Host of the Second Annual Cheetah Reunion
In the early 1950's, sports car races were being run on the streets in and around Elkhart Lake. When the state legislature banned racing on public roads, a man named Clif Tufte organized a group of influential local citizens and leaders of the of the Chicago Region of the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA). This group developed plans and sold stock to build a permanent racecourse. The overall vision of Road America grew out of the dreams of Tufte, a highway engineer, who chose 525 acres of Wisconsin farmland outside the Village of Elkhart Lake for the track.
Bringing the Cheetah to Elkhart Lake
The first professional race weekend was the August 1956 NASCAR Grand National race. At the time NASCAR was just a regional southern series and not widely popular. Well under 10,000 spectators attended the two-day event. On Saturday Paul Goldsmith won in a Jaguar Mk., VII sedan with a winning speed of 59.2 mph. The Sunday race was run in the rain and was a display of spinouts and hay bale bashing. The day’s winner was Tim Flock in a Mercury at a speed of 71.4 mph.