Saturday, June 8, 2024

1952 – Grim Snaps 3 Marks, Beats Holland, DeRock

The "Hurryin' Hoosier" Bobby Grim and his car owner, Hector Honore, enjoy another trip to victory lane after winning the IMCA big car feature at Des Moines.  

Des Moines, Iowa (June 8, 1952) – Bobby Grim, the youthful driver from Indianapolis, shattered three dirt track records for half-mile ovals in winning the 25-mile Spring Championship at the State Fairgrounds on Sunday afternoon.

The bobbysoxer’s favorite, capturing his first major title here since his debut several seasons ago, finished nearly half a lap ahead of his rival, Bill Holland, the Reading, Penn., veteran and 1949 Indianapolis 500 winner.

Grim was clocked in 22 minutes and 13.89 seconds for the 50 laps, erasing the old mark of 25 minutes and 14 seconds set by Emory Collins of Le Mars, Iowa, in 1936, the last time the 25-mile race was staged here. Grim averaged 67 miles per hour for the 50 circuits.

Grim’s Offenhauser also obliterated Collins’ International Motor Contest Association marks for 15 and 20 miles. Grim hit 13 minutes and 18.42 seconds for 15 miles, well under the former record of 15 minutes and 2.25 seconds, and 17 minutes and 45.82 seconds for 20 miles, also well below Collins’ 20 minutes and 6.50 seconds.

The champion and the next four money winners went all the way without a pit stop. Jimmy Campbell of Bates City, Mo., was forced out for two laps with a broken exhaust stack but managed to finish seventh.

Threatening weather, which held attendance to 7,500, almost washed out the program after the preliminary heats had been staged.

The start of the 25-mile feature, moved up in the program, was twice delayed by rain showers as officials waited until the slippery racing surface was ironed out.

In the feature race, the 14 starters were strung out after lap 10, when Grim took advantage of a traffic jam to forge his half-lap margin over Holland.

Thereafter, it was a duel between Holland, Kansas City’s Bob Slater, and Campbell, until the latter was forced to the pit area for exhaust repairs.

Slater went on to finish third followed by Al Kern, Carbondale, Ill., finishing fourth and Mack McHenry of Wichita, Kan., in fifth, just ahead of Mason City’s Leon DeRock, a victor over Grim in the first heat.

DeRock was a full lap behind Grim with the rest of the field as far back as eight laps when starter Al Sweeney waved the checkered flag.

Holland, winner of the second heat, ate more dust following the main event. Starting in the back row of the special match race, Holland was never able to catch the winner Campbell and runner-up Slater, who finished in a close duel, clocked at 3 minutes and 17.15 seconds.

Results –

Time trials – Bobby Grim, Indianapolis (24.41)
Heat #1 – Leon DeRock, Mason City
Heat #2 – Bill Holland, Reading, Penn.
Heat #3 – Mack McHenry, Wichita, Kan.
Match race – Jimmy Campbell, Bates City, Mo.
Consolation – Charlie Irons, Sherard, Ill.
Feature –
1. Bobby Grim
2. Bill Holland
3. Bob slater, Kansas City, Mo.
4. Al Kern, Carbondale, Ill.
5. Mack McHenry
6. Leon DeRock
7. Jimmy Campbell
8. Herschel Wagner, Hickman Hills, Mo.
9. Buss Luce, Toledo, Ohio
10.Bill Richardson, Des Moines

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