A Supercharged Chadwick Racing Car

One of our visitors, Doug Marin, a Chadwick enthusiast sent us these two photos of a Chadwick racing car that I believe was supercharged. If this car is indeed the super-charged car, the blower and the induction system is what the bulges in the hood are covering.

The photo above is of Len Zengle, during 1909 in Cleveland, next to a Velie (?) racing car. This car posted the fastest time at many hill climbs that year. A month or so later it was at Indianapolis at the first Indy Speedway events. It won one of the early 10 mile “free for all” races.

The photo below is of Willie Haupt, in the Chadwick “Black Bess” racer, just before the 1908 Vanderbilt race. This car led the race for several laps before both magnetos failed. It was timed in pre-race preparation at 109 mph!

The bottom photo shows a drawing of the supercharger that was driven by a flat belt off of the flywheel.

 

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3 Responses to A Supercharged Chadwick Racing Car

  1. glen says:

    leather belt driven supercharger, one of the first cars to go over 100mph, faster than some airplanes of the time.

  2. Donald Ellis says:

    In various Histories of Technology you usually read that forced induction (supercharging) arrived in 1916 as an attempt to give First World War British fighter planes, altitude capability to deal with lighter than air Zeppelins. I’ve assumed that for a long time. Does anyone have the facts to back up a revisionist history of supercharging?

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