Antique Auto Advertising: Thrill Driver’s Choice – Joie Chitwood for Chevrolet

Long before Ken Block, Tanner Foust and Evel Knieval did their first drifts, loops and jumps, there were car daredevil and thrill shows that toured the country, playing state fairs and the like. They were a big enough deal that the better known teams had corporate sponsors. The 1964 New York World’s Fair had a dedicated stadium for the Hell Drivers’ show, which prominently used Dodge vehicles. Joie Chitwood was perhaps the most famous of the stunt show promoters, and he (and his sons after him) exclusively used Chevys in their thrill shows. In this promotional film made by the Jam Handy Organization, Chitwood extols the virtues of the 1956 Chevrolet. Chitwood, who also did stunt driving for the motion picture industry, including working on at least one James Bond film, was a competent race driver. He had three top 5 finishes at the Indy 500 and also is one of the few American drivers to have earned points in Formula One racing, competing in the 1950 F1 season in an Offy powered Kurtis Kraft.

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