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Ever notice the follow cars at big races? Each will have a sticker on the windshield that identifies it as part of the race. No window sticker means your car is not allowed on the course. It’s the little things I suppose, but before there were window stickers there were car plaques that were fixed to the bumper of the car (like the car, at right, from the 1959 Vuelta), and prior to that identifying flags were attached and flown near the wheel wells of the follow cars. As to the plaques, the halcyon days were the 1950s and 1960s. Unlike today’s disposable stickers, the ones of the post-war period were often made of metal or wood. Because of their durability, some these wonderful relics of racing days gone by survived for future generations to enjoy. My wife and I became intrigued by car plaques about twenty years ago and always keep an eye for them. We were lucky to get while the getting was good. Like many desirable items, with the passage of time, the car plaques are becoming more difficult to track down. A perfect addition to the walls of any cycling fan’s house!
From issue 23. Buy it here.