Saturday, March 7, 2009
STURGIS SD. MOTORCYCLE RACES 1958
Ray Hendershot, was the BSA DEALER in KANSAS CITY, KS in 1958. Ray would help out any rider that needed help, along the way. In 1958 he met such a rider, a First Year Class " A" Rider . During my visit to Ray's shop the Topic of the STURGIS SD. RACES came up. Ray often mentioned the STURGIS RACES and the FEED HELD AT THE CITY PARK...BUFFALO BUGERS !
Being that the STURGIS RACES were a 2 day event, Ray ask me if I would like to come along to watch over things as he could only stay for one race day . Ray had a second night job at TWA, so after the 1st Day Races he would fly back to Kansas City KS. The plan was that after the STURGIS SD. RACES we would then go to thwe Kansas Fair Races and then on to SPRINGFIELD IL. for the MILE NATIONAL. Ray would meet us at SPRINGFIELD IL. that following weekend.
First Year Class " A" Rider did Ok the during the 1st day of racing. The next morning we headed out to get breakfast. We spotted some racers trailerd RACE BIKES parked at this small cafe on main street STURGIS, so we stopped and went inside. While sitting at our booth I noticed several well known CA. RACE RIDERS , sitting at a table near us.
We were about to order our Breakfast when in walks JOE LEONARD National # 1 in 1958. Joe ask the question "Does anybody have a sharp RAZOR as I want to have a clean shave when I kiss the Trophy Girl Today.
First Year Class "A" Rider sitting across from me in our booth says " Joe what makes you think , you are going to WIN the Trophy Dash Today ? " The CA. racer guys , sitting at the table near us look our way....Hell , I wanted to slid under or booths table, at that time. No comment fron JOE. I then ask First Year Class " A" Rider why he would say something like that to JOE LEONARD ? He said in his TEXAS DRAW " WELL THE RACE HAS NOT BEEN RUN YET".
Needless to say JOE LEONARD WON : The Trophy Dash ( Kissed the Trophy Girl) and WON everything else that day.
My long time friend, First Year Class "A" Rider went on to become a NATIONAL NUMBER and WON NATIONAL RACES at the MILE & 1/2 MILE RACE TRACKS ...........SAMMY TANNER # 7
PS: SAMMY TANNER, is also a WPFT Member & AMA HALL of FAME MEMBER