SOCIETY OF LANDSPEED RACING HISTORIANS Newsletter #21. Websites posting the newsletter are:
President's Corner: By Jim Miller.
Crossover racers. If you look at the dry lakes of Southern California you'll be amazed at the tallent that went to
school there. You'll find these Gow-Job boys invaded every form of motorsports imagineable. Right now I'm
looking at a picture of a Clyde Adams dirt track racer built before the war that was photographed on August 8,
1947. The car looks ready to win a trophy dash for its driver and a kiss from some budding starlet but wait, this
isn't Carrell or Saugus, the location is El Mirage and the car is running in the Streamliner Class. An old Ford
Model-B engine powers it sporting two long pipes down the side. Right above the pipes it says McAfee. This is
none other than Jack McAfee's Class C ride that ran through the lights at 122+ mph. Later he ran the same car
with a Studie flathead-6. Tommy Davis was another one who cut his teeth on the dirt. He ran a car at the lakes
in '41 that started life at Indy as a Miller, but you would never know it. The chassis was the only thing left of the
original car. It ran an Olds flathead straight-8 that turned 116 mph and used a '29 Ford roadster body that was
narrowed and shortened. Tom started Avaid, and the company still make the dry-sump pumps today. And what
about Bruce Crower. Who else would show up at Bonneville with a Hudson powered by a Chrysler and run
151+ with guest driver Jimmy Bryan. Today Bruse tinkers with Rice Rockets and runs an empire. Hallock,
Magoo, Ingle, McGurk, Remington, Kurtis, Schiefer, Brown, Pink, Hilborn, Senter, Palamides, Winfield, Meyer,
Daigh, Kong, Barnes, Phil Hill, I could go on forever with names, some you know, some you don't that cut their
teeth or played in our sandbox. Thanks guys!
1) I would really love to be a member of the Historians. Paula Murphy Paula: Welcome. You are on the
list. However, anyone can go to one of many websites to read and enjoy and to send in histories and questions.
There are no fees, duties or responsibilities outside of what Jim Miller and I do, or what volunteers chose to do.
We are a 'working' group of historians. Some are trained, some are not. The main goals are for our members to
find a museum to store landspeed and hotrodding memorabilia and historical works and to encourage writers,
researchers and photographers to continue to write and study. What qualifies one for membership in the Society
of Land Speed Racing Historians (SLSRH)? Look at the list of members and it will become obvious. Many
have written articles and books on the subjects of hot rodding and landspeed racing. Some have been amateur
and professional photographers of these sports. Many were original members of SCTA or other Timing
Associations and have intimate knowledge of our history. Some are collectors, past officials, media reporters
and public relations people. Why are we glad to have you join us? Anybody who knows anything about what
we are doing knows the name Paula Murphy and what she has done and what she means to our heritage. When
we talk about national treasures we are talking about those who gave our hobbies life. We are honored that you
want to belong. Welcome to our group.
Editor's notes: The following was sent out in June, 2006 and just recently received. Rex McAfee is the son of
Jack McAfee, who raced at the dry lakes in the 1940's. You may notice that I have been sending quite a few
newsletters recently. The reason is that my server would not let emails through to me earmarked for Rnparks1
and so I had to go to Rnparks2, until the server blocked that email address as well. Once I got DSL, I was able
to go back and retrieve "lost" emails, some 2413 of them. These backlogged emails will soon be exhausted and
then only new material will go into the future newsletters.
2) My driving debut in the "Lone Wolf " Corvette took place this weekend at the 5th annual Historic Car
Festival at California Speedway. The weather couldn't have been better; smoggy, hot, humid....ahhh....
the Inland Empire! My good friend Rory Rinebold who just ran his 1950's special weeks earlier at the
Wine Country Classic purchased this Corvette "project" car for me to drive. Hats off to Rory for working
his tail off installing the roll-bar, fire system, new front-end, fuel cell and other items. After squeaking
by tech-inspection, he just felt sorry for us, we went out for our first practice session. A few laps out the
ignition went "South." I pulled off the course but couldn't get the car in a protected area. Full Course
Caution with the Safety Car! I told Rory "It can only get better from here." Next session, I was just
starting to finally relax and get a feel for the car when coming on the main straight, the engine started
losing power and smoking. I limped on the shoulder across the finish line and coasted into the last
paddock entrance with oil and water leaving a nice trail...the engine had "expired." On the bright side,
we had Rory's motor home with A/C to "retreat" in and hide from the officials. A crate motor is in the
works along with other improvements so we can at least run at Palm Springs later in the season. Maybe
Las Vegas too. Until next time...Rex
3) Saw you and Bro on the 'tube of boob' Sunday in THE Roadster...sure brought back memories. Looked
like a good time was had by all. "THANX TO "WALLY" FOR ALL HE DID FOR US"!!! Your pal, Don
Rudy Don: I've just finished a story on the Celebration of Life at the racetrack last Sunday and will send it to
www.hotrodhotline.com, www.oilstick.com and any other publication that wants it. In addition, there will be a
video tape made and possibly sold through the museum. There was an A-list of celebrities who came. All the
nostalgia guys and gals. Dad always said that he wanted a "Steve Evans" type send-off and they did just that.
