Welcome to 365 Days of Motoring

An Everyday Journey Through Motoring History, Facts & Trivia

Belt up and enjoy this 365-day ride as you cruise past the most momentous motoring events in history. Packed with fascinating facts about races, motorists and the history of the mighty engine, this is a must-visit web site for any car enthusiast.

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On This Day


26th January

1891

131 years ago

Inventor of the first internal combustion engine to efficiently burn fuel directly in a piston chamber, Nikolas Otto (58), died. Although in 1861 Ailphonse Beau de Rochas had invented and patented the concept of four strokes, with the vital compression of the mixture before ignition, Otto was the first to make it practical.

Nikolas Otto

Nikolas Otto

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1899

123 years ago

The Paris – Rouen – Paris (Perigold Cup) race was won by Leonce Girardot driving a Panhard 6hp in a time of 4 hours 26 minutes 0 seconds.

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1906

116 years ago

An American mechanic in the seat of a steam-powered automobile set a land speed record of 127.66 mph. Fred Marriott’s milestone was not beat until four years later, when a Blitzen Benz used a gasoline engine to reach 141. Continue Reading →

Fred Marriott in his Stanley Steamer

Fred Marriott in his Stanley Steamer

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1917

105 years ago

The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company Ltd (Java) was established in Buitzenzorg, West Java, Dutch Indies (now Bogor, Indonesia).

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1919

103 years ago

Roscoe Sarles drove a Miller-powered Roamer to victory at Ascot Speedway in Los Angeles, California, US.

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1925

97 years ago

General Motors subsidiary in Brazil was inaugurated.

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1947

75 years ago

Red Byron captured the inaugural National Championship Stock Car Circuit event, billed as the "Battle of the Champions," on the Beach-Road course at Daytona. In 1948, Byron became a part of the newly formed NASCAR Modified Series racing with Raymond Parks' team. In 1949, Byron began racing in NASCAR's newly formed Strictly Stock series, which became the Grand National series, Winston Cup, and the modern-day Sprint Cup series. Continue Reading →

Red Bryon

Red Bryon

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1958

64 years ago

Ferrari and Porsche were the only European teams on hand for the "Argentine 1000 Kilometers", the first World Sports Car Championship race run under 3.0 litre regulations and opening round of the 1958 campaign. The Ferrari of Peter Collins and Phil Hill led from start to finish. Continue Reading →

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1960

62 years ago

Fifty-five electricians went on strike at BMC (British Motor Corporation), which eventually led to 31,000 workers being idle in Birmingham, Coventry and Oxford. Only one model of car remained in production, and by the time the strike was over BMC reported a loss of 25,000 vehicles and £12 million turnover.

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1962

60 years ago

Gene Hartley, driving the George Hopkins Offy, won the 50 lap USAC Midget race at the indoor Cincinnati Gardens, Cincinnati , Ohio, US. Billy Woods was second followed by Johnny White, Nick Wilhelm and Chuck Rodee.

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1964

58 years ago

Don Branson won the first 50 mile USAC Sprint Car race on 1 mile dirt oval Arizona State Fairgrounds, Phoenix, Arizona, US. A.J. Foyt was second followed by Chuck Hulse, Jim McElreath and Gordon Woolley.

Don Branson

Don Branson

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1974

48 years ago

Cale Yarborough won the the rain postponed NASCAR Grand National "Western 500" at Riverside International Raceway, the opening round of the 1974 season. The race began on the 20 January, with 63 of 191 laps run before a downpour hit the track (Yarborough reported snow flurries on the backstretch). Rain persisted, and officials elected to complete the race the next Saturday. Continue Reading →

Cale Yarborough

Cale Yarborough

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1975

47 years ago

The Brazilian Grand Prix was run at Interlagos and Carlos Pace took the top honors, the circuit was to be later named after Pace. He and his Brabham won in 1:44:41. after qualifying in the 6th spot. Continue Reading →

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1979

43 years ago

The Dukes of Hazzard, a prime-time CBS television action/comedy show, was aired for the first time. The show starred John Schneider and Tom Wopat as cousins Bo and Luke Duke, who tangled with the crooked law-enforcement officers of Hazzard County with a little help from their cousin Daisy and Uncle Jesse. However, the real star of the show was their car, The General Lee, a 1969 Dodge Charger with a bright orange paint job and a Confederate flag on its roof.

General Lee (Dodge Charger)

General Lee (Dodge Charger)

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1981

41 years ago

UK Industry Secretary Keith Joseph announced an extra £990 million state aid for British Ley Leyland

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1985

37 years ago

William David Ormsby-Gore, 5th Baron Harlech KCMG PC known as David Ormsby-Gore until 1964, a British diplomat Conservative Party politician, died in a car crash at Montford Bridge near Shrewsbury in 1985, aged 66.

William David Ormsby-Gore

William David Ormsby-Gore

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1990

32 years ago

Frederick Roberts "Bob" Gerard (76) passed away. Bespectacled Leicester (England) garage owner Bob Gerard was one of the dogged British Formula 1 privateers who began racing in a Riley in 1933 but did not make his name until the immediate postwar era with a private ERA. He won the Ulster Trophy in 1947 and the British Empire Trophy on the Isle of Man on three occasions. Continue Reading →

Bob Gerard

Bob Gerard

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1996

26 years ago

Lincoln Mercury announced that production of the Lincoln Mark VIII luxury coupe would cease in June 1998.

Lincoln Mark VIII

Lincoln Mark VIII

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1996

26 years ago

The three-turn tri-oval 1mile (1.6 km) Walt Disney Track, Florida, US hosted its first car race, a Formula Ford 2000 support race, followed the next day with the Indy Racing League's Indy 200 car race.

Rene Arnoux - 1983 German Grand Prix

Rene Arnoux - 1983 German Grand Prix

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2000

22 years ago

Ford reported record earnings of $7.2 billion in 1999, more than any other automotive company in history.

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2003

19 years ago

Eddie Leavitt, sprint car driver from the 1970's & 80', died. He was inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 2001 and was in the Knoxville Raceway Hall of Fame. He was a two-time (1975 & 1976) National Sprint Car Champion.

Eddie Leavitt

Eddie Leavitt

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2003

19 years ago

Billy Joel was airlifted to hospital after his car smashed into a tree. The singer lost control of his Mercedes S500 and skidded for 100 yards before crashing. The accident happened in The Hamptons, New York.

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2007

15 years ago

Malaysian news announced that Volkswagen AG had signed an agreement to buy a 51% stake in Proton (company) Auto Division.

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2007

15 years ago

In Germany Peter Hartz, Volkswagen human resources executive, was fined $750,000 and given a 2-year suspended sentence after he pleaded guilty to funding an account that provided special travel perks for employees.

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2010

12 years ago

General Motors agreed to sell Saab, its Swedish subsidiary, to Spyker Cars, a Dutch maker of sports cars, for $74 million in cash and shares worth $326 million.

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2010

12 years ago

Toyota Motor Corp. halted sales of some of its top-selling models to fix gas pedals that could stick and cause unintended acceleration. Last week, Toyota issued a recall for the same eight models affecting 2. Continue Reading →

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2010

12 years ago

Jeff Mathews won the opening round of the 11th annual Open Wheel Modified Winternationals Championship Stock Car race at the East Bay Raceway Park, Tampa, Florida, US. Dave Hess Jr. was second followed by Stormy Scott, Perry Brown and Kevin Weaver.

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2014

8 years ago

Tata Motors Managing Director Karl Slym was found dead. He fell from the 22nd floor to the fourth floor of the Shangri-La Hotel in Bangkok, where he was attending a meeting of Tata Motors Thailand.

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