THE WHEELMEN. - Successful Celebration of the Annual Meet. - Los Angeles Herald, 31 May 1889
Successful Celebration of the Annual Meet.
THE RACES AT THE PARK.
Wing Lowers the Coast Records for One Mile and Five Miles.
Some Good Sport.
When the California Division of the League of American Wheelmen decided to hold its fourth annual meet in Los Angeles on Memorial Day, it was certain that the sports would be a success, for during the past year or two, the Angel City has become one of the strongholds of cycling. And that the clubs here are composed of some of the best men of the State was fully attested yesterday, two of the Coast records being cracked by local riders. The first figures to be lowered were in the one-mile State championship race, when W. S. Wing, reduced the record from 2:48 1/2 to 2:47. The five-mile open race was, however, the astonisher, for the coast record of 15:49 was lowered to 15:40 1/2, by W. S. Wing, who rode in splendid style, and only carried off the honors from J. P. Percival by a few feet, the last-named gentleman also beating the previous records.
The cyclists began to pour into town at an early hour yesterday morning, and the first train from San Francisco bore quite a sprinkling of wheelmen from the northern part of the State, but few of the noted riders, however, making the journey, because they knew that they were overmatched in this part of the country. The Westminster Hotel was made the league headquarters, and at 10 o'clock the register showed that the following visitors were in town:
T. J. Cobden, E. Nohrig, S. H. Knapp, Jr., San Francisco; C. C. Moore, Stockton; G. W. Starr, Grass Valley; Emile R. Abadie, Elmer B. Burns, G. W. Burns, G. G. Glenn, Santa Ana; E. Cole, Ventura; G. A. Simpson, E. S. Turner, C. A. Johnston, S. A. Smith, O. L. Miller, A. L. Marahan, A. L. Ryder, J. M. Permar, S. L. Test, G. H. Frost, G. W. Glover, Jr., J. H. Smith, P. O. Prince, L. W. Williams, Pasadena.
The street parade started at 11 o'clock, and was witnessed by a large concourse of people. The Seventh Infantry Band was in the lead, and then came the representatives of the California Division officers, who are as follows:
Chief Consul, Edwin Mohrig, San Francisco; Vice-Consul, J. Phil Percival, Los Angeles; Secretary-Treasurer, Alex. S. Ireland, San Francisco. Representatives, George H. Frost of Pasadena, Charles C. Moore of Stockton, Dr. Thomas S. Hill of San Francisco. Club Representatives - J. W. A. Off, for Los Angeles; Dr. J. M. Cunagh, for the San Francisco Bicycle Club; J. J. Bliss, for the Bay City Wheelmen; Charles C. Moore for the Oak Leaf Wheelmen, Stockton. Racing Board - R. Ashton Smythe, Chairman, of San Francisco; J. W. A. Off, of Los Angeles; Percy Haslett, of Alameda.
Then came the clubs in the following order: Bay City Wheelmen, San Francisco Bicycle Club, Oak Leaf Wheelmen, Alameda Scorchers, Outing Cycling Club, Garden City Wheelmen, Capital City Wheelmen, Pomona Deceivers, Pasadena Cycling Club, Los Angeles Wheelmen, unattached. The line of march was from Main street to the Plaza, countermarch to Spring, to Ninth, to Main, to headquarters.
At the conclusion of the parade, an interval was taken for lunch, and then adjournment was made for the Agricultural Park, where the races were to be held.
Fully 3,000 persons had passed the gates by 2 o'clock, the hour named for the opening event, and the grand stand, the fences and other points of vantage were all occupied. A large number of carriages and buggies drew into the ground, and the racecourse presented as lively an appearance as it did during race-day.
The first race was the one-mile novice, in which were entered Frank Scheidler, T. Romero, Fred Corey, Jno. Q. Tufts, Jr., and Geo. F. Martineau. It was a foregone conclusion for Tufts from the time he started, and he came in an easy winner, with the time of 2:54, Romero being second, Scheidler third, Corey fourth, and Martineau last.