Because it was at an NHRA event, it required a ticket and Dad would have been hurt had he thought that his
Farewell came at a cost to anyone. So we are planning another event in February, a day before the Winter-
nationals, when parking and admission won't be charged and we won't have to rush the speakers and do it all
in half an hour. NHRA and the Motorsports Museum did a great job, but we need to have a Celebration of
Life that is open and accessible, as he would have wanted it. Neither my brother or I have stood in the way
of anyone wishing to create a tasteful event to say goodbye to our Dad. These events are important. They
allow us to say our goodbyes, but also to say hello to those we don't see very often. It is the hellos that are
really important, to let those we admire know that we respect and admire them. Goodbyes and hellos are a
bonding experience from one generation to another and we need them.
4) Working on a Blackie Gejeian story. Most of his photos were destroyed in a fire. Greg Sharp kindly sent
me several photos of Blackie's Modified. I'm looking for photos of the Clovis Speedway, and Fresno
Dragway, particularly any showing 4 dragsters running side by side down the strip. Blackie was the only
promoter to do such. Of course any photo of Blackie at El Mirage would be the crowning jewel. Dick
Martin Dick: I will post your email and ask our readers if they have what you need and if they will contact
you. Readers: If you have a request, please post an email address, phone number or some other way for people
to get in touch with you. It is the policy of the newsletter to not divulge your whereabouts until you expressly tell
me to or if you provide it in your email to the newsletter. But the volume of mail has gotten so high lately that it
is time consuming and difficult to resend messenges and I would ask you all to help me out in my workload by
conducting conversations directly among yourselves. Unless of course, in case you want to make your answers
public. I will be glad to post any letter that you send in.
5) Editor's notes: I attended the 70th Anniversary of the SCTA Exhibit at the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports
Museum on November 7, 2007 and met many land speed racers and fans. Among our group in attendance was
Jim Miller, Roger Rohrdanz, Ed Safarik, Al Teague, JD Tone and myself. A full report will be written under my
Gone Racin' by-line and sent to the websites.
6) I began writing these "Epistles" in 1999. Some are around. I'll send what I can find. You can use what
ever you want. It's been a lot of fun and I've met a number of people and made some good friends because
of these letters. I have one about our week at the Chili Bowl in Tulsa you might enjoy, but it's about
Bonneville people going to the granddaddy of all midget races. I'll send it and you can decide if it really
belongs in a Bonneville genre. I have now installed a 533 cu. in. KB with a 14-71 blower to run on about
35% nitro. It's still in work. Pete Prentice, my youthful partner has moved on to other endeavors, so the
KB installation is progressing slowly as I only have 1/10 the energy he does at age 38. I just hit the big
seven-zero and run out of steam more quickly than when I was younger. Ken Kelley Ken: I will publish
anything that is sent to me as it concerns the hotrodding and landspeed world. We will be glad to publish them.
7) The tribute to your dad at Pomona was great. I hope you and your family had the same view as the rest
of the people there. I got some great pictures and one ran in 1320 notes on www.dragracingonline.com.
When you take as many as I do it is hard deciding which are the ones to use out of the 1000's I take.
James Drew James: Thank you for the nice compliments and for covering Dad's Celebration of Life at
Pomona last Sunday.
8) I have been retired since 1995. Sure, sent the newsletter. Ken Kelley Ken: Welcome, you're on the list.
Keep sending us your observations on landspeed racing, past and present.
9) We here at Infineon Raceway are celebrating our 40th year in Racing here in Sonoma County. We are
trying to locate old images, stories, etc from 1968 through the mid to late 80ís for Drag Racing, Early
Indy Cars, Camel GT, early NASCAR etc. If you have any information please contact Mike D'Addario
Infineon Raceway, Sonoma, CA 800-870-7223 X141 - firstname.lastname@example.org
10) The following came from www.hotrodhotline.com. They are featuring us in their on-line website.
Members: Jonathan Amo, Brett Arena, Henry Astor, Glen Barrett, Lee Blaisdell, Warren Bullis, Gary Carmichael,
Jerry Cornelison, G. Thatcher Darwin, Jack Dolan, Ugo Fadini, Robert Falcon, Rich Fox, Glenn Freudenberger,
Don Garlits, Bruce Geisler, Stan Goldstein, Andy Granatelli, Walt James, Wendy Jeffries, Ken Kelley, Mike Kelly,
Jim Lattin, Mary Ann and Jack Lawford, Fred Lobello, Dick Martin, Ron Martinez, Tom McIntyre, Don McMeekin,
Tom Medley, Jim Miller, Don Montgomery, Mark Morton, Paula Murphy, Louise Ann Noeth, David Parks, Richard
Parks, Wally Parks (in memoriam), Eric Rickman, Willard Ritchie, Roger Rohrdanz, Evelyn Roth, Ed Safarik,
Frank Salzberg, Charles Shaffer, Mike Stanton, David Steele, Doug Stokes, Bob Storck, Pat Swanson, Al and
Jane Teague, JD Tone and Jack Underwood.