The Saratoga Automobile Museum’s Lost Speedways program which is scheduled for the Saturday after Thanksgiving (November 24, 2012), has grown into a must see event for those interested in the history of auto racing in New York State and long-shuttered area speedways.
The program will also include Hall of Fame driver Brian Ross’ recollections of his short but eye opening Winston Cup career and his time as an instructor at Andy Hillenburg’s Charlotte driving school along with a look back at the highlights of the century old Fonda Speedway by longtime racing writer and DIRT legal advisor Andy Fusco. Memorabilia will be on display from 11:30 am, with everyone encouraged to bring items to display. The formal presentations will begin at 1 pm. “Our current featured exhibit, ‘-Moonshine to Millionaires – NASCAR’s History, Heroes and Technology,’ has been a huge success and since it will close right after Lost Speedways, I want to focus on NASCAR history this year,” explained exhibit curator and event organizer Ron Hedger. “Plus, we have the opportunity to again enjoy the racing tales of Jim Reed, a multi-year NASCAR champion who was a big hit last year and has agreed to return. He’s going to tell us about winning the 1959 Southern 500 at Darlington, among other highlights of his career, which fits perfectly with the theme.”
“I will also do a pair of presentations myself,” added Hedger. “We have Bill Wimble’s Carnegie Medal on display and I’ll relate that story, along with a discussion of NASCAR’s Speedway division for Indianapolis-type cars, something most people have never heard of.”
“With the cars of Dale Earnhardt and Curtis Turner and the amazing ’59 Thunderbird ‘-zippertop’ scheduled to return to Charlotte October 1st, I’ll be replacing them with a Richie Evan’s Pinto and a gorgeous Speedway Division car wheeled by Wally Campbell, so the timing will be perfect. And we may have another surprise or two before November rolls around,” Hedgar said.
There will also be a drawing of one winner in the auto museum’s NASCAR VIP Raffle, sponsored by M and M/Mars, which will see two winners each receive four tickets to the 2013 Sprint Cup race of their choice, $250 travel money, garage passes and a personal meet and greet session with Kyle Busch. The second drawing will be held in the spring of 2013. Tickets are $5 and may be purchased at the museum or online.
The Lost Speedways event is free to museum members, with others admitted for the standard museum admission charge. More information is available online at www.saratogaautomuseum.org. The Saratoga Automobile Museum is located on the Avenue of the Pines in the Saratoga Spa State Park, just off Exit 13N of the Adirondack Northway.
The Saratoga Auto Museum will be holding a workshop for area Cub Scouts on the science involved in building a winning Pinewood Derby Car. The event, which will take place on January 7, 2012 at the Museum (110 Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs), will begin at 1:00 pm and include Tech Talk (The physics of speed), Speed Shop, and Track Time.
To participate in the full event, preregistration is required and will be limited to the first 40 registrants. Each registration includes a pinewood derby car kit with regulation axles and wheels which will be assembled during the Speed Shop segment. Once the cars are completed, a weigh in will precede a series of heat races on the SAM’s Garage Pinewood Derby Track. Registration fee for the event is $10.00 and will include a car kit and Museum admission for the scout and an adult, so participants should come early to check out the “Porsche: 60 Years of Speed and Style in North America” exhibit before the Pinewood Derby event begins.
Participation in the Tech Talk and Track Time segments is also open to Cub Scouts who have previously completed their car and just want to join in the fun.
The Saratoga Automobile Museum and the Downtown Albany Business Improvement District (BID) have announced that the Downtown Albany Fall Car Show, an ‘-open air’ event, will be held on Saturday, October 15 from 11 am to 4 pm.
North Pearl Street will be closed from Pine Street to Sheridan Avenue to create an exhibition and judging area for the show, which will showcase automobiles and motorcycles from all eras but focus on vehicles from the 50′-s, 60′-s and 70′-s. The BID has partnered with the Saratoga Automobile Museum in organizing the show, which will be held rain or shine.
Retailers and restaurants throughout Downtown will be open during the Car Show, with many planning on having specials and sales. Additionally, a balloon artist will be taking requests and the Devil Dawg plans on making an appearance. Music is also anticipated throughout the Downtown restaurants and pubs. An event guide will be available on the BIDs website as the event draws near. Visitors should note as well that the Downtown Albany Restaurant Week, set for Oct. 13-21, will overlap the event and provide great post-event dining options.
