The Vanderbilt Cup was the first major trophy in American auto racing. An international event, it was founded by William Kissam Vanderbilt II in 1904 and first held on October 8 on a course set out in Nassau County on Long Island, New York; the announcement that the race was to be held caused considerable controversy in New York, bringing a flood of legal actions in an attempt to stop the race. The politicians soon jumped in. Vanderbilt prevailed and the inaugural race was run over a 30.24 miles course of winding dirt roads through the Nassau County area. Vanderbilt put up a large cash prize hoping to encourage American manufacturers to get into racing, a sport well organized in Europe, yielding many factory improvements to motor vehicle technology; the race drew the top drivers and their vehicles from across the Atlantic Ocean, some of whom had competed in Europe's Gordon Bennett Cup. The first Long Island race featured seventeen vehicles and the newspaper and poster art promotion drew large crowds hoping to see an American car defeat the mighty European vehicles.
However, George Heath won the race in a Panhard and another French vehicle, a Darracq, took the Cup the next two years straight. Crowd control was a problem from the start and after a spectator, Curt Gruner, was killed in 1906, the race was cancelled. Meanwhile, in France, the first Grand Prix motor racing event had been run on June 26, 1906, under the auspices of the Automobile Club de France in Le Mans. One of the competitors was American Elliot Shepard, the son of Margaret Vanderbilt-Shepard and a cousin of William Kissam Vanderbilt. Learning from his cousin about the success of the French Grand Prix and the rapid expansion of Grand Prix racing in other European countries, William Vanderbilt conceived a way to solve the safety issue as well as improve attendance to his race. Vanderbilt formed a company to build the Long Island Motor Parkway, one of the country's first modern paved parkways that could not only be used for the race but would open up Long Island for easy access and economic development.
Construction began in 1907 of the multimillion-dollar toll highway, to run from the Kissena Corridor in Queens County over numerous bridges and overpasses to Lake Ronkonkoma, a distance of 48 miles. The 1908 race was held over parts of the new highway and much to the delight of the large crowd on hand, 23-year-old local hero George Robertson from Garden City, New York became the first American to win the event driving the American Locomobile, the company's first gas-powered car and designed by famed engineer Andrew L. Riker; the Vanderbilt Cup was held on Long Island until 1911 when it was showcased at Savannah, Georgia in combination with the American Grand Prize. The next year it moved to a racecourse in Milwaukee, Wisconsin for three years in California: Santa Monica in 1914 and 1916, San Francisco in 1915; the race was canceled after the United States joined the Allies in World War I in 1917. Some of the drivers who participated in the Vanderbilt Cup became famous names, synonymous with automobiles and racing such as Louis Chevrolet, Vincenzo Lancia and Ralph DePalma.
The Vanderbilt Cup was not held again until 1936 when William Kissam Vanderbilt II's nephew, George Washington Vanderbilt III picked up the cause and sponsored a 300-mile race at the new facilities at Roosevelt Raceway. Once again, the Europeans were enticed by the substantial prize money and Scuderia Ferrari entered three Alfa Romeo racers. A lack of American competition and a less-than-exciting course layout saw the race run for only two years, both won by Europeans; the Vanderbilt Cup would not return to the United States motor racing scene for more than twenty years. In 1960, sponsored by Cornelius Vanderbilt IV, it was run as a Formula Junior event and held again at Roosevelt Raceway. In 1965, 1967, 1968, the Bridgehampton Sports Car Races were billed as the Vanderbilt Cup; the original Cup is cast of silver and measures 2.5 feet in height. It bears the image of William K. Vanderbilt II driving his record-setting Mercedes at the Daytona Beach Road Course in 1904; the trophy today is stored at a Smithsonian Institution storage facility and is not available to be seen by the public.
