Wednesday, April 30, 2008

imca, 1923 part two

I like the photo from the Toronto Star. There was a big article in the magazine Auto Racing Memories by former IMCA stalwart Aut Swenson who traveled with the group back in those days and eventually had a thrill show that came through the prairies during the 1950s and beyond that talks about the train coaches that were attached to the fair train by Sloan that went from town to town. I'll have to search that one out.

The further exploits of Emory Collins, Regina, SK, come to light. First as a "mallet welder (sic)" for the automobile polo match that was part of the show and then in Ontario as a driver.

Saturday, July 28, 1923, Saskatoon, Saskatoon, exhibition, 1/2 mile

no results--sports page missing from the Monday--I got a headache for this?

Saturday, August 4, 1923, Regina, Saskatchewan, exhibition, 1/2 mile


--light car race--7 laps--1st, Claypool (Gray-Dort); 2nd, Daily (Duesy Special)--time, 4:41

--championship match race--5 laps--1st, Lampkin (Peugeot); 2nd, Claypool (Premier Special)--time, 2:58

--Australian Pursuit race--7 laps--1st, Sarles (Mooney Ford)--time, 4:14

--Class D handicap--7 laps--1st, Claypool (Premier Special); 2nd, Petticord (Essex); 3rd, Lampkin (Peugeot)--time, 4:26

--Regina Sweepstakes--5 laps--1st, Sarles (Mooney Ford); 2nd, Lecklider (Earl Special); 3rd, Claypool (Gray-Dort)--time, 3:11


--match race--5 laps--1st heat--1st, Petticord (Essex); 2nd, Sarles (Mooney Ford)--time, 3:?6

--match race--2nd heat--1st, Lecklider (Earl Special); 2nd, Daily (Duesy Special)--time, 3:21 4-5

--match race--3rd heat--one mile--1st, Lampkin (Peugeot); 2nd, Claypool (Premier Special)--time, 1:11 4-5

--final--1st, Petticord; 2nd, Lampkin; 3rd, Lecklider--time, 3:10

note: (from Regina Leader on the auto polo event) “Emery (sic) Collins, the well-known young hockey player, who is taking up the gasoline sport, was one of the mallet-welders (sic).”

Saturday, August 25, 1923, Toronto, ON, CNE, 1/2 mile

--1st race--7 laps--1st, Ray Claypool; 2nd, Ray Lampkin; 3rd, “Pop” Daily--time, 4:13

--2nd race--5 laps--1st, Jack Petticord; 2nd, Emory Collins; 3rd, Cleo Sarles--time, 3:02 2-5

--3rd race--7 laps--1st, Ray Lampkin; 2nd, Cleo Sarles; 3rd, Emory Collins--time, 4:17 3-5

--4th race--7 laps--1st, Ray Claypool; 2nd, “Pop” Daily; 3rd, Jack Johnson--time, 4:14 3-5

Monday, August 27, 1923, Toronto, ON, CNE, 1/2 mile

--results unknown

Sherbrooke, 1923 (Mike Tanney info, thanks Mike)
> Half-mile track
> Friday, August 31
> 1) Light Car Race (7 laps)
> 1. Lecklider (#5 Earl Spl) 4:04, 54.5mph
> also ran: Petticord (#28 Essex), Collins (#34 Beaver), Norton
> (#29 Grey-Dort)
> 2) Match Race (5 laps)
> 1. Lampkin (Peugeot) 2. Claypool (Premier)
> 3) Australian Pursuit (7 laps)
> 1. Norton (Grey-Dort) 4:12 2/5
> also ran: Beaver, Essex, Mooney Ford
> 4) Class D Handicap (7 laps)
> 1. Lampkin 4:20 3/5 2. Claypool 3.Lecklider
> 5) Exhibition Sweepstakes (7 laps)
> 1. Lampkin 4:13
> also ran: Essex, Premier, Mooney Ford, Beaver

Friday, September 14, 1923, Ottawa, Ontario, Central Canada Exhibition, 1/2 mile

--1st race--heavy car race--7 laps--1st, Ray Claypool (Premier Special); 2nd, Burr Lampkin (Peugeot)--time, 4:22 1-2

--2nd race--light cars--5 laps--1st, Jack Petticord; 2nd, Cleo Sarles (Ford)

--2nd heat--Exhibition Sweepstakes--1st, Claypool; 2nd, Pop Daily (Duesey Special)

