Bill Green Starts 2014 with Talk on Vanderbilt Cup Races
Center Historian Bill Green will discuss the George Vanderbilt Cup races of 1936 and 1937 in the first Center Conversations talk of 2014. The free talk will be on Saturday, Jan. 18, at 1 p.m.
Green will speak about the short, two-year run of the George Vanderbilt Cup competition at Roosevelt Raceway on Long Island.
Other Center Conversations talk topics during 2014 will include the history of Holland International Speedway in western New York; land speed record competition; Formula 5000 racing; and the Milwaukee Mile.
Details will be announced as they are finalized.
The international W.K. Vanderbilt Cup races were conducted on Nassau County, NY, streets and on a closed circuit from 1904-10. The races moved to other states for the next six years. The George Vanderbilt Cup races were at the then-new facilities at Roosevelt Raceway for just two years in 1936 and 1937.
Another 20 years would pass before a Vanderbilt Cup was again awarded in the United States. The Cornelius Vanderbilt Cup was run at Roosevelt Raceway in 1960 as a Formula Junior event, and in 1965, 1967 and 1968 the Bridgehampton Sports Car Races were billed as the Cornelius Vanderbilt Cup.
Green, who is the Center’s historian, is internationally recognized for his exhaustive knowledge about racing at Watkins Glen and elsewhere. His personal collection of racing materials was launched at the first Watkins Glen race in 1948 when, as an 8-year-old, he bought a program. The collection today comprises 3,000-plus hard and soft cover books, racing posters, photographs, motorsports magazines and full race results of Watkins Glen 1948 to present.
Since 1948, he has missed only two Watkins Glen race seasons: 1966 and 1967, when he was stationed in Morocco with the U.S. Navy. He made up for the misses by attending Formula One races in England and Germany.
The popular Center Conversations program has long been a cornerstone of the Racing Research Center’s educational outreach and oral history initiative. Noted authors, race historians, drivers, team owners and track officials have taken listeners behind the scenes of every race series over the years. Speakers have included Donald Davidson, historian at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway; Doug Nye, writer and historian; David Donohue, racer and son of famed driver Mark Donohue; Bobby Rahal, driver and team owner; and the late John Fitch and Bill Milliken, both legendary figures in road racing.
The Racing Research Center is an archival library dedicated to the preservation of the history of motorsports, of all series and all venues, through its collections of books, periodicals, films, photographs, fine art and other materials.
For more information about the Center’s work and its programs, visit www.racingarchives.org or call (607) 535-9044. The Center also is on Facebook at “International Motor Racing Research Center” and on Twitter at “@IMRRCatWG.”
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