The event is free for spectators. Vehicles and motorcycles can be pre-registered for $10 or registered the day of for $15. To register, contact Peter Perry at the Saratoga Automobile Museum at 518-587-1935 ext. 17 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Information is also available online at www.downtownalbany.org or by calling 518-465-2143 ext. 13.
The Saratoga Automobile Museum is unveiling an exhibit celebrating 60 years of Porsche in North America on October 1, 2011. The exhibit showcases sixteen significant Porsche sports and racing cars and honors Joe Buzzetta, successful New York Porsche racer and automobile retailer. Now a successful New York State businessman with six auto dealerships on Long Island, Buzzetta was a factory Porsche driver in the 1960s and 1970s. Co-driving with Udo Schultz, Buzzetta won the 1967 Nurburgring 1000 KM race in a Porsche 910, perhaps Porsche’s most sentimental victory – it’s first overall win in Germany’s most prestigious sports car race – as the home team won before the home crowd after a decade of trying. His personal collection includes a Porsche 904, 906, 907, 908 and a 910, all restored.
Marque founder Dr. Ing. Ferdinand Porsche’s son, Ferry, understood that racing was the crucible in which to prove Porsche’s superiority and capture world attention. Imported into America by Max Hoffman, an Austrian expatriate friend of the Porsche family, the low, streamlined little cars attracted great interest. Six decades of popularity in America have established Porsche on the top tier of performance automakers. Accordingly, The Saratoga Automobile Museum is pleased to present “Porsche: 60 Years of Speed and Style in North America,” sponsored by Porsche Cars North America and New Country Porsche of Clifton Park, NY, and Greenwich, CT.
Automotive journalist and Museum consultant, Ken Gross, will be the exhibit Curator. Joe Buzzetta’s Porsche 904 and 906, as well as a 908 engine, will be on display in Saratoga. The Collier Museum in Naples, FL, is loaning Buzzetta’s Nurburgring-winning 910 for the exhibit. Former Porsche/SCCA/ IMSA competitor, Bob Bailey, a Saratoga Automobile Museum trustee, is loaning cars for the exhibit, as is Paul Plugfelder, whose Porsche 959, 914-6GT and 911 RS will be on display. Porsche Cars North America will be bringing the exciting new Porsche 918RSR Race Car for the opening of the exhibit, as well as several cars from the Porsche Museum after Rennsport, a 961 and the LeMans winning GT1.
Joe Buzzetta will be honored at the Saratoga Automobile Museum’s Annual “Drive For Excellence” Gala on October 1, 2011. Among the noted drivers expected to attend will be endurance racing champion, Vic Elford, a winner at Le Mans, the Targa Florio, the Daytona 24 Hours and the Nurburgring andScooter Patrick who co-drove with Joe at LeMans.Invitations have also been extended to several of Joe’s other old Porsche Factory teammates, including Brian Redman, Derek Bell and Hans Herrmann. Positive confirmation has been received from two so far. It will make for a very memorable evening with Joe and his Porsche teammates speaking at the dinner of their memories of the Golden age of motor racing with the Porsche Racing Team.
Also planned on October 1st is an Adirondack Porsche Tour (about an hour & a half), leaving the Saratoga Auto Museum at 10:00 AM, over some spectacular mountain roads, ending at the Sagamore Resort in Bolton Landing on Lake George for lunch on the lake. On Sunday October 2nd the Saratoga Auto Museum’s “Octoberfest German Car Lawn Show,” featuring Porsche, will take place on museum grounds starting at 10:00 AM. The show is open to all German cars. Porsche owners and enthusiasts are invited. Details will be available soon on the museum’s website or by calling the museum.
The Porsche exhibit will open to the public on Oct 1, 2011 at 10:00 AM, and will be occupying the downstairs galleries until January 31, 2012. Members of Porsche clubs are welcome for the run of this exhibit and will be offered a generous Museum discounted admission. Call for details and group rates. Along with the feature exhibition the Museum has on display, “East of Detroit, Cars Made in NY”, and several significant cars that raced in NY. The Saratoga Automobile Museum is located at 110 Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs, NY. Hours of operation during the fall and winter months are Tuesday – Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm.
