Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Streak: The Ninth Time, Out Of The Last 55 Times, That Clemson Lost A Basketball Game in Chapel Hill…

Palacio Chrsyler then.
They were still racing cars on the ROOF of this building…

The Streak: Game Nine, December 10, 1952 – North Carolina 65, Clemson 59.  

The not-yet-ready for prime time Tigers finished the year 8-10, and 6-8 in the Southern Conference.  They notched wins against Presbyterian, The Citadel (2), William and Mary, South Carolina and Furman among others.

North Carolina was 17-10 in new head coach Frank McGuire’s first year at the helm.  The Heels would finish 8th in a tough Southern Conference with a 15-6 record making it to the quarterfinals of the conference tournament.

In 1928, two years after The Streak began and five years after Chrysler's current part-owners Fiat inaugurated their stunning Lingotto plant with a rooftop racetrack, Chrysler's Argentine distributors opened a magnificent building to assemble, test, sell... and race cars on the roof of their Buenos Aires headquarters/factory .  

FIAT's Lingotto, the first assembly-line plant in Europe
Palacio Chrysler, as the building was called, was built by Argentine entrepreneur Julio Fevre, who had acquired the exclusive right to represent Chrysler in Argentina. The building was designed by Mario Palanti and occupied an entire city block in what was then a rather sparsely populated area.

Period photos show the building towering over townhouses and empty land. The column-lined facade housed an exhibition area, while the back and upper parts of the building were used for administrative offices, workshops, and storage areas.

Palacio Chrysler now.
But it was the upper deck that stole the show. Equipped with a test track of slightly over a mile long, it was used for testing cars and hosting Argentina’s  high society.  The infield spectator area could accommodate 3,000 people.

Alas, all good things must come to an end and operations ceased sometime near Game 9 of The Streak.  In 1990, the site was taken over by a development company who converted Palacio Chrysler into apartments and offices.  The racetrack on the roof was demolished and replaced by a fancy roof and an in-ground swimming pool.

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