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Sprint Cars & Champ Cars The big brother(s) to the midget these open wheel beasts have a rich heritage in our auto racing memories.



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Old 03-25-2011, 02:00 PM   #1
Mitch G.
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Default Don Branson, color photo

Love those great vintage color shots, here's one from Joe Scalzo's great book, "The American Dirt Track Racer", it's a Bob Tronolone photo. Don Branson, one of the greatest of all American oval track racers, volumes have been written on his accomplishments, midgets, sprints, champ and Indy cars dirt and pavement, he won it all. Here's "Grandpa Don" in a USAC national championship dirt car on a dirt mile, "Backin' it in".

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Old 03-25-2011, 08:06 PM   #2
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Default Re: Don Branson, color photo

This car is restored as the Leader Card #4 and currently resides in CT. The engine was taken apart last winter for a rebuild to reveal a cracked crank. Haven't heard what stage the rebuild is in or if it's back together.
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Old 03-26-2011, 02:50 AM   #3
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Default Re: Don Branson, color photo

.....'Well, thanks a lot for that, CTtoPA. That's good to know. One of my pictures from the Ron Albright Collection is Don Branson's car back at the hotel in 1966 before the race at Sacramento and it just happened to be the Leader Card Racers #4.

And Mitch's picture of Branson at Sacramento in 1965 is why I think Bob Tronolone and later, Jim Chini were the best at shooting any race car on a dirt track. They adopted their own style that I've never seen anyone else duplicate.

And Mitch, what made Scalzo's book so great is that it's full of Bob Tronolone photos! Everything was classic and priceless. That's probably why you can't find that book for anything less than $200. I remember thinking when I first got it and saying that 'a book could be written about this book, it's so great!'

If you guys don't mind, I'll post a couple more of Don Branson and then a couple more Tronolone photos out of one of my programs. I always like to include the caption because it was either Ronnie Allyn or Don Basile that seemed to ad a lot to the importance and history of the shot.

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Old 03-28-2011, 10:35 AM   #4
Mitch G.
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Default Re: Don Branson, color photo

LittleFauss, that's great stuff, you gotta' love that tow rig and trailer!
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Old 04-16-2011, 09:57 AM   #5
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Default Re: Don Branson, color photo

Mitch, My father has one of those trailers at his shop, and it still tows great. The last time we used it was to take our Champ Car to run at Eldora. It's great to take a race car to the track on an open trailer. The kids pointing at it as you drive by , and the look on their faces is priceless. Reminds me of how I was oh so many years ago.
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Old 10-07-2014, 05:25 AM   #6
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Default Re: Don Branson, color photo

Don Branson was not only one of the great race drivers of that era, but one of the great guys in racing. I spent many an hour in the stands at Indy 61-66 during practice with Don's son ( who was handicapped and 10 years older than me) and I would try to find the best places to sit at the speedway. we sat in every different grandstand, on the infield side and outside. I rememeber him getting so excited when his dad would come around the track. Don went to bat for my dad 1963 whke usac was investigating the death of Allen Crowe. My dad was being questioned be Henry Banks about possible rough driving that may have caused the accidient. Don Branson came to the inquirey and assured Banks and UsAC that my dad, while racing hard that day did not cause the crash.
I was at ascot that night he and Dick Atkins Died. Bad night for USAC,bad night for racing period.
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