For more information, call Peter Perry at 518-587-1935 ext. 17 or visit the Saratoga Automobile Museum on the web at www.saratogaautomuseum.org.
When racing historian and memorabilia collector Ed Biittig Sr. of Sloansville recently decided it was time to pare down his book collection to make more room for other collectibles, the library of the Saratoga Automobile Museum was the beneficiary.
Ed and wife Betty soon had cartons filled with some 350 books ready for delivery to the auto museum, where they are currently being sorted and catalogued by volunteers headed by the library coordinator, longtime museum volunteer Jerry Hart.
“If we find we have duplicates, some of the books will eventually be offered for sale,” said Hart. “But the majority will be cataloged and added to our already extensive collection that will be made available for use by the public every Wednesday beginning in August. Our library is divided into sections on such specific topics as Buick, Ferrari or Chrysler and broader topics such as auto racing. Enthusiasts are always welcome to use the volumes for research or just for enjoyment.”
“This is the fifth major donation we’ve had,” added museum trustee Ron Hedger, who coordinates the museum’s “Racing in New York” gallery. “Along with small donations from countless supporters of the museum, Ed’s books will join major donations from the late volunteer Ed Marks, Bud Lyons, Michigan automotive engineer Don Everett and racing personality John Fitch. I’m sure followers of auto racing will love Ed’s contribution”
The Saratoga Automobile Museum is located on the grounds of Saratoga Spa State Park at 110 Avenue of the Pines. For more information, guests can visit the Museum’s website at www.saratogaautomuseum.org or call (518) 587-1935.
Trustees of the Saratoga Automobile Museum (SAM) unanimously elected Gloversville businessman Charles Montano as Board Chairman at their annual election meeting of the trustees in May.
Montano becomes the fourth Board Chair of the Museum, joining the late founder and initial chairman Lewis Golub of Lake George, Bob Bailey of Diamond Point and the most recent chairperson, Jean Hoffman of Clifton Park, as head of the Board of Trustees. Other board officers elected at the meeting included Seth Rosner of Saratoga Springs as Vice-Chairman, Dr. James Hoehn of Menands as Treasurer and Robert Ensign, Jr. of Latham as Secretary. Chairs of the board’s various sub-committees will be announced at a later date. A Gloversville native, Montano owns and operates a commercial/industrial rental business with divisions specializing in apartments and luxury home development in the downstate area. He is also a well known automobile collector, with a number of “Woodies” from his collection the focus of a recent exhibit in the Museum’s Golub gallery.
“Cars with wooden bodies have always fascinated me,” offered Montano. “But they only represent a segment of my collection and my interests. I truly love all aspects of the automotive world.
“As chairman of the Board of Trustees, my goal is to continue and expand our programs that bring these diverse communities together. Whether your focus is woodies, the brass era, auto racing, classic cars, any of the diverse makes that highlight our lawn shows or our automotive-themed educational programs, the Auto Museum is your place and I want everyone to feel welcome here.”
“Charlie Montano epitomizes the caliber of leadership and automobile enthusiasm the Museum needs to continue advancing the exceptional cultural enrichment we strive to provide for our growing communities,” said Taylor C. Wells, SAM Executive Director.
SAM Board members fulfilling their current terms include Bob Bailey, David Darrin, Wayne Freihofer, Ron Hedger, Jean Hoffman, Tony Ianniello, Eric King, Ed Lewi, Lee Miller, and Alan Rosenblum.
The mission of the Saratoga Automobile Museum is to preserve, interpret and exhibit automobiles and automotive artifacts. We celebrate the automobile and educate the general public, students and enthusiasts regarding the role of the automobile in New York State and in the wider world. In addition to technical and design aspects, our educational focus is on the past, present and future social and economic impact of the automobile
The Museum is chartered by the Board of Regents of the State of New York Department of Education as a not-for-profit institution. Additionally, the Museum is a member of the American Association of Museums (AAM) and the National Association of Automobile Museums (NAAM).