--final heat--5 miles--1st, Lampkin; 2nd, Sarles--time, 6:00

Saturday, September 15, 1923, Ottawa, Ontario, Central Canada Exhibition, 1/2 mile

--Exhibition Sweepstakes--5 miles--1st, Cleo Sarles (Mooney Ford); 2nd, Ray Claypool (Premier Special); 3rd, Pop Daily (Duesey Special)--time, 6:02

--1st race--light cars--7 laps--1st, Joe (?) Collins, Regina, Sask. (Gray-Dort)--time, 4:14

--match race--5 laps--1st, Ray Claypool (Premier Special); 2nd, Burr Lampkin (Peugeot)--time, 3:03 1-4

--class D handicap--7 laps--1st, Lampkin; 2nd, Claypool

--Australian pursuit--1st, Pop Daily (Duesey Special); 2nd, Sarles

Monday, April 28, 2008

Jack Martin, ELRA, Haney Speedway

At the Tradex over the weekend one guy, Brian K., came up looking for a photo or something about his late friend, Jack Martin.

I did recognize the name from 1966 at both Haney and Langley Speedways. That was the year where the Early-Late Racing Association (ELRA) finished out the lease on Haney Speedway and then moved to Langley Speedway because the BCTRA was having a dispute with track owner Craig Frazer.

Thanks to the Langley Speedway Historical Society they copied photos from ELRA member, and racing great, Gordy Hemrich. Some of the photos and clippings were from Haney Speedway. So here's two of them.

The clipping notes that Jack Martin's number was 54 (deep in my brain I sort of remember being impressed at age 8 that there was a car 54 because we all knew the t.v. show line "Car 54, where are you?"). Hopefully the 54 pictured is of Jack. The clipping comes from the Burnaby Examiner where Lee Kelly spent a year before moving onto the Columbian. He did great work covering motorsport in the area. I wonder where the heck he went to and if he did the same in his new location.

Anyway, for Brian K., here's something on his friend Jack Martin.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Saturday, April 26, 2008

the pits

Mention of gravel pits, especially the Stokes Pit in Surrey, by Murray from Surrey had me remembering the various races and events held in various pits in the south Langley, Aldergrove and Surrey areas, especially in the 1970s.

Not sure if this photo is from the Stokes Pit but it definitely is dramatic. And not in any way, shape or form the pits.

More pit items to come.

Friday, April 25, 2008

more sad news, Gaines Markley

Another racer gone. This time Gaines Markley from the Washington State area. Gaines came north to Mission frequently for the NHRA points meets. Rivals included Jerry Ruth and Herm Petersen.

Here's the information forwarded by Wayne "the Peregrine" King:


Ronald Gaines Markley, beloved husband, father, brother and uncle passed peacefully away in Seattle on April 24, 2008.

“Gaines,” as everyone knew him, was born August 4, 1941, in Spokane and grew up in Seattle. He graduated from Lincoln High School in 1959 and attended classes at the University of Washington. In 1971 he married Annie and they raised one daughter, Beth.

Gaines loved all creatures, large and small, but had a special rapport for his Scotties, Doc and Mac. Dogs are a good judge of character and there has never been a dog that met Gaines that didn’t love him. He set tails wagging wherever he went.

After his family (which included his dogs), Gaines’ love was auto racing. He was Top Fuel Drag Racing champion for 1979 and won numerous other awards and trophies for drag racing. With his brother Charlie and nephew John, he took up racing at the Bonneville Salt Flats in the 1990s, setting a world’s record for his class at 272 miles per hour. He also enjoyed driving his 1933 Ford and 1957 Chevy to cruise-ins and show and shines with his daughter in the Seattle area. Since 1978 he co-owned and operated Custom Machine Shop with Bob Gage, performing specialty machine work on high-performing engines.

Gaines was always a helper and a friend to all. There wasn’t a stalled car he couldn’t get started or a friend he ever turned down. He will be sorely missed by all and especially his survivors, wife Annie, daughter Beth, brother Charlie, cousin Chris Cannon, nieces Julia and Maria, nephew John, and sister in law Mary. We all pray for his peace and look forward to seeing him in Heaven.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

racin' thru the raindrops live and in person!

I'll be at the Tradex in Abbotsford, BC over the weekend. Part of the crews manning the Greater Vancouver Motorsport Pioneers Society, the GVMPS, (down by the Nitro cars) and the Langley Speedway Historical Society, the LSHS, booths.

