Though the popularity of vintage motorsports has never been greater, events like Millers at the Mile meet, hosted by the Harry A. Miller Club, can still provide an intimate experience.
About 50 cars from the front-engined era of Indy, Sprint and Midget racing gathered last week to take on the historic Milwaukee Mile in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the world’s longest continually operating racing oval. It has hosted at least one race every year since 1903, though the last professional event was held in 2015.
Sunday’s event featured welcome scattered clouds, a pleasant breeze and lighter crowds than the previous day. The event had the feel of an exclusive club outing, affording unencumbered access to the paddock and ample seat time for both drivers and lucky passengers around the slightly banked oval.
The annual event always manages to surprise with rare examples of pre-war competition cars such as an early Mercer, Stutz Roadster or trio of early Bugattis and this year was no different.
Though the event is not limited to the revolutionary race cars produced by Menomonie, Wisconsin native Harry Arminius Miller, special emphasis is certainly placed on them. Considered by many the most influential American race car designer, Miller’s engines and cars dominated championship racing during the 1920s and 1930s, winning 38 Indianapolis 500 races.
Also present were cars from the 1950s and 1960s era from constructors such as A.J. Watson (Watson Roadster) and Frank Kurtis (Kurtis Kraft).
The Miller Club was founded by the late sports car enthusiast David V. Uihlein, Sr. in 1995. Fellow enthusiasts, along with Mr. Uihlein’s former assistant, Lenore Heinzelmann, carry the torch forward today and keep the evocative sounds of Indy Car racing’s golden years echoing off the walls of the historic oval racetrack.