The Saratoga Automobile Museum is located on the grounds of Saratoga Spa State Park at 110 Avenue of the Pines. For more information, guests can visit the Museum’s website at www.saratogaautomuseum.org or call (518) 587-1935.
The Great Race, America’s premiere old car rally, is coming to Saratoga Springs this Thursday, June 16, and is expected to bring up to 100 antique automobiles to the city. The overnight stop will be marked by a public event at the Saratoga Automobile Museum to mark their arrival in the Spa city, one of America’s premier vacation destinations. The 2011 event, sponsored by Hemmings Motor News and Coker Tire, starts in Chattanooga, TN and finishes in Bennington, VT. Run from coast to coast from 1983-2007, it is not a speed race, but a time/speed/distance rally. The driver and navigator are given precise instructions each day that detail every move down to the second, then scored at secret check points along the way and penalized one second for each second either early or late. As in golf, the lowest score wins.
Cars start, and hopefully finish, one minute apart if all goes according to plan. The biggest part of the challenge, other than staying on time and following the instructions, is getting an old car to the finish line each day.
The first car is expected to arrive at the Saratoga Automobile Museum, located in the scenic Saratoga Spa State Park, around 5 p.m., with cars continuing to arrive each minute for an hour and a half. The cars will remain parked for two hours to allow spectators to visit with the participants and to look at the cars.
“When the Great Race pulls into a city it becomes an instant festival,” offered Jeff Stumb, from Huntsville, Ala. He and his wife Karen have competed in the Great Race several times in his 1916 Hudson. “We have seen as many as 40,000 people at stops like Huntington Beach, Calif., and Sioux Falls, S.D.
Participating cars range in age from 1911 to 1969, with most having been manufactured before World War II. For the first time, a 100-year-old car, a 1911 Velie owned by Howard and Doug Sharp of Fairport, N.Y, will participate in the race.
The Great Race was started in 1983 by Tom McRae and was sponsored by Interstate Batteries. It takes its name from the 1965 movie, The Great Race, a comedy based on the real life 1908 automobile race from New York to Paris starring Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon, Natalie Wood and Peter Falk.
The auto museum will not be open to the public during the event, with participants expected to move to their downtown hotel at approximately 8:30 pm.
On May 7, 2011, the Saratoga Automobile Museum will debut the exhibit “Forza Italia!, Fine Sporting Cars From Italy.” The exhibit will feature several cars from the renowned Oscar Davis Collection in Elizabeth, NJ. Cars from Mr. Davis’ fine collection, housed in an exclusive private Museum, have appeared at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, as well as at Amelia Island, Radnor Hunt, and other significant concours events.
Cars expected on display in Saratoga will include a prewar Alfa Romeo 6C1750, a 6C2300 and an 8C2900, along with a sporty Fiat Balilla Spyder. Postwar examples will include a Ferrari 212 Scaglietti Spyder, a Lancia B24S Nardi Spyder America, a Maserati Ghibli SS, a Bizzarrini 5300 Strada, a Fiat Abarth 750 sports coupe, and a Ferrari F40, to name just a few. Italian vehicles embody everything that’s exciting about a country where speed, head-turning styling and pure sex appeal are standard equipment in every car. The Italian automobile industry has long been one of its country’s greatest, most visible and innovative assets. A major contributor to Italy’s dramatic postwar industrial rebirth, Italian cars continue to set trends and attract countless enthusiasts.
From FIAT, a pioneer automaker whose tiny Topolino economy car preceded Germany’s Volkswagen and Britain’s MINI- to Lancia, an early motoring innovator and successful racing marque- and Alfa Romeo, a serious technical and race-winning pre-war rival to Bugatti- to the premium postwar European sports car renaissance led by Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati, Italian high-performance cars have long contested and set standards for the world’s best.
With the Fiat and Alfa Romeo marques returning soon to North America, and considering the present-day strengths of Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati, this is a ‘primo’ time for the Saratoga Automobile Museum to present an overview of great vintage Italian Sports and Grand Touring cars.
Open to the public through the Summer Season, the exhibit will end with the acclaimed Second Annual Fall Ferrari Festival, held in cooperation with the Saratoga Performing Arts Center’s acclaimed Wine and Food Festival, scheduled for September 10, 2011.