The George Vanderbilt Cup is on display at Museo Nicolis in Verona. ^A The 1966 event was billed as the "Bridgehampton 200". The Vanderbilt Cup name disappeared for another 36 years until 1996. In recognition of William Kissam Vanderbilt's place in automotive racing history, a copy of the original cup was created as the trophy for the CART U. S. 500 race. In 2000, CART designated the Vanderbilt Cup as its series championship trophy. Names of U. S. 500 winners from 1996–99 and the CART series winners since 2000, are etched into the new Cup. With the bankruptcy of Champ Car and purchase of the assets by the IRL, Tony George has mentioned interest in using the Vanderbilt Cup as the Series Championship Trophy for the IndyCar Series. However, the Astor Cup has been used since the 2011 season. Vanderbilt Cup Race Series - EMRA - EASTERN MOTOR RACING ASSOCIATION - Owners of the "Vanderbilt Cup" service mark Vanderbilt Cup Races 22 October 1904. Cup Contest
A dashboard is a control panel located directly ahead of a vehicle's driver, displaying instrumentation and controls for the vehicle's operation. The word dashboard applied to a barrier of wood or leather fixed at the front of a horse-drawn carriage or sleigh to protect the driver from mud or other debris "dashed up" by the horses' hooves; these boards did not perform any additional function other than providing a convenient handhold for ascending into the driver's seat, or a small clip with which to secure the reins when not in use. When the first "horseless carriages" were constructed in the late 19th century, with engines mounted beneath the driver such as the Daimler Stahlradwagen, the simple dashboard was retained to protect occupants from debris thrown up by the cars' front wheels. However, as car design evolved to position the motor in front of the driver, the dashboard became a panel that protected vehicle occupants from the heat and oil of the engine. With increasing mechanical complexity, this panel formed a convenient location for the placement of gauges and minor controls, from this evolved the modern instrument panel, although retaining its archaic common name.
The first mass-produced automobile, the Oldsmobile Curved Dash, got its name from its dash, curved like that of a sleigh. Where the dashboard included an array of simple controls and instrumentation to show speed, fuel level and oil pressure, the modern dashboard may accommodate a broad array of gauges, controls as well as information, climate control and entertainment systems. Contemporary dashboards may include the speedometer, tachometer and fuel gauge, turn indicators, gearshift position indicator, seat belt warning light, parking-brake warning light, engine-malfunction lights. Other features may include indicators for low fuel, low oil pressure, low tire pressure and faults in the airbag systems, glove compartment, ashtray and a cigarette lighter or power outlet — as well as heating and ventilation systems, lighting controls, safety systems, entertainment equipment and information systems, e.g. navigation systems. In 1937, Dodge, DeSoto, Plymouth cars came with a safety dashboard, flat, raised above knee height, had all the controls mounted flush.
Padded dashboards were advocated in the 1930s by car safety pioneer Claire L. Straith. In 1948, the Tucker became the first car with a padded dashboard. One of the safety enhancements of the 1970s was the widespread adoption of padded dashboards; the padding is polyurethane foam, while the surface is either polyvinyl chloride or leather in the case of luxury models. In the early and mid-1990s, airbags became a standard feature of steering dashboards. In the 1940s through the 1960s, American car manufacturers and their imitators designed unusually-shaped instruments on a dashboard laden with chrome and transparent plastic, which could be less readable, but was thought to be more stylish. Sunlight could cause a bright glare on the chrome for a convertible. On North American vehicles in particular, this trend lingered on as late as the mid-1980s, which still featured dashboards with wood and fake chrome embellishment along with square instruments long after European and Japanese manufacturers had long embraced a plainer, more functional and austere approach for dashboard and instrument panel design.
With the advent of the VFD, LED and LCD in consumer electronics, some manufacturers used instruments with digital readouts to make their cars appear more up to date, but this has faded from practice. Some cars use a head-up display to project the speed of the car onto the windscreen in imitation of fighter aircraft, but in a far less complex display. In recent years, spurred on by the growing aftermarket use of dash kits, many automakers have taken the initiative to add more stylistic elements to their dashboards. One prominent example of this is the Chevrolet Sonic which offers both exterior and interior cosmetic upgrades. In addition to OEM dashboard trim and upgrades a number of companies offer domed polyurethane or vinyl applique dash trim accent kits or "dash kits." Manufacturers such as BMW, Honda and Mercedes-Benz have included fuel-economy gauges in some instrument clusters, showing fuel mileage in real time, limited to luxury vehicles and hybrids. Following a focus on increasing fuel economy in the late 2000s along with increased technology, most vehicles in the 2010s now come with either real-time or average mileage readouts on their dashboards.
