Chevrolet's Debut

This is a fine package of articles on the May 21, 1905, race meet at Morris Park, New York. The track was billed as "the world's only track devoted to automobile racing." This wasn't entirely true. The track had lost a ton of revenue when the bulk of horse racing had gone to the newly constructed Belmont Track, also in New York. Latching on to the burgeoning interest in automobiles, Morris Park tried to reinvent itself as an automobile speedway. More significantly, this was Louis Chevrolet's debut as a race driver, and he did not fail to impress. His prime competition was Barney Oldfield, widely regarded as America's premier driver at the time. Oldfield had set all track records for one to 50 miles in 1904 driving his Peerless Green Dragon. Chevrolet, who had only a few years prior arrived from France in Toronto and then subsequently moved to New York, now worked for the top Fiat importer in America. An outstanding mechanic, he was given the opportunity to drive in competition. He took to it immediately, toppling Barney Oldfield from his perch. In fairness, Chevrolet's Fiat had a 30 HP advantage on Oldfield's Peerless, but Chevrolet's sudden rise to prominence could not be denied. There are three articles on this meet in this package from the following publications: The Automobile, Horseless Age, and Motor Age.

Morris_Park_1905.pdf2.9 MB