The Forza Italia! exhibit will open to the public on May 7, 2011 at 10:00 AM, and will be occupying the Museum during the summer months until September 25, 2011 at 5 pm.
Adjacent to the Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC) in the Saratoga Spa Park, The Saratoga Automobile Museum is located at 110 Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs, NY. Hours of operation during the summer months are: Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm. †For more information, call 518-587-1935 or visit us on the web at www.saratogaautomuseum.org.
The 41st Annual Car Show, for everyone in the old car hobby Spring officially arrives on the first weekend of May with the Rhinebeck Car Show. Rhinebeck 2011 will be held at the Dutchess County Fairgrounds on May 6, 7 and 8. Gates will open at noon on the 6th for spectators to go through the vendor’s sites. This event is a sure cure for “cabin fever” and hobbyists from all over the Northeast have been celebrating spring for over forty years by converging at Rhinebeck to participate in this popular event. Rhinebeck is one of the biggest car shows in the Northeast and hundreds of cars and thousands of spectators will be filling the Fairgrounds for this spring celebration of automotive history. Rhinebeck 2011 will be fun for the whole family. Mom and Dad will be reminded of that first date in one of these special vehicles or that first new car their family had. Many car collectors are fulfilling old dreams in the car that they really wanted but were out of reach when they were younger. The kids and grand kids will enjoy the cars too but should also enjoy the old toys displayed and for sale by vendors. In addition to all of the cars on display, the family can wander through the Swap Meet looking at automotive memorabilia. Plenty of food vendors will be offering an interesting variety of food choices and, as usual, Fosters Coach House will be open at the Fairgrounds for those who prefer to sit down to relax and enjoy their meal.
This year we will be featuring a display by the Saratoga Automobile Museum on our show field. They are planning to bring several cars and motor cycles for your viewing enjoyment following is a bit about the activities they plan this year:
The Saratoga Automobile Museum displays Autos from May to October, there are over 20 lawn shows that feature cars from Alfa and Auburn to Stutz and Volkswagen. In early May, the Saratoga Spring Invitational is a showcase for a select group of breathtaking automobiles from the Brass Era to Classics from the Golden Age of Motoring, to today’s most modern and exotic Supercars. On the same weekend is our traditional Spring Car Show, while later in the summer we are pleased to host Hemming’s Sports & Exotics Show.
When fall and winter come, the Museum is still active with lectures and technical sessions, our unique “Living Legends” interview sessions (this year featuring racers A.B. Shuman, Jack DeWitt and automotive journalist Ken Gross). Add in the young people’s exhibits at SAM’s Garage, our educational programs (last year’s building of a Model A Huckster and this year’s upcoming “Build a Hot Rod”), our onsite school-age programs (for elementary to college level students), the “…fun for kids of all ages…” racecar simulators, and it is apparent that the Saratoga Automobile Museum is your place to be for year round automotive entertainment.
Saturday’s show spotlights the creativity and ingenuity of the owners and builders of some of the finest hot rod, custom cars and sport compacts in the country. 800 Cars are expected to be on the show field for your enjoyment. These vehicles feature amazing paint schemes including fancy flames and cool graphics. They include incredible custom body designs with chopped tops and channeled bodies.
Monster motors built without caring that they get less than 10 miles per gallon- and fine custom interiors you’ll wish you could live in. The Atlantic Coast Old Time Racing Club will take a break from their racing competition to show off their antique racers at Rhinebeck. The Sport Compact cars have special sounds systems, low rider wheels, unique exhaust systems and special paint schemes. The guys who customize these cars are very creative and develop truly unique and fun vehicles. Sunday’s show focus is on restored antique and classic cars.
Over 1100 old cars from all automotive eras up to 1986 are expected. These vehicles are some of the finest restorations to be found anywhere. Owners and restorers pride themselves restoring their vehicles to “showroom” condition. Actually, many of these vehicles are restored too much better condition than when they left the showroom.
