Saturday, May 31, 2008

Eldon Rasmussen

A racing historian had spoken with Eldon Rasmussen recently during the month of May at Indianapolis. Eldon, who got his start in Alberta has ended up at Indianapolis after making the move there in the mid-1960s. The historian wanted some background info on the "Hinton Hornet". So this is some of what I dug up from the files.

First, another recent article on Eldon.

And a couple things from the 1960s:

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Langley Speedway, September 19, 1965

Second to last race of the 1965 season at Langley. These last races didn't count toward points as far as I understand. The season points were finalized on the September 5/6 weekend.

Some other names from other newspapers include: Lloyd Bellamy and Dennis Wooden in the early-late class. Both would go on in future years in other classes: Bellamy in the modified stock class (and better known by his "Charlie Brown" name) and Wooden in the A modifieds.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

imca, 1925 part two

Second part of the 1925 IMCA Canadian races. The advert shows what entertainment the mid-1920s crowd was being offered. Rubin and Cherry Shows: "The Aristocrat of the Tented World". Sounds good to me no matter the price of admission.

All that and auto races. John DePalma, Elfrieda Mais versus Marion Martin. Emory Collins, Fred Horey and others. Helluva deal:

July 13, 1925, Edmonton, AB, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--event no. 1--3 cornered match race--5 laps--1st, Fred Horey; 2nd, Al Cotey; 3rd, Johnny DePalma--time, 3:11

--event no. 2--3 cornered match race--5 laps--1st, Emory Collins; 2nd, Red Maley; 3rd, Bud Putman--time, 3:18 3-5

--event no. 3--special match race for lady drivers--3 laps--1st, Miss Marion Martin; 2nd, Miss Elfrieda Mais--time, 1:56

--event no. 4--match race between Miss Marion Martin and Al Cotey--3 laps--1st, Martin--time, 1:53

--event no. 5--Firestone Sweepstakes free-for-all--9 laps--1st, Fred Horey; 2nd, Emory Collins; 3rd, Al Cotey--time, 7:35

July 18, 1925, Edmonton, AB, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--1st event--cars not over 450 cu. in. piston displacement--5 laps--1st, DePalma (Mercedes); 2nd, Putnam (Fiat); 3rd, Cotey (Duesenberg)--time, 2:57 3-5

--2nd event--light car race--3 laps--1st, Collins (Briscoe); 2nd, Miss Marion Martin (Frontenac-Ford); 3rd, Maley (Miller Special)--time, 1:48 1-5

--3rd event--3 cornered match race--3 laps--1st, Horey (Miller Special); 2nd, Cotey (Elcar); 3rd, DePalma (Mercedes)--time, 1:48

--4th event--Australian Pursuit race (handicap)--7 laps--1st, Horey (Miller Special); 2nd, Putnam (Fiat); 3rd, Maley (Miller Special)--time, 4:13 1-5

--5th race--Exhibition Handicap Sweepstakes--9 laps--1st, Collins (Briscoe); 2nd, Horey (Miller Special); 3rd, Williams (Duesenberg)--time, 5:12 2-5

Saturday, August 22, 1925, Ottawa, Ontario, Central Canada Exhibition, 1/2 mile

--light car races--5 laps--1st, Cleo Sarles (Frontenac Ford); 2nd, Claude Montieth (Peerless)--time, 3:07

--Ajax Sweepstakes--5 laps--1st heat--1st, Putty Hoffman (Hoffman Special); 2nd, Ed Daily (Peugeot)--time, 3:10 4-5

--2nd heat--1st, Ray Claypool (Premier)--time, 3:18 2-5

--final heat--9 laps--1st, Cleo Sarles (Frontenac Ford); 2nd, Putty Hoffman (Hoffman Special)--time, 5:48 3-5

--free-for-all--7 laps--1st, Putty Hoffman (Hoffman Special); 2nd, Cleo Sarles (Frontenac Ford)--time, 4:39 2-5

--exhibition mile--Miss Marion Martins--Buggatti--1:17 3-5

Saturday, August 29, 1925, Toronto, ON, CNE, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--1st race--5 laps--1st, Ed Daily (Peugeot)--time, 3:18 2-5

--3 corner match race--3 laps--1st, Putty Hoffman; 2nd, Ed Daily; 3rd, Ray Claypool--time, 1:56 2-5

