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DURANT WINS AUTO RACE.

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Pre-WWII Racing

DURANT WINS AUTO RACE.

The New York Times
March 16, 1919

One Driver Killed on Santa Monica Course.

SANTA MONICA, Cal., March 15.-Cliff Durant won the Santa Monica road race over the Santa Monica course of 250 miles in 3 hours 4 minutes 45 seconds, or an average of 81.6 miles an hour.  Hearne finished second.  Time-3 hours 11 minutes 50 seconds.  The winner received $4,000 and the second-place man $2,500.  Louis Lecocq finished third, in 3 hours 15 miuntes 28 seconds, winning $1,500.  Eddie Pullen came in fourth.  Time-3 hours 20 miuntes 40 seconds.  He received $1,000.

Walter Melcher, who at the last minute was substituted for Driver A. E. Christenson, in Car 17, died during the race as a result of injuries suffered when his machine overturned.  Melcher lived at San Francisco.

Durant and Hearne started in first and second places and stayed there throughout.  Hearne ran a nonstop race.  Durant stopped twice for tire changes, losing 26 seconds each time.  Of the fourteen cars that started only three besides the prize winners remained to be flagged down.  They were:  Brown, who had fifth place in his thirty-second lap; Omar Toft, who held sixth place in his thirty-second lap, and Edward Kaster, who was seventh position in his thirty-first lap.

The crowd was the largest ever assembled at the course, according to race officials, who estimated it at more than 150,000 persons.



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