Sunday’s show will include early antique vehicles, cars from the roaring twenties, thirties classics, fabulous forties cars, and plenty of vehicles from the fifties, sixties and seventies. Many of the cars on display disappeared from showrooms years ago. Antique trucks, motorcycles, plenty of sports cars, and other foreign cars will be there too. Many of last year’s award winning vehicles will be on display in the “Winners’ Circle” on both Saturday and Sunday.
Anyone looking for a way to get started in this great hobby will find plenty of opportunity in the Rhinebeck Car Corral. A wide variety of over 500 collectable cars will be for sale there.
In the Swap Meet area, about a thousand vendors will be selling plenty of auto hobby related material. There will be lots and lots of old car parts, tools, restoration supplies, and automotive literature. Many of the vendors will be selling both old and new toys.
The Dutchess County Fairgrounds is located on Route 9, just north of the village of Rhinebeck. The gates open at 6:00 AM on Saturday and at 8:00 on Sunday. Admissions are $10.00 but children 12 and under are admitted free. For additional information, call 845-876-3554 from 7 to 9 PM.. This year we also have early birds day Friday with gates open at 12:00. Weekend passes are available at the gate to those who plan on attending more than one day at $17.
Rhinebeck 2011 is sponsored by the Hudson River Valley Antique Automobile Association Inc. which is an association of six local car clubs whose members volunteer hundreds of hours each year to organize and run this event.
The Saratoga Automobile Museum is in preparations for the third annual Saratoga Spring Invitational and Spring Auto Show. Set for Saturday, May 14 and Sunday, May 15, the Saratoga Spring Invitational 2011 is perfectly described by its sub-title, “A Gathering of Fine Automobiles.”
The Invitational field will be joined on Saturday by entrants in the “Euro Show” while Sunday’s co-feature will be the museum’s long-standing Spring Auto Show with judging in some two-dozen divisions. Enthusiasts will enjoy an entire weekend filled with unique, perfectly turned out vehicles representing all aspects of the automotive world and can count on seeing different cars each day. “We sent out some 350 invitations to participate in the Saratoga Spring Invitational, which is growing into a destination event year by year, and responses are coming in steadily,” commented SAM Board Chairwoman Jean Hoffman. “Invitational participants will enjoy a wide variety of activities highlighting the area’s attractions, among them an evening in downtown Saratoga Springs, a visit to the outstanding automotive collection of Jim Taylor, a drive around Lake George with a visit to the historic Lake George Club and the opening of the museum’s new exhibit, “Forza Italia,” with remarks by our highly respected exhibit curator, Ken Gross.”
A nationally recognized author and expert on everything automotive from antiques to classic cars to hot rods, Gross will acquaint the audience with the details and seldom heard facts that make the various automobiles worthy of being included in the exhibit. The “Forza Italia” exhibit will be highlighted by a half-dozen automobiles on loan from nationally known collector Oscar Davis, a frequent winner in Pebble Beach judging over the years.
Enthusiasts visiting the Invitational, which will open at 10:30 am both Saturday and Sunday, will be able to inspect a wide variety of classic and special interest automobiles. Early entrants include a 1931 Pierce-Arrow and 1947 Cadillac owned by Tony Zappone, Bill Cook’s 1962 Daimler SR 250, a 1966 Yenko Corvair owned by Bill Cotrofeld, Bill and Marie Burke’s 1949 Packard and Joe Verillo’s 1965 Corvette Convertible.
But by show day, judges Al McEwan, Peter Hageman, Ken Gross, Tom Cotter and Grand Marshall Ed Herrmann, all Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance veterans, will have scores of perfectly turned out automobiles to consider before the winners are revealed on the red carpet at the Sunday afternoon awards ceremony.
Other weekend highlights will include a display of vintage open cockpit race cars on Sunday courtesy of the Atlantic Coast Old Timers and a number of sports cars, both historic and modern, from the Mo-Hud region of the Sports Car Club of America. And for those who have always wanted to get a taste of competition, a simulator that will recreate the experience of driving a race car around Connecticut’s famed Lime Rock Park road will be on hand. Also on tap are a variety of activities for children, including the Price Chopper Hopper” and the Tri-City Valley Cats pitching experience.
More information, including registration procedures for the car shows, is available online. Registration forms can also be filled out in person at the museum’s admissions desk during normal business hours.