--Australian pursuit--7 laps--1st, Cleo Sarles; 2nd, Putty Hoffman; 3rd, Claude Montieth--time, 4:14 3-5

--Dominion Sweepstakes (Barney Oldfield medal)--9 laps--1st, Ray Claypool (Premier); 2nd, Cleo Sarles (Frontenac Ford); 3rd, Putty Hoffman (Hoffman)

--mile--Marion Martins (Frontenac Ford)--1:13 (new record for woman at CNE)

Wednesday, September 2, 1925, Toronto, ON, CNE, 1/2 mile

--Dominion Sweepstakes--9 laps--1st, Sarles; 2nd, Disbrow; 3rd, Hoffman--time, 5:31 1-5

--1st race--5 laps--1st, Claypool; 2nd, Montieth; 3rd, Joe Allen--time, 3:05 3-5

--2nd race--3 corner match race--3 laps--1st, Disbrow; 2nd, Hoffman--time, 1:48 2-5

--Australian pursuit--7 laps--1st, Hoffman; 2nd, Montieth--time, 4:10 4-5

Monday, May 26, 2008

Jack Turner, from Seattle, at Indianapolis, 1956, part three

Jack's reflections on the 1956 race:

$900 for a month's work. Like Jack says, not bad, considering it was 1956.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

duel of the mighty midgets, part 17

Friends come to Cam's side, the publicity is good, but there's a problem coming soon:

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Jack Turner, from Seattle, at Indianapolis, 1956, part two

The day before the 500, Jack gives his impressions and strategy for the race.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Langley Speedway, September 12, 1965

Biggest crowd at a Greater Vancouver speedway since the Digney Speedway days of the late 1940s.

Championship races, just dashes and main events. No heats. Drivers from The Island and south of the border.

Interesting to see the name of Bob Simpson from Victoria. His racing went back to the Langford Speedway days in the 1940s. Also a mention of Ray Pottinger from Nanaimo, another good racer.

While the clipping from Racing Wheels covers it nicely here's a quick recap:

Early-late dash: Dennis Corfe
Early-late consolation main: Rick Lester
Early-late 35-lap championship main: Neil Van Horn

Stock car dash: Reinhard Unruh
Stock car 50-lap championship main: Reinhard Unruh

B modified dash: Ken Klatt
B modified 100-lap championship main (run with A modifieds): Ken Klatt

A modified dash: Ralph Monhay
A modified 100-lap championship main: Ralph Monhay

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

imca, 1925 part one

First part of 1925. Appears that Fred Horey and Emory Collins were the big deals of this season. Interesting to see a match race between Collins and Louis Rogers at Regina. I think it was for the championship of Western Canada.

And Hoot Gibson, movie star, was in attendance as well doing a lap with one of the cars.

It was, after all, entertainment.

June 29, 1925, Brandon, MB, exhibition grounds, 1/2 mile

--heavy car race for cars of 450 cu. in. and under--5 laps--1st, Fred Horey (Briscoe); 2nd, Bud Putman (Fiat)--time, 3:11 1-2

--match race--5 laps--1st, Fred Horey (Miller Special); 2nd Hal Cody (Al Cotey?) (Duesenberg)--time, 3:14

--Australian Pursuit--7 laps--1st, Horey (Miller); 2nd, Putman (Duesenberg)--time, 4:38

--special event to beat track record over two miles at 2:14 4-5--1st, Fred Horey--time, 2:10 2-5

--free-for-all--1st, Horey; 2nd, Putman; 3rd, DePalma--time, 6:03 4-5

July 1, 1925, Regina, SK, exhibition grounds, Dominion Day, 1/2 mile

rained out

July 2, 1925, Regina, SK, exhibition grounds, 1/2 mile

--1st event--Firestone Sweepstakes--5 laps--1st, Bud Putnam (Fiat); 2nd, John DePalma (Mercedes)--time, 3:22

--time trials--Louis Rogers and Emory Collins--Collins, 33 3-5 for 1/2 mile

--2nd event--match race--Collins and Rogers--1st, Collins--time, 1:43 3-5

--3rd event--Firestone--2nd heat--5 laps--1st, Al Cotey (Elcar); 2nd, Emory Collins (Briscoe); 3rd, Red Maley (Miller Special)--time, 3:06

--4th event--match race--one mile--1st, Miss Marion Martin (France); 2nd, Miss Elfrieda Mais (Indianapolis)--time, 1:11 2-5

--5th event--final heat of Firestone Sweepstakes--7 laps--1st, Emory Collins (Briscoe); 2nd, Bud Putnam (Fiat); 3rd, DePalma (Mercedes)--time, ???

