Contact: Ron Hedger at 518-885-7481 or rjhmedia@juno.com

Saratoga Springs, NY    

The Saratoga Automobile Museum's wildly popular "Lost Speedways" auto racing program, long a "Saturday after Thanksgiving" tradition for area fans and racers, is set to "go green" once again. And for the 2015 edition, on Saturday, November 28th, a common complaint has been addressed.           

"The only complaint I ever get is that people get hungry," said organizer Ron Hedger. "They come to the museum when we open at mid-morning, peruse the memorabilia displays, look at the exhibits in all the galleries and then enjoy the afternoon presentations, all without lunch. To address this issue, we have engaged the good people at Bravo's Catering to provide a light buffet menu of pizza, pasta, bread and soft drinks."

The "Lost Speedways 2015" program will include Mark Supley's look at board track motorcycle racing, Ken Perrotte's memories of the Fulton Speedway when it was known as the MilRay Speedway, and Greg Rickes' tales of sports cars racing in the streets of Alexandria Bay. John Snyder will relate the story of the Orange County Fairgrounds early years, when it was known as Victory Speedway, while Bill Ladabouche will recall the days when New Yorkers like Pete Corey and Kenny Shoemaker dominated Vermont's Otter Creek Speedway. And to close out the program, DIRT modified star Kenny Tremont and Oswego supermodified star Otto Sitterly will discuss their outstanding careers and recent developments in their areas of racing during Ron Hedger's traditional interview session.          

Museum visitors will also enjoy viewing additions to the Racing in New York Gallery, including a Jaguar driven by sports car legend John Fitch and a Richard Petty Pontiac recently donated to SAM by longtime racer Roger Griffith, as well as the newly opened "Real Steel - Stories of Automotive Archeology" exhibit in the Golub Gallery.        

The Saratoga Automobile Museum opens at 10 am, with the Lost Speedways memorabilia display set for 11:30 and the presentations scheduled to begin at 12:45.


An elementary school teacher in Niskayuna by day, nights and weekends have seen John Grady at speedways near and far for decades, always with his camera on a strap around his neck and a big envelope of snapshots from prior weeks under his arm.

At one time or another, John was the official track photographer at all the speedways in the area, sending photos to the trade papers and selling snapshots at the souvenir booth. And for a number of years, he also wrote a racing column for the Daily Gazette in Schenectady. But his greatest contribution to the sport was providing a source for “old” photos, both for journalists and collectors, along with names and anecdotes stored away in his photographic memory.

John Grady is best known for his shots of drivers either standing beside their car or strapped in, ready to go to war. All you had to know about a driver of the past is what car number he drove. John, and in later years his son Chris and friend Bob Novak, could go into the bins of photos, filed consecutively by number, and pull out the photo you wanted. The cost was minimal and the story that went with it was a no-charge bonus.

We’re proud to share enlargements of some of John’s favorite photos with you. Our only regret is that this mini-exhibit, limited by available space, represents less than one percent of the photos he’s taken over the years.


Many experienced drivers will tell you they “can drive anything.” But put them in one of Henry Ford’s Model T’s, the car that changed the world and most won’t have a clue what the various levers and pedals are for.

This mystery will be solved on Sunday, November 22nd when SAM and the Capital District Model T Club join forces to present their first “Model T School” at the museum, located on the Avenue of the Pines in the Saratoga Spa State Park. Club members will have several Model T’s on hand for what SAM Education Director Seth Warden calls “a 100% hands-on program.”

“We have 20 seats available for the program,” said Warden. “Participants will develop the skills, dexterity and, most importantly, the confidence required to be comfortable driving a Model T on the highway.

“We’ve had requests before for instruction on driving Model T’s, which are entirely different from other cars. Our new exhibit, “Real Steel,” features a pair of vintage Model T’s, and the club members are enthused about sharing their knowledge, so this is the perfect time to run this program. Licensed drivers of all ages are welcome and the only pre-requisite is bringing warm clothing for the road sessions.”

Model T School –Course Outline

  • Becoming familiar with a Model T

  • Starting the vehicle

  • Use of spark and throttle control levers

  • Coordination of hand and foot controls

  • Proper shifting techniques

  • Stopping the vehicle

  • Correct use of the Neutral / Brake lever

  • Reversing the vehicle

Sign up here: https://saratogaauto.z2systems.com/np/clients/saratogaauto/eventRegistration.jsp?event=46&


Saratoga Springs, NY     When the new “Real Steel – Stories of Automotive Archaelogy” exhibit opens on November 14th at the Saratoga Automobile Museum, both of the museum’s galleries will be filled with vehicles from the collection of Connecticut businessman and automobile enthusiast Kevin Biebel. And as an “added attraction,” the museum’s art gallery will also feature a new exhibit showcasing a variety of paintings by nationally known artist Stu Eichel.

“We’re blessed that an artist like Stu has settled in Saratoga Springs and is willing to share his work with us,” said SAM art director Brandon Salls. “This will be his second showcase here and it will feature 29 new pieces, all ‘something that rolls’ including cars, trucks, motorcycles, tractors, firetrucks and more.”

