Feb 23, 2021
A short while ago I received an email from a reader asking me about some entrants in the 1955 GAMR event.I looked at the copy of the entry list, as sure as heck his mother and father were listed as an entry! Below is a copy of the email he sent me. Love this kind of stuff!
Hi Gary,Nice to hear from you. The pictures are amazing. That is definitely them. My mom who is 91 only recalls bits and pieces of the rally.From what she told me she remembers that they drove a light blue Beetle they got from my fathers parents. As far as the 1954 Austin Healy that was listed she wasn’t sure why they switched cars, it got me wondering, knowing my father he probably decided to use the Volkswagen with the rear engine design and weight distribution because it would be far better climbing snowy hills than the Healy!I’m assuming he read the rules and knew they could switch cars and I’m sure he wasn’t in the Rally for the fun of it, they were in it to win. I do recall many rally trophies that they had won and displayed in our dining room growing up but not sure if they received one for the 1955 GAMR.My Mom mentioned that they had started a local rally club in the fifties with a badge of their own designed and my father was a salesman for Russ Sceli a local foreign car dealer in Hartford who was a founder of Sports Car Club of America. As far as the ’55 GAMR, my mother recalled that there were some famous drivers that came from Overseas ( We had a cat named Juan Manuel and my sisters middle name was Mercedes) and that the grand prize was a trip to Europe. She said that after driving 10-12 hours straight and late into the night she was hallucinating and said the lines on the road were rising up and you couldn’t drive over them? She recalls navigating and my father doing the driving. She did say that they would have won except for at the end of the Rally in the trials they didn’t back up close enough to a stake set in the ground. I’m assuming penalty points where added for being too far away. After rallying for numerous years my father went on to race Austin Healys and later on a Lotus Super 7 very successfully in the Northeast holding the lap record for his class at Lime Rock in 1968. He did say that he sold his Austin Healy to the guy that owned Yankee candle and it was in his car museum up in Deerfield, Mass and last I knew his Lotus was owned by someone in California.Both myself and my mom live in Ct and she is encouraging me to enter the GAMR revival! I would also be interested in any other information on the ’55 Rally and share anything else of interest. Thanks for that info Stephen. So, to date we have meet two original entrants in GAMR ’55, the other one Peter Bullard; whom I spoke to yesterday and remembers his running in ’55 & ’56; he turns 90 later this year.Following is a picture of his mother and father at one of the trials at the end of the rally.If anyone has parents, or relatives that ran in GAMR I would love to hear from you.
Inge and Walbridge Baily in their VW. Note he is wearing a jacket and tie in the picture!
The entry list showing Inge and Walbridge Baily entering a Healy, but we know they traded the Healy off for a VW. I am sure it was much better in the snow!