Telephone Pole on Vanderbilt Cup Course - 1906

This image is derived from a photograph that appeared in the September 19, 1906 Indianapolis News. The picture illustrated the dangerous corner where Apperson star driver George Robertson lost control of his racer during practice for the upcoming American Elimination Trial for the 1906 Vanderbilt Cup.
The trial was a qualifying race for teams seeking the opportunity to represent America in the country's most first and only international auto race, the Vanderbilt Cup, on Long Island, New York. Robertson wrapped his Kokomo, Indiana-built race car around the telephone pole destroying the machine. Fortunately both he and his riding mechanic were not fatally injured. The Apperson team, though, missed the contest. Robertson was barely 22 years old and know for pressing the limit. 
The caption that originally appeared with the picture is presented in quotes below. Note that the copy differs from the heading in reference to whether the pole in question was for telegraph or telephone. Anyway, read on:
"That little matter of a hairpin turn, which exists out in Old Westbury, on Long Island, is likely to become as much talked about this year in connection with the Vanderbilt Cup race as the crooked 'S'  was last year. Every 'S' is crooked, for that matter, but nothing would suit the motorists better than to emphasize the double curve at Albertson by defining it as a crooked 'S.'
The News today prints the first good picture of the hairpin turn. The driver of a motor car strikes it on the way down from Bull's Head tavern to Old Westbury. In fact, when he strikes the turn, he has arrived at Old Westbury. If he doesn't keep his eyes open and watch sharply to the right, he is likely to slip beyond the turn before he knows it and head away off to the south, past the village blacksmith shop and the hotel. That means retracing a lot of distance to get back to the proper corner, which must be encircled, to follow the Vanderbilt Cup route correctly over behind Roslyn. A telephone pole in the middle of the durve, against which the Apperson car was wrecked today, markes the most dangerous spot in the whole course.
Of course, on the day of the race there will be no very great probability that anybody will go astray, for there will be flags to mark the course and excited Long Islanders gathered at this doubling of the road upon itself to see how the foreign experts will take the contracted curve. In shape it is practically like the letter 'U.' Just imagine that you were going to sail into a 'U' head on. Coming down the left-hand side your vision would be obstructed a trifle at the beginning of the 'U,' owing to the fact that the road, before reaching it, bends slightly to the east. The moment that the 'U' is encountered, however, it is a wild sweep, a swash, a skid, and a slide until you have rounded the curve, which forms the base of the letter, and are snorting sixty miles an hour up the other side.
Of course, if some of the drivers don't happen to skid right, and some of them don't happen to slide right, and one or two of them miscalculate their distance, there is likely to be trouble. The greatest trouble will be to keep out of the way of the imposing telegraph pole, which stands exactly in the center of the curve of the 'U,' and about twenty feet back of it. If a machine ever jumps the track, bumps over the stubble and smashes into the pole there will be no communication with New York on the particular lines in that neighborhood for some hours. Likewise there will be a racing machine out of business. It was a somewhat similar accident which befell Foxhall P. Keene last year, when he was trying to make the bad double turn near Albertson.
There is another telegraph pole which is a menace to the hairpin turn, but it is on the near side of the track and the only danger to be encountered is the possible swerving of a car, as the driver swings from one side of the road to the other. Chances are that so much extra cauton will be used in rounding the hairpin turn that results may not be as bad as they would without exercising a little discretion. All kinds of trouble may be expected, however, if anybody approaches it with a reckless idea of having fun. Innumerable accidents were predicted for the 'S' turn last year, but the drivers took it with so much caution that only one serious accident resulted."

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