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View Full Version : GENE PASTOR - The Two Minute Interview


Jerry Lee
12-29-2009, 11:33 AM
For 50 years Lakeside Speedway influenced a lot of North Denver kids, and how could it not with an inner-city race track right down the block?

Gene Pastor was no exception to this rule as he not only ran 16 seasons with the R.M.M.R.A. at the track, but went on to become a flagman, official, and board member of the club, plus made a few trips to Indy as a pitman.

I found this 1994 video clip at the bottom of that dusty box of racing past.

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JL: "When did you start going out to Lakeside?"

GP: "We started going out to Lakeside in '46. They ran three nights a week on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays. They would hike us over the fence of the new bleachers and we would get in free. We followed those Midgets and me and a bunch of other guys would go out there every night. We never missed a night. We thought those drivers could walk on water, and the cars were dangerous in them days."

JL: "When did you start racing Midgets?"

GP: "I started running in '49 or '50. I had an old car with the Rocky Mountain Midget Racