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Hemmings Motor News Blog

Hemmings Motor News has been around since 1954. We're proud of our heritage, but we're also more than the Hemmings full of classifieds that your father subscribed to. Aside from new editorial content every month in Hemmings, we have three monthly magazines: Hemmings Muscle Machines, Hemmings Classic Car and Hemmings Sports and Exotic Car.

While our editors traverse the country to find the best content for those magazines, we find other oddities related to the old-car hobby that we really had no place for - until now. With this blog, we're giving you a behind-the-scenes look at what we see and what we do during the course of putting out some of the finest automotive magazines you'll ever read.

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A Great Save on the 2018 Great Race

Posted July 04, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl

The Mount Washington Auto Road, which climbs to the summit of its namesake peak in New Hampshire, offers breathtaking views to those willing to tackle its average 12-percent grade. When brake failure struck a 1955 Buick Estate station wagon competing in the 2018 Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty while descending from the mountain’s summit, it was bravery of a fellow competitor, and his willingness to sacrifice a restored 64 1/2 Mustang, that averted potential disaster.

Day four of the Great Race included a lunch stop at the base of Mount Washington, and though not a required stage, competitors were given the opportunity to take their cars to the summit. Doing so is no joke, since certain contemporary vehicles (those without a first or low gear on their automatic transmissions) are prohibited from making the trip. Even full-size cars, station wagons, minivans, pickups and SUVs without other restrictions are given weight limits, ensuring that the climb and descent remains as safe as possible.

Classic cars collide to divert disaster at The Great Race.

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Guru

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Tucson, AZ
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#1

Re: A Great Save on the 2018 Great Race

07/04/2018 11:44 PM

...and THAT is why disc brakes were eventually introduced to the automobile market.

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Guru

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#2

Re: A Great Save on the 2018 Great Race

07/05/2018 1:30 PM

OUCH!

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Associate

Join Date: Mar 2017
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#3

Re: A Great Save on the 2018 Great Race

07/05/2018 4:07 PM

Clearly not Stirling Moss, who apparently won a race with no brakes over the last 4 laps. He used the chronic understeer to scrub off speed.

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Power-User

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#4

Re: A Great Save on the 2018 Great Race

07/06/2018 3:58 PM

I had some very personal experience with this some 35 to 40 years ago. After having driven my 1969 Chevy Impala up to the Mount Washington Summit time came for the great decent. The 327 engine combined with a two speed automatic transmission was, as I soon discovered, not designed for this. In short order, the brakes were fading towards uselessness. Fortunately, the road is equipped with numerous pull offs and each one had a 55 gallon drum of water and a 1 gallon open lid can. At each opportunity I would get out of the car, throw a gallon of cold water directly at each wheel cooling things down enough to make it to the next water supply. While the water was likely used more for overheating engines it worked quite well on the wheels & brake drums.

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