Jul 06 2013

Then & Now: The Massapequa Turn for the 1904 Vanderbilt Cup Race

One of the most exciting locations to watch the first Vanderbilt Cup Race was the turn from Massapequa-Hicksville Road onto the new Bethpage-Hempstead Turnpike in present day Plainedge. Here's the "Then & Now."



Howard kroplick


Then: 1904

This section of the course was rough and narrow  and seen as particularly treacherous. The turn onto the new Bethpage-Hempstead Turnpike had been the biggest problem area in Nassau County, with loose stone and ruts creating a significant hazard. American Mutoscope and Biograph Company elected to station their second film crew at this vantage point.

Fernand Gabriel driving  a DeDietrich for France

George Heath driving the winning Panhard for France

Paul Sartori driving a FIAT for italy

Albert Clement, Jr. driving the Clement-Bayard for France

Charles Schmidt driving the Packard "Grey Wolf" for the USA

William Luttgen driving a Mercedes for Germany

1904 Vanderbilt Cup Race Film

In one of the first films of an American sporting event, the Massapequa turn can be seen at the following marks: 0:29 seconds to 1:20 minutes and 1:39 to 1:56 minutes.

Now: 2006

As seen in the "Now" photos, the semi-circle design of the turn remains unchanged from 1904.


Jul 07 2013 Lou K 9:41 AM

Not nearly as exciting in the ‘now’ photograph. Great research Howard and loved the video…..You’re dedication to this history is amazing ..... Many thanks….

Jul 07 2013 Dave Fischer 10:21 AM

Hi Howard, another great story, great photos…......thank you….Dave   10-4

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