The Put-in-Bay Road Races, 1952–1963


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About the Book

A great little sports car race took place on an island in Lake Erie, offshore of Sandusky, Ohio. The drivers came on ferry boats to compete for silver cups in an age when there were no sponsors and no prize money. The drivers were car salesmen, stock brokers, engineers, printers, etc. Often, the cars they raced were those they drove as daily transportation: MGs, Porsches, Triumphs, Alfas and others. In this well-illustrated history (full color throughout the ebook edition), drivers, officials, mechanics and spectators share their stories. The text paints a vivid picture of the sports car racing scene in post-war America.

About the Author(s)

Carl Goodwin has written for Vintage Motorsport, Vintage Racecar, Classic Motorsports, Classic MG, 356 Registry, Forza and other periodicals, plus the Italian car web site Veloce Today. He has earned the Carl Benz Award from the Society of Automotive Historians four times and won numerous golds, silvers and bronzes presented by the International Automotive Media Awards. He lives in Novelty, Ohio.

Bibliographic Details

Carl Goodwin

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 272
Bibliographic Info: 228 photos, appendix, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7930-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1459-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Preface 1
1. ­Put-in-Bay—A Summer Paradise in 1951 7
2. The Last American Road Race, 1952–1959, 1963 15
3. 1952: The First of the Last American Road Races 36
4. 1953: What Is So Fair as a Day in June? 57
5. 1954: The Technology of Sport 75
6. 1955: Safety in Sports Car Racing 92
7. 1956: A Likeable Little Race 114
8. 1957: A Typical Day at ­Put-in-Bay 136
9. 1958: The Year of the Lap Record 158
10. 1959: The Last CSCC Race 181
11. 1963: The Secret Road Race 210
12. Farewell to ­Put-in-Bay—It Was a Wonderful Race 229
Appendix: Special Contributors 243
Bibliography 256
Index 259

Book Reviews & Awards

  • Silver Medal—International Automotive Media Competition (IAMC)
  • “well-illustrated…many of the photographs are being published for the first time, providing a fresh look into an era that has long since faded from memory…Goodwin and his book deserve a good measure of praise”—SAH Journal
  • “there are some remarkable vignettes, photographic and otherwise, in this book. The book is a winner”—Hemmings Sports & Exotic Car
  • “Goodwin has written a wonderful and very readable book on the little-known Put-in-Bay road races. Goodwin had excellent access to photographs and illustrations, many of which have not been seen before. They are a vital part of this history”—Antique Automobile; “a most entertaining book on the true spirit of racing from a time when racing had a soul”—Victory Lane
  • “masterpiece…will shine long after the nostalgia has faded…Goodwin is the perfect writer for a wonderful book about an idyllic event”—