The ammeter was the gauge of choice for monitoring the state of the charging system until the 1970s. It was replaced by the voltmeter. Today most family vehicles have warning lights instead of voltmeters or oil pressure gauges in their dashboard instrument clusters, though sports cars have proper gauges for performance purposes and driver appeasement along with larger trucks to monitor system function during heavy usage such as towing or off-road usage
The Triumph TR4 is a sports car produced by the Triumph Motor Company from 1961 to 1965. Code named "Zest" during development, it was the successor to the TR3A; the car was based on the chassis and drivetrain of the previous TR sports cars, but with a modern body designed by Michelotti. As 40,253 cars were built during its production years it proved to be successful; the new TR4 body style did away with the cutaway door design of the previous TRs to allow for wind-down windows in place of less convenient side-curtains. The angular rear allowed a boot with considerable capacity for a sports car. Advanced features included the use of adjustable fascia ventilation, the option of a unique hard top that consisted of a fixed glass rear window with an integral rollbar and a detachable, steel centre panel; this was the first such roof system on a production car and preceded by five years the Porsche 911/912 Targa, which has since become a generic name for this style of top. On the TR4 the rigid roof panel was replaceable with an folded and stowed vinyl insert and supporting frame called a "Surrey top".
The entire hard top assembly is mistakenly referred to as a Surrey top. In original factory parts catalogues the rigid top and backlight assembly is listed as the Hard Top kit; the vinyl insert and frame are offered separately as a Surrey top. Features such as wind-down windows were seen as a necessary step forward to meet competition and achieve good sales in the important US market, where the vast majority of TR4s were sold. Dealers had concerns that buyers might not appreciate the new amenities, therefore a special short run of TR3As was produced in 1961 and'62; as of Q1 2011 there were 739 licensed and 138 SORN TR4s registered with the DVLA. The pushrod Standard inline-four engine, was designed for use by the Ferguson TE20 tractor; the TR4 engine was continued from the earlier TR2/3 models, but the displacement was increased from 1991cc to 2138 cc in the TR4 by increasing bore size. Gradual improvements in the manifolds and cylinder head allowed for some improvements culminating in the TR4A model.
The 1991 cc engine became a no-cost option for those cars destined to race in the under-two-litre classes of the day. Some cars were fitted with vane-type superchargers, as the three main bearing engine was prone to crankshaft failure if revved beyond 6,500 rpm; the standard engine produced 105 bhp SAE but and otherwise performance-tuned, a 2.2-litre I4 version could produce in excess of 200 bhp at the flywheel. The TR4, in common with its predecessors, was fitted with a wet-sleeve engine, so that for competition use the engine's cubic capacity could be changed by swapping the cylinder liners and pistons, allowing a competitor to race under different capacity rules. Other key improvements over the TR3 included a wider track front and rear larger standard engine displacement, full synchromesh on all forward gears, rack and pinion steering. In addition, the optional Laycock de Normanville electrically operated overdrive could now be selected for second and third gears as well as fourth providing the TR4 with a seven-speed manual close ratio gearbox.
The TR4 was fitted with 15x4.5" disc wheels. Optional 48-lace wire wheels could be ordered painted the same colour as the car's bodywork, stove-enamelled or in matte or polished chrome finishes; the most typical tyres fitted were 590-15 bias ply or optional radial tyres. In the US at one point, American Racing alloy wheels were offered as an option, in 15x5.5" or 15x6" size. Tyres were a problem for original owners who opted for 60-spoke wire wheels, as the correct size radial-ply tyre for the factory rims was 155-15, an odd-sized tyre at the time only available from Michelin at considerable expense; some original TR4 sales literature says the original radial size was 165-15. The much more common 185-15 radials were too wide to be fitted safely; as a result, many owners had their wheels re-laced. The TR4 had a number of racing successes in America through the efforts of the Californian engineer Kas Kastner and his top driver, Bob Tullius. In 1961 the TR4 thirtieth overall at Sebring; that car was driven by Nick Cone.