The next race was one of the crack events of the day, being for the one-mile State championship, held by W. S. Wing, with a record of 2:48. Six entries were made, and all of these appeared at the start, the competition being between D. L. Burke, James W. Lancaster, John W. Tufts, Jr., J. Phil. Percival, W. S. Wing and P. L. Abel. Tufts got away in the lead, Burke bringing up the rear, and was evidently disheartened by his start, for after running a hundred yards or so he gave up. Wing got in front at the quarter, with Tufts second, only ten feet behind, Percival running third. This order was maintained until the three-fourths, when Tufts spurted and got into the lead, but at the stretch Wing got down to work and drew clear away. An exciting finish then followed, during which Abel came a nasty cropper, falling on his head, a repetition of the performance he had given the previous day, while in training. The last fifty yards was a neck and neck race between Wing and Percival, but the first named gentleman came in ahead, in the record-beating time of 2:47. Percival was second, Lancaster third and Tufts fourth.
For the next race, a quarter of a mile dash, W. S. Wing, Jas. W. Lancaster, J. Phil Percival, P. L. Abel and D. L. Burke were entered, but only the last-named rider appeared, and he went over the distance in the comparatively slow lime of 43 1/4 seconds.
The half-mile dash was another interesting event, the following entries having been made: W. S. Wing, E. Cole, Jas. W. Lancaster, J. Phil Fercival, P. L. Abel and D. L. Burke. Of these, only three came to scratch, Burke, Lancaster and Cole, and after running 200 yards Cole retired, leaving the finish between his two competitors. Burke had no difficulty in distancing his advergary, and the blackboard showed a record of 1.26 1/4 as he rode back to the dressing-room.
The one mile safety race next claimed attention, and three riders, Jno. Q. Tufts, Jr., Jas. J. Archibald, and Will A. Tufts, came to the starting post. A broken start was made, and then Archibald got away in the lead, with Jno. Tufts second, and Will Tufts third; and this order was kept up until the quarter, where John Tufts got clean away, and kept increasing his lead until the finish, which he made in 3:04 1/2, Archibald coming in second, and Will Tufts third.
The next race was an important one, being for the three-mile national championship, and entries had been made by D. L. Burke, Jas. W. Lancaster, J. Phil Percival, W. S. Wing and P. L. Abel. Burke and Lancaster failed to appear, however, and the other three got off in the following order, Abel, Wing, Percival. The positions were maintained throughout the first and second miles and, on passing the scratch for the final round, all settled down to work. At the first quarter Wing pulled in to the lead, but between the half and three-quarters they were all riding within a few feet of each other. On turning into the stretch, however, Percival began to pull away, and this resulted in a spurt from Wing, who was unable to catch his man, the order at the finish being Percival, Wing, Abel with about ten yards between first and second, and Abel far behind. Time - First mile, 3:33; second mile, 6:55; third mile, 9:48 1/4.
The one mile race, for the 3:15 class, was to have been competed for by Frank Scheidler, Jno. Q. Tufts, Jr., T. Romero, Geo. Martineaux and Fred Corey, but the last named gentlemen declined to answer to the summoning bell. Romero was first off at the crack of the pistol, but only held first honors until the half, when John Tufts came to the front, and kept the lead to the finish. Romero was second, Scheidler third, and Martineaux fourth, Time, 2:57.
A quarter-mile foot race was next, and A. S. Henderson, Chas. V. Howard, A. D. Taylor and P. J. Ward entered. Henderson came in first, in 52 seconds, with Howard second.
For the one-mile open race entries were made by T. Romero, George F. Martineau, Fred Corey, W. S. Wing, James W. Lancaster, D. L. Burke, J. Phil Percival and and Frank Scheidler, but only Martineau, Lancaster, Burke and Scheidler were on hand. It was an easy event for Burke, and he won in 2:52 1/4, Lancaster finishing second, Scheidler third and Martineau fourth.
The boys under 18 next had a chance to distinguish themselves in a half-mile race, and of the four entries Will A. Tufts, Will J. Allen, W. F. Wright and Frank H. Talbott, only Wright failed to respond. Will Tufts won in the good time of 1:37 1-5. Allen was second and Talbott third.