July 11, 1925, Calgary, AB, Stampede, Victoria Park, 1/2 mile

--match race--5 laps--1st, Elfrieda Mais (Briscoe); 2nd, Marion Martin (Frontenac-Ford)

--Jubilee Handicap Sweepstakes--15 laps--1st, Fred Horey (Miller Special); 2nd, Emory “Spunk” Collins (Briscoe)

--1st race--5 laps--1st, Collins; 2nd, Bob Green (Frotenac-Ford); 3rd, Bob Wallace (Parker Special)--time, 3:07 3-5 (?)

--3 cornered match race--3 laps--1st, Al Coty (Elcar); 2nd, Horey--time, 1:58

--5 laps--1st, Johnny DePalma; 2nd, Red Maley--time, 3:30 4-5

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

some programme covers

"Programme" or "Program"? That isn't the question.

However they are spelled they are great artifacts. And those with penciled in qualifying times and results are even greater. But the ads and features help anyone looking into the past.

These three come from the Bill Hall family collection. Bill had connections to midget racing right back to 1950. He raced for a couple decades with the Washington Midget Racing Association starting in the late 1950s and finished in the top ten point standings often.

Jack Turner, from Seattle, at Indianapolis, 1956, part one

The first of three clippings from "Cactus" Jack Turner, published in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, back in 1956 when Jack was a rookie at the Indianapolis 500.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

duel of the mighty midgets, part 16

The wrong person accused. King continues:

Bonus day added because I'm out of town.

Friday, May 16, 2008

an older version of the Okanagan hill climb

From the August 1958 SCCBC newsletter Pit Pass:

Thursday, May 15, 2008

heading to knox mountain

The Knox Mountain version of the Okanagan Hill Climb has been going on for about 40 years.

Here's a couple photos from last year, the winner John Haftner plus Ian Wood's Porsche.

Langley Speedway, September 6, 1965

Second half of a two-day weekend show at the speedway, the Monday being Labour Day.

The A modified 50-lap main event Empire Trophy winner was Mel Keen. He was followed by Don Bennett, Wayne Wilbey and Cal Arnold.

The B modified main event winner was Ken Klatt.

The modified stock main event winner was Frank McCabe. He was followed by Walt McKitka, Doug Thompson (in Reinhard Unruh's no. 7) and Bill Inwood.

The jalopy/early-late main was won by Brian Thompson and he was followed by Dennis Corfe, John Rothwell and Glen Buckler.

This was the last points earning day for the BCTRA. Going into the day Wayne Wilbey was tied with Ralph Monhay and with his finish took the title. Ralph had been busy with the Canadian American Modified Racing Association races at Edmonton, Victoria and Nanaimo. (Check the clipping from Racing Wheels.)

The B modified points title for 1965 went to Dennis Goldstraw.

The modified stock title went to Reinhard Unruh.

And the jalopy/early-late main went to Carmen Parton.

A more detailed look will be posted shortly.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

imca, 1924 part two

Final part of the information I have on the 1924 IMCA season in Canada, bracketed by Saskatoon and Regina clippings on Emory "Spunk" Collins, from Regina, Saskatchewan.

Oh yeah, Sig Haugdahl made a world's record (* -- take that with a grain of salt) for the mile at Edmonton.

Monday, July 14, 1924, Edmonton, AB, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--mile--Haugdahl (Miller Special), 60 seconds flat (new Canadian record)

--1st heat--Canadian championship match race--5 laps--1st, Speedy Walters (Maxwell); 2nd, Daily (Duesenberg); 3rd, Wood (Ford)--time, 3:06 2-5

--2nd heat--5 laps--1st, Disbrow (Duesenberg); 2nd, Stone (Simplex); 3rd, Purvay (Fiat)--time, 3:04

--final--5 laps--1st, Disbrow (Duesenberg); 2nd, Walters (Maxwell)--time, 2:57

Saturday, July 19, 1924, Edmonton, AB, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--Stampede Derby--25 laps--1st, Speedy Walters; 2nd, Louis Disbrow--time, 15:10

--match race--1st, Walters; 2nd, Stone--time, 1:14 4-5

--light cars--5 laps--1st, Daily (Duesy Special); 2nd, Collins (Frontenac Ford); 3rd, Stone (Ford Special)--time, 3:10

--Australian pursuit--7 laps--1st, Disbrow--time, 3:14

Saturday, July 26, 1924, Saskatoon, SK, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--no results--the sports page was missing--again!!!!

