Friday, August 16, 2013

August 16, 1957 - Lee Petty Owns Old Bridge

August 16, 1957: Starting third, Lee Petty leads a handful of laps early in a 100-mile race at Old Bridge Stadium in Old Bridge, New Jersey. Then with nine laps to go, he went back to the point and claimed his 28th career NASCAR Grand National victory.

Rex White won the pole and dominated the race by leading 177 of the 200 laps on the paved half-mile. But as Greg Fielden notes about the race in his book, Forty Years of Stock Car Racing - Volume 1:
Lee Petty used a late race caution to close in on the rear bumper of leader Rex White, then dashed to victory...

White finished second, 2.0 seconds behind the Petty Oldsmobile. Third place went to Jim Reed. Marvin Panch came in fourth, and Jack Smith finished 5th.

White, making a stab at his first Grand National win, had taken the lead in the 15th lap and was holding nearly a lap lead when a three car crash involving Chuck Hansen, Dick Klank and Bill Benson brought out the only caution flag. The yellow light was on for four laps.

White led the charge when the green came out with 10 laps to go. But Petty muscled his way under White and led the final nine laps. ~ pp. 275-276

1 comment:

  1. I was at "Old Bridge" for that race. I was stationed in New Jersey. The following year (even though he did not win), he put on a real driving exhibition at "Wall Stadium". Jim Reed, Rex White And Buck Baker ran 300 laps nose to tail and he passed them twice. That was the best racing, I have ever seen. I have watched live or on TV since the second Sprint Cup race. Won by Red Byron on the Beach.