1955 APBA Gold Cup
Lake Washington, Seattle WA, August 7, 1955
Gold Cup's Return Celebrated in Detroit
By Harry LeDuc
DETROIT, Aug. 10 -- Not since the old days, when Detroit first won the Gold Cup from New York, has there been such a reception as greeted the Gale V people when they got off a plane at Willow Run late last night. Waiting near the runway were more than a hundred people.
The reception, not far from midnight, pleasantly surprised and shocked the Schoeniths -- Lee, the driver of the winning Gale V; Joe, his father; and Mildred, his mother. The Schoeniths filled the Gold Cup with champagne and everybody quaffed a sip or two.
Some Gold Cup drops from Seattle:
Drivers and owners like the "bonus point" scoring system for the 90-mile race, despite public criticism. The subject was not discussed at length at the Gold Cup Contest Board meeting Monday night. No motion was made to change the method that let Detroit get the trophy back without winning a heat.
Gold Cuppers feel 400 points for the fastest heat and 400 for the fastest 90 miles force everyone to go faster all the way.
The board meeting, which fixes the rules for the following year, made it possible to cut the Detroit course to 2 1/2 miles, but the long-existent three-mile course will be used, as it will in the Silver Cup two weeks from Saturday.
Les Staudacher sold a spare speedsters to industrialist Henry Kaiser, whose Scooter Too sank on the first lap Sunday. Ray Crawford, of El Monte, Calif., also talked to Staudacher about a new boat. Crawford's Fury was the real clunker among the 13 contenders for the Gold Cup. It failed to qualify.
Bill Muncey, Miss Thriftway's driver, may drive Jack Schafer's Such Crust III in the Silver Cup. No West Coast boat will be here because there isn't time, owners said.
A rule change applying next year permits a two-section first heat if more than eight boats are eligible to start.
Driver talk is of two-way radio between pits and pilots. Except for the RPMs on his tachometer, a driver has no way of knowing exactly how fast he is going. Had Muncey known that he needed to gain only five seconds on Gale V, Miss Thriftway might have won.
An indication that the largest crowd in five years saw Sunday's race lay in the fact that in 1954 35 large truckloads of litter were removed from the shores on the course, whereas this year there were 112 truckloads.
Race aftermath was rich with witticisms: "There should be a CPA riding with every driver" . . . "It was another beautiful marine triumph for Seattle but a statistical victory for Detroit" . . . "Detroit won with adding machines and Einstein" . . . "Victory was awarded to the slow boat to China."
Gale V, Miss Cadillac and Tempo VII will stop Sunday at Flathead, Mont., for a 45-mile race.
(Reprinted from the Detroit Free Press, Aug. 10, 1955)
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