Saturday, August 2, 1924, Regina, SK, exhibition, 1/2 mile


--mile--Haugdahl, 1:01 3-5 (new track record)



--mile--Haugdahl--1:03 1-5

--sweepstakes--1st, Haugdahl; 2nd, Collins

Saturday, August 23, 1924, Toronto, ON, CNE, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--division one--light cars--5 laps--1st, Ed Daily (Duesy Special); 2nd, Dick Woods (Mooney)--time, 3:00 2-5

--no other results--

Monday, August 25, 1924, Toronto, ON, CNE, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--1st race--1st, “Swede” Anderson (No. 51); 2nd, “Pop” Daily (No. 17 Duesy Special); 3rd, Emery (sic) Collins (Fronty-Ford)--time, 3:03 1-2

--2nd race--5 laps--1st, “Speedy” Walters (Maxwell); 2nd, Louis Disbrow (Duesenberg); 3rd, Larry Stone--time, 3:05 1-4 (also ran: Walter Purvy)

--mile--Sig Haugdahl (Miller)--1:03 2-5 (new world’s record--???--by 2 seconds)

Wednesday, August 27, 1924, Toronto, ON, CNE, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--no results--

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

the first power boat race at Cultus Lake

"The first" is always (maybe that's a poor word choice) a dodgy claim. But I'll take it at face value for the moment. The first power boat race at Cultus Lake, BC, was April 22, 1962.

One mistake I see is that it was Ron Bestward, not "Robert", who was the cracker box driver. At least I think it was. Ron Bestward went on to be the American Power Boat Association (APBA) cracker box champion for the year of 1962. And second place finisher Bunny Jeboult was cracker box champion in 1964. Not too shabby for a couple local racers.

As usual there were boats from the Seattle area that did well in most of the other classes. More power boat histories to follow as the weather warms (?) into summer.

Monday, May 12, 2008

some links, some ads

Too much happening in my brain (chewing gum and walking at the same time syndrome) so a couple links.

Here's Pacific Raceways 1963, drag racing. Same guy has some cool sports car racing from that era.

And some 1970s Skagit Speedway shots of modifieds.

And a couple movie ads from way back when, when clubs were asked to bring out their cars to add to the show.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

pole day

Noted that it was Pole Day at Indianapolis today. Not sure who got the pole, the rules are a bit different than from 20, or 50 years ago.

Victoria's Ed Kostenuk (actually spelled "Kostenuick") tried to qualify for Indianapolis in 1962 and 1963. He didn't make it.

He had raced big cars at Langford Speedway, Shearing Speedway and Western Speedway on Vancouver Island as well as further south into Washington and Oregon.

John Dalby said that once, when Ed was driving John's big car down at a dirt track in the US, Ed disappeared into the cloud of dust at turn one on the green at the back of the pack only to come out on the back stretch in the lead. When asked what happened Ed said something to the effect that he couldn't see anything and needed to get out of there quick.

He had also raced midgets at Burnaby's Digney Speedway in 1950 getting the BC Midget Auto Racing Association points title. As can be seen from the initial scrapbook clipping he made some headlines in the Vancouver area.

Some of his exploits can be found at his inductee posting at the Victoria Auto Racing Hall of Fame site.

One thing that happened to Ed Kostenuk back in 1962 was that he got hit in the face with a bird and came back to Victoria shaken and wondering about his future in racing. The article from the Victoria Colonist is by sports writing legend Jim Taylor. The bird didn't end his career.

In 1963 he tried again to qualify but couldn't get up to speed. A rookie by the name of Johnny Rutherford did make the field with the car, at that point named the City of Victoria but changed for Johnny's sponsors. Ed carried on having six starts in champ car racing.

I've also seen a clipping where he had a wreck in a USAC stock car race that hurt Johnny Rutherford a bit.