Things too busy right now to do a proper post. Might have to stall until Monday.

At any rate here's the book the GVMPS is selling.

If you can't get to the Tradex or the businesses listed, and are still interested in the book, send me a post with your email. I promise not to put your email up on this site. I'll respond and we can arrange to mail the book out. I'd think, including postage, etc., $25 should cover it.

And if you're at the Tradex just say "be fast past" and I'll probably look more intelligent than I am. Then again, maybe not.


Wednesday, April 23, 2008

imca, 1923 part one

Looks like a two parter, maybe three. Some of the names aren't all that well known, but they are colourful -- Robin Hood?

Also interesting to note the non-IMCA race win by an "E. Collins" from Regina, SK this year. Emory Collins' racing career is underway.

Monday, July 2, 1923, Winnipeg, Manitoba, River Park, 1/2 mile

--event #1--2 miles--1st, Petticord; 2nd, Sarles; 3rd, Robin Hood--time, 2:40 4-5

--event #2--2 1/2 miles--1st, Lampkin; 2nd, Claypool; 3rd, Johnson--time, 3:16 4-5

--event #3--1st heat elimination trials--1st, Lampkin; 2nd, Robin Hood; 3rd, Sarles--time, 4:31 4-5

--event #4--2nd heat elimination trials--1st, Sarles; 2nd, Petticord

--event #5--British auto polo team defeated Americans 2-0

--event #6--final heat elimination trials--1st, Robin Hood; 2nd, Lampkin; 3rd, Sarles--time, 6:58

Friday, July 6, 1923, Brandon, Manitoba, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--free-for-all--7 laps--1st, Lampkin (Chicago Special); 2nd, Sarles (Ford)--time, 6:24 3-4

--light car race--2 miles--1st, Robin Hood--time, 2:34

--heavy car race--5 laps--1st, Lampkin (Chicago Special)--time, 3:13 3-4

Saturday, July 14, 1923, Calgary, Alberta, exhibition, Victoria Park, 1/2 mile

--light cars--7 laps--1st, Petticord (Essex); 2nd, Lecklider (Earl Special); 3rd, Ray Claypool (Premier)

--match race--5 laps--1st, Lampkin; 2nd, Claypool--time, 3:00 2-5

--Australian Pursuit--7 laps--1st, Claypool (Premier); 2nd, ??? (Mooney Ford); 3rd, Daily (Duesy Special)--time, 3:42 2-5

--5 laps--1st, Lampkin; 2nd, Claypool--time, 4:18 3-5

--10 laps--1st, Claypool (Premier)--time, 6:19 1-5

Monday, July 16, 1923, Edmonton, Alberta, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--event #1--light car race, division one--5 laps--1st, Robin Hood (Premier); 2nd, Petticord (Essex)--time, 3:19 2-5

--event #2--heavy car race, division four--6 laps--1st, Lampkin (Chicago Special); 2nd, Claypool (Premier Special)--time, 4:04

--event #3--free-for-all, division six--1st heat--7 laps--1st, Lampkin (Chicago Special); 2nd, Robin Hood (Premier)--time, 4:13 1-5

--event #4--free-for-all, division six--2nd heat--7 laps--1st, Petticord (Essex); 2nd, Claypool (Premier Special)--time, 4:17 4-5

--event #5--free-for-all, division six--final heat--5 laps--1st, Petticord (Essex); 2nd, Lampkin (Chicago Special); 3rd, Robin Hood (Premier)--time, 3:05 205

note: E. Collins of Regina won a 10-mile race at River Park, Winnipeg, MB, this same day.

Saturday, July 21, 1923, Edmonton, Alberta, exhibition, 1/2 mile


--match race--10 laps--1st, Claypool; 2nd, Paul Welch--time, 6:04 2-5

--1st race--7 laps--1st, Petticord (Essex)--time, 4:39 2-5

--5 laps--1st, Lampkin (Peugeot); 2nd, Claypool--time, 3:21

--Australian Pursuit--1st, Daily (Duesy Special); 2nd, Sarles (Mooney Ford)--time, 4:19 1-5

--Class D handicap--7 laps--1st, Lampkin (Peugeot); 2nd, Claypool (Premier); 3rd, Lecklider (Earl Special)--time, 4:12 2-5 (?)

