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    BoatRacingFacts VIP racingfan1's Avatar
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    Default April 1972

    Here are page 9 - 16 of the April edition
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    Administrator Ron Hill's Avatar
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    Default Owen Kaiser's Article for Southern California Outboard Association 1972 P 14

    I think I was Commodore, 1972. I was floundering around with kneel down boats. I'd sold my Alky (PRO) stuff and wasn't happy with OPC going to single engine. I had built a boat for a guy in Needles, 1970, who owned a furniture store in 29 Palms. The boat was for his son, and I traded a couch for it.


    The son wasn't very interested in boat racing, so when August 1970 rolled around, I realized that the Nationals were in Beloit, 15 miles from my wife's hometown. I needed to get to Waukegan to get my twin engine Jones, to race at the Elsinore 500 in October. I asked my wife if she could get time of in August from TWA, if she was taking time off in October to go to Europe. She applied for PTO (Personal Time Off) in August, she had already been approved for October.


    We were a little surprised that they gave her the time off, so we decided to go to the Nationals.....and pick up the Jones. Well, I got this idea, to borrow the boat I'd build for Weatherby in Needles. So, we hauled out for Beloit via Needles. I threw the boat on top of my 1968 station wagon and off we went. Spent the first night at my aunt's in Las Vegas.


    I won both qualifying heat of D Runabout and both final heats of D Runabout. Many that watched me drive my Hill Boat, named the Bounty Hunter, 81-C thought it might have been the spectacular boat race of the century, at least in kneel down boats. 4 lap heats, I started lap both heats, and by lap three I was leading.


    Charlie Strang told me he designed that Mark 55-H but never dreamed anyone could make it run that fast. He then asked me who built the boat? I said, "I did." He then asked why I didn't build OPC boats. I said, "MONEY." He said stop by Jack leeks office Monday and pick up a check, I want you to build us a boat.


    So, OMC was buying my gas to take a boat to California to race, and then I got a check for $5,500 to build a boat. Wow, in 1970, I think I made $7,200 a years. I figured, maximum material for the new boat at a grand.


    One draw back, in Winslow, Arizona I was standing on the corner, with a valve through the head of my station wagon's motor. I ended up buy a new El Camino, and went on down the road.


    I left the Hill D Runabout off at Weatherby's and went home as my wife and I both had to go to work the first of September.


    Mr. Weatherby, Earl, called and said, "Why don't you buy our equipment?" They had a couple of C's, and a D Motor, nice trailer, a new Dawe C Hydro, an older Hill D Runabout and the new D Runabout.


    So, I had some "OMC" money, so I bought all Weatherby's equipment.


    1971, got away from me, teaching, working on propellers, racing boats.
    As Commodore of SCOA in 1972, I decided I should sell off the Weatherby stuff. So, at Needles, I loaned out both Weatherby C motors, and both Hill D Runabouts.


    We ended up with about 10-12 C Runabouts, two of which we mine. On about lap two, Dave Bryan sheared a pin coming out of the corner, he climbed forward and sat of the deck with his knees wrapped around the steering wheel. Johnny Craven, came sliding through the corned, in my boat, and "Hooked It" and ran right into Dave Bryan, hitting him in the breast bone, knocking out of the boat.


    The river has cool water always, but winter water is colder, Dave didn't seem hurt, but they took him to the hospital anyway.


    Well, Doc Hartenstein had been golfing at the Needles Golf Course, when they called him to come and work on Danny Loper. Doc Hartenstein, happened to get to the hospital about the same time Dave got there. Doc Hartenstein took one look at Dave and said, "You need surgery right now." Dave said, "Let's wait a few minutes here." Doc, said, "You'll be dead in a few minutes." Turned out Dave had a ruptured spleen, had Danny Loper not been cut, Dave would have died that day, 1972.


    Dave told me this story many times, he passed at 83, in October 2016.


    Owen Kaiser, is Mary Jo Allen's (Mrs. Ernie Dawe) half brother (Her father drown inthe Colorado River in Needles).. Owen is a dentist in Tuscon, AZ.
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    Last edited by Ron Hill; 3 Days Ago at 07:59 PM.

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