Put-in-Bay Road Race Heritage Society

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History of Put-in-Bay Sports Car Races

The tiny island town of Put-in-Bay hosted sports car races that were conducted by the Cleveland Sport Car Club and the Northeast Ohio Region of the Sports Car Club of America one weekend each year from 1952 to 1959.  There was one additional race in 1963 coordinated by the Detroit Region of SCCA / Waterford Hills Road Racing Club, but that race was abruptly halted when a competing Elva sports racer went off course (to avoid a dog, the driver claimed) and crashed heavily, fortunately without injury to driver or spectators and ending road racing on the island “forever.”  

The cars that competed in those races were small sports cars with under 2,000cc of displacement and sports racers (purpose-built closed-wheel racing cars) under 1,500ccs.  Marques included production cars from makers such as MG, Triumph, Porsche, Alfa Romeo, Lotus and many others and race-bred cars such as Elva and Cooper as well as a host of home-bred varieties.  The drivers were strictly amateurs, racing for the fun of it, but many went on to make significant names for themselves in racing.  These include Carl Haas, Chuck and Susie Dietrich, Chuck Stoddard, Tom Payne, Ralph Durbin and a long list of others.  Despite the challenging roads and difficult spectator control, there is no record of any major injuries that resulted from conducting these races. 

A very thorough book about original The Put-in-Bay Road Races was written by sports car racing historian Carl Goodwin and published in 2014 by McFarland & Co – wwwmcfarlandpub.com.

More information about the history of Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island can be found at the Lake Erie Islands Historical Society web site:  www.leihs.org

Put-in-Bay Road Race Reunions

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The Last Checkered Flag

obit00001 Paul Henry

6-14-1954 to 8-22-2011

Son of original PIB racer Chuck Henry and accomplished racer in his own right, dedicated caretaker of his father's MG TC race car, Put-in-Bay Road Race Reunion enthusiast with a passion for all things fun to drive or fly, was highly regarded and is greatly missed by all who knew and loved him. obit00002 Colin King

10-7-1944 to 10-8-2011

Good Friend and Put-In-Bay Road Race Heritage Society volunteer all three years of the event, Advocate of all things MG, and Racer will be missed by friends and family and remembered for his Vintage sports car spirit and efforts.

The PIB Course Marker Project

Start Finish Marker

Start/Finish Marker

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PIB Turn 1 Marker

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PIB Turn 4 Marker

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PIB Turn 5 Marker


Past Posters by Bob Colaizzi

Bob Colaizzi, infamous vintage racer and talented artist, has contributed PIBRRR posters each year since 2010.

2017 Poster

PIB 2016 6 4 FINAL FlatSM

PIB poster 2015 small

 RSK-comp-flat-w logo




©PIB Road Race Hertiage Society 2013