingdom of Belgium, is a country in Western Europe. It is bordered by the Netherlands to the north, Germany to the east, Luxembourg to the southeast, France to the southwest, the North Sea to the northwest, it has a population of more than 11.4 million. The capital and largest city is Brussels; the sovereign state is a federal constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system. Its institutional organisation is structured on both regional and linguistic grounds, it is divided into three autonomous regions: Flanders in the north, Wallonia in the south, the Brussels-Capital Region. Brussels is the smallest and most densely populated region, as well as the richest region in terms of GDP per capita. Belgium is home to two main linguistic groups or Communities: the Dutch-speaking Flemish Community, which constitutes about 59 percent of the population, the French-speaking Community, which comprises about 40 percent of all Belgians. A small German-speaking Community, numbering around one percent, exists in the East Cantons.
The Brussels-Capital Region is bilingual, although French is the dominant language. Belgium's linguistic diversity and related political conflicts are reflected in its political history and complex system of governance, made up of six different governments. Belgium was part of an area known as the Low Countries, a somewhat larger region than the current Benelux group of states that included parts of northern France and western Germany, its name is derived after the Roman province of Gallia Belgica. From the end of the Middle Ages until the 17th century, the area of Belgium was a prosperous and cosmopolitan centre of commerce and culture. Between the 16th and early 19th centuries, Belgium served as the battleground between many European powers, earning the moniker the "Battlefield of Europe", a reputation strengthened by both world wars; the country emerged in 1830 following the Belgian Revolution. Belgium participated in the Industrial Revolution and, during the course of the 20th century, possessed a number of colonies in Africa.
The second half of the 20th century was marked by rising tensions between the Dutch-speaking and the French-speaking citizens fueled by differences in language and culture and the unequal economic development of Flanders and Wallonia. This continuing antagonism has led to several far-reaching reforms, resulting in a transition from a unitary to a federal arrangement during the period from 1970 to 1993. Despite the reforms, tensions between the groups have remained, if not increased. Unemployment in Wallonia is more than double that of Flanders. Belgium is one of the six founding countries of the European Union and hosts the official seats of the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, the European Council, as well as a seat of the European Parliament in the country's capital, Brussels. Belgium is a founding member of the Eurozone, NATO, OECD, WTO, a part of the trilateral Benelux Union and the Schengen Area. Brussels hosts several of the EU's official seats as well as the headquarters of many major international organizations such as NATO.
Belgium is a developed country, with an advanced high-income economy. It has high standards of living, quality of life, education, is categorized as "very high" in the Human Development Index, it ranks as one of the safest or most peaceful countries in the world. The name "Belgium" is derived from Gallia Belgica, a Roman province in the northernmost part of Gaul that before Roman invasion in 100 BC, was inhabited by the Belgae, a mix of Celtic and Germanic peoples. A gradual immigration by Germanic Frankish tribes during the 5th century brought the area under the rule of the Merovingian kings. A gradual shift of power during the 8th century led the kingdom of the Franks to evolve into the Carolingian Empire; the Treaty of Verdun in 843 divided the region into Middle and West Francia and therefore into a set of more or less independent fiefdoms which, during the Middle Ages, were vassals either of the King of France or of the Holy Roman Emperor. Many of these fiefdoms were united in the Burgundian Netherlands of the 15th centuries.
Emperor Charles V extended the personal union of the Seventeen Provinces in the 1540s, making it far more than a personal union by the Pragmatic Sanction of 1549 and increased his influence over the Prince-Bishopric of Liège. The Eighty Years' War divided the Low Countries into the northern United Provinces and the Southern Netherlands; the latter were ruled successively by the Spanish and the Austrian Habsburgs and comprised most of modern Belgium. This was the theatre of most Franco-Spanish and Franco-Austrian wars during the 17th and 18th centuries. Following the campaigns of 1794 in the French Revolutionary Wars, the Low Countries—including territories that were never nominally under Habsburg rule, such as the Prince-Bishopric of Liège—were annexed by the French First Republic, ending Austrian rule in the region; the reunification of the Low Countries as the United Kingdom of the Netherlands occurred at the dissolution of the First French Empire in 1815, after the defeat of Napo
Octave John "Johnny" Claes was an English-born racing driver who competed for Belgium. Before his fame as a racing driver, Claes was a jazz trumpeter and successful bandleader in Britain. Claes was born in London to Belgian father, he was educated in England at Lord Williams's School. In England, he began playing trumpet in a jazz band that included Max Jones on reeds, another with Billy Mason on piano. In the 1930s he moved to the Netherlands, where he worked with Coleman Hawkins, he worked with Jack Kluger's band in Belgium. Returning to England, he led his own group, the Claepigeons, making a recording in 1942. In the late 1940s he abandoned his jazz career and settled in Belgium as a professional racing driver. Claes was one of several gentlemen drivers who took part in Grand Prix racing of post-World War II, his first contact with racing was at the 1947 French Grand Prix, where he served as interpreter for British drivers. He made. Although Claes never scored any points in the World Drivers Championship, he was, like many of his contemporaries active in non-Championship Grand Prix races and sports car races.
His first win was at the 1950 Grand Prix des Frontières, held at the Chimay race track. In April 1951 Claes crashed into a crowd while practicing at Italy, he was uninjured but an observer was killed and three onlookers were injured. In 1952 he exchanged his outdated Talbot for a Gordini, for a Connaught, always with the Ecurie Belge colours, but he raced for works team, including Gordini and Maserati, he won the 1953 Liège-Rome-Liège Rally and took a class win at the 1954 24 Hours of Le Mans. Claes teamed with Pierre Stasse to finish 12th in the 1954 24 Hours of Le Mans, they drove a Porsche. Together with compatriot Jacques Swaters, Claes finished third in the 1955 24 Hours of Le Mans. In 1955 Claes' health problems worsened, as he had contracted tuberculosis. Claes sold his outfit to Swaters, who merged it with his own Ecurie Francorchamps to form Ecurie Nationale Belge. Claes entered occasional events until the end of the year, but succumbed to the disease in Brussels in 1956, aged 39