Sunday, September 10, 2023

1956 – Turner Wins 250-Miler on Lakefront

Curtis Turner proudly shows his trophy after winning the NASCAR convertible division 500-mile race at Soldier Field. Joining Turner in victory lane is Holman-Moody’s John Holman, who owned the ’56 Ford. – Bob Sheldon Collection

Chicago, Ill. (September 10, 1956) – Curtis Turner, a 36-year-old lumber dealer from Roanoke, Va., won the 250-mile, 500-lap late model convertible race which concluded the summer’s Soldier Field stock car racing before 17,855 spectators on Sunday afternoon.

Turner, manipulating his car adroitly on the turns, finished two laps ahead of Joe Weatherly, a Norfolk, Va., racing promoter. Finishing third, another two laps behind, was Bob Welborn of Greensboro, N.C., who heads the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing’s convertible division.

Turner, who pilots his own plane to auto racing events, had won the 500-mile stock event at Darlington, S.C., on Labor Day.

Turner received $4,100 for his victory from a gross purse of $14,700.

Turner and Weatherly both driver Ford’s, while Welborn wheeled a Chevrolet. Twenty drivers started the event with only 12 cars left at the finish.

Turner and Weatherly led most of the contest. They both alternated as the pacemaker in the early stages before Turner took command for good.

There were several mishaps but no injuries. “Tiger” Tom Pistone of Chicago pulled over to the wall on the south turn on the 250th lap with smoke billowing from his car. He jumped out and walked to safety.

Bob Beck of Buffalo, N.Y., went into a spin in the north turn and smacked the wall on lap 478. He too, escaped injury and got his car back on the track to finish the race.

Results –

1. Curtis Turner, Roanoke, Va.
2. Joe Weatherly, Norfolk, Va.
3. Bob Welborn, Greensboro, N.C.
4. Jim Massey, Burlington, N.C.
5. Jimmie Lewallen, Winston-Salem, N.C.
6. Allen Adkins, Fresno, Calif.
7. Larry Odo, Chicago
8. Bill Poor, Joplin, Mo.
9. Bob Beck, Buffalo, N.Y.
10.Norm Schill, Toronto, Canada
11.Don Oldenberg, Highland, Ind.
12.Possum Jones, Mango, Fla.

No comments:

Post a Comment