July 27th, 1969 — The worst fear of a sports photographer is to have the greatest picture in the world happen right in front of him only to look at the just developed film fresh from the fix and find a referee’s backside blocking his view just as he pushed the shutter. It’s kind of what happened to me as Denny Hulme crossed the finish line to win the Klondike 200 Can-Am car race at Edmonton International Speedway. This time it was the starter and it wasn’t the greatest shot in the world and actually it was planned because I knew the habits of this particular starter. “Sure John, you planned it, really you did, …”
July 27th, 1969 — A member of the Goodyear Racing Division turns a racing slick into a hammock to catch a nap during practice for the Klondike 200 CanAm sports car race in Edmonton while the rest of the crew in the background play cards. I doubt this scene would ever happen in the hyper competitive and expensive racing we have today. Note that the “slicks” of this earlier era actually had tread. Also of note is that there are two big car races this weekend, the Indy 500 and the Formula 1 race in Monaco.
July 27, 1969 — George Eaton crosses the finish line on three wheels to place third in the 1969 Edmonton CanAm race. Eaton blew the right rear tire on his McLaren M12 just before the last corner and spun out a few meters after receiving the checkered flag.
August 27th, 1993 — If you’re not a motor racing fan this picture won’t mean much but these three men were the titans of American open wheel racing for a while. Carl Haas, Eric Broadley and Teddy Mayer in conversation during practice for the 1993 Indy car race in Vancouver.
July 26th, 1969 — Chris Amon about to get into his Ferrari 612P during practice for the 1969 Edmonton CanAm race. Later in the day while trying for a close up picture of Amon sitting in the car I didn’t realize I was blocking his exit from the pits. Him running me over wouldn’t have killed me but the look he gave me just before I jumped out of harms way almost did.
August 1st, 1971 — Edmonton Speedway — David Hobbs after winning the Lucerne 100 F5000 race in Edmonton, one of the victories that gave him the overall championship in 1971. The trophy to the disappointment Hobbs was filled with milk not Champaign.
May 23rd, 1970 — Edmonton International Speedway — There were people who said that in the late 60’s Mike Eyerly was the fastest American driver on four wheels but some bad car choices and couple of accidents ended his career after winning the SCCA Continental Formula B championships in 1969 and 1970.
August 1st, 1971 — One of my favourite pictures from my days photographing races at Edmonton International Speedway.
Aug 1st, 1971 — The race track at Edmonton was next to a farmer’s field and the owners of the land were often seen riding their horses through it during races. Sometimes they came across the strangest things such as this scattering of race cars which had piled up on the first lap of a support race for the 1971 Formula 5000 race and had been pulled into the dirt to be rescued by their owners and pit crew at the end of the day.
June 20th, 1971 — At one time a photographer’s pass at a car race allowed us to go anywhere we wanted, no restrictions. It was assumed we knew what we were doing and if we wanted to stand in the pit lane to get a picture with the crowd behind, no one cared. How dangerous could it be? If you look closely at the background there are workers cleaning up debris from a fire and near explosion caused by another car at an earlier pit stop. I was photographing at another part of the track when it happened and missed the shot but that’s the luck of news photography. See previous picture. The driver in the car was I think Parnelli Jones during a Trans Am race at Edmonton Speedway. The man on the pit wall wearing the hat is Bud Moore, the owner of the team.