This ’57 Chevy 150, is one of six, factory backed racers built for the 1957 NASCAR Grand National Championship. Nicknamed the “Black Widows”, Chevy dominated NASCAR that year with their 283 powered 150’s.
The Black Widows debuted at the Daytona Speed Week race of 17 February 1957, driven by Johnny Beauchamp, Buck Baker, Speedy Thompson, Rex White, Frankie Schneider and Jack Smith. Beauchamp would finish second, behind Cotton Owens and his Pontiac. Jack Smith would drive this car to victory 2 weeks later at Concord, NC. That race would see the Black Widows sweep, with Baker in second and Thompson in third. Smith would take the checkered flag again at Columbia, South Carolina; Hickory, North Carolina, and North Wilkesboro, which would be enough for Smith to drive this Chevy 150 to fifth place in the NASCAR season championship standings.
The Black Widows’ success would lead to the Series fuel-injection ban, that would remain in effect for another 55 years.
“Specially built in Detroit and shipped by rail to SEDCO for final preparation, each car was equipped with the new 283/283 HP small-block V8 with Rochester mechanical fuel injection, Fenton headers, a column-shifted 3-speed manual transmission, heavy-duty 3.90:1 rear end, high-performance Hydrovac power brakes, 20-gallon fuel tank and six-lug wheels.” — Mecum Auction Website
I love, absolutely LOVE, the fact that these racers were column shifters!
This, Jack Smith driven ’57 Chevy “Black Widow”, is up for auction in Kissimmee, Florida, between January 6 – 15, 2017. It is expected to bring in $150K-$250K.
What a sweet piece of automobile history.
All photos and car statistics come courtesy of Mecum Auctions.