Senior Moment From Russ Dodge:
Maryland Cars Were "Sweet"!
While organizing my Maryland racing materials
recently I came across this 1958 Labor Day photo from Alcyon Speedway, which
was located in Pitman, New Jersey. It shows the Putty Hill Race Team leaving
the infield pits with the 88, which was driven by Ed Lindsay to the 50 lap
I want to focus on the pick-up and race car but, I can't help but let my
mind get distracted a little as I look at the old concession stand which
separated the infield and the pits. I wonder how many of the 25 cent "dirty
water" hot dogs I had eaten that afternoon I spent in "glory"! Yes, that is
the cab of Elton Hildreth's pick-up you see parked in the pits. In
retrospect, the facility was "shabby" but the racing was fantastic, drawing
the "Who's Who" of stock car racing on a regular basis.
Now back to my original thought, the Maryland cars that came up to race,
were usually a "tad" ahead of the "Jersey" guys. I don't even want to get
into how cool the pick-up was! Full hub caps, exhaust stacks whitewalls, fog
lights, stop! that's enough!
The basics that were true of most of the Maryland cars, and this is just my
own observations omitting the exceptions. The fenders were neatly trimmed
and often the edges "rolled" around the wheel opening. The fender cuts were
not excessive. Hoods and often engine side panels were still used. The paint
jobs were quality and racing damage repaired as soon as possible. The 88
painted red and white sported flames which were a favorite to me. Look on
page 8 in the 50's section of the 3wide vault for a color picture of this
Photo 2 shows PeeWee Poblett's #46, 1937 Ford coupe. PeeWee would get the
"best of show" award on a weekly bases if such an award was given. His
equipment had the "boy I would like to have that to drive on the road" look.
This 1957 version was white and dark metallic blue with gold leaf numbers.
PeeWee ran strong and finished usually in the top 5 but was never able to
get a win at Alcyon. Note on PeeWee's coupe the strap on top of the roof.
Many of the Maryland cars had that strap which appears to bolt into the main
roll bar. I believe it was structurally used to hold the body in place. and
also the roll bar in place if the car flipped. Remember the doors could
still be opened on many of these cars and were bolted or chained shut while
More important than looks, the Maryland cars were "strong" I can't still
hear PeeWee on-and-off the throttle as he worked his way thru the Alcyon
dog-leg. His 3 carbureted Ford had a "throaty" sound that stood out over the
It's interesting how times change our perspectives. Here in the present day
I'm reminiscing about the quality of the cars from Maryland and yet on that
Labor Day afternoon in 1958, I wasn't a real happy camper! That darn Ed
Lindsay had just won the feature in that flaming 88 and my hero Al Tasnady
driving a "far from beautiful" Jordan deuce hadn't won.
Senior Moment By: Russ Dodge