The Ford-Cooper "999" Racer

This image is of Henry Ford and a very young Barney Oldfield with the Ford-Cooper "999" racer in late 1902. This was Ford's first race car, developed in collaboration with Tom Cooper, national champion bicycle racer in 1899. It was in this racer that Oldfield burst onto the national scene when he defeated millionaire auto manufacturer Alexander Winton at Grosse Pointe, Michigan in October 1902. Winton, who had raced in the James Gordon Bennett Cup, was widely regarded as America's premier auto racer at that time. One story has it that Carl Fisher gave the car its name when promoting a race meet, naming it after the world's fastest locomotive, New York's "999." Oldfield also used this car to record the first "mile-a-minute" lap around a mile track in June 1903.

Barney Oldfield Collection 032.jpg3.3 MB