Grand Prix History in Scale Models

1963, Dirt Champ Car, Don Branson, GMP, IndyCar, Watson

1965 Watson – Offenhauser (Wynn’s Special) Dirt Champ Car Branson

Don Branson was born in 1920 and started racing midgets just after the World War in 1946. He works for 13 years as truck driver, and when raced, in the off-season pumped gas and drove taxi-cabs. In 1952 Branson moved to International Motor Contest Association (IMCA) big cars. In 1952 – 1954 he won 5 IMCA races and finished 8th in 1952 and 10th in 1954 overall IMCA points, as well as 5th in the National Speedways circuit points both in 1952 and 1954. In 1956 Branson switched to USAC starting in all 3 national series – Midget Championship, sprint cars and USAC big cars National Championship. He scored 15 wins in the National Midget Championship in 1957 – 66. Branson won the 1959 USAC Midwest Sprint Car series, was runner-up in both 1960 Midwest and East regional standings in 1960, and took the 1964 USAC Sprint Car  Championship. In USAC sprint cars Branson won 15 events in the regional Midwest and East series in 1957 – 1960, and 13 events in 1962 – 1966 in united National Championship. He debuted in USAC big cars National Championship in 1957, competed in 128 USAC Championship events, winning six. His best position in the Championship was 3rd in 1960. He was killed in 1966 in a crash at a sprint car race at Ascot Park in Gardena, California, along with fellow driver Dick Atkins. 1966 was to be his last year of competition, and the fatal crash occurred with only a few races left in the season for the USAC series.

In the 1965 USAC National Championship Don Branson raced with Wynn’s Special Watson-Offy car owned by Bob Wilke. The car was built by A.J. Watson, mechanic who ran his tiny repair shop and racing car building garage in Glendale, California. Watson-built roadsters won Indianapolis 500 six times between 1956 and 1964. Watson also built big dirt cars, as well as sprint cars (one of them won the 1960 Midwest championship with A.J. Foyt driving). In 1965 Branson in Watson-Offy won  three Championship races – on paved oval at Phoenix and on dirt tracks in Du Quoin and Sacramento. He took the 4th position in the final Championship points standing.

1965USAC National Championship
Driver No.Entrant
Don Branson4Rob Wilke
ChassisEngineCar Name
WatsonOffenhauserWynn’s Special
Scale ManufacturerCollection
1:43GMPLimited Edition 1:43 Wynn’s Special 3 Car Set
Cat. No.QualityRarity
1272 out of 1500 pcs. Limited Edition

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