The serial number of that TR4 is CT 7L. In 1962 the TR4 won the E production national championship, following which the SCCA reclassified the car to D production, Tullius won that class title in 1963 and ’64. Soon after the TR4 was introduced, Kastner along with Mike Cook, in the advertising department at Triumph in New York City, convinced the company to provide three new TR4s to race in the 12 Hours of Sebring race in 1963. Beginning in September 1962 the cars were prepared in California, where Kastner was service supervisor for Triumph; the cars were flown to Florida for the endurance race in March 1963. These cars were driven by Mike Rothschild and Peter Bolton from England, Bob Tullius, Charlie Gates, Ed Deihl, Bob Cole, Bruce Kellner and Jim Spencer and finished overall 22nd, 24th, 35th of 65 entries, first and fourth in the 2.5 GT class. This was the beginning of the Triumph Competition Department Kastner headed for several years and used to publicize and market the TR4; the next year a privateer TR4 finished dead last in the 1964 running of the Sebring 12-hour race and Kas Kastner returned to Sebring in 1966 w
A running board or footboard is a narrow step fitted under the side doors of a tram, car, or truck. It aids entry into high vehicles, is typical of vintage trams and cars, which had much higher ground clearances than today's vehicles, it is used as a fashion statement on vehicles that would not otherwise require it. The origin of the name running board is obscure. In the early 20th century, all automobiles were equipped with running boards; the necessity of using them was caused by the fact that first cars were designed with a narrow, high body bolted to the chassis. A running board served as a step to a vehicle's cabin, sometimes could be wide enough to serve as a place to sit or lie down for an adult. During the 1920s and 1930s, car design was evolving to become more sleek and aerodynamic, which eliminated the need for running boards; the first automobile designed without running boards was the 1936 Cord. It changed the attitude towards running boards for many years ahead. Running boards may be used to stand on while the vehicle is moving.
The name running board is given to safety appliances for walking on top of rail cars. The term applied to the walkways on top of railway/railroad boxcars, they were used by brakemen to travel from car to car to apply hand-operated brakes. With the adoption of the air brake this practice was abandoned; however the running board was still used as an observation point to pass hand signals to the train driver when cars were being shunted. The increased use of radio communication made this unnecessary. Today, in most countries, it is forbidden for anyone to be on top of a freight car while the train is in motion. Footplate
The Cadillac Allanté is a two-door, two-seater luxury roadster produced by Cadillac from 1987 until 1993. It used a Cadillac running gear with a body built in Italy by coachbuilder Pininfarina, it was expensive to produce with the complete bodies flown to Detroit for final assembly. Over 21,000 were built during its seven-year production run; the name Allanté was selected by General Motors from a list of 1,700 computer generated selections. Designed to compete with the Mercedes-Benz SL and Jaguar XJS, the Allanté featured a modified variant of the 4.1 L V8 used across Cadillac's model line. This was expanded to 4.5 L in 1989, upgraded to the 4.6 L L37 Northstar in its final year, 1993. The Allanté incorporated an international production arrangement, similar to the early 1950s Nash-Healey two-seat sports car; the Allanté bodies were designed and manufactured in Italy by Pininfarina and were shipped 4,600 mi to the U. S. final assembly with domestically manufactured chassis and engine. Specially equipped Boeing 747s departed Turin International Airport with 56 bodies at a time, arriving at Detroit's Coleman A.
Young International Airport about 3 miles northeast of Cadillac's new Hamtramck Assembly plant, known as the "Allanté Air Bridge". The expensive shipping process stemmed from GM's recent closing of Fisher Body Plant #18, which had supplied Cadillac bodies since 1921, it was not the first time that Cadillac utilized Pininfarina, having farmed out body production for the 1959 Eldorado Brougham and design and coachworks for several one-offs and concept cars. All Allanté models featured a electronic instrument and control panel, angled towards the driver, featured no knobs or manual controls. General Motors implemented electronic controls in its mid-to-late 1980's vehicles such as the Buick Reatta, Buick Riviera, Oldsmobile Toronado Trofeo, although these vehicles included a touchscreen control panel called the Graphic Control Center, which the Allanté did not feature; the front-wheel drive Allanté roadster featured a transverse multi-port fuel injected variant of GM's aluminum 4.1 L HT-Cadillac 4100 V8, along with roller valve lifters, high-flow cylinder heads, a tuned intake manifold.