I wonder if Johnny remembers much about Ed Kostenuk.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Vancouver Art Gallery, 1968

This came up elsewhere. A car show of sorts at the Vancouver Art Gallery in 1968. So some clippings from the Ubyssey UBC student newspaper, including a review, and a photo of the Gordon Reelie midget at the show. (Of course this didn't happen during the racing season as Gordon would have been out with his car, Palmer Crowell at the wheel.)

And I'll leave reviewing the reviewer to someone else. It would have just been neat to see cars at an art gallery. Happened in Coquitlam a few years ago, the Evergreen gallery space.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Langley Speedway, September 5, 1965

Looks like this is the aftermath of the Ken Wilcox crash. Front end ripped off the super modified and Ken asking, according to the Surrey Leader, as he was being taken to the hospital, "how badly is the car hurt?"

First of a two-day weekend of racing. Wayne Wilbey moved into a tie with Ralph Monhay in the super modified points standings.

Will get the second day sorted out soon.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

imca, 1924 part one

We here at "racin' thru the raindrops" aren't above commercialism, it helped racing flourish from day one. And, of course, the month of May is the month of the Indianapolis 500. The "voice of Firestone" used to be considered the squealing of the rubber around the brickyard, also the sponsorship of the radio broadcast of the 500.

It has been said before, probably by me on this blog, that the IMCA ruled the racing world of North America for every day except the day of the Indy 500. So we will continue with the IMCA, 1924 part one this time.

Monday, July 1, 1924, Brandon, MB, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--1st race--light cars--2 miles--1st, Sarles (Collins?); 2nd, Daily (Duesy Special)--time, 2:33 3-5

--2nd race--elimination--5 laps--winner to meet Haugdahl--1st, Disbrow (Duesenberg); 2nd, Stone (Simplex)--time, 3:06

--3rd race--match race with Haugdahl--2 miles--1st, Haugdahl (Miller); 2nd, Disbrow (Duesenberg)--time, 2:17 3-5

--4th race--free-for-all--7 laps--1st heat--1st, Stone (Simplex); 2nd, Walters (Crysler?)--time, 4:18 1-5

--5th race--free-for-all--2nd heat--1st, Disbrow (Duesenberg); Purvis (Wisconsin)--time, 4:20 4-5

--6th race--free-for-all--final--5 laps--1st, Disbrow (Duesenberg); 2nd, Stone (Simplex)--time, 3:41 2-5

Friday, July 4, 1924, Brandon, MB, exhibition, 1/2 mile

--results unknown--

Saturday, July 12, 1924, Calgary, AB, Stampede and Fair, Victoria Park, 1/2 mile

--mile--Haugdahl (Miller Special)--1:01 (New Canadian record)

--Stampede Derby--25 laps--1st, Larry Stone (Simplex); 2nd, I.M. “Speedy” Walters (Maxwell); 3rd, Louis Disbrow (Duesenberg)--time, 15:25 2-5

--match race--2 miles--1st, Haugdahl; 2nd, Disbrow--time, 2:15 2-5

--light cars--5 laps--1st, Pop Daily (Duesy Special); 2nd, R. Hood; 3rd, Elmer (?) Collins (Ford)--time, 3:03 2-5

--3rd race--1st, Disbrow; 2nd, Stone; 3rd, W. Purvay (Fiat)

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

early Westwood, 1961

A clipping from Competition Press. A race from May 7, 1961 -- almost to the day of this post.

Bob McLean had come back from the Rob Walker driving school. He would go on to quickly become the so-called "king of Westwood" and 1965 Canadian driving champion.

Not sure if Tony Boom is still around. I think I was told it wasn't a nom de plume. I understand that CP/Autoweek is putting together an archive of the old racing newspaper to celebrate its 50th anniversary.

Monday, May 5, 2008

season opener, 1967

Been watching a dvd of old drag racing footage. That's got me in the mood for some smoke and noise. (I'm coming to the realization that those early drag racers were the original "drifters".)

The season opener happened in April for the drag racers in 1967. Some familiar names in the class winner stats: Bob Nottingham, Carl Tjorhom, Bob Kokotailo and others.

And, as was pointed out in a comment by Hemideuce, the late Gaines Markley provided some great racing at Mission.

Can't remember where I found the Mission poster. Off the web no doubt, so "please and thank you" to the BC Custom Car Association (BCCCA), who still run the second Mission Raceway.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

duel of the mighty midgets, part 14

"Oh oh, what's that!" indeed. It's Sunday, Duel of the Mighty Midgets time: