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The Nationals – A Home Town Car At Indy

Two Peter Helck Collection photos of National racing cars, at the Speedway in Indianapolis. He captioned the photo above as 1909, with Merz on the left and Atkin on the right in the car with the lowered drivetrain, as was the one we have seen Oldfield driving in the past.

The photo below seems to be dated incorrectly by the photographer with the wrong year, as Helck has it captioned and dated as 1909-1910 again with Johnny Atkin at the wheel, along with his mechanic Howdy Wilcox who later went on to his own driving career. The ten miles in the caption would refer to a ten mile sprint race. Photos courtesy of Racemaker Press.

3 responses to “The Nationals – A Home Town Car At Indy

  1. In 1996 the Vintage Car Club of New Zealand celebrated its 50th anniversary with a big rally which drew anumber of overses entrants. One of these was a big blue four cylinder 1910 (?) National roadster from Canada. I remember reading on the board attached to the car that it supposedly had competed at Indianapolis in one of the early pre-500 races. I guess there may have been quite a few Nationals that fell into that category with Indy being their home town. In its restored state it was a very tall car – over 8 feet high with its top up. I remember the owner saying that he was going to have to replace the wheels because it was on an odd size for which tyres were not avilable – 28 inch I think whereas 29s were readily available. I haven’t been able to find a picture of it on the net but I presume it is still around somewhere.

    • I believe I have the car in question, I’m looking for more information as now it is only the body and I’m going to restore it. Looking for previous owners.

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