Suspension was independent strut rear, with Bosch ABS III four-wheel disc brakes. A removable aluminum hardtop, Delco-GM/Bose Symphony Sound System, the industry's first power retractable AM/FM/Cellular Telephone antenna, a complex lamp-out module that substituted an adjacent lamp for a burned-out bulb in the exterior lighting system until the dead one could be replaced were all standard; the only option was a cellular telephone, installed in a lockable center console. For 1988, the Allanté featured revised front seat headrests, a power decklid pulldown as standard equipment. Analog instruments, in place of the standard digital dash cluster, were now available as a no-charge option; the base price was raised to $56,533, with the cellular telephone still being the only extra-cost option. In 1989, the price rose to $57,183. Allanté's engine, the new 273ci V8, produced 200 hp, with 270 lb⋅ft of torque, it provided the most torque from any front-wheel-drive automobile in the world. Unlocking the trunk unlocked the side doors – similar to Mercedes-Benz and BMW.
As a theft-deterrent, Allanté added GM's Pass Key, utilizing a resistor pellet within the ignition key that has the ability to render the fuel system and starter inoperative if an incorrect ignition key is used. Allanté received a new speed-sensitive damper system called Speed Dependent Damping Control, or SD²C; this system firmed up the suspension at 25 mph and again at 60 mph. The firmest setting was used when starting from a standstill until 5 mph. Another change was a variable-assist steering system. In 1990, Cadillac offered a lower-priced companion model with a cloth convertible roof and without the removable aluminum hardtop, a model including the hardtop at $58,638. By midyear, prices were dropped to $57,813 for the hardtop/convertible and $51,500 for the convertible, which included a $650 Gas Guzzler Tax along with $550 destination charge; the integrated cellular telephone, equipped from the factory on just 36 cars this year, was available for an additional $1,195. Allanté's bumper-to-bumper new car warranty, seven years and 100,000 mi, was three years longer than other Cadillacs, an additional 50,000 mi of coverage.
Allanté owners received a special toll-free number to call for service or concerns. Headlamp washers and dual 10-way Recaro seating remained standard. A driver's side airbag was added to the leather-wrapped steering wheel, eliminating the telescoping steering wheel — which retained its tilt feature; the analog instrument cluster – introduced the previous year – was standard on the convertible, with a total of 358 cars equipped with the analog cluster. The power mirror control moved from the right of the steering column on the instrument panel to a new location on the upper end of the driver's door armrest, while the power seat switches were relocated to the lower side trim of the seat base facing the door panels; the 3-channel garage door opener base mounted on the header panel above the windshield was eliminated when a new sun visor design was introduced this year. Traction control was added – the first front-wheel drive automobile with a V8 to be equipped as such; the system was designed to cut fuel to up to four cylinders to reduce power and optimize trac
1964 Indianapolis 500
The 48th International 500-Mile Sweepstakes was held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana on Saturday, May 30, 1964. It was won by A. J. Foyt, but is remembered for a fiery seven-car accident that resulted in the deaths of Eddie Sachs and Dave MacDonald, it is the last race won by a front-engined "roadster", as all subsequent races have been won by rear-engined, formula-style cars. It was Foyt's second of four Indy 500 victories. Jim Clark, who finished second the previous year, won the pole position in the Lotus 34 quad-cam Ford V-8, he took the lead at the start, led for a total of 14 laps. However, a tire failure caused a broken suspension, he dropped out on lap 47. Team manager Colin Chapman had chosen special soft-compound Dunlop tires for qualifying, the rules dictated that the same type of tires be used for the race, where they suffered from a high wear rate. Clark's Lotus teammate Dan Gurney was pulled from the race after experiencing similar tire wear. Bobby Marshman led during the early stages of the race, at one point stretching his lead to as much as 90 seconds.
