Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Smilin' Jack

In this photo from Pine Brook in the early 1970s, Jack Duffy enjoys a victory lap in the Zrinski #75, his regular ride and a combination that won plenty of races.  (Click the photo for an enlarged view.)

In the background, Bill Force has pulled up to the pit gate in his #26, and Alan Purdy has stopped behind Force, in his #4.

That’s Hank Force, Bill’s father, leaning into the cockpit of the #26, and Ed Enes, at the time an ATQMRA officer, standing with his arms folded.

Why have we chosen the above photo for this week?  So many reasons, beginning with this new photo:

When this past Saturday’s scheduled 2013 opener for the Vintage TQ Club was rained out, instead of there being racing there was a social gathering at Gary Mondschein’s Dimension Design shop in Brodheadsville, Pennsylvania.  There, Jack Duffy, now some 40 years older but looking the same, took a seat in the very race car that was obscured by his checkered flag in the Pine Brook photo.

Duffy, who today resides in Florida, had traveled north for the occasion, and while he was disappointed to not get on the track with the Vintage Club, in the Purdy #4 he is smiling more than we recall him ever smiling after a race victory!

The restored #4 will be among the cars participating in the rescheduled season opener, now set for this Saturday, May 18.  So will the restored Force #26, with Bill Force himself on hand.

So we just had to use the old Pine Brook photo this week.  In that photo we see two of the cars and two of the drivers now participating with the Vintage Club.