Bonneville Salt Flats History


November 1962 Cycle World: Complete Bonneville Report

Cover photo: World's fastest motorcycle - The running of the Bonneville National Speed Trials this year saw records falling left and right, the most impressive of which was the long-sought World's Record. Joe Dudek and Bill Johnson's well known Triumph Streamliner was the star of the meet, but they were not alone in their record breaking... Buy the Magazine Here.

Bonneville Salt Flats photos included in magazine are:

1. Kuffel starts his run on his open 127.774 record.

2. Larry Cloyd of Boise, Idaho took home an open record of 120.628 with his beautiful 750cc Triumph running in the partial streamlining class. Front view indicates extremely minimal steering lock, a safety factor for high speed record runs.

3. Kelm & Camron double-overhead camshaft 500cc Triumph from Los Angeles, Calif., comes in from its Class A-A 500cc open record runs with an average of 121.903 mph. Camron designed and built the highly interesting head.

4. Richard D. Kuffel of Bradley, Ill., switched classes by adding the canvas cone, putting the bike into the partial streamlined category. He took home a Class PS-C 650cc open record average of 127.774 for his trouble.

5. Crew of the world's fastest motorcycle, left to right; Pat Owens, Owner / builder Joe Dudek, Vern Sanders, and Bill Johnson, the rider.

6. AMA referee Earl Flanders, seals the Dudek/Johnson streamliner's engine after their gas record runs and before the fuel class attempt. Rich Richards mixed the fuel for the attempts.

7. R. Garcia and L.W. Waterman entered this hairy twin-engined Harley-Davidson with a total displacement of 2,623cc! With Waterman aboard, a Class A-A 3,000cc open record was established with an average speed of 164.985 running on fuel. The cycle, a marvel of excellent workmanship and detail, is usually used for drags. This was their first Bonneville attempt. A second run with Garcia riding netted an average two-way run of 156.732 mph.

and many more photos...


1964 Article: 16th Annual Bonneville Speed Trials

The 16th Annual Bonneville Speed Weeks, staged by the Southern California Timing Association on the famed Wendover, Utah salt flats, fell short of expectations this year due to extremely unsatisfactory salt conditions...Buy the Article Here.

Photos included in article:

1. Dot on the horizon at left is John Green, Jr., Honda mounted, on his way to a record in Class APS-A-350 of 111.439 mph.

2. Richy Vesco did an outstanding job by averaging 127.556 riding brother Don's 500cc G-50 Matchless in full road racing trim for a record in Class PS-C-500.

3. Sporting partial streamlining this year, Ira Mahoney's Class AB-PS-700 supercharged Triumph averaged 128.640. Bike ran 125 mph last year minus the road racing fairing.

4. Gary Richards on the Cycle World / Richards Class APSC-650 Triumph sets out for the fastest record run of the meet: 159.222.

5. Bill Martin brought this handsome belly tank-based Triumph for an assault on the 179.304 mph record held by Bill Johnson and Joe Dudek's Triumph.

6. Don Vesco sets off on the TD-1 minus its fairing for the record Class C-C-250 run of 107.293 mph, one of two records set by the same machine with Vesco riding. Old record of 102.658 was set in 1962.

7. James Eng, riding the Shell Motors sponsored 750 Enfield, established a record in Class APS-C-750 at an average of 135.314. This was a new class for 1964

8. Bill Martin's streamliner reached 169 mph but had fuel starvation problems and he was unable to work them out before bad weather set in, ruining the course. First runs were made with Martin lying completely supine on his back, viewing the course through an ex-Army tank periscope. Later tries saw the periscope abandoned and Martin sitting slightly propped up, looking forward over the rim of the entrance hatch.

9. All the way from Boise, Idaho, again came Larry Cloyd with his beautiful Class PS-A-750 Triumph but he failed to raise his own 133.410 record set last year. His machine continues to be the most beautiful on the salt. It sports many cutom features that distinguish it from its competitors.

10. Vanguard of a passed era, Sam Pierce, keeps the 1921 Indian Scout he ran cleaned out as he warms it up for a run. Though plagued by mechanical difficulties, Pierce's rider, Bill Edmonston, managed a 108 mph run. Pierce also helped to sponsor the champion of the fast Indians. Burt Munro, the rapid New Zealander. Sam even donated a late model Ford to the lightly-financed Munro, with an Indian decal affixed to the doors, of course.

11. CR-93 125cc Honda twin of Rick Schell of San Mateo, California, set a new class APS-A-125 record of 102.375 mph, far below its potential under better conditions. Spectators enjoyed all seven of his gear changes down the five mile salt run.



Vintage 1969 Ad: Triumph Sweeps Bonneville

Triumph has done it again. 15 out of 16 new speed records set in the 750cc class alone.... Buy the Vintage Ad Here.



Vintage 1971 Ad: FE PLUS Chemical Lubricant

When Don Vesco smashed the world's motorcycle land speed record at was FE PLUS that kept his engines turning to 10G's and 251.924 mph! Buy the Vintage Ad Here.



Vintage Magazine Article: Bonneville 1970

It was the best and the worst of years. It was, as ever, a chronicle of tremendous effort, agonizing victory, and ever more agonizing defeat - and it went down in the books as the year of ...The Changing Times. Buy the Article Here.

Photos: Don Sliger, a consummate home-brew engineer, laced two killer-engines into an inflexible frame and went 203 mph; Robert Thomas' supercharged 100-inch Sportster; Cast rear wheel of the big Sportster carries a typical Salt sprocket; Another machine of boundless potential - Rick Vesco's supercharged 'liner.; The price of performance - Leo Payne's engine went lean, burned a valve; Old Bonneville campaigner Don McEvoy's Triumph double - went 198, blew up;

Also included is article titled, "Who the Hell is Don Vesco?" - thus read last year's T-shirts, when Don's reputation for genius was only as long as your arm. Since then he has tuned for World Champion Kel Carruthers ("I should have been doing this all along!"), collected a pocketful of 350cc AMA speed records, and recently he has shattered the 4-year motorcycle land speed record with a drop-tank streamliner powered by a pair of Yamaha 350 engines running on pump gasoline, having endured a heart-stopping 252 mph crash a month before the attempt. Look at this year's T-shirts. See the Superman emblem?



More to come...