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  • Don Brown

    Nobody has mentioned this so I thought I would post it.

    USAC sprint driver and ace metal shaper, Don Brown has died after a long illness.

    He is probably best known for the roadster sprint cars he built, known as the "Mechanical Rabbits", driven by Greg Weld, Joe Saldana and Don, himself.


    RIP, my friend..................
    .

    http://indyroadsters.webs.com/
    http://macmillersgarage.webs.com/
    http://www.youtube.com/user/macmiller46241


    I love any race car whose last name is "Special"

    .

  • #2
    The "Mechanical Rabbit" cars were absolute beauties. Hopefully Al Consoli will post his photo of one of the cars here.

    Another link to the "Thunder and Lightning" days of the '60s/'70s gone. RIP Don.

    Comment


    • #3
      Did he build/own the car Don Davis was killed in at New Bremen (Aug 62)? I didn't attend that race.

      Seems he had a blue and red #54 Chevy that year. Was the same as Don's normal ride the JH Rose Chevy. They were nice cars!
      "Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved
      body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting
      "...holy $^!+...what a ride!"
      >

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Niseguy
        Did he build/own the car Don Davis was killed in at New Bremen (Aug 62)? I didn't attend that race.

        Yes, that was Brown's car #54. I was there that day. The race was over
        and Davis just blasted on into the first turn after the checkers and lost it.
        I believe it was the consi. Davis failed to make the "featch" and was a little upset............
        .

        http://indyroadsters.webs.com/
        http://macmillersgarage.webs.com/
        http://www.youtube.com/user/macmiller46241


        I love any race car whose last name is "Special"

        .

        Comment


        • #5
          Don normally dove the #28 JH Rose car but had missed the feature. He took over the blue and white #54 of Don Brown, for the feature race and lost his life while taking the checkered flag. The car ended upright in turn 1 and Don lived for 2 days before he died from his injuries.

          Comment


          • #6
            We were at New Bremen that day, and it seems like it was at the end of the feature. We always sat toward turn one and the car ended up right in front of us. I guess that was a day the old roll bar didn't do its job.
            "Miss the old days"

            Comment


            • #7
              By the way, the date of the accident was August 5th, 1962, with Don dying on the 7th.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by mac miller
                Nobody has mentioned this so I thought I would post it.

                USAC sprint driver and ace metal shaper, Don Brown has died after a long illness.
                Mac, sorry to hear this

                Don Brown also built the innovative and infamous "batmobile" Modified that cleaned up in the big Syracuse race.
                Last edited by JThur1; 11-10-2005, 04:04 PM.
                "Versions of a story that are more tidy, compact, and camera-ready should generally be viewed as historically suspect." - Jackson Landers

                Comment


                • #9
                  From the Al Consoli collection isnt this one of those Brown Roadsters?
                  If you havent bought a Consoli picture you havnt got a good racing picture yet. Go here and take a look. http://www.pbase.com/consoli/root
                  Go to misc dirt track photos, It is the 4th car down left side of the page.
                  aXe
                  Born Again Race Fan seen at
                  www.openwheelracers3.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    aXe,
                    in Al's series you cite, there is a picture of Don Brown in his roadster
                    "Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved
                    body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting
                    "...holy $^!+...what a ride!"
                    >

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      http://www2.indystar.com/cgi-bin/obi...=show&id=49339

                      here's a link to the obit in today's Indianapolis Star. A fitting tribute to one of the "originals" which seem so rare in the sport today.
                      It really IS all good!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        RIP DON BROWN
                        From Al consoli's site here He is in one of his Roadsters


                        aXe
                        Born Again Race Fan seen at
                        www.openwheelracers3.com

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          A couple of other thoughts on Don Brown....

                          While some might not be aware of it Don Brown drove the Novi in early 1960 for a day during a test on the El Mirage Dry Lake. It was a wild ride for Don but he got the job done that day for Novi boss Jean Marcenac going faster than the car ever did at Indianapolis. Don worked on the Novi team during 1959 and 1960.

                          Also, several of you have made reference to Don's "Mechanical Rabbit" roadsters. Unlike about every other roadster design (whether midget, sprint, or Indianapolis car) his cars worked great on dirt tracks as well as on the pavement. In fact, I don't think that the one that Joe Saldana drove ever raced on anything but dirt. Does anyone know what was unique about the design on these cars that made them so universal? I've always wondered about this.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Pardon my ignorance.

                            Is this one
                            http://www.champcarstats.com/drivers/BrownDon.htm
                            the same man or just a namesake?
                            Reinhard

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by ReWind
                              Pardon my ignorance.

                              Is this one
                              http://www.champcarstats.com/drivers/BrownDon.htm
                              the same man or just a namesake?
                              Yes, it's the same Don Brown. He never had too many starts in Indianapolis cars. And the ones he did get were pretty low buck efforts. I seem to remember the starts he had in the Seymour Chevy were largely as a result of his efforts in completely rebuilding the car long after its useful career should have been over. But a racer is a racer and you have to keep trying.

                              Comment

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