I do remember Evan drove the sharpest looking pickup I ever saw on the street.
Show car quality, bucket seats, custom wheels, custom interior, the whole ball of wax!
He must have been a natural to finish second in B hydro just behind Bob Hering and one spot ahead of Jerry Waldman with only a few years experience. Seems like he would have been a fun guy to hang around with. Sounds like a wealthy Hans Krage. It might be that RCA decided boat racing was too dangerous for the pilot of a Lear Jet.
Upper right corner behind fence.......Jim Schoch.
On the other pic, that is Marshall Grant in the forground.
Thanks Marc. It wasn't your Dad that I met when I picked up the boats and trailers, but it might have been your Grandfather Hassell. I like that name.
ADD: I've been thinking you have been holding out on us Marc. You see how much interest has been generated by a few photos that you could have posted awhile back, but maybe because they were not boats racing, they would not be interesting. Just the opposite for me. Everyone takes pictures of boats on the water, but there are not enough pictures taken in the pits. If you have any more pictures in the pits, please post them on Random Shots, or create your own thread. It's fun to look back at the people, the boats and motors, the cars, the clothes and hairstyles, and then get the input from BRF members. John Schubert was right on target.
I could be wrong here, but since this was our first trip into that kind of country, and I remember so strongly about Baldy pointing out things, that it was the first time I had ever seen tobacco in the fields. I was very surprised to see that the fields were so small. They were ten, twenty..and maybe some were forty or fifty acres. They were planted on hillsides where tall trees had been cleared for the planting In those days tobacco growers, cigarette companies and oil companies carried lots of ads on the television. I still remember the buyer folding over leaves of tobacco then the auctioneer setting off in his statacco bid then pointing "Sold...American!". Until then I always thought all tobacco was grown on large level tracts like in Texas. These tracts were the family plots that had to work hard to grow good crops to sell at the auctions. It may be that I saw this on another boat racing trip, but I'm almost positive that it was on the way to and from the North South Championships.
One thing I do know, however, is that's the first time I ever heard Baldy tell us that Mules in Tennessee had two legs shorter than the other two. While we were confused as to what he meant, he pointed to the hills that had crops planted on the slopes and said the mules could only plow one direction. They had to plow with the long legs on the downhill side. They would be able to plow back in the other direction, but they would have to cross the road first. This was typical of Baldy. He could tell us kids a corny joke, and laugh just as hard as when he got a friend in a setup.
I think Monday was time trials after the races and I saw in the September issue of Roostertail that Jan Schoonover was the first pleasure boat to officially clock over 100 mph. He set the record at 102.857 with a dual Merc powered Switzer Wing. It only said that the record was at the Knoxville Boat Club, but not the date. I wonder if that was right after the North South race. I would have loved to have seen that historic run.
We got back on Tuesday. We had to get busy the next three days to clean everything up and mix new fuel and recharge the batteries because we would head out Saturday for Baytown. It was the second race at the Highlands race course on the San Jacinto River at Baytown Boat Club. We were all looking forward to the kettle fried chicken and french fries.
We stopped off first at Jack Chance's as we always did. Coming out of the Baytown Tunnell on Highway 146, it was only a few miles to the turnoff to Jack's house. The Holiday Inn where we stayed was only about a block before the turn to Jack's house, so it was only 4 or 5 miles from Jack's to the Holiday Inn.
Jack had fixed the 2 cylinder FC Konig while we were gone, and we put that back in the trailer, and if there was anything to do to any of the motors after the Knoxville race, Jack would have done it then. Somewhere along the way, we had picked up a used FA Konig. I don't know where we got it, but I suspect somebody at Knoxville gave Baldy a special deal on a used motor. So now we had a used FA and FC for our stable.
I must have learned something, got inspired or suddenly we got our act together after a year and a half of racing. For the first time, we finished in the money in every class we entered. A, B and C Hydro and Runabout. We only had that one Marchetti for all three classes, but the FC Konig wasn't all that fast. It had pretty good punch, but it was good enough to learn with. Baldy had been talking to Scott Smith quite a bit, and I'm sure they had a lot of discussion at Knoxville. Scott more than likely informed Baldy that Konig would be shipping 4 cylinder rotary valve motors over for the 1968 season, and Baldy wanted me to get some more driving experience before the 1967 season ended.
I ran into Marsha Wetherbee and her cousin LeeAnn (Alex Wetherbee's daughter) at Baytown and we more or less hung out together along with Marsha's younger brother Steve. There were not many drivers my age then, and at that time I didn't know Denny Henderson very well. He couldn't get away to make all our races in the gulf coast area at that time. Joe Bowdler was from San Antonio and pitted with Artie and Lucky Lund,( Artie having recently gotten our of the army), and Raymond Jeffries. Joe was only about a year older than me, but having been a seasoned racer and running CDF hydro and runabout, I didn't compete with him on the race course. My shyness kept me from approaching him, as he was a very talented driver, and at six foot two, three or maybe four, I figured he never even saw me.
I think I wrote these results down in my notebook in the same order that the heats were run.I got two forths in C runabout, a second in A hydro, a third in B hydro, a third in C hydro, a second in A runabout, and two seconds in B runabout. That equaled a grand total of $65.00 in prize money. I was walking on cloud nine. You could imagine how Baldy felt. We were pumped up, and were looking forward to the next race. Since there was no press to get back to school, we stayed overnight and stopped off at Jack's before we left for home.
ADD: This was our only hydro at the time. When I had a bunch of pictures hanging in my office in Alice in the 80's and 90's I wrote the date and place on them. I mistakenly wrote 1966. It was Baytown, but the year was 1967. I didn't realize this until I found BRF, and in dredging through time in tired old brain, I remembered that we had the Sid-Craft in 1966. This was our "Big" Marchetti according to Bob Hering. I don't remember the exact length. But for a short while we ran two cylinder A, B, and C Konigs on it. I'm being towed in at one of the three races we ran at the Baytown Boat Club in 1967. The FB Konig with the chrome exhaust can is hanging on the transom. The guy taking the picture is Mr. Tiporino. His friends called him Tippy. He took lots of pictures at Baytown over the years, and his Son fried chicken and fries.
ADD: Note how I just made a half loop (can't see it, but that's what I did) around the steering wheel, and the tow rope is taught against the top of the cowling? I was used to being towed in at Baytown. I knew they weren't going to start pulling soon as I made a few loops around my hand, or before the boat was straight. These guys had been towing boats for years and knew exactly how to pull alongside, toss the tow rope, give time to tie off, or like I did in the pic, just make a loop and hold taught against it. They would not tow fast so you couldn't hold on, or make a wake. If they did have to get you back in the pits quick for a speeded up tow, I would tell them and they would let me do a quick release on the bow handle. The picture reminded me of when I conked out at a course that didn't put on two or three races a year and did not have pickup boats that lived to watch and work the races. The guys knew how to drive boats, but they were vounteers, and didn't have experience. I did the half loop on one race course, and as soon as I pulled the loose end taught and nodded, the driver gunned it. Not to get on a plane...but to speed up the operation. The rope split the cowling of my Marchetti down to the "dashboard" batten. I reached over the cowling to grasp the tow rope to hoist it back and about the same time he slacked off. He learned, but I had to do some patching. I learned from that also. After wooden decks, I always tied the half loop around the bow handle.
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