Our friends over a ProTeam Corvette Sales are looking for more information their unique 1953 Corvette number 211. The car is 1 of 2 Corvettes assembled by Chevrolet Engineering to compete at the 1956 NASCAR Performance Trials and Flying Mile in Daytona Beach.
1953 Corvette VIN 211 is one of two Corvettes (the other was a 1955) specially built by Chevrolet Engineering Shop Order #3950 entitled “Rebuilding of NASCAR Corvettes for Stock Car Racing.”. Both cars were modified with high output 1956 engines, 3 speed manual transmissions, and heavy duty 3.27:1 rear ends. External enhancements included plastic tonneau covers, chopped racing windshields, and relocated gauges.
The cars travelled to Daytona Beach in February 1956 for the annual NASCAR Performance Trials and The Flying Mile competition. There is it was seen in promotional photos with NASACAR founder Bill France. At that time the car wore #27, but it is believed that it could have sported #62 at NASCAR tracks in the Carolinas. After competing at Speed Week both cars had roll bars added and then were raced at Bowman Gray Stadium piloted by drivers Pee Wee Jones and Billy and Bobby Myers. They were maintained by Hubert Westmoreland for NASCAR sports car races. Gray Tuttle of Clinton, NC later bought #211 from NASCAR/Jack Hawkins in 1958 and helped verify some of the car’s history.
VIN 211 is documented the Chevrolet Engineering department build orders and vintage photos from both the Chevrolet and NASCAR archives. This first year C1 is the earliest known Corvette to run NASCAR’s sanctioned events. It could also be the earliest Corvette (by VIN) to ever race.
ProTeam credits Corvette historian Loren Lundberg for helping to verify the history of VIN #211. Other Corvette gurus who participated in the archeology of this Corvette include John Hutchins, Noland Adams, Dave Bartush, David Burroughs, Tim Jones, Chocolate Myers, Chevrolet archives, and the Daytona Beach NASCAR archives.
Since being restored to its #27 livery the car been invited to and participated at several notable events including the 2012 Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals, the 2014 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, the 2014 Ault Park Concours d’Elegance, and 2014 Concours d’Elegance of America.
Although much of this car’s history is now known, there’s always more to the story. Do you have more information on this Corvette? Do you remember seeing it race in person or in photos? Did you own it? If so, then ProTeam would like to hear from you. Contact ProTeam President Terry Michaelis at [email protected] or contact us and we can help get you in touch with right people.
ProTeam Corvette Sales