A graduate of New York’s Pratt Institute with a degree in graphic design and the University of Tennessee with a fine arts degree, Eichel has produced works for such diverse customers as the John Deere Corporation and McGraw-Hill while winning major awards at competitions in New York, Tennessee and St. Simons Island, GA.

Eichel, who moved to Saratoga Springs after living in a number of places around the nation, professes a love for the region that finds him “outside painting the scenes that have caught my eye any time the temperature is over 50 degrees.” So besides enjoying his artwork, visitors to the Saratoga Automobile Museum may well see familiar places and vehicles as they peruse Eichel’s gallery display.

“Real Steel” will open to the public at 10 am on Saturday, November 14, 2015 following a formal opening for members and other interested parties at 6 pm on November 13. 

Contact:   Brandon Salls, Saratoga Automobile Museum Art Director – 518-587-1935 or Brandon.salls@saratogaautomuseum.org


The Saratoga Automobile Museum, known nationwide for presenting unusual exhibits, has outdone itself with the upcoming presentation of “The Kevin Biebel Collection – Real Steel: Stories of Automotive Archaeology.”

Biebel, a Connecticut businessman who has displayed a lifelong fascination with all things mechanical, is a collector of memorabilia as well as unusual automobiles, thus the “Automotive Archaelogy” segment of the exhibit title. So along with cars ranging from a 1907 Success and 1908 Sears to his 1960’s Kent Fuller dragster and 1932 Plymouth roadster that came from the factory with a special Princeton University paint job, Biebel has accumulated untold interesting items that chronicle the development of the automobile.

“A visit to the Biebel’s home, garages or manufacturing facility is like walking through the warehouses of the Smithsonian,” said exhibit curator Ron Hedger. “Original artwork here, vintage advertisements there, dozens of vehicles on racks awaiting restoration, the original model and patent drawings for turn signals on a bookcase. Neither Kevin nor visitors can proceed from one point to another without stopping repeatedly to investigate unusual items.”

Kevin and Yvonne Biebel, who became interested in the Saratoga Automobile Museum through participation in its various auto shows and concours d’elegance, have graciously agreed to share many of these unseen items with the public in the new exhibit, which will open with a formal ceremony at 6 pm on Friday, November 13th and to the general public the following day. Tickets for the opening, at $10 for members and $20 for non-members, are currently available online or at the museum admissions desk.

Biebel will share stories of his collection during the event, including how the Sears, originally purchased from the Sears Catalogue, made its way to the longstanding Bridgewater, NY Automobile Museum and on to his collection. A number of his vehicles are national award winners and have been displayed individually at the ACCA Museum in Hershey, PA. They range from barn finds to restored beauties and include a motorcycle that spent decades inside the wall of a house before being discovered. Enthusiasts can expect to hear this story and more at the opening event.

The Biebel’s have also provided a number of go-karts for a mini-exhibit on the history of the toys turned racing machines and will collaborate with the museum’s educational program by donating a vintage TQ-midget race car for an upcoming student restoration project.

Details on the opening event, other exhibits and SAM’s ongoing educational programs, including the nationally heralded Distracted Driving program featuring state-of-the-art driving simulators, are available online atwww.saratogaautomuseum.org.


Contact: Ron Hedger – 518-885-7481

Saratoga Springs, NY     Two of the nation’s top short track racers, DIRTcar modified star Kenny Tremont Jr. and Supermodified kingpin Otto Sitterly, have agreed to join the already exciting cast of the Saratoga Automobile Museum’s premier racing program, Lost Speedways. The program is set for its traditional “Saturday after Thanksgiving” date, November 28th.

Tremont, the 2015 point champion at the Albany-Saratoga Speedway, is hot off a second place finish in the final Syracuse 200. He will join Sitterly, the leading winner at the super-competitive Oswego Speedway over the last decade, to discuss their enviable careers in the program’s closing segment.

“Last year I interviewed asphalt superstars Reggie Ruggiero and Brian Ross and it was a huge hit,” said event organizer Ron Hedger. “The audience really got into it when they had the opportunity to ask their own questions. Kenny and Otto represent different types of racing, but have known each other since they both competed at the nearby Albany-Saratoga Speedway, so it’s a perfect combination. Besides being great racers, they are also fan favorites.”

The other presentations will include Board Track Motorcycle Racing by Mark Supley, a look back at sports car racing on the streets of Alexandria Bay with Greg Rickes and the early days of Mil-Ray Speedway in Fulton by Ken Parrotte. In addition, John Snyder will recall Victory Speedway at the Orange County Fairgrounds and Bill Ladabouche will talk about the New Yorkers who dominated Vermont’s Otter Creek Speedway back in the day.

Lost Speedways will also feature the traditional memorabilia session, with enthusiasts bringing their treasures to share. The museum displays various items from the collections room, with the emphasis this year on the history of the Syracuse Mile. Participants are asked to have their items ready for display by 11:30 am, with the presentations set to go green at 12:45.

