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History The Old Sanjose Speedway

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by SpeedyPAt, Jul 16, 2008.

  1. This is how I remember it. My dad and I made the trip a few times in the 70s. I even got to race one of my bike there once.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. 36Brua
    Joined: Jul 31, 2007
    Posts: 87

    36Brua
    Member

     
  3. RichFox
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 9,946

    RichFox
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I grew up in Belmont. Summer nights I'd be in bed with the window open and could hear the hardtops running. Loved it.
     
  4. JeffB2
    Joined: Dec 18, 2006
    Posts: 8,343

    JeffB2
    Member
    from Phoenix,AZ

    I went to the last race before it closed :( even tho' I lived in Sacramento Fremont was a special place, there were some great Nostalgia events got to see some of the most memorable Legends in Drag Racing.
     
  5. JeffB2
    Joined: Dec 18, 2006
    Posts: 8,343

    JeffB2
    Member
    from Phoenix,AZ

    Thanks for the memories in pics,I worked for M&M Speed Engineering in Sacramento in the mid 70's,Bailey Bros,Tognottis', Herberts' and Rex Hutchinsons were all in the area then.Do you remember a car that ran at San Jose sponsored by Cal Cams out of San Leandro?
     
  6. SpeedyPAt
    Joined: Jan 21, 2008
    Posts: 129

    SpeedyPAt
    Member
    from Spokane Wa

    Hey guys I have to tell you that all yours storys are excellent I have really
    enjoyed all of of your post's and the pics as well thank you! The flat track
    bike pic is amazing that must of been the mile track I would assume.I don't
    remember what year it was but one time they brought out the little midgets,
    to Sanjose and the carts didn't have enough power to go up the high banks
    and would slide down the corner to the inside of track. I only went to one
    Mile race that was in the mid 80's I beleive eithr Bubba Sobert or Chris Carr
    won that race on a Honda.
     
  7. maddog
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 693

    maddog
    Member
    from So Cal

    Thanks for the memories. I remember San Jose Speedway and Baylands well. My dad took me to baylands to see my first drag race. The hilite for me was when the jet car blew down the fence.
    San Jose Speedway is where I spent one night a week for a long time. I was 16 and had to have my parents sign a slip so I could join nascar and pit for my best friends big brother. Thats right, I was in the pit crew. I was somebody!! I wouldnt miss that for nothing. This is in the late 60's, no mufflers, the noise, the smell, I loved it. My friends big brother was only about 19 or 20. He had the only single carb car at the track, finished last in the C race every single week. "Next week we're gonna do better" he would tell us. His name is Ken Boman. He raced for years and years and never got to the same level as Keading, Marshel, Ricino, and the other real fast guys. Man I loved that.
     
  8. art.resi
    Joined: Oct 15, 2006
    Posts: 214

    art.resi
    Member

    In the pits a radio on and advertising Marshal Sargents Last Lap restarant.
    On the track within 5 seconds Marshal goes into the wall, I never saw
    him race again and don't think he did.
     
  9. RichFox
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 9,946

    RichFox
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    As a kid I also went to a Stock car race at Bay Medows horse race track in San Mateo. And here is a picture taken at the San Carlos mile and a quarter board track. I used to have a picture of a Big car going out the top, but sent it to the Speedway museum. Track ran in 20 and 21. No I wasn't there. I belive I do remember being at $99 claimer races in Alviso around '58 or '59 with my buddy Larry Climbe and his '49 Ford claimer.
     

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    Last edited: Jul 21, 2008
  10. 36Brua
    Joined: Jul 31, 2007
    Posts: 87

    36Brua
    Member

    A friend, Tom Razovich, who has passed away, used to talk about running on the board tracks in and around the bay area. He said that flying hunks of splintered wood really got your attention !! here comes a 2 x4 !! yikes
     
  11. That picture sure is sad! Yeah, I was there at Fremont the last race too. A jet car roasted the KOME (or was it KSJO?) sign at the back of the dragstrip and everybody cheered. I also raced there a few times in a few different cars. What a waste! Lots of great memories at that track. I have a bunch of old pictures I took there in the '70s and '80s with a big telephoto lens buried in a box somewhere.

