Updated: Feb 9
Art Gerrick began building this single seat Model T Roadster in 1936. His objective was to build the best 4-cylinder Salt Lake racer with the goal to keep it lightweight and very nimble to drive. When stricter SCTA safety rules put an end to Gerrick’s racing at dry lakes, he started running hill climb events in Long Beach and raced there until the late 1960’s.
Like many of our Hot Rod forefathers, he built the car from parts he could find around. It absolutely paid off, as the car turned out to be the benchmark for racers and builders to come. It even earned a feature spot in Hot Rod Magazine in May of 1951.
Gerrick started with frame rails from a ’24 Olds, kicked up the rear section, and topped it with a 1927 T roadster body narrowed by 10 inches. The beautiful windshield was hand formed plexiglass that he drew over a mold with an acetylene torch to achieve the look and shape he was going for. The front axle was a close ratio steering box from a 1920’s Franklin car.
The heart of this beauty came from a 1924 Model T that he bored, then outfitted with high compression pistons, early Model-B crank, Model-A rods, Winfield cam, Pierce Arrow dual ignition, and Rajo Model BB-R head with eight spark plugs. The end result was an extremely lightweight, compact and powerful machine.
This beautiful car still exists and resides at the Museum of American Speed in Lincoln, Nebraska. While the roadster is still with us, Gerrick is no longer. As with all racers who have passed on, we wish him the fastest runs, across endless vistas of dry lakes and hills wherever he may be now.