The event, which draws a full house each fall, is free to members, with others paying the normal admission charge. More information on the Saratoga Automobile Museum, located on the Avenue of the Pines in the Saratoga Spa State Park

Kenny Tremont Jr

Kenny Tremont Jr

Otto Sitterly

Otto Sitterly


Bob Bailey, a founding trustee of the Saratoga Automobile Museum whose leadership skills, business acumen and dedication to the museum's primary mission of education have been key factors in the museum's success, was honored in late September with the nationally recognized Lee Iacocca Award. 

The award was presented by Hemmings Motor News publisher Jim Menetto at a banquet held in conjunction with the annual Hemmings Motor News Concours d'Elegance, a joint effort of the Vermont based automotive publisher and the Saratoga Automobile Museum.

Legendary auto industry executive Lee Iacocca is the namesake for this very special award honoring a person who, over time, has demonstrated an extraordinary dedication to the classic car hobby through vehicle preservation and club participation and who has unselfishly assisted and encouraged others in perpetuating an "American Automotive Tradition." The award is linked with the Iacocca Family Foundation, whose mission it is to find a cure for diabetes. This is especially fitting because, like Lee Iacocca's dedication to the Foundation's mission, these car enthusiasts are committed to serving their communities.

Iacocca is known to the public for a variety of reasons, as he was the "father" of the Ford Mustang and the Chrysler Minivan and the bold leader who saved Chrysler and paid back a loan from the federal government in full and ahead of schedule. He also led the effort to raise funds for the preservation of Ellis Island as a memorial to our country's immigrants and was a champion of the restoration of the Statue of Liberty.

Bailey, a very successful sports car racer in his own right, is chairman of Racemark, which he founded with the late Mark Donahue, an internationally known driving star and Indianapolis 500 winner. Under Bailey's direction, the company, which produces OEM automotive floor mats and interiors, has grown from a small operation in Burnt Hill, NY to an international manufacturer with facilities in the United States, Hungary and Switzerland.

"I was humbled and honored to receive this most prestigious award,

especially since it benefits such a worthy cause, the National Diabetes Foundation," reflected Bailey. "And to receive it in front of our museum trustees and members, the Hemmings staff and the enthusiasts who made the concours such a great success made it even more special."

The prestigious award was presented to deserving recipients at some two dozen major automotive events across the nation this year, with the list of honorees spanning the automotive spectrum. Notable past recipients include auction organizer David Gooding, Mustang and Chrysler mini-van designer Hal Sperlich, racing legends Al Unser, Sam Posey and Don Garlits and journalist Denise McCluggage.

Dino Petrocelli to Exhibit at SAM

Dino Petrocelli to Exhibit at SAM

A new exhibit highlighting the work of highly regarded automotive photographer Dino Petrocelli will be installed in the Rosner Gallery of the Saratoga Automobile Museum on Saturday, November 29, 2014. The opening will coincide with the museum’s wildly popular Lost Speedways auto racing program, with the photographs scheduled to remain on display through the winter season.

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Tesla owners get a free charge at the Saratoga Automobile Museum

Tesla owners get a free charge at the Saratoga Automobile Museum

The installation was supported by Tesla Motors, manufacturer of the wildly popular electric vehicles that have changed the image of electric vehicle use in America. A recent Tesla test drive and information program at SAM attracted so many interested consumers that a follow-up drive event has been scheduled for Saturday, October 18th and Sunday, October 19th.

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Lost Speedways 2014

Lost Speedways 2014

The 2014 edition of the extremely popular Lost Speedways program, set for Saturday, November 29that the Saratoga Automobile Museum, will feature a mix of both familiar and new presenters. The most recent to sign on was longtime NASCAR modified star Reggie Ruggiero, who will join fellow driver Brian Ross for “NASCAR Modifieds – Heroes and Speedways.”

The duo will look back on careers that ran from the period when every race counted towards the national modified championship into the current Tour format and saw them compete against and beat such superstars as Richie Evans, Jimmy Spencer and Mike Stefanik.

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Saratoga Wine & Food Festival and Concours d'Elegance

Saratoga Wine & Food Festival and Concours d'Elegance

The Saratoga Automobile Museum is partnering again this year with the Saratoga Performing Arts Center on The Saratoga Wine & Food Festival. Featuring over 250 premiere wine and food exhibitors,  one-of-a kind seminars, and spectacular collector cars, this three-day destination event draws an audience of close to 6,000 from Montreal to Northern New Jersey and is quickly becoming known as the most original and exciting Wine and Food Festival north of New York City.

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2 New Cars Join Racing in New York Exhibit

2 New Cars Join Racing in New York Exhibit

Saratoga Springs, NY     A pair of radically different modifieds wheeled by star drivers who grew up together in, of all places, the tiny Adirondack mountain village of Saranac Lake, NY are now on display at the Saratoga Automobile Museum.

“Sometimes things come together perfectly,” offered “Racing in New York” curator Ron Hedger. “I invited Wes Moody to speak at last fall’s ‘Lost Speedways’ program and he was excited about his recently rebuilt #63 coupe, which he immediately offered for display once he saw our racing gallery.

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