Jul 29 2011

Long Island Automotive Update: News, Comments & Events- Saturday, July 30, 2011

Latest Long Island automotive news, events and recent comments on VanderbiltCupRaces.com:

Gezunter Presentation "The Incredible Vanderbilt Cup Races of Long Island",East Hills, July 27, 2011








Over 100 Gezunters, a club for men 60 years and older, attended a presentation "The Incredible Vanderbilt Cup Races of Long Island" by historian Howard Kroplick at the Sid Jacobson JCC in East Hills, New York. Susan Banco, Associate Executive Director said "I know the men loved the presentation and the members loved seeing the "Black Beast" and display outside the building."

Featured Upcoming Automotive Events:

New York AutoFest Homestead Music Festival & Car Show, Syosset, Sunday, July 31, 2011

Calendar of 2011 Long Island Automotive Events

WBAB Long Island Car Club Event Calendar

2011 Long Island Cruises

Current Long Island Weather Forecast

Recent Comments on VanderbiltCupRaces.com


The Long Island Motor Parkway in the 1937 Classic Film “Topper”?

Greg Oreiro: "Turns out, that’s a trick question! My first thought was that must be a model of Cord I’ve never seen, (since no other manufacturer had such beautiful styling like that in the 30’s) but I guess I was wrong. Here’s the info on the car from IMDB:

“The fancy finned-back car driven by the Kerbys was custom built by the Bohman & Schwartz Co. using a 1936 Buick Roadmaster chassis. Originally the producers had in mind to use a coffin-nosed Cord, but it wasn’t large enough. In the custom-made Buick there were special compartments for camera equipment, etc. The Buick resembles a Cord, but the supercharger pipes on the side were just decorations (a Cord comes with an actual supercharger). After filming the Buick was bought by the Gilmore Oil Co. and was used for promotional purposes for many years. It was updated in 1954 with a Chrysler Imperial chassis and drive train. The car driven by Cosmo Topper is a 1936 Lincoln Model K.”

Upon looking at the Topper car a little more closely, (after finding it was custom built) I discovered that the Topper car is a much closer match to a 1935 Auburn 851 Speedster than the Cord 810.(The Topper car and the Auburn are almost identical)


From the Ron Ridolph Collection- Demolition of the Mineola LIRR Motor Parkway Bridge

Joseph Oesterle: "In the spring of 1983 I was 16 years old and got a job as a busboy in Wheatley Hill Golf Club. I saw old maps there leading the parkway south over Hillside Ave. The next Sunday morning, I went to church early, and set out on my bicycle following the parkway and the power lines south. From the south I saw the LIRR bridge. I went around and approached it from the north. I climbed dangerously out on a barbed wire ledge from the parking lot of 1 Old Country Rd. Down under powerlines through brush to the base of the bridge. I climbed the side wall from the north end. I remember my knee was scraped and bloddy. As soon as I stood on the bridge I swore it swayed. So to test my theory I jump up high and let myself stomp down. No doubt, that bridge moved.

Unlike the LIRR LIMP bridge in Albertson which was 100% solid. I remember the steel side walls of the bridge being lower that Albertson. In Albertson I could lean against the side, and my center of gravity was far below the steel side walls. Here, I was too afraid to even go near the edge. The were pot holes where I could look down and see rebar. My clearest memory was the south side. The motor parkway and the cement sidewalk (as I used to call them as a kid) extended off the bridge, but the land underneath was gone. So the roadway was just hanging there. The blacktop part had seperated from the sidewalk. The sidewalks extending further away from the bridge than the road part, before sagging with gravity. A train was approaching from the east. As it came close, the conductor or that trains eyes and mine locked, until he disappeared under me. The entire bridge shook. I did not have to be a genius to know I was in a place that was unsafe. I climbed down, made it back to my bicycle, and headed home. I remember I stopped by the bridge in Albertson on the way home.

About two weeks later, my dad and I were in the car as my mom was shopping in the center just oppostie Voice Rd on the eastern side of Glen Cove Road. I told my dad to take a ride, I wanted to show him something. We drove down Voice Road, back behind the building at the far northern end of Voice Road to where we could see the bridge. There was a work crew taking it down. I used to joke with friends that I was probably the last person to climb on that bridge before it was dismantled.

Thanks to you and Ron for the pictures. Your Fan"


The Motor Parkway Bridges #1: North Hempstead Turnpike Bridge in Fresh Meadows, Queens

Roy Warner: "Thank you for posting the Fresh Meadows article. I was five years old when my family moved into a new house in 1953 on the other side of the expressway. Before the War, a golf course and farms. After the war - all filled in, with Francis Lewis Blvd. as well. I can’t remember the number of times I took my bike on the Motor Parkway."

Links to related posts on VanderbiltCupRaces.com:

Archives: Long Island Automotive Updates

Press Conference: “Long Island: The World’s Largest Resort” Interactive Exhibit

June 15, 2012 Update: The Black Beast was included in the Sid Jacobson JCC 2011-2012 Annual Report


Jul 31 2011 Howard Kroplick 6:16 PM

From JJZBullit109:

“Mr.Kroplick is one of the nicest men I’ve ever met in the classic car hobby. Your attitude toward people is truly welcoming; most would never allow people to breathe on their car the wrong way. It is a great pleasure to see such a beautiful and important piece of automotive history of an all but forgotten era of motorsports preserved. Cheers”

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