View Full Version : Leo B. Wildman Photographer

Ron Hill
03-31-2007, 08:03 AM
Jim Buckhorn gave me his personal collection of Leo B. Wildman photos. Leo lived in Garden Grove and took many pictures. His wife was always at his side helping him and keeping him organized.

The last time I really remember seeing him was 1967 when he took Ted May's and my pictures for our passports. But there were trees in the background, so we had to get regular pictures...

I'm going to call Chuck Rear and see if we can get together, as Jim and I can't remember most of these pictures....

This was WOA Racing at its best...

All classes had two in the boat, as everyone knows, it is more fun with two in the boat...

Ron Hill
03-31-2007, 08:09 AM
Twin Merc 44's on a Power Cat... The runbaout is Doc Robbins, "Coming at you". A "Flying Scott"...

Ron Hill
03-31-2007, 08:18 AM
Don't recall what JP and MM meant, may actually have never known their meaning...

Racing through the old trees at Havasu... and the MM boat is in Mission Bay, San Diego, maybe...

Ron Hill
03-31-2007, 08:32 PM
Doc Robbins with a KG-9 before he had a Scott...

Second pictures is a MOREHOUSE...a Lee Morehouse runabout with a Scott...

The third picture is an EP, Cutless Craft.....Looks like a Yellow Kacket..., I think...Lake Havasu when there were still trees in the middle of the lake.

As usual, two in the boat was more fun!!!

ADD: Actually, that is a Mark 40...Not a KG-9.

Ron Hill
03-31-2007, 08:45 PM

RX 62 is the first picture...

JimBuckhorn with no numbers is the second picture..

Third picture...51-X is out of control...

25 DX may very well be John Cordes , my brother's brother-in-law...as we race with FREE STA Mix gas for several years...

Doc Robbins deck rider "Getting forward"...

Go Rite Fuel, thatr Sta Mix put outr of business...with Jim Buckhorn at the wheel...

121 X///Some "LOON"..going faster than he should...

Ron Hill
03-31-2007, 08:49 PM
Let's see, RM 62 is starting the race with two in the boat...then...

Last picture, you gys tell me the water gets "ROUGH"...

04-01-2007, 08:14 AM
Great stuff Ron, would love to see more.

Joe J
04-01-2007, 06:39 PM

If I get figure out how to scan, I have all my dad's pictures, w/ a bunch of Leo Wildman shots in the box.

If I can't figure it out, I would "Consider" sending them to you, but you would have to PROMISE me that I will get them back.


Ron Hill
04-01-2007, 07:48 PM
I still don't know how to scan, that is why most of my pictures "SUCK"....I take pictures of the pictures, as I know how to post from my camera...

Do you know who any of these guys are??? Going to call Chuck Rear, and see if he'll put names with some of these GREAT FACES.....

I guess, I REMEMBER TOO WELL, but WOA BOAT RACERS "RACED"......Long before they ever heard of OPC!!!!

More pictures...Buckhorn paid a BUCK EACH for these and he GAVE them to me....But I'd return yours if you want....

Check out these CRAZIES....Two in this hydro....

Ron Hill
04-01-2007, 10:06 PM
Truth is, Western Outboard Association's racing was really quite COOl. They weren't APBA or OPC, they were RACING OUTBOARDS and were proud of it.

In high school, my best friend was Rus Edmission, (Rus raced DX, with his brother Larry, in WOA) and in metal shop we built lots of things...Rus built a power trim from a hydralic jack. I told him this was a DUMB idea as things like trailer hitches were better. Well we built a trailer hitch for my 1953 Chevy, and the power trim for his DX and we also built a cross bow that shot welding rod...The damn thing went off and we shot a welding rod through the roof of the metal shop...

Rus went on to build Barbie some houses, Putt Putts and Hot Wheels, when he worked for Mattel...

I guess Power Trim was a good idea...Maybe, WOA had a good idea, stock production motors, with two in the boat...as everyone knows, it is more fun with two in the boat...

ADD; If you haven't noticed, these guys ARE RACING!!!!

Mark Poole
04-02-2007, 03:19 PM
That last pic of the 808mm, must be the first piclefork ever built. Looking at the motors looks to be around 1964 or 65.

Ron Hill
04-02-2007, 10:03 PM
Ted May, Joe Moore, Bill Knoch, John Craven and myself were at Bixby Slough, March 1954, when the DeSilva Boys brought out a "NEW" Hydro for Lowell Haberman...It was a "PICKLE FORK" with both pickles connected ith a 1 X 2 piece of wood...The boat had so much lift, that it kept doing "Wheel Stands", not blowing over, but we gave the boat the NICKNAME of "The Flying Sling Shot", because, from a distance, when the bow went up, it looked like a GIANT Sling Shot.

My dad took a ride in it, a announced that is was a "DUMB DESIGN" as he came back soaked and said he hit a wave and the water came right down between the "Pickle Forks', though they weren't called that then...and he thought he migh drown...

Ralph designed them, there were several. Not sure they ever won a race...But I had seen a Swith with a "PICKLE" fork front end, in a Speed and Spray magazine years earlier...

So, this wasn't the first "Pickel fork" ever...But, like my dad inventing water skiing on Lake Elsinore...He had never heard of water skiing before he built a ski...these guys may have designed this themselves, without any knowledge of anyone else's design...

More pictures from Leo B. Wildman...

Ron Hill
04-05-2007, 09:44 AM
Some more Leo B. Wildman photos...

232 might be Dick Sherrer, as I know Dick raced a GALE Outboard Motor...

