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Joie chitwood

The meaning of «joie chitwood»

George Rice Chitwood (April 14, 1912 – January 3, 1988), nicknamed "Joie", was an American racecar driver and businessman. He is best known as a daredevil in the Joie Chitwood Thrill Show.

Chitwood was born in Denison, Texas; he was of Cherokee Indian ancestry. He was orphaned as a 14-year-old and he ended school after 8th grade.[1] He lived in the Dust Bowl-era at Topeka, Kansas and was seeking employment during the Great Depression.[1] His main job was a shoe shiner and he was a candy butcher at a burlesque show to earn more money.[1] He started learning a trade by helping at a welding shop.[1]

He was dubbed "Joie" during his racing career after a newspaper reporter mis-took and misspelled his name in an article. The writer confused St. Joe, Missouri (where Chitwood's race car was built) with "George", and when it was typeset, added an "i" by mistake to spell "Joie." The nickname stuck for life.[2]

Chitwood built his first racecar from an Essex and drove the car after the driver didn't show up; he finished second.[1] He started his racecar driving career in 1934 at a dirt track in Winfield, Kansas.[3] From there, he began racing sprint cars. In 1937 and 1938, he finished second in the Central States Racing Association (CSRA).[4] In 1939 and 1940 he switch to a different circuit and won the AAA East Coast Sprint car championship.[3] He switched back to the CSRA and won its title in 1942.[4] He won 14 consecutive CSRA features that season.[3] Between 1940 and 1950 he competed at the Indianapolis 500 seven times, finishing fifth on three occasions.[4] He was the first man ever to wear a safety belt at the 1941 Indianapolis 500.[3] Chitwood took the belt out of his dirt car because he liked how he was jostled around less and would help keep his foot on the throttle.[3] Chitwood promised AAA officials Rex Mays and Wilbur Shaw that he would release the belt in the event of a crash because drivers thought that it was safer to be thrown from the car.[3] He won six major sprint car races in 1946.[4] Chitwood won nine AAA East Coast features in 1947, including the first race at Williams Grove Speedway.[4] He retired from racing in 1950.[3]

In 1942, stuntman Earl "Lucky" Teter died and Chitwood took over his show after being asked by his widow to sell Teter's equipment.[4] Chitwood was unable to find a buyer during World War II.[1] Chitwood was deemed 4-F so he taught welding at factories.[1] He began to operate the "Joie Chitwood Thrill Show."[1] The show was an exhibition of auto stunt driving that became so successful he cut back significantly in racing.[4] Often called "Hell Drivers," he had five units that for more than forty years toured across North America thrilling audiences in large and small towns alike with their death-defying automobile stunts. Chitwood performed a ramp-to-ramp jump with a car that was devised by Teter.[1] Chitwood and his son Joie Jr. perfected driving a car on two wheels.[1]

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