Chasteen Tops Oakland Class “C” Meet

Makes Amazing Speed with Indian Sport Scout to Win from a Fast Field

By W.C. Meyer, Photography by Unknown

Above in the stands we shivered wearily and called down maledictions upon a sun that had played us false. We bought a hot dog, and immediately solved the problem of what was done with those drought cattle of a few years back. Timer National Champion Joe Petrali stepped up into the officials’ box. Henchman Timer Speedway Racer Pete Coleman followed him. A spot of verbal racing relieved us of the chilling wind momentarily. Racing talk flagged, and we turn our attention to what was about to ensue. The card embraced three fifteen-mile heats with the first four men from each heat qualifying for the 30-mile main event, and wound up with a 10-mile consolation. Chasteen set a new 15-mile mark in the opening heat with a time of 10:40 3/5, which adds up to 84.297, with the pencil in the hands of someone whose mathematics are better than ours, and picked off a new mark in the 30-mile main, passing under the checkered flag just exactly 21 minutes 30 2/5 seconds after leaving the same gentleman who had waved a green flag at him. That one-added up by the same interest-calculating shark-figures 83.695 miles per hour, which, to our untutored mind, is going places hastily for a road machine that was running on Ethyl gasoline.

Starter George Harais rolled the first heat to the line and administered the final rites to Casazza, Chasteen, Hubbard, Andres, Wilson and Young in the time-honored fashion, “Now come down together, men, and let’s try and get away in the first lap.” And, strangely enough, the men took his words to heart. A trailing, formation that chuckled their way down Oakland’s mammoth backstretch, a formation that jerked uneasily as though the tension was communicating itself to inanimate motors, the formation dressing to the left as it swept into the corner. The snuffling, uneasy bellow grew, became a drumming cannonading. Motors slid into tune, that booming sound as exhaust note synchronized with exhaust note until it sounded as though there were but one machine running. Suddenly came a break in the rhythmic cadence. Driving down came six bulleting figures, diving off the top of the turn, helmeted heads drop on tanks and a white flag whips downward. Chasteen, white helmeted, brown jacketed, a crouching figure jumped the pack and streaked into the first turn. He blasted his way into the lower turn, and made a fast drive up the straightaway, some two hundred yards in the lead.

His Sport Scout ran in a chuckling fashion, exhaust note clean and clear. Behind him boomed the Harley-Davidson ace, Young, veteran craftsman slugging away as best he might. The routine remained unchanged lap after lap. A deft throttle backed off and then increased-on just enough to remain with the precious lead; off just enough to conserve the stamina. Duplicating the performance in the second spot Track General Young does likewise. The main event was yet to come and then would be time to test the strength and toss caution to the winds. So much for the front rank battle. In the rear Casazza, Andres and Hubbard had a battle of their own, as Jimmy Wilson fell by the wayside. Then the brown jacketed figure dived off the top of the final turn once again, and Chasteen came down to the finish. Down went the flag again, and this time it whipped in front of Young. Twice more it fell before it finished the job of chalking off the qualifiers for the main event. In doing so, it qualified Casazza (Indian) and Andres (Harley-Davidson).

By W.C. Meyer
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