Last week I noted that three brothers produced more supercharged cars in the 30’s than all other American manufacturers combined. I asked what were their names? Joseph B., Robert C., and Ray A. Graham began in 1919 to produce kits to modify Ford Model Ts and TTs into trucks. That led to the brothers building their trucks using engines of various manufacturers and the Graham Brothers brand. Eventually they settled on Dodge engines, and soon the trucks were sold by Dodge dealers. The Grahams expanded from beginnings in Evansville, Indiana, opening plants in 1922 on Meldrum Avenue in Detroit, Michigan of 13,000 square feet (1,200 m2), and in 1925 on Cherokee Lane in Stockton, California. The Canadian market was supplied by the Canadian Dodge plant. Dodge purchased the Graham Brothers truck firm in 1925, and the three Graham brothers took on executive positions at Dodge. As you can see, the motor industry has been incestuous for many years.
So to this week. Who was this? First he raced motorcycles and then he concentrated on sports cars and single-seaters. His nickname was ‘Nivola’. His victories – 72 major races, 150 in all included 24 Grands Prix, five Coppa Cianos, two Mille Miglias, two Targa Florios, two RAC Tourist Trophies, a Le Mans 24-hour race, and a European Championship in Grand Prix racing. Ferdinand Porsche called him “the greatest driver of the past, the present, and the future.”