Tag Archives: Vail

Hudson Super Six Special

While out watching the vintage racers negotiate Prescott and Loton Park 18 months ago I caught some snaps of this 1917 Hudson Super Six racer being driven by James Collins.

Hudson Super Six, VSCC Prescott

The Hudson Super Six is powered by a 4700 cc / 299 cui straight six fitted with one of the earliest a balanced crwankshafts. James car is fitted with a radiator cowling that is said to have come from a Peugeot.

In 1917 Hudson built four 2100lb racing versions of there Super Six models, called Super Six Specials, these featured stock frames that had been shortened and lightened, blue printed 115 hp motors with larger valves and ports, high lift camshafts and light weight pistons along with a two carb manifold.

Hudson Super Six, VSCC Loton Park

The Super Six Specials were taken by special railway cars that served as rolling workshops to tracks for Ira Vail, Billy Taylor, Ralph Mulford and AH Patterson to drive the cars up to August 1917 when the Great War required resources be used elsewhere.

Major wins were recorded at Omaha, Tacoma and Minneapolis with many placings and wins at minor events during the war shortened season.

In 1919 four of the 1917 Super Six Specials were entered privately for the Indy 500, Canadian Vail and US driver Ora Haibe qualified 10th and 26th respectively finishing the race in the same order 8th and 14th.

Hudson Super Six, VSCC Loton Park

From what I have been able to gather it would appear James car is a tribute to the 1917 Super Six Specials.

My thanks to Hudson Forum members paulrhd29nz for identifying the radiator cowling, and oldhudsons for pointing in the direction of Don Butlers excellent History of Hudson.

Thanks for joining me on this Super Six edition of ‘Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres’, I hope you will join me again for Ferrari Friday tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !