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Thread: Part 25 - Drivers and the Southern Ontario Outboard Racing Association

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    Default Part 25 - Drivers and the Southern Ontario Outboard Racing Association

    The internet does not have information concerning Southern Ontario Outboard Racing Association and finding drivers with information is almost impossible. Before CBF (Canadian Boating Federation) races were conducted, in southern Ontario, under Southern Ontario Outboard Racing Association . The classes were by H.P. with a free-for-all as the last race. In the very late 40s early 50s Mercury was front and center in the introduction of the stock outboard racing and class re-designation from H.P. to A,B,C & D soon followed.

    Drivers could race nearly every weekend and keep within 100 miles of home with the season end at London, Ontario on Labor Day weekend. This last race for the year was conducted by the Thames Boat Club and later by the London Ontario Outboard Racing Association at the Thames Boat Club.

    Prize money in cash did not exist for the most part. Sometimes the race promoter was able to acquire bushel baskets of groceries from the local grocers as prizes along with other items donated by local businesses. Basically boat racing was good. Low cost to join the association for the year, low entry fees ($1.00), lots of free food at the banquet Sunday night after the races and the high cost of racing had yet to come because under the H.P. classes most boats and engines served the dual purpose of racing and pleasure/fishing.This would not work today as pleasure boating equipment is very expensive.

    Apparently, medical/patrol boat personnel had not been informed about giving a driver rum after being ejected from his boat was not the best idea. It was rumored some drivers would upset their boat on purpose just to get the free rum.

    As you can see from the photos early on lifejackets or helmets were not required. Quickly that changed.

    At the time it was not mandatory or necessary for a racing association to carry liability insurance and from what little information available at this time Southern Outboard Racing Association were not insured. CBF (Canadian Boating Federation) incorporated March 1950 and has sanctioned insured races to this day barring this 2020 Covid-19 season. A lot of racers quit racing when CBF came on the scene. However, the rise in stock outboard racing and continuation of alky (pro) classes in limited numbers caused racing to move forward.

    Dunnville, London, St. Catharines, Welland, Hamilton, Niagara Falls, Chippawa were the well known race locations. Names that were well know were Frank Dashwood, Bob Glenney, Jerry and Walter Ollen-Bittle, Al Williams, Mike and Jim Toohey, Ken and Gordon Lewis, George and Bill Wells, John Dertinger, Jack and Butch Lundy, Francis Pickering, John and Ross Monroe, Jerry Bowman, Ken Wilkes, Dr. J. Boyd, Bill Bond, Bill Crawford, Austin McKee, Fred Herbert, William Boughen and Chet Webb. These are only a few names and we have little information available on their racing careers.

    Frank Dashwood: If he ever raced a boat is was well before this era. Frank sponsored his grandson Bob Glenney in racing until his passing. He donated the Frank Dashwood Trophy to CBF as a traveling trophy for the driver with the highest points in the ally division. Frank Dashwood invented the gas valve/regulator for controlling natural gas pressure in your homes and business used to this day. (Copy of the patent attached) His grandson Bob Glenney started racing in the A runabout class when the engine of choice was the Evinrude/Elto four cylinder 10 H.P. Lightfour Imperial. After this class ended he ran B hydro first with a Johnson SR then with a Konig. No information has come to light since.

    Dr. J. Boyd, Hamilton, Ontario ran a Evinrude Big Four on a Willis Comet and easily took care of the free-for-all class at the end of each days racing. He had a good run until boat and engine technology finally eliminated his edge. In his day he could start from any position and still win. The free-for-all class was later dominated by George Wells with his various versions of four cylinder Evinrude 50 H.P. engines. (Big Four, Pumper, 4-60) After Dr. Boyd quit racing for approximately 10 years he returned to the London Labor Day race with the Willis Comet with a new paint job and his same engine. Although very senior at the time he started his own engine only to find technology had really passed him by and that was the last time I had seen him at a race.

    Bill Boughen, St. Catharines, Ontario was the go to guy if you wanted your Evinrude 33 H.P. Speedifour to run fast. Even U.S. drivers close to the border had Bill Boughen work on their engines if they wanted speed. In Ontario Lloyd Pearson, Turkey Point, Ontario had his 33 worked on by Bill Boughen and this resulted in winning.
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    Last edited by Karl Williams, Sr.; 11-27-2020 at 07:20 PM. Reason: add attachments

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