Winfield Daily Courier
Monday, May 3, 1915 - Page 6:

 

 

 

Winfield Daily Courier
Saturday, May 8, 1915:

 

 

   Friday, May 7, 1915                           Winfield Daily Courier           Wednesday, May 12, 1915
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Winfield Daily Courier
Saturday, May 8, 1915
Front Page Banner Headline:

Fastest Auto and Motorcycle Races in Southern Kansas - Admission 50¢, Starting 2:30

 

 

 

Arkansas City Daily News
Saturday, May 8, 1915 - Page 4:

Winfield Auto Races May 13
Many Local Autoists From Here Will See the Great Races Thursday

The county seat town will stage Thursday of next week, what is expected to be the best auto races ever seen in Southern Kansas and they promise to draw a big crowd from this city.  A. A. Welt, publicity agent for the races, was here today placing advertising matter and telling the people what they may expect in the way of a program.  There will be all of the thrills that any autoists would care to see and there are many in this section who have not as yet have an opportunity to see auto races of this capacity.  Some of the best drivers in the field of sport today will take part in the event and the county seat town promises to be a Mecca of excitement on May 13.

Arkansas City Daily Traveler
Saturday, May 8, 1915 - Page 8

 

 

 

Arkansas City Daily News

Saturday, May 8, 1915                                                                                         Tuesday, May 11, 1915

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Page 3:

 

 

 

Winfield Daily Free Press
Tuesday, May 11, 1915 - Page 8:

 

 

 

 

Winfield Daily Courier
Tuesday, May 11, 1915 - Front Page:

 

BREED WILL RACE HERE
FORMER LOCAL MAN HAS FILED ENTRY FOR THURSDAY
FAST DRIVERS COMING
Interest in Auto Races Increasing

Records of Various Drivers Entered Foretell Some Fast Events at Fair Grounds

Floyd Willard

Sig Haugdahl

Arthur Thurman

J. Sam Wilson

 

 

     That local People will have the opportunity of witnessing some of the fastest automobile drivers in the central west in the motor day races here Thursday was shown today by a comparison of the records of the various drivers now entered for the 20 miles event.

     In the half-mile dirt track class, these men today stand at the top of the ladder, all being winners many times over.  The records of the men thus far listed are as follows:

     FLOYD WILLARD, driver of the Ford “Red Devil”, in 1913 lowered the state record for five miles from 6:10 to 5:40; won the A.A.A. Columbia Heights hill climb; won 26 firsts out of 34 starts in 1914.

     SIGURD HAUGDAHL, driver of the Mercer; holder of the half-mile track record for Michigan; in 1914 won 12 firsts, 4 seconds, and 2 thirds out of 21 starts.

     ARTHUR THRUMAN, driving a National for four years, one of the foremost drivers in the country.  The 110 H.P. National won the Elgin race in 1912, making a speed of 78 miles an hour for 360 miles.

     SAM WILSON, one of the most conservative and steadiest of America’s drivers.  With the exception of a few cases of accidents, Wilson has finished in the money each time out of the 51 races which he has entered during the past two years.  He drives a Special, the car which has won him many a race.

     GLENN BREED, who is no stranger to Winfield people and motor enthusiasts all over the Middle West, needs no introduction.  He is noted for being a daring driver and when behind the wheel of a car some one is going to be riding in the dust and you can rest assured that it will not be Breed.  Breed, when asked what he thought the chances were for winning the various events, answered, “I’m going in to win and the fellow that beats me out will know he has been in a race.”  Breed’s victims are countless for he has participated in races all over the middle west and nearly always has been victories and in every race he has entered, has been a strong contender when not a finisher.

 

 

 

 

Arkansas City Daily News
Thursday, May 13, 1915 - Front Page:

The auto races were late starting but were in progress at 4 o'clock when the News went to press.

 

 

 

Winfield Daily Courier
Friday, May 14, 1915 - Page 6:

MERCER WON MOTOR RACES
Haugdahl Easily Kept Out of Reach of His Competitors
NATIONAL HAD TROUBLE
Will Swain was Compelled to Quit
Ford Red Devil Took Second in Ten Mile Race
Time Was Slow

     About two thousand people attended the motor races at the Fair Grounds Thursday afternoon, probably half of them in automobiles.  Weather and track conditions were ideal but the time made in the automobile races and motorcycle event was slow and the races lacked interest. Sig Haugdahl, in a Mercer, romped away from his four competitors with ease and wasn’t pushed at any time in any of the races.  Floyd Willard’s little Ford Red Devil was favorite with the crowd and the spectators were sorry when it was compelled to drop out later in the afternoon by reason of “shot bearing.”