--Edmonton Sweepstakes--5 laps--1st, Johnson--time, 3:21


--match--1st, Lecklider (Earl Special); 2nd, Johnson (Premier)

--match--1st, Sarles (Mooney Ford); 2nd, Petticord (Essex)

--match--1st, Lampkin (Peugeot); 2nd, Claypool (Premier)

--match race winners race--5 laps--1st, Lampkin--time, 2:19

And a photo to close out this rapid post from the Winnipeg Free Press of "E. Collins" and his win.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

and now for something....

Okay, it's not quite completely different. But it's not Greater Vancouver and it's not Pacific northwest. It's one of those tangents I can get on.

While looking at the Prince George Citizen from the early 1970s I came across the above article on Jim Dilamarter, crew chief for the Bignotti team, and now working with Parnelli Jones at the private museum Jones has in southern California.

I was reading a story about the museum in the latest issue of the UK magazine Motorsport and it reminded me of the PG story.

Dilamarter was originally from Ontario. Can't say the article says his racing roots were from there but the article does say he still had his Ontario driver's license back in 1972.

In many ways, and for many reasons, Jim Dilamarter should be in the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame.

Now to chase him down, get his story, submit it to the CMHF committee and hope for the best....

Monday, April 21, 2008

big car time

(The photo above came courtesy of the late Don Radbruch, a continuing source of inspiration for me. It is of the great Jimmy Wilburn who got his racing start in the Pacific northwest, even racing at Victoria's Willows in 1935. The clipping is from an old racing publication of that era, Coast Auto Racing.)

The "big cars" -- that'd be "sprint cars" to the rest of us so-called modern kids -- never raced all that much in the Greater Vancouver area. Our loss. (I suppose the racing at Hastings Park in the 1920s could be called big car racing.)

They did make it to Digney Speedway once in 1949 with most of the cars coming from Vancouver Island. (The winner was Bob Simpson in the second Jack Smith built rear-engined car.) Victoria was the hot bed of big car racing in the 1930s into the 1950s. Langford Speedway, about 8 miles north of Victoria was the track and featured some of the hottest shoes that the Pacific northwest had to offer.

South of the border Everett's Silver Lake Speedway, both of the Aurora tracks (Speed Bowl and Stadium), and further on south to Portland Speedway and Portland Meadows plus many other tracks, mostly half-mile horse tracks, featured the big cars.

Seems like I've been in recent contact with a number of descendants of racers from that early era. And that's great. I hope it continues.

Here's one of the mainstays of that big car era with quite a detailed racing biography up to that point of 1949: Art Scovell. (Scovell even made it to Vancouver with the midgets in 1937 for a series of indoor races at the annual summer fair.)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

duel of the mighty midgets, part 13

King continues to investigate, and try to prevent a disaster. Intrigue and firings ensue:

Friday, April 18, 2008

100, one hundred, ONE HUNDRED!!!!

I mean:

So here are a few "100s" to celebrate:

Jack Spalding at Con Jones Park in east Vancouver, 1940 with a midget race car. Jack's nickname was "the little man with the big cigar". The cigar doesn't show up all that well in this shot taken off the t.v. screen from a vhs tape. (I can even see my lamp reflected in the shot. Real high tech!)

When Jack raced in Vancouver he was from Victoria, and when he raced in Victoria he was from Vancouver. Originally he was from the States. His brother was Ernie Spalding whose son was/is Cliff Spalding. Cliff raced at Langley Speedway with the midgets in 1966.

With most of the midgets coming from the U.S. the numbering of the few Canadian cars were three digits. The car in the foreground is numbered for the next post, 101.

Larry McBride first raced with the midgets and track roadsters (hot rods) at Digney Speedway. He was pretty successful in both classes. When the stock cars took over Larry switched to them and was even more successful. He won the first 100-lap stock car championship race at Digney in 1952.

A bit of news from Clutch Chatter, the newsletter of the BC Custom Car Association. According to Larry B., who raced back then, a stop watch had been used in earlier years and by 1955 Chrondek timing lights were installed at Abbotsford Airport for the drag races. So it appears that Ron Hackett was the first officially to run 100 mph or more.

The photo below is of Ron with his 1923 Model T:

And below here is the patch from the BCCCA that drivers would get if they made a pass at 100 mph or more. This is off Stew Braddick's club jacket and is courtesy of Sylvia B.

On the international front, Milt and Ross Blewett ran the hydros. While they alternated driving chores from year to year, Milt was the one on board when he qualified for the 100 mph club. That was a big deal recognized by the American Power Boat Association.

