ECHOES OF THE RELAY RACE. - The Victorious Garden Citys and Their Speedy Men. - MIDWINTER FAIR TRACK. - San Francisco Examiner, 14 Apr 1894
ECHOES OF THE RELAY RACE.
The Victorious Garden Citys and Their Speedy Men.
MIDWINTER FAIR TRACK.
It Is In Poor shape and Thoroughly Unfit for Racing Purposes - Something About E. C. Bald, the Wheelman Who Has Broken Several World's Records - May Attend the Fair Competitions.
The Garden City Cyclers have been fortunate for years in having several speedy members. Wilber J. Edwards and Clarence Davis cannot be beaten except by less than a half-dozen men, and with this number they compose the champions of the Coast at all distances. The winning team was made up of men who proved to be equally as fast riders - in fact, some of them made much faster time than Edwards, but he had a head-wind to ride against. Yet it was not supposed that the Garden City team was so strong. I said in a former article that they would be surely one of the first three teams, but might not win on account of having some men that would lose the ground that Edwards, Davis and Alexander would gain. This was proven in the case of Desimone, as I stated, but Joe Desimone was not in good health and suffered some loss in strength on that account.
The time made on that first relay was wonderful, considering the conditions of the road and the disadvantages to be encountered. An average gait of three minutes was kept up throughout it. Mr. Smith has had considerable experience in road racing, otherwise the Garden City Cyclers might not have won.
Delmas did not do as well as was expected, but his best effort has been track work, and on his relay endurance and strength were more needed than speed. Needham also rode slower on his relay than either the Bay City man or the Acme contestant.
Hubbard was riding strong, and made up the two minutes that George Osen lost in the relay before him. Al Jarman showed up splendid and made very fast time for the fifth relay, which helped the team considerably.
The Garden City's racing committee is made up of Captain R. J. Butler, President Lamkin, H. A. Alexander and G. W. Pollard, and to these gentlemen belongs much of the glory for the victory, Captain Butler said a fortnight before the race that he had a winning team, and that he was confident of it, for though some of the men were weak in comparison to the club's strongest rivals, the arrangement was such that the flyers would cover any losses that might occur.
The quarter-mile track on the grounds of the late Alameda Athletic and Bicycle Club has a good surface and is well built, but the turns are bad, and as the Reliance Club has decided to rebuild the track it should do so at once. If it was ready now the eastern cracks who are expected out here could use it to train on.
Alameda is the only proper place hereabout for a bicycle track and the grounds there are perfectly located for convenience, speed and utility. There is always too much wind in San Francisco, and when the wind does not bother the fog does. The Midwinter Fair track is only an experiment or make-shift, that will at the most be available for only scrub tryouts after the Fair is over, and Oakland has no probability of a track, so that Alameda has everything in its favor.
The Midwinter Fair bicycle track has been completed some time, and still it is no more fit for use than it was weeks ago. Somebody is to blame for this state of things.
Edward C. Bald of the Buffalo Press Cycling Club racing team began racing in the fall of 1891, when he won the novice race in the arsenal there. A little later he took part in and won the twenty-mile road race of the Roamers, a bicycle club that was composed of him and a score of schoolmates. In 1892 Bald joined the Press Cycling Club and was sent through the New York State Circuit by that club under the care of Joseph Young, who is now one of the same club's flyers. Bald did not have much success on the circuit, but be learned a lot about track racing. At Buffalo, though, he won the city championship.
In 1893 Bald fared better and began in June to win firsts. At Cleveland, June 20th, he won a number of events, also at Little valley, Lockport, other Western New York tournaments and at Detroit.
After the Tonawanda-Buffalo tournament of July 4th Bald went back to his father's butcher shop until the Troy meet of August 25th when Asa Windle, the prince of trainers, took charge of him and few days later, September 4th and 6th, he appeared on the Hartford track, beating Willie Windle, the American champion, and all the other cracks.
The half-mile scratch race at Springfield was won by Eddie Bald in the world's record time of one minute and three seconds. Those two days, the 13th and 14th, added many prizes to the Buffalo boy's collection, and on the 19th at Waltham, near by, he broke the track record for a mile. From Waltham he want on to Baltimore and Scranton, Pa., winning almost everything in which he started. At Reading, Pa., he won the mile open, beating Sanger, Taylor, Tyler and all the fast men in the country except Zimmerman, who did not compete. Bald also secured the quarter mile and half from the field.
Bald captured 63 prizes on the fall circuit last year, divided as follows: Thirty-three first prizes, 18 seconds and 12 thirds. His prizes included 18 diamonds, 8 gold watches, 8 bicycles, silverware, furniture and a lot of other things.
This speedy press cycler made arrangements last winter to come out here and get in shape to train in California, but on learning from the writer that the Midwinter Fair track was not to be finished till this month he went to Florida instead. A few weeks ago he decided with his trainer, Asa Windle, who is an old racing man, to come here for the Midwinter races. But in common with the other fast Eastern men this plan was given up until definite knowledge could be received from the Fair people, and as that was not received he is now at Savannah, training there.