Ed & Bud Winfield designed and built a 181 cubic inch supercharged V-8 engine in 1938. It was arguably the most advanced piston engine in the world. It was this engine that became the famous Novi V-8 and powered a series of Novi Specials at Indianapolis from the 1940's through the 1960's. Even after the last Novi Special raced in 1965, the name has been associated with speed and power. The Motorsports Museum and Hall of Fame of America is proud to display the last ever Novi Special.
Motorsport events have a vast history worldwide. The Motorsports Museum chronicles the personalities, manufacturers and machines of all types of racing. Exhibits include Indy Cars, stock cars, sports cars, dragsters, race trucks and openwheelers. Among these exhibits are champion and record holding race vehicles.
The Motorsports Museum exhibits change periodically. Below is a sampling of past and present exhibits.
In 1962 Art Arfons built this jet powered car in an attempt to break the world land speed record. Although he didn't break the record in this particular car, he did set the record for open wheel/open cockpit cars at 342.88 MPH. That record is still in the books today. Art Arfons was once described as the "junk yard genius of the jet set". His cars were often crude, but they were extremely fast and were built for a fraction of the cost of his better financed rivals. His talent was in crafting scrap parts into race cars. The powerplant for this car is an U.S. Government scrap F104 J79 Starfighter jet engine that produced 17,500 HP.
The oldest vehicle in the Motorsports Hall of Fame is the famous Ford 999 racer from 1902. Although it is not the first race car ever built, it is certainly the first car to rise to the status of legend.
Always seeking publicity, Barney Oldfield dubbed the car 999 after the feats of the record-holding New York Central locomotive.
James Brooks founded JEB Four Racing along with sons Jeff, Jamie and John. They first introduced their unique Henry J dragster to the NHRA/IHRA circuit and the Super Gas class in 1993. This one of a kind car was based on the 1951 "Red Baron" that James took down the track in the 1960's.
While the 90's version had a professionally built, tube chassis with a fiber glass body by Bernard Weaver, it also included an actual Henry J roof to add authenticity. But it was a rough start, and JEB Four Racing rolled the original car in the first season. While searching for a replacement roof, the team discovered their father's Red Baron in a junkyard. With the help of Smith's Body Shop in Fredericksburg, Virginia the car was recreated... and a brand new chapter opened for the team.