Now who was the first to run a 100 mph lap at Westwood? Had to do some math calculations, something I'm out of practice doing. Figure a 64.8 second lap gets it done. (That right, Tom?)

Looking at some race results from the early 1970s finally got me to someone making the claim, in print, that the first 100 mph lap was done at the Player's Pacific race May 27, 1973 by Formula B driver, Allan Lader of Gresham, OR.

From the Canadian Motorsport Bulletin, July 1973: "In a late attempt to move up on race leader Lader, Craig Hill pressed the Castrol Brabham to a new Westwood lap record of 1:05.1 and an average speed of just over 99 MPH. Lader's crew responded with a 'record'? pit signal to Lader at the beginning of his third to last lap, and a 'Got It' two laps later when Lader replied with a 1:04.4, then a 1:04.3, making him the first driver to break the 100 MPH average speed barrier at Westwood."

The photo below shows Lader being given help back to the start-finish line as he, as well as Hill, ran out of fuel on the cool down lap after the checkered flag.

Now that's cutting it close.

And I should close this entry out. My one hundreth! Amazing. As with anything improvements are needed and will be worked on over the next 100.

That might take a bit longer than the 100 days (hey!) it took to get this many posted.

Shift changes, etc., are looming, starting this week, so hopefully I can keep up with the regularly scheduled stuff (IMCA, Langley, and comics!) and other things. Might take two days to get a post prepared. That might make them look a bit more slick than some of the 15 minutes of prep, one minute of corrections, then hit "publish post" and sign out ones I've got done.

Always trying to be "best appearing" even if that is a lost cause. Here's the last "100" for this 100th post. Ron Livingston's number 100 demolition derby car at Callister Park before it lost its best appearing appearance:

(Thanks to Tom J., Sylvia B., Larry B., and Murray C. for help and contributions to this biggie. Cheers all.)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Langley Speedway, August 22, 1965

Ray Hurren from the November 1965 issue of Motorsport in BC. Looks like number 37 is Dennis Corfe and his "passionate pink Packard" as announcer Dick Brooks used to refer to it.

Actually quite a bit of information on this date. All the dailies, the Sun, the Province and the Columbian had Monday reports as did the weekly Surrey Leader. And I even have a clipping from Racing Wheels about the race.


A record crowd, so far, of close to 3800 in attendance.

40 jalopies (early lates) competing with a total of 75 cars in the pits for the four classes.

Some modifieds arriving from the south (Bob and Gerry McLees as well as Bobby Etchison and John McPherson).

Rollovers and wrecks (Ray Hurren for the second time in 1965 -- see photo above).

Trophy dash winners:

jalopies -- Carmen Parton (he also lowered the class record from 19.46 to 19.41 seconds and got $10 for the effort)

stocks -- Walt McKitka

B modified -- Ken Klatt

A modified -- Wayne Wilbey


jalopies -- Walt Katcema (slow heat), Rick Lester (fast heat)

stocks -- Vince Landry (slow), Walt McKitka (fast)

B modified -- Ken Klatt

A modified -- Wayne Wilbey


jalopies -- Gary Greenaway (consolation), Bill Mandy (main) after rolling the week before

stocks -- Reinhard Unruh

B modifieds -- Ken Klatt

A modifieds -- Mel Keen

Keen edged out Gerry McLees by a narrow margin in the 25 lap feature.

Well, this is the 99th post for me which will make the next one the .... And I'll have to do something more impressive for that.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

imca, 1922 part one

Probably will take three installments for this. Don't want to overtax everyone, including myself. First is Alberta.

The bottom clipping just verifies Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame inductee Jack Smith's participation then.

July 6, 1922, Calgary, Alberta, exhibition, Victoria Park, 1/2 mile

--mile--Haugdahl (Wisconsin Special), 1:03 3-5

--6th event--5 miles--1st, Haugdahl; 2nd, Claypool; 3rd, Lampkin--time, 6:08 4-5

--Calgary Sweepstakes--1st heat--7 laps--1st, Lampkin--time, 5:20 2-5

--Calgary Sweepstakes--2nd heat--1st, Haugdahl; 2nd, Claypool--time, 4:16

--consolation--2 miles--1st, Bill Endicott; 2nd, Oscar Anderson--time, 2:37

--mile--Miss Zenita Neville, 1:12 1-5

July 7, 1922, Calgary, Alberta, exhibition, Victoria Park, 1/2 mile

--mile--Haugdahl (Wisconsin Special), 1:01 2-5 (equals world’s record) (1/2 mile in 31; 3/4 mark in 47)

--Dominion Sweepstakes--15 laps--1st, Haugdahl (Frontenac); 2nd, Oscar Anderson; 3rd, Claypool--time, 9:29 1-5

--1st race--5 laps--light cars--1st, Claypool--time, 3:14 1-5

--2nd race--7 laps--1st, Haugdahl; 2nd, Endicott; 3rd, Anderson--time, 4:23 2-5

--time trials--1/2 mile--Jack Smith, 35 4-5; Lampkin, 36 2-5; Claypool, 32 3-5; Haugdahl, 32.