     Will Swain, a former local boy, driving a big National, should have been a real contender for first money, but faulty water and oil circulation kept him from finishing in each of the races though he worked hard trying to put his car in shape.  He was not familiar with the car, never having driven it before yesterday.  His many Winfield friends wanted to see him win.

     Another disappointment for the crowd was Glenn Breed’s failure to appear.  This was said to have been due to his inability to get his car in shape for the races.

     The first event was a five-mile motorcycle race with eight starters.  Walter Higley, of Coffeyville, driving an Excelsior twin won handily in 6:39.  Garst of Wichita on a Harley-Davidson was second and Roy Rinehart of Arkansas City on an Indian was third.

     Ray Weishaar, champion motorcyclist of Kansas, rode an exhibition mile against time, but made poor time, 1:14 3/5 for the mile.

     In the ten-mile automobile race, five cars started.  Haugdahl, in a Mercer, Willard in a Ford Red Devil, Swain in a National, Rigby in a Flanders, Wilson in a Wilson special.   Haugdahl won easily in 15.31 ¼.  Willard was second and Rigby third.

     The Australian Pursuit Race was won by Haugdahl with Willard second and Wilson third.

     The twenty-mile race also was taken by the Mercer.  Rigby* finished second and Wilson third.  The Ford and National were laid out by mechanical trouble in this race.  The time was 29:14.

     While the crowd appeared much larger, the total receipts are said to have been less than a thousand dollars and the promoters state they lost money on the day of racing.

 

Webmaster’s Notes:

Sigurd Olson "Sig" Haugdahl (1891-1970) was a Norwegian immigrant who made his home at Albert Lea, Minnesota.

The Mercer automobile was so named as it was built in Trenton, Mercer County, New Jersey.

Arthur Thurman, driving his own Duesenberg, crashed on the forty-fourth lap of the 1919 Indianapolis "500" and was fatally injured.

Raymond Roy Rinehart, born in 1885 at Arkansas City, Kansas, was one of the few men to race both motorcycles and cars on the half-mile racetrack at Winfield.  He moved to Blackwell, Oklahoma in 1933 and passed away there in 1968.  Roy's body is interred in the Riverview Mausoleum in Riverview Cemetery on the north edge of Arkansas City.

Charles William “Will” Swain grew up in Richland Township north central Cowley County, Kansas and owned an automobile dealership at 220 N. Market, Wichita, Kansas.

Guy W. Knease (c1887-1915), of Iowa City, Iowa entered these races at Winfield but he was fatally injured during a race at Coffeyville, Kansas on May 5, 1915.

 

 

 

Sig Haugdahl behind the wheel of the Mercer Raceabout that he drove to victory at Winfield, Kansas on May 13, 1915.  Haugdahl still holds the 40-lap track record at Winfield that he set in this car on that date.  Click your mouse on the photograph above to see a different photo of Haugdahl in this same car - Sigurd W. Haugdahl collection

 

 

 

Floyd L. Willard of Albert Lee, Minnesota raced his “Go-Cart” at Winfield on this date but a “shot bearing” ended his afternoon early - Sig Haugdahl collection 

 

 

 

J. Sam Wilson of Iowa City, Iowa raced his Wilson Special at Winfield on this date – Sig Haugdahl collection

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

* The May 14, 1915 issue of the Winfield Daily Courier reported that “Rigby” finished second in Flanders automobile in the 20-mile race run at Winfield on this afternoon while the Chanute (Kansas) Daily Tribune and the Winfield Daily Free Press of the same date reported on their fronts page that second place in that race was taken by Roy Good** who was driving a 1910 Flanders 20 owned by J. F. Jersezy of Chanute, Kansas.  An article on page 5 of the May 14, 1915 issue of the Coffeyville Daily Journal says that Good not only run second in that race but that the also finished first in another race on this afternoon.  The stories in all four newspapers agree that the winner of the event was a Mercer which was being driven by Sig Haugdahl of Albert Lea, Minnesota.

 

** Roy Anderson Good, Sr. (1893-1958) of Coffeyville, Kansas.

 

 

 

Return to page one of the History of Auto Racing at Winfield, Kansas