Gentlemen, start your engines; history roars to life at Wildwood race [photos]

    The fourth annual Race of Gentlemen returned to the New Jersey beach town to celebrate American automotive history and pack as much horsepower as possible into the shells of pre-World War II vehicles.

    It’s the one weekend when it’s legal to drive on the beach in Wildwood. That is, if you’re driving a vintage car or motorcycle that has been converted into a machine built for racing.

    The fourth annual Race of Gentlemen returned to the New Jersey beach town to celebrate American automotive history and pack as much horsepower as possible into the shells of pre-World War II vehicles.

    Competitors raced each other in one-on-one heats behind the wheel of old Fords, Dodges and Chevys or atop Harley Davidsons and Indian motorcycles.

    After a postponement due to the threat of Hurricane Joaquin last weekend, competitors had a nearly perfect day to speed down a sandy beach at breakneck speed.

    Some of the gentlemen — and women — competing in the races traveled from across the country, though the majority hailed from the tristate area.

    Vintage car and motorcycle enthusiasts lined the beach, many standing on dunes for a better view, to watch the racers speed by the water’s edge and celebrate what the founders of the event call “a simpler time when guys were gentlemen and and cars were king.”

    The two days of racing concluded Sunday with a large bonfire on the beach and live music.

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