--match race--1st, Zenita Neville; 2nd, Endicott--time, 1:16 1-5

July 14, 1922, Edmonton, Alberta, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--mile--Haugdahl (Wisconsin Special), 1:01 3-5 and 1:02 3-5

--Edmonton Sweepstakes--final heat--10 laps--1st, Haugdahl (Frontenac); 2nd, Claypool--time, 5:51 2-5

--sweepstakes--1st heat--7 laps--1st, Lampkin (Duesy Special); 2nd, Bill Endicott--time, 4:19 2-5

--sweepstakes--2nd heat--1st, Claypool; 2nd, Haugdahl--time, 4:09 2-5

--consolation--1st, Swede Anderson (King Special); 2nd, Endicott (Fiat); 3rd, Daly (Peerless)

July 15, 1922, Edmonton, Alberta, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--mile--Haugdahl (Wisconsin Special), 1:01 1-5 (world’s record)
--then broke crankshaft

--2nd event--7 laps--heavy cars--1st, Haugdahl; 2nd, Endicott--time, 4:11 2-5

--1st event--5 laps--1st, Ray Lampkin; 2nd, Claypool; 3rd, Jackels--time, 3:10 1-5

--match race--mile--1st, Zenita Neville; 2nd, Bill Endicott

--Dominion Sweepstakes--15 laps--8 points to winner for international championship for 1/2 mile--1st, Ray Claypool; 2nd, Haugdahl; 3rd, Anderson--time, 8:48 1-5

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

some more Digney stuff

Just some follow up on the Digney reunion preview.

A photo of Roy Long now:

And Roy Long then:

And Roy Long in his Hudson Essex Terraplane. Apparently it was quite noisy. And almost able to leap the fence:

Monday, April 14, 2008

another racer gone -- Moe Vaillant

Was told over the weekend that former stock/modified racer, Maurice "Moe" Vaillant passed away.

The photo above is from Ralph Monhay's modified restoration site and is of the three top drivers at Haney Speedway in 1963. From left to right they were Ralph Monhay, Mel Keen and 1963 points champ Moe Vaillant. Moe sold the car to Len Jalouse of Prince George, BC, early in 1964, after Moe had won a race there and wanted to quit racing.

Moe raced at Digney, False Creek and Haney Speedways. He was also president of the BC Track Racing Association and had spoken with Craig Frazer early on about the move the BCTRA would eventually make to Langley.

Moe came back to racing after a long layoff by building some mini-sprints for his sons. They raced at Deming Speedway (WA) winning championships there. 360 sprints followed also with wins.

Moe definitely was a boost to motorsport in the Greater Vancouver area.

Here's the obituary from the newspaper:

Maurice Reuben (Moe) Vaillant

VAILLANT Maurice Reuben (Moe)In Loving Memory Of May 15, 1933 to April 10, 2008 Born in Virden, Manitoba, he spent his early years in Baird, Ontario, and moved to Vancouver as a young man where he met his wife Shirley. He retired in 1987 from his position as General Equipment and Maintenance Manager for Canadian Stevedoring, moved to Hope and later Agassiz. He passed away from this life peacefully in the Chilliwack Hospital surrounded by his family. Moe is survived by his beloved wife of 55 years, Shirley, his adored children, Cheryl (Kesh), Denise (Ron), Maurice (Anna-Marie), Shirley-Marie (Rob), Darcy (Jamie) and Reg (Shirley), thirteen grandchildren, two great-grandchildren; a brother, Eugene, sisters Doreen Gould and Joan Meservia. He was preceded in death by his parents, four brothers and five sisters. He will be dearly missed by his family and many friends. Moe's passion for racing cars transferred to his sons and became a family affair that still continues today. He loved the outdoors, fishing and hunting; traveling south where he enjoyed Bluegrass festivals, sprint car racing and trying his luck at the casinos. He was a friend of Bill Wilson. A celebration of his life will be held on Friday, April 18 at 2:00 p.m., at the Chilliwack Alliance Church, 8700 Young Road, Chilliwack, B.C. In lieu of flowers, a donation to the charity of your choice. Moe had a special place in his heart for the homeless and less fortunate. You are invited to leave a personal message of condolence at the family's online memorial register at
Published in the Vancouver Sun and/or The Province on 4/13/2008.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

duel of the mighty midgets, part 12

More intrigue as King sorts out who's who and what's what:

Saturday, April 12, 2008

odds and ends

Rambling warm Saturday, first warm day for a long time so everyone seemed to be out and about, including me.

So in keeping with that attitude here is an unfocused post:

Came across a news item from 1977 saying that Tom Berrow, from Port Coquitlam, BC, qualified 36th for the Permatex 300 NASCAR race at Riverside, CA. That would be the support race to the Winston Cup cars (of that era, now they're Sprint Cup stock cars). No follow up article that I could find but I have only looked in one newspaper of the day. (The photo is of Tom with his number 86 super stock along with Al Tourond at Langley Speedway in 1976.)

Also, from the motorcycling world is this link. Motorcycle photos from Westwood from the early 1960s.

Finally, from back east there are a few interesting articles in the current issue (April 08) of Inside Track Motorsport News: one on the Can-Am series, another on a longtime stock car racer from Ontario and another on the 2008 induction ceremony for the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Langley Speedway, August 15, 1965, part duh

Pity the poor historian who doesn't turn the page of the real scrapbook while researching (searching again and again) through his own material for the virtual scrapbook.

Which is to say there is more information on the August 15, 1965 International Challenge Cup race at Langley in the August 26, 1965 issue of the Langley Advance.

Rather than pull info out of the story I'll just reprint the story.

Not sure which modified is in the photograph. I see some crewmen wearing number 97 shirts. Wes Henham maybe?

The story, historian, the story:

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Langley Speedway, August 15, 1965

This was the fourth race of the International Challenge Cup between Langley and Skagit Speedways. At this point I only have information from one source: the Columbian.

75 cars were in the pits from many locations: Keremeos, Victoria, Grand Coulee as well as the Skagit area.

The mains were as follows:

A modified -- Ralph Monhay
B modified -- Ken Klatt
stock -- Bob Warman
early late -- Carman Parton

The trophy dash winners were:

A modified -- Ralph Monhay
B modified -- Ken Klatt
stock -- Reinhard Unruh
early late -- Carman Parton

Rollovers included Bill Mandy in his early late and the modifieds of Glenn Parsons and Barry Chamberlain.

The photo comes from the Barry Youngston collection. Photographer unknown but probably Ed Jacques. No idea about who the driver of No. 2 is or whether he could see much.

Like the poor historian at times, "driving blind".

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

imca, 1921 part two

Finishing off the 1921 exploits of the IMCA through the prairie provinces and the far eastern edge of the west that includes Toronto. Research done by Don Radbruch and others finds that Fred Horey was not French Canadian. It was probably just another flight of fancy of promoter J. Alex Sloan, but it makes for good copy in the newspapers, especially when you're going to Canada:

August 6, 1921, Regina, Saskatchewan, exhibition, 1/2 mile


--event #1--7 laps--1st, Horey; 2nd, Anderson; 3rd, Larson--time, 4:25 1-4

--event #2--match race--1st heat--5 laps--1st, Raimey; 2nd, Hoffman; 3rd, Reynolds--time, 3:13 1-4

--event #3--time trial--one mile--Horey, 1:05 1-4 (ntr)

--event #4--3 miles--1st, Horey; 2nd, Larson--time, 3:31 1-4

--event #5--match race--2nd heat--5 laps--1st, Hoffman; 2nd, Reynolds; 3rd, Raimey--time, 3:01 1-4

--event #6--Saskatchewan Sweepstakes--5 miles--1st, Hoffman; 2nd, Larson; 3rd, Reynolds--time, 6:02 1-4


--time trials--1/2 mile--Horey, 34; Hoffman, 34 3-4; Reynolds, 35 1-4

--Dominion Derby--1st heat--3 miles--1st, Larson; 2nd, Horey; 3rd, Reynolds; 4th, Meyers--time, 3:43 3-4