    The thing I remember the most was standing at the corner of the wire fence about 20 feet away from the cars at the starting line while jet cars and nitro cars lined up to race, and feeling the power of their engines hitting me in the chest. That was awesome. I can almost smell the nitro and feel it burning my eyes just thinking about it. And I can remember every race when I was going down the track. There was a nice looking girl in the booth that would hand me my time-slip after I made the turnaround. One time she was laughing at me because my brakes were so lousy that I had to pass the first turnaround and turn around way down at the turnaround the top fuel guys use at the very end of the track.
     
  12. acsidetrack
    Joined: Jul 18, 2008
    Posts: 2

    acsidetrack
    Member

    I realy remember the San Jose speedway, i was in grammer school the firdt time i went there with a friend. Al Silveiras dad took us there for a
    open track roaster,and big car event. about 1950 i guess, i won 3 championships with Bill Scott driving my blue goose cars from about 1967-1971. and 1 as an engine builder after Fred Ede bought the car and had Bill still drive the car.
    Fred still has the car.a track like that today would be great if there was some control on the rules to keep the cars affordable.

    Keep the stories going as i,m sure whatever ones are left do truly enjoy the stories. A.C.
     
  13. Ingram_son
    Joined: Aug 31, 2008
    Posts: 8

    Ingram_son
    Member

    Marshall Sargent was always my favorite, even though I was really too young to know anything. I remember laying on the steps up in the bleachers and falling through. fortunately a guy happened to see me start to roll and reached down and caught me. He held me suspended there until my Dad got someone from the track to unlock and let him to get me.

    We have a track up here in Skagit County that brings some of those memories back.
    They run Sportsman, 360, 410, and a class called Outlaw Hornets (street cars in really bad shape) Lots of dirt and speed and very down to earth. Kasey Kahne holds the track record and usually comes back at least once a year.
     
  14. ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Joined: Jan 1, 2008
    Posts: 1,367

    ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Member
    from Bordertown

    My folks would go to San Jose. We lived in Merced so I grew up watching the Sportsmen cars at Merced Speedway. But on occasion went to Madera and saw the Supers there. I love those old cars, and helped start a nostalgic Sportsman class at Merced, and now am revamping a low budget open wheel class at Rattlesnake Raceway in Fallon Nevada, to resemble the Sportsman/Modified cars of the 60s and 70s.
    The car I grew up around...my dad painted it circ. 1972.
    [​IMG]
    My "California Sportsman" at Merced Speedway in 1999
    [​IMG]
    Sliding into turn 1 @ Merced in 2002
    [​IMG]

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CktOu5eGpiU</EMBED>
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2011
  15. I was there for the "Last Race" as well. I'd just checked in at NAS Moffett Field. Interestingly, they opened up the strip for some racing the following Saturday as well, but it wasn't advertised (intentionally?) and just a handful of people showed up.

    I usta watch the bike races- The San Jose Mile- at the Speedway as well.

    Bubba Shobert ruled!!! :D
     
  16. boldventure
    Joined: Mar 7, 2008
    Posts: 1,766

    boldventure
    Member

    I'm an "east coast refugee", we've been in the Bay Area about 10 years. When the names of the racing venues from the bygone era come up I wonder where these places actually were. I live quite close to the speedway in Watsonville, we've been there a few times. Can anyone "put dots on maps" for the Bay Area places that were? I'm just curious...
     
  17. nitram22
    Joined: Apr 16, 2007
    Posts: 29

    nitram22
    Member
    from California

    My family made many trips from Sacramento to San Jose back in the '70's. We loved to see those 150 lap "Johnny Key Classic" races.

    My favorites at San Jose were Howard Kaeding (won 16 straight and 22 mains overall in 1973), and "Quick" Nick Rescino.


    Baylands info: http://www.na-motorsports.com/Tracks/CA/Baylands.html
    The outline of the oval and dragstrip used to be visible on Google Earth, the buildings there now must be fairly new.

    San Jose info: http://www.na-motorsports.com/Tracks/CA/SanJose.html
    (Info is about the Fairgrounds track), the paved speedway was also on Tully Road, across the street from the Eastridge Mall, next to the airport. Nothing left of it now.

    Here's some pictures of old San Jose Supers at the All American Vintage Classic:
    [​IMG]

    A good shot of the transverse leaf rear:
    [​IMG]
    A panorama of some of the other cars at the Classic:
    [​IMG]

    A bunch more stuff at my Fotki site.