Everyone had been anxiously looking forward to the last race, the five-mile open event, for it was well known it would be for blood. The first prize was to be a special star bicycle, valued at $140, and the second prize a gold Keystone watch, worth $50. As a result, entries had been made by D. L. Burke, Jno. Q. Tufts, Jr., Jas. W. Lancaster, J. Phil. Percival, W. S. Wing and P. L. Abel, and as they are all crack riders a grand race was expected. With a coast record of 15:49 facing them, the riders drew into line for the start, the positions being as follows: Abel at post, Burke No. 2, Lancaster No. 3, Percival No. 4, Wing No. 5, Tufts (outside) No. 6. In the first quarter then all formed into a line, Burke leading, Tufts second, then Lancaster, Wing Percival and Abel. The pace was a hot one from the word go, and it was evident that Burke was forcing the running at a rate that would crack the record. At the three-quarters Abel dropped out, and as they came under the wire for the first mile the order was Burke, Tufts, Lancaster, Wing and Percival.
They kept all in a bunch for the first half of the second round, Percival still running last and Burke keeping a wheel's length in advance. In the stretch, however, the positions were slightly changed, and the second mile found Tufts leading. Lancaster second, Burke third, Wing fourth and Percival last. The fourth mile found them still within handshaking distance of each other. The order on passing the wire for the last round being, Tufts, Burke, Wing, Lancaster and Percival. Then the race began in earnest. Although not spurting, each man got down to real hard work, and Tufts kept his slight lead in a manner that led his admirers to think that he would never be again passed; but Percival and Wing began to close in, and soon the proverb that the last shall be first was illustrated. for Percival, on passing the three-quarters, came with a swing to the lead. Tufts, however, challenged him and got in front again, and as the riders entered the stretch, one of the prettiest wheel races on record was witnessed. Percival got in front again, then Wing came up, closely followed by Burke, who made one last desperate rally to take the lead. He could not quite make it, however, and the last fifty yards found Percival and Wing spurting side by side, while the excited crowd rent the air with hoarse shouts, “Percival wins!" "Wing's got it!" as they came down to the wire. Wing, however, made a magnificent rush at the end, and came in the winner of a yard or two in 15:40 1/2, having broken the Coast record by 8 1/2 seconds. Percival took second honors, Burke was third, Tufts fourth, and Lancaster last. Time, first mile, 3:03 3/4; second mile, 6:25 1/2; third mile, 9:25; fourth mile, 12:43; fifth mile, 15:40 1/2.
The officers of the day were as follows:
Referee, Edwin Mohrig, Chief Consul California Division, League of American Wheelmen, San Francisco.
Judges, J. W. A. Off, G. A. von Brandis, Charles C. Moore, of Stockton.
Timers, L. D. Sale, Chas. J. Bosworth, R. C. Woodworth.
Clerk of Course, H. C. F. Smith.
Scorer, A. C. Smith.
Starter, A. W. Allen.
Marshal, J. Frank Plank.
The day was brought to an end in a befitting manner by a grand ball at the Pavilion. The hall was handsomely decorated in harmony with the occasion, and the merrymakers found everything arranged in such a manner that there was no fear of a hitch. An excellent dance programme was discoursed by the Seventh Infantry Band, and it was long past midnight before the festivities came to a close.
To-day a cross-country run will be made, as follows:
Starting at 9 o'clock from the clubrooms, Panorama Building, a run through the far-famed San Gabriel Valley will be made. The route will be through East Los Angeles, the Arroyo Seco, Garvanza, South Pasadena, Raymond, Pasadena - the Crown of the Valley; thence to Lamanda Park, and Sierra Madre Villa, where a splendid view of the mountains can be had.
Continuing on, a visit will be paid to "Lucky" Baldwin's famous ranch, "Santa Anita." Wheeling through beautiful drives, the time-decayed old mission church of San Gabriel will be visited. Winding around foothills, across rural bridges, over the adobe roads, the run will be made to Los Angeles again over a different route. The distance is about twenty-five miles.