--Dominion Derby--2nd heat--3 miles--1st, Hoffman; 2nd, Anderson; 3rd, Horey; 4th, Raimey--time, 3:39 3-4

--Dominion Derby--final heat--1st, Hoffman; 2nd, Larson--time, 3:17 1-4

--match race--3 miles--1st, Larson; 2nd, Louie Rogers--time, 3:38 3-4

--match race--final heat--1st, Raimey; 2nd, Hoffman; 3rd, Reynolds--time, 2:30

August 12, 1921, Yorkton, Saskatchewan, 1/2 mile (?)

results unknown

Saturday, August 27, 1921, Toronto, ON, CNE, 1/2 mile

--1st race--7 laps--1st, Norske Larson (Mooney); 2nd, Oscar Anderson (Wisconsin); 3rd, “Speed” King (Essex)--time, 4:20 2-5

--2nd race--5 laps--1st, Louis Disbrow (Essex); 2nd, Irvin Hoffman (Wisconsin); 3rd, Toots Reynolds (Simplex)--time, 3:03 2-5

--3rd race--Louis Disbrow attempted to lower the world’s dirt track record for light cars, but ignition trouble set in early in the attempt and had to give up.

--4th race--3 mile handicap--1st, Fred Horey (Briscoe); 2nd, Oscar Anderson (Wisconsin); 3rd, Meyers (Duesenberg)--time, 3:44

--5th race--5 laps--1st, Irvin Hoffman (Wisconsin); 2nd, Louis Disbrow (Essex); 3rd, “Toots” Reynolds (Simplex)--3:06 3-5

--6th race--sweepstakes--15 laps--1st, Fred Horey (Briscoe); 2nd, “Speed” King (Essex); 3rd, Norske Larson (Mooney Special)--time, 9:22 2-5

--trial against time--Fred Horey (Briscoe)--2 miles--2:15 4-5 (record is 2:15 2-5)

Monday, August 29, 1921, Toronto, ON, CNE, 1/2 mile

--class C--5 laps--1st, Disbrow (Essex); 2nd, Hoffman (Wisconsin); 3rd, Reynolds (Simplex)--time, 2:59 3-5

--Dominion Derby--1st heat--8 laps--1st, Larson (Mooney Special); 2nd, Anderson (Wisconsin); 3rd, King (Essex)--time, 4:53 3-5

--Dominion Derby--heat--1st, Horey (Briscoe); 2nd, Disbrow (Essex)

--consolation race--6 laps--1st, Reynolds (Duesenberg); 2nd, King (Essex)--time, 3:44 2-5

--Dominion Derby--final heat--10 laps--1st, Disbrow (Essex); 2nd, Horey (Briscoe); 3rd, Larson (Mooney Special)--time, 5:52 (new track record--old was 6:01)

--event no. 6--4 laps--1st, Horey (Briscoe); 2nd, Hoffman (Wisconsin Special); 3rd, Larson (Mooney Special)--time, 2:23 2-5

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

B.C. Roadster Racing Association

Cleaning up a pile I came across something I knew I had (but couldn't find) -- a photo I'd taken of the late Dick Brunt's BC Roadster Racing Association (BCRRA) membership card from 1950. He was number 2 in the club. They raced at Digney Speedway in 1950, never getting to a critical mass of members with racing cars to make a solid go of the two day a week racing that Andy Digney wanted, so the club waned and disappeared.

The BCRRA did race once or twice at the Cloverdale fairgrounds around that time as well as being responsible (according to a newspaper clipping from 1954 or so) for the almost legendary Wonderland Speedway at Brown Road and the Trans-Canada Highway (24o Street and the Fraser Highway now) east of Langley City.

Just to round out this find (an archaeological dig in my own home) a couple roaring roadsters from the 1950 Digney Speedway season -- Larry McBride with his no. 10, and the late Larry Miller in the no. 8 and Frank Kratzer in the no. 11.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Gim Wong, midget car racer (amongst other things)

I believe Gim Wong said last Saturday at the Digney Reunion preview that he would be turning 86 on his next birthday. He talked a bit about Con Jones Park in East Vancouver and the midgets racing there, Mickey McDowell and others, and that was where his interest in midget racing came from.

I first met Gim a number of years ago. He is generous of spirit and information and carries with him a wonderful memory and a number of passions.

The photos show some of racing he has been involved with over the years. While he wasn't a champion he definitely was the type of racer that one has to respect: enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and able to make little or no money stretch out and allow him to race.

Long may he be around.