    P.S. I'm looking for stuff on the old Clovis Speedway, if anyone has pictures/info from there, I'd appreciate it, thanks!!
     
  18. JeffB2
    Joined: Dec 18, 2006
    Posts: 8,343

    JeffB2
    Member
    from Phoenix,AZ

    The "burndown" with the Jets was out of this world!:cool: Too bad some one doesn't have it on film to post on Youtube. I ran a route for a linen company and passed by there a lot after it closed,and it sat,and sat,and sat empty for a long time,too bad! :(
     
  19. boldventure
    Joined: Mar 7, 2008
    Posts: 1,766

    boldventure
    Member

    All American Vintage Classic....
    Got any more info?
     
  20. turdytoo
    Joined: May 14, 2007
    Posts: 1,560

    turdytoo
    Member

    That blue circle three was the greatest. Al Pombo.
     
  21. nitram22
    Joined: Apr 16, 2007
    Posts: 29

    nitram22
    Member
    from California

  22. In the late fifties we'd pile in the station wagon and Pop would take us to Belmont, Alviso and SanJose Speedways......and even the Cow Palace in South City, where the midgets ran. Turdytoo is right, they were called 'hardtops" in the day. Al Pombo was a biggie, as was Joe Leonard. I was a fan of George Rogge, a Palo Alto junkyard owner. After I had my drivers license, we went up to Belmont one night and some prick stole the 32 grille off my roadster. I was pissed because the replacement I found cost me 5 bucks! In 1959 that was a lot of money to me.
     
  23. boldventure
    Joined: Mar 7, 2008
    Posts: 1,766

    boldventure
    Member

    nitram22; 10-4...10-Q
    And it current info too!
    Hope I remember by Sept. anything 2009!
     
  24. ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Joined: Jan 1, 2008
    Posts: 1,367

    ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Member
    from Bordertown

    Nitram22....AWESOME PICS!!!!!!, Thanks
     
  25. ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Joined: Jan 1, 2008
    Posts: 1,367

    ANDEREGG TRIBUTE
    Member
    from Bordertown

    Anybody have any info on this?
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  26. aXe33
    Joined: May 7, 2008
    Posts: 130

    aXe33
    Member
    from Austin Tx

    Any of you remember when the Baylands speedway site was a boat race facility?
    aXe
     
  27. aXe33
    Joined: May 7, 2008
    Posts: 130

    aXe33
    Member
    from Austin Tx

    This is the famous Blue Goose refered to in the post above by ACsidetrack in post #42
    Driven by Bill Scott they were virtualy unbeatable almost every sat night out there for a couple of years.

    [​IMG]

    AC Is Arnold Chaves I believe. They won more than their share with this car. I was there for most of them. I knew Bill and was tired of seeing Him have virtualy no competition. But they worked very hard to get it so? One thing about it back then at SJ the more you won the farther back you had to start the main event My guess He started last place in most of those main event wins. The record 16 Fast times in row!! Just going for it every sat night.
    I was wondering My brother worked with a guy who had a Buick powered Hard Top Bill drove it a few times, I think burt Foland Did also. His shop was out on the Sunnyvale end of the old Highway 9 close to the Brass Rail. I ended up with one of those buicks in a 51 GMC pu My brother left Me in his will. anybody know of Him?

    By the way there is a book out on the San Jose areas auto racing. The title is History of San Jose Auto racing 1903-2007. raceing was held on no less that 14 tracks in that area.
    go to www.openwheelracers3.com or just www.historyofsanjose racing.com You will not find a better boook on racing from that area anywhere.
    aXe
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2010
  28. dmw56
    Joined: Jan 1, 2008
    Posts: 711

    dmw56
    Member

    I raced Street Stocks at San Jose, Watsonville, and Antioch.
     
  29. aXe33
    Joined: May 7, 2008
    Posts: 130

    aXe33
    Member
    from Austin Tx

    From the message #57 above.
    The name of that car owner just came to me, It was Phil Bettencourt, anyone know or remember Him?
    aXe
     
  30. tommy v
    Joined: Mar 4, 2005
    Posts: 1,974

    tommy v
    Member

    yes AC would be Arnold Chaves
     

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