Sunday, October 29, 2023

1967 – Long Grove Grind goes to Adamson

Bobbie Adamson accepts his trophy after winning the National Open at Williams Grove Speedway. 

Mechanicsburg, Penn. (October 29, 1967) - There was never a dull moment for Bobbie Adamson as the Coraopolis, Penn., chauffer drove to victory in the fifth annual National Open before more than 10,000 fans at Williams Grove Speedway Sunday afternoon.

By virtue of his triumph, Adamson became the fifth different driver to win the event, joining Gordon Johncock, Larry Dickson, Lou Blaney and Henry Jacoby.

For the popular young winner, it was the first major triumph of his career. Only last week he had indicated that he desired a $999 win purse rather than the $1,000 which had been posted in hopes that it might change his luck. As it turned out, he didn't need this good fortune.

Adamson had qualified for the fourth starting spot in the 35-car field in Saturday’s time trials. He moved up one spot when the number two man Andy Phillips could not go in the main attraction after blowing his engine In warmups

When the green flag dropped on the field, Kenny Weld, the polesitter, charged ahead but going up the backstretch, Adamson pushed the Hawthorne Special out in front to a lead which he never gave up despite some real pressure throughout the affair. During the first six laps, Adamson opened a 10-length lead.

Then, the first of eight minor mishaps slowed the proceedings, closing up the field. At this time, Weld was running second. This is the way matters stood until the 42nd lap. Coming down the front chute, Bud Cochran slipped by Weld and took over the runner-up spot. From that point, Cochran was never more than five or six lengths behind the leader.

The two pacesetters battled it out for the remainder of the race. On the 84th circuit, Cochran pulled alongside Adamson moving through the third and fourth turns but did not have enough to push ahead. Three laps later, the two were bumper to bumper and stayed that way from then until the 92nd lap when Adamson opened daylight after slipping through lapped traffic.

As the race neared the wire, Cochran again closed on his worthy opponent, but Adamson would not be denied. He simply put his foot into it and remained at the head of the class. When Ray Dovel was involved in a mishap on the 99th lap, the yellow and checkered came out simultaneously, giving the win to Adamson but only by a scant two car lengths.

In third, eight lengths off the pace, was Ted Wise. Bobby Allen, Hanover, Penn., was fourth and Weld fifth.

Saturday, Weld recorded the best showing in the time trials with a clocking of 25.11 seconds for one lap on the half-mile track.

Results –

1. Bobby Adamson
2. Bud Cochran
3. Ted Wise
4. Bobby Allen
5. Ken Weld
6. Frank Gorichky
7. Larry Snellbaker
8. Steve Ungar
9. Dick Tobias
10.Ronnie Rough
11.Mitch Smith
12.Ed Zirkle
13.Bob Gerhart
14.Lynn Paxton
15.Joe Lingle
16.Milford Wales
17.Ray Dovel
18.Larry Cannon
19.Bill Banick
20.Johnny Crawford
21.Gene Varner
22.Ray Tilley
23.George Weaver
24.Bob Weaver
25.Dick Swartzlander
26.Gene Kohr
27.Hal McGilton
28.Rick Schmeylun
29.Bud Crytier
30.Gus Linder

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