Motor

Challenge Indy with twin-cam engine machine │ until the project begins

Or stop? Al Stein's dream was to build a twin-engine machine and challenge the Indy 500. One of the most spectacular racing cars with Porsche engine. However, there is only one body panel hanging on the wall of the repair shop.

In the United States, which was trying to recover from the Great Depression of the late 1920s, many young people were beginning to seek a way of life without shoulder and elbow. Perhaps it was a reaction that survived the dark and tough days. Perhaps because of that, in the 1930s there was a big boom in car racing on the dry lake in Southern California, and a race using a small racing car called a midget car has grown rapidly in Northern California. It was.

In the beginning, most of the midget cars, which were supposed to be miniature versions of racing cars that fight the Indy 500, were made by amateur race lovers in their own garages, using motorcycle engines. The course was a short oval with a total length of 1/5 miles [about 320 m] and the road surface was dirt. The race was quick and exciting and quickly caught the hearts of the fans, and the number of spectators was increasing to eel climbing.

The first official Midget Car Race in the United States took place on the Oval Course in Sacramento, California, dated June 4, 1933. The event was supervised by the newly born Midget Racing Association [MRA]. There are 10 drivers in total. Among them was the name of Al Stein, who lives in Auckland. A mechanical worker, he was a young man who had been absorbed in anything related to mechanics since he was a child and always wanted to create something new.


Al Stein was a midget race driver in the 1930s

Stein was also interested in motorcycles, and when he started the midget race, he mobilized all the knowledge of the mechanics he had to create a machine. As midget races have become more popular, new oval courses for midget races have been established all over Northern California [Emeryville, Alameda, Vallejo, Alviso, Stockton, Fresno, Bakersfield, etc.].

The controlling group of midget races was eventually taken over from MRA by Short Track Automobile Racing [STAR], but again Al Stein is one of the top contenders. Not only was he an excellent driver, but he was also highly regarded as a master of his ability to create groundbreaking machines. And, always trying to adopt new ideas, actively equipped with a 2-cylinder or 3-cylinder engine, and sought to win.

Stein won the race again and again, and in 1935-37, he won the STAR for three consecutive years. In 1938, he refused to take part in the race due to injury, but in 1939 when he resumed his activities, he showed himself in fourth place in the series. By the way, it is Stein's racing companion Skeets Jones that won the 1938-39 championship. Jones will play an important role in Stein's Indy 500 entry plan 25 years later.

Although Stein continued racing for two seasons after returning, he retired after listening to his wife's request. Soon after the footsteps of World War II approached, Stein was hired by a mechanic to work at a local shipyard. Having continued to work until the end of the war, he started up the business related to mold making and die casting, but again started making midget cars.

Challenge Indy! <Continue to next time>


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