Aug. 20, 2015- The 1915 S.D. Exposition Road Race in Point Loma

Thurs., Aug. 20  The OBHS presented:  1915  S.D. Exposition Road Race in Point Loma. Presenter  Mac McPherson of the  Horseless Carriage Club, S.D., program is about the Jan. 9, 1915,  the Automobile Club of Southern Calif. & Al Bahr Shrine sponsored the San Diego Exposition Road Race,  a 300 mile road race over a 6-mile course around Point Loma. The race was one of the opening events of the 1915 Panama California Exposition in Balboa Park.
The race course routed around Point Loma starting  on Rosecrans St., heading North, turning West on Lytton St.,  South on Chatsworth Blvd. and Catalina Blvd., East on Cañon St. and back onto Rosecrans.  Almost 5 hours and 51 laps later, Earl Cooper in Stutz #8 won the race averaging over 65 mph. Only 5 of the 18 cars that started the race finished the grueling 300 mile 51 lap route. Racing cars in those days carried a driver as well as a mechanic. Other notable drivers were San Diegan, William Carlson, who finished 2nd, Barney Oldfield, Eddie Rickenbacker, and Bob Burman.  An estimated 50,000 people spread out along the course to watch the spectacle. The San Diego Union newspaper proclaimed: “It was the greatest throng ever seen at one event in San Diego, excepting, perhaps, the opening of the exposition.”   Also, clips from the recent Balboa Park Centennial Tour Reenactment were shown at OBHS program.

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