The Bob Dye - Chip Miller 1957 Corvette Race Car
Everybody Loved Chip
Chip Miller purchased the Bob Dye race car from Frank Buck in 1992. Chip intended to vintage race the car, and had John DeGregory rebuild the FI unit in the Bob Dye race car in 1996. Ultimately, Chip decided to go in a different direction and decided to race modify and race his 1959 Corvette instead.
A binder of photographs and information accompany the Bob Dye race car. Several letters in the binder shed light on Chip's decision to sell rather than race the Bob Dye car. The main reason is this - Chip did not want to modify the Bob Dye race car to race in vintage races on the east coast. Vintage racing differs on the east coast compared to the west coast. West coast vintage racing emphasizes originality, where east coast vintage racing allows for more modifications. Chip did not want to modify the Bob Dye race car to be competitive on the east coast vintage racing circuit. Chip decided to convert his 1959 Corvette into an east coast vintage racer (based on an email I received from Lance Miller).
Given the originality of the Bob Dye race car, Chip believed that the car belonged on the west coast, where it could race against other original cars. Thus, Chip shipped the car to Corvette Mike's in Southern California, and offered the car for sale. Chip's instincts were dead on - Ken Epsman purchased the Bob Dye race car to vintage race on the west coast in 2000.
I did not know Chip personally. But everything I have read about him suggests that he was loved by all. There are several letters from Chip in the binder of information accompanying the Bob Dye car, and I understand why everybody liked him. Two years AFTER Chip sold the Bob Dye race car to Ken Epsman, Chip sent a letter to ken congratulating him on the win at the 2002 Monterey Historics. At the end of the letter, Chip states:
That's a class act. I am proud to own a car that Chip once owned.
Russ Uzes Mill Valley CA Russ Email