424 is a Fantasy Hydro....I think, Kenny Pyle designed this boat...The hydros, didn't really out run runabouts in THE OLD DAYS, as the boats were heavy, two people in the boat and all, the sponson had more drag than a flat bottom...

I guess what I like about these photos are, not one of these SUMBITCHES ain't "RACING"....Nobody is just riding around, they're "RACING BY GOD"...

04-12-2007, 05:38 PM
Let me know I can teach anything to anyone including a Hill (though it may mean a little duct tape to get the lesson started :-))

04-12-2007, 07:22 PM
If he was going to, he would have already. He's got a camera and he's going to use it :)

04-13-2007, 05:29 AM
I too wish high quality scans were available of the stuff Ron has, but I am
gratefull for the decent camera images he is able to provide. It's quick and
easy and it works.. ( Sounds like Ron's race boats!!:D )
Danny Leger

If he was going to, he would have already. He's got a camera and he's going to use it :)

04-13-2007, 08:37 AM

If I get figure out how to scan, I have all my dad's pictures, w/ a bunch of Leo Wildman shots in the box.

If I can't figure it out, I would "Consider" sending them to you, but you would have to PROMISE me that I will get them back.


Joe, Ron and maybe Wayne,

If you need a scanner you might look at the Canon LiDE 25 or LiDE 70. They're inexpensive ($50 or $80) and as an added bonus, they're so easy to connect, even a boatracer could do it (only one USB cable to plug in). They aren't professional grade but we're not doing professional grade work.......:confused:

Another nice thing about them is that they are small/light enough that when not in use mine leans against the wall under the desk.


Joe J
04-18-2007, 04:53 PM
OK, I finally sat down and figured out how to scan.

Below is a Leo wildman photo of my dad, dated August 1970. It was taken at Lake Casitas, above Ventura CA.


04-18-2007, 08:56 PM
Joe . i am glad to see you got the scanner working. Post more pictures of your Dad. He was a great boat racer .

Master Oil Racing Team
04-19-2007, 09:08 AM
Thanks for the info Dave, but I have two Canon scanners already. Trouble is my best one was sabotaged by my brother-in-law. He installed a security program so strong it wouldn't allow me to get into my programs. It's like Fort Knox. I erased it, but I still cant't figure out how to use any of my programs. I should have started on the DePue stuff a month ago.

Don't let this be any discouragment though. That is good information, and I am glad to see Joe J getting his working. I had no clue when I started, but I was compelled to learn after joining BRF. As Dave says, it is easy to learn, so any of you guys out there afraid to try, get that out of your mind. Get your mind on finding that shoebox and start scanning your photos.:D

Ron Hill
05-01-2007, 05:54 PM
More lessons needed.... Here is a check to cover mine and Ted May's pictures that Leo took for our passports...Why I have these old checks, I haven't a clue...except I keep looking for several that have D. Laughlin's signature on the back....D as in Don Laughlin...as in Laughlin, Nevada....

Ron Hill
05-10-2007, 02:55 PM
scanned picture

05-10-2007, 02:57 PM

07-11-2013, 06:32 AM
More Leo Wildman photos, from the collection of Bill Whitney as provided by "DoubleEagle"

07-11-2013, 04:32 PM
Any notes on the back regarding location or year?

Ron Hill
07-11-2013, 06:33 PM
Lake Casitas

Lake Casitas is an man-made lake in the Los Padres National Forest of Ventura County, California, created by the construction of Casitas Dam on Coyote Creek, two miles before it joins the Ventura River. Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lake_Casitas)

Area (http://www.google.com/search?biw=1536&bih=734&q=lake+casitas+area&sa=X&ei=TVzfUdzLDMirigLWm4DIAg&ved=0CJQBEOgTKAEwDQ): 1.719 sq miles (4.452 kmē)

Surface elevation (http://www.google.com/search?biw=1536&bih=734&q=lake+casitas+surface+elevation&sa=X&ei=TVzfUdzLDMirigLWm4DIAg&ved=0CJcBEOgTKAEwDQ): 338' (103 m)

Length (http://www.google.com/search?biw=1536&bih=734&q=lake+casitas+length&sa=X&ei=TVzfUdzLDMirigLWm4DIAg&ved=0CJoBEOgTKAEwDQ): 3.293 miles (5.3 km)

Width (http://www.google.com/search?biw=1536&bih=734&q=lake+casitas+width&sa=X&ei=TVzfUdzLDMirigLWm4DIAg&ved=0CJ0BEOgTKAEwDQ): 1.864 miles (3 km)

Outflow location (http://www.google.com/search?biw=1536&bih=734&q=lake+casitas+outflow+location&sa=X&ei=TVzfUdzLDMirigLWm4DIAg&ved=0CKABEOgTKAEwDQ): Coyote Creek (http://www.google.com/search?biw=1536&bih=734&q=lake+casitas+coyote+creek&stick=H4sIAAAAAAAAAGOovnz8BQMDAy8HsxKnfq6-QYqpiXmFbHjH0lMGlrm3l6qoM0oeP73u1MJAACrh2noqAAAA&sa=X&ei=TVzfUdzLDMirigLWm4DIAg&ved=0CKEBEJsTKAIwDQ)

Islands (http://www.google.com/search?biw=1536&bih=734&q=lake+casitas+islands&sa=X&ei=TVzfUdzLDMirigLWm4DIAg&ved=0CKQBEOgTKAEwDQ): Main Island

WOA and COBRA raced there for years. AS population pressure grew, the "RANGERS" got "PISSY" that us boat racers touched their water. Early 1960's.

The last few races there were APBA events!