Today, we loaded up Bender, the Studebaker, and drove the NYS Thruway from Troy to Buffalo (about 300 straight, boring miles). Bender behaved very well and returned 20 mpg (at about 65 mph). When we arrived at the Adams Mark Hotel, HQ for the start of the Race, we were met by representatives of the local Studebaker Drivers Club (Peter Bishop, president and Steve Mangione, expert photographer). They had us pose the car in front of the big fountain in the hotel’s forecourt with a Club banner! Nice. Nicer still ( astonishingly so), they then presented us with a gift card for a VERY generous amount of gas money, courtesy of the Iroquois, Atlantic Canada, Kinzua, and Central NY chapters of SDC. WOW! Blown away. MAJOR Thanks to those clubs for their unexpected gift!
We had dinner with all racers and staff, hosted by the Pierce Arrow Museum (we’ll tour and have another meal there Friday, too).
Pierce-Arrows (once among the 3 P’s of fine American cars, with Packard, Peerless) were made here in Buffalo, and the museum here is likely the largest car museum in the world (330,000 sq ft, once complete). Around our dinner table were many vintage advertising signs, mostly motoring related, but this one you can see, was made for me!
The Great Race attracts a wide variety of interesting old cars. Today we saw a new one to our eyes and what a lovely piece of custom coachbuilding. It’s a Model A Ford, but not like any you’ve seen! Wowza!
So today (once we arrived) we caught up with our many Great Race friends. Tomorrow is official registration and tech inspection and getting our car all stickered up with numbers and such. Gonna be good! Stay tuned.