May 27 2011

Roslyn News “The Alco Black Beast Racer Returns to Indianapolis”

This week's Roslyn News has a featured article: "The Alco Black Beast Racer Returns to Indianapolis":

The Alco Black Beast Racer Returns to Indianapolis

Friday, 27 May 2011

After 100 years, the Alco Black Beast racer is returning to Indianapolis where it competed in the inaugural Indy 500 Race in 1911. Built by the American Locomotive Company in Providence, RI in 1909, the six-cylinder, 100-horsepower Black Beast was one of the most successful race cars of its day, winning both the prestigious 1909 and 1910 Vanderbilt Cup Races held on Long Island.

The Black Beast was the favorite to win the first Indy 500 Race among the 40 participants. However, a connecting rod broke on the 52nd lap and the Black Beast settled for finishing 33rd. After one more competition, a second place finish in the 1911 Elgin National Trophy Race, the car was retired from racing and gifted to its driver Harry Grant.

For several decades the car was largely forgotten until discovered with several other Alco automobiles in an Ohio Barn. The racer was restored to its previous glory in 1972 and was owned by several collectors and museums including Harrah’s Automobile Collection.

Today the car is owned by Howard Kroplick, an East Hills entrepreneur and historian who has written a book, The Vanderbilt Cup Races of Long Island and created the popular website

On Sunday, May 29, the Black Beast and four other race cars from the 1911 Indy Race will take a parade lap before the historic 100th Anniversary Indy 500 Race. The car was also featured in a four-page article in the 2011 Official Indy 500 Program.

“After 100 years it is a thrill to bring the Alco back to Indianapolis and run a lap in front of 300,000 spectators,” Kroplick said. “I am optimistic that the Black Beast will finally be the first car over the finish line at Indy.”

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Archives: 2011 Indy 500 Centennial Celebration

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May 29 2011 irena 8:33 AM

My DVR is set to record!

May 29 2011 Wayne Carroll Petersen 11:21 PM

What a thrill for you and to awaken the Black Beast. Congratulations!!!!
Best Regards,
Wayne Carroll Petersen
Barney Oldfield, Master Driver of the World, great great nephew

May 30 2011 Arthur E. Lloyd 11:29 PM

I saw you take that lap at Indy and it must have been the thrill of a of a lifetime for you…

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