Home
Drivers
Owners-Crew
Statistics
Stories
Links
Birthplace of Speed
Fireball Roberts
Contact
Click Here to Visit!



 

 


                   Russ Truelove

After graduation from high school in 1942 Russ Truelove, a native of Waterbury, CT, joined the US Navy and the crew of the USS Sherwood DD 520 in the Aleutian and Northern Kruli Islands in the Pacific. Discharged in 1946, He began racing in New England  along the east coast in a '47 Crager. Savin Rock , Plainville, Danbury, Rhinebeck Stafford Springs, and  were home to Russ until he joined NASCAR in 1953.

 

In 1956 Russ qualified fifth at Daytona (128.205 mph) and made a bit of history. While down shifting down from 130 mph for the North Turn, the right tire dug in, and the car flipped six times. Photos of the crash made the March 19th issue of Life magazine.

"I walked away, but spent the night in the hospital. My bell was pretty well rung," says Russ. "I consider myself very lucky to have survived. You don't think about a whole lot but hanging on. You see sand and sky. It all happens so fast," Russ
explains. But, he still wonders how Ralph Moody managed to duplicate his gymnastics and still finish the race.

After the race, Russ got a new car body from the factory, but when he blew an engine in 1957, he quit racing. "It was just too expensive for independent drivers," he explains. Russ had two top ten finishes during his Grand National career.

Russ' racing career was revived in 1989 when his wife presented him with a four-cylinder Spec Racer kit car for Christmas, and he was off and running with the Sports Car Club of America. He finally stopped racing when he was hit from
behind and knocked into a wall. "The medical
people told me to keep out of racing, and I decided to listen to them," he said.

Russ still lives in Waterbury and has served as a director of The Living Legends of Auto Racing, Inc. These days he spends a large part of his time scheduling public appearances for our members. Russ can usually be found posing for photographs with his restored 1956 Mercury and signing autographs for old and new fans at Living Legends events.

Russ still lives in Waterbury and has served as a director of The Living Legends of Auto Racing, Inc. These days he spends a large part of his time scheduling public appearances for our members. Russ can usually be found posing for photographs with his restored 1956 Mercury and signing autographs for old and new fans at Living Legends events.
Excerpts from Living Legends of Auto Racing Site.

Takin’ the “226” to the Beach

After being nearly demolished at Daytona’s beach/road course, Russ Truelove’s restored 1956 Mercury proves they don’t build ‘em like they used to.
By Meghan Frazier  Photography: Jeff Huneycutt
Did you ever spend Spring Break in Daytona Beach? Well, if you did, just imagine those flat stretches of sandy beach being as crowded as they are today—not with rowdy college kids, but race cars and spectators. Today, when we think of a racetrack in Daytona Beach, we think of Daytona International Speedway—the granddaddy of all race tracks. Well, scratch that out of your mind. In the early days, the track at Daytona was made up of a long stretch of
sandy beach and an equally long stretch of Highway A1A.

In February of 1956, Russ Truelove took his Mercury of the same year to the sands of Daytona Beach to race around with his friends for an early Spring Break and the 1956 NASCAR Grand National for stock cars on the four-mile beach course. Racers, like Truelove, Tim Flock, Fireball Roberts, and Lee Petty raced around in Big Three production cars with the only NASCAR safety requirement being a roll over bar. Other than fixing the doors so they would not fly open during the race, which was done with two I-bolts and a chain strung between the doors, Truelove raced this red rocket with everything intact from the factory—including turn signals. Truelove actually raced on the beach the year before.
Excerpt from
http://stockcarracing.com/featuredvehicles/43258/

Russ Truelove "getting ready" for the beach race in 1956. In the background is John Holman, of Holman and Moody Ford fame.

Below, Russ joined by author Greg Fielden and The Speed Zone webmistress Andre' Morrison with the #226 Mercury in the background during Speedweeks 2000. Truelove qualified 5th fastest in the 76-car field for the 1956 Grand National event, but a crash ended his bid for victory. Check out Greg's site: http://members.tripod.com/~SpeedZone70/index.html 


 

 

 

 


Long time cheif NASCAR scorer Joe Epton, Russ Truelove, legendary car builder Ray Fox and Don Ruhff with $5000 Living Legends of Auto Racing Club check for charity.
 

 

 

 

Grand National Statistics   - Russ Truelove

Year

Races

Win

T5

T10

Pole

Laps

Led

Earnings

Rank

AvSt

AvFn

RAF

1953

1 of 37

0

0

1

0

0

0

75

86

 

9.0

0

1955

6 of 45

0

0

2

0

738

0

585

 

19.7

15.5

4

1956

5 of 56

0

0

2

0

521

0

450

60

17.8

25.0

2

1957

1 of 53

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

189

35.0

55.0

0

4 yrs

13

0

0

5

0

     1259

0

1,110

 

20.4

21.7

 


Nascar Nextel Cup Series Tickets




   Copyright © 2003 LegendsofNascar.com by Roland Via. All rights reserved.  Revised: 06/08/12 08:11:31 -0400. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works. FAIR USE NOTICE: This web page may contain copyrighted material whose use has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. This page is operated under the assumption that this use on the Web constitutes a 'fair use' of the copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. Any text or images that you feel need to be removed please contact me. LegendsofNascar.com is not associated or affiliated with any racing club or organizations including that of NASCAR. It is constructed simply as an internet information source. Images and content made be used with email permission. Opinions and other content are not necessarily those of editors, sponsors.
Please visit official NASCAR information website at NASCAR.COM.