OldDuckRacing.com is here to take you into the world of Swamp Buggy Racing!
"Swamp" buggies were created, out of necessity, by hunters and fishermen as a way to travel and hunt the "swampy" land(s) of Collier County and the Everglades.
So how did swamp buggy racing come into play? The way the story goes... just before the opening of hunting season, hunters would get to work preparing their buggies for the upcoming season and the difficult workout they were about to experience in the swamps. Many of the hunters would share tips (regarding their buggies) with one another and it didn't take long for one hunter to challenge another in a race of their swamp buggies in a muddy potato patch. The first races happened around 1943 and the prize was "bragging rights". More hunters joined in on the racing event and eventually the prizes became more "substantial"...usually a new shotgun or a turkey. Fred Oliver raced his buggy back in November of 1955, won his class and received a Coleman lantern and camping stove. (You can read more about Fred and his buggy and see some great pictures by visiting The "Fan" Belt.)
The first "Official" Swamp Buggy Races were held in 1949 along with the annual Swamp Buggy Parade. "Swamp Buggy Days" was born.
Prizes again changed...this time to engraved trophies and cash prizes. Many other traditions came into play as well, one of those being the Swamp Buggy Queen's Mud Bath which became an annual event beginning in 1957.
To read more on the
history of Swamp Buggy racing, click here.
Another interesting article on the history of Swamp Buggies can be viewed by clicking here. (Sorry... this is an external link and the hosting site is not providing this link, at this time)
Click "What It's Like" to read a racing experience, through Beth's eyes.