Gary_Ash

1933 Studebaker Indy car drivers and riding mechanics

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Here is a photo of nine guys on the Studebaker Indy team, apparently just after the 1933 Indy race ended.  Each car had a driver and riding mechanic, so there should have been ten guys, but only nine are in this photo.  Fortunately seven of the nine are wearing their Studebaker shirts with their initials, so they are easy to identify.  I'd like to pin down who the other two are and name the missing guy.  Here are my nominal identifications, left to right:

 

AG = Anthony "Tony" Gulotta, driver #34

JL = Jimmie Lowden, mechanic #47

CB = Cliff Bergere, driver #6

?  = possibly Luther Johnson, driver #46

WT = William Tucker, mechanic #46

? = possibly L. L. Corum, driver #47

VL = Vern Lake, mechanic #6

WM = Walter Mitchell, mechanic #9

ZM = Zeke Meyer, driver #9

missing = Carl Riscigno, mechanic #34

 

Those are the names of the ten guys who took part in the 1933 race.  The questions are really which one is missing and which are the two guys without initials on their shirts.  All the photos of the cars in 1933 show these guys with their cloth racing helmets, so it's tough to pin them down.  What do you think?

 

 

Indy driver group 1933 (Large).png

Indy_sweater2.jpg

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P.S.  Here are some photos of the guys who didn't have initials on their sweaters to help match them up.

 

 

Luther Johnson-Bill Mallar 1932.jpg

1933_#47 Car Corum-K35614.jpg

L L Corum 1935.jpg

1933_#46 Car Johnson-K35627.jpg

1933K35613.jpg

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Ironically, I have lived in Indiana my entire life, I now live less than 35 miles from the speedway. I have never been to a race there and the only event I ever attended at IMS was a Rolling Stones concert on Independence day in 2015. I am not much of a race fan but I love these old pictures. 

 

image.png.3df4b0aa50dac8514e333906994fd7a0.png

Edited by keninman
added map from home to track and date of Stones concert (see edit history)

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I drove round it once on a freeway on the way to the 1997 Studebaker International Meeting in South Bend. Race track? Where?

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OK Gary, you have the shirt, now hurry up with the car and stop messing around!?

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Yes, Spinneyhill, they all had to be skinny - the seats were only 16 inches wide.  The driver's seat is actually 5 inches forward of the mechanic's seat to allow for elbow room for the driver.

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15 hours ago, Spinneyhill said:

As a broad generalisation, the mechanics are all skinny men!

Well there goes another career opportunity!  Fat men need not apply should be outlawed! 

  • Haha 1

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Hagerty had a show there during antique racer week. If you entered the show you got to drive the track. I entered the 38 Studebaker and was one of two or three pre war cars there. I waited to be the last car in line except for the trail safety car. First lap at 50 was ok second at 60 we were falling behind. Third lap at 70 they were gone. Forth lap I’ve got it floored and never lifted as I come around turn 4 there is a Porsche turbo sitting there I’m about 50 yards or less away and go for the inside lane to pass him. The smart ass sticks his hand out the window, waves and is gone ! 

I almost passed a Turbo Porsche on the Indy 500 track going flat out in a 38 Studebaker State Commander, not many can say that. I am sure I would have made the pass if my buddy riding with me as the mechanic would have been a skinny guy! Oh well. 

Dave S  

Edited by SC38DLS (see edit history)

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On ‎5‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 6:21 PM, SC38DLS said:

Hagerty had a show there during antique racer week. If you entered the show you got to drive the track. I entered the 38 Studebaker and was one of two or three pre war cars there. I waited to be the last car in line except for the trail safety car. First lap at 50 was ok second at 60 we were falling behind. Third lap at 70 they were gone. Forth lap I’ve got it floored and never lifted as I come around turn 4 there is a Porsche turbo sitting there I’m about 50 yards or less away and go for the inside lane to pass him. The smart ass sticks his hand out the window, waves and is gone ! 

I almost passed a Turbo Porsche on the Indy 500 track going flat out in a 38 Studebaker State Commander, not many can say that. I am sure I would have made the pass if my buddy riding with me as the mechanic would have been a skinny guy! Oh well. 

Dave S  

Like a true driver always blame the mechanicBill

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WOW.....Thank You for this photo!!!!!! .....It's the only picture of my grandfather I have seen like this!!!!!.....Jimmie Lowden #47 ......   Thank You

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Hi, my Grandpa Luther drove the #46 and, unfortunately, he is one of the ones missing from the picture above. The man to the left of William Tucker is, unfortunately, not Luther.

 

I have never seen this picture before so thanks for sharing it!

 

Luther's Grandson,

Craig

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I knew Luther quite well and interviewed twice (this back in the '70's). He gave me his original copy of the contract he had with Studebaker re winnings at the 1932 race. Also have numerous photos of him. He also related his experiences re driving the race car blindfolded through city traffic at various towns and cities as a promotional stunt. He had a scrapbook full of articles. Did a family member end up with the scrapbook?

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They all; look very fit and slim. They obviously needed to be light weight as they only had a thumping big 337 CUI 200HP eight, ha ha.

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Gary,

I suggest you get in contact with THE OLD MOTOR website to help with the driver's I.D.  An amazing amount of history is known and shared there.

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