During his aggressive charge in front, he became uncharacteristically obsessed with putting A. J. Foyt a lap down. On lap 39, he went too low in turn one, bottoming out the car, dropped out with a broken transmission oil plug. Parnelli Jones dropped out after a pit fire. With Marshman and Jones all out of the race, A. J. Foyt cruised to victory, leading the final 146 laps. Race winner Foyt drove the whole 500 miles without changing tires. Goodyear participated only in practice. No cars used Goodyear tires during the race itself. Foyt's 1964 winning car remains the only car in the collection of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame and Museum on display, that has never been restored to pre race condition. Time trials were scheduled for four days. Saturday May 16 – Pole Day time trials Rodger Ward was the first to make headlines, as he set a one-lap record of 157.563 mph, a four-lap average of 156.406 mph. Bobby Marshman raised the record to 157.867 mph. Jim Clark took pole position with a record-setting run.
His second lap set the one-lap track record at 159.337 mph, his four-lap average was a record 158.828 mph. Clark became the first foreign-born pole-sitter since 1919; the following weekend, Clark won the Dutch Grand Prix. Sunday May 17 – Second day time trials Saturday May 23 – Third day time trials Sunday May 24 – Fourth day time trials Dave MacDonald was driving a car owned and designed by Mickey Thompson, the #83 Sears-Allstate Special, it was a rear-engined car that first raced in 1963, updated with a streamlined body for 1964. The car utilized Allstate tires, manufactured by Rubber Co.. Due to rule changes by USAC for 1964, the car was required to utilize 15 in tires; the wheels were most notably enclosed in the front and the rear by streamlined bodywork, intended to take advantage of aerodynamic effects to increase top speeds. However, it is believed that the wheel encasements, as well as the bodywork in general, made the car difficult to handle; the fuel tank was located in the left sidepod of the car, held 44–45 US gal of gasoline.
It was a single bladder, in a fiberglass shell supported by the fill neck and a moulded fibreglass body housing and a flat thin magnesium plate beneath the tank, braced by two steel straps hanging from the top rail of the frame. Following the crash, numerous erroneous accounts described the tank as oversized, some claiming it held upwards of 80 US gal. An urban legend circulated that Thompson was boasting plans to drive the entire 500 miles without a pit stop, using an oversized fuel tank, but this has been proven false; the crashworthiness of the car and the fuel cell was brought into question at the time. During practice, it was discovered that the car's handling was flawed. Masten Gregory complained. Gregory suffered a crash on May 6, quit the team due to what he believed was a terribly-handling car. Dave MacDonald managed to qualify his car without incident. Eddie Johnson qualified the second team car. On Carburetion Day, MacDonald tested the car, with conflicting accounts on whether he drove with a full load of fuel.
Other drivers in the paddock were known to be concerned about the car, at least one account claimed that 1963 pole winner and reigning Formula One World Champion Jim Clark advised MacDonald to get out of the car. Another Formula One driver and future Indy 500 winner Graham Hill had tested the car at the speedway in 1963 but had refused to drive it because of its bad handling. On the first lap, MacDonald passed at least five other cars; as he passed Johnny Rutherford and Sachs, Rutherford noticed MacDonald's car was handling poorly, zig-zagging, throwing grass and dirt up from the edge of the track. Rutherford said, watching the behavior of MacDonald's car, he thought, "he's either gonna win this thing or crash." Eyewitness accounts and film footage are inconsistent about the exact details of MacDonald's first two laps, but it is agreed he was attempting to pass many cars. On the second lap, MacDonald's car spun coming off turn four, as he was turning down below the groove to pass Jim Hurtubise and Walt Hansgen.
The car slid across the track and hit the inside wall, igniting the gasoline in the tank and resulting in a massive fire. His car slid back across the track, causing seven more cars to be involved. Ronnie Duman crashed, spun in flames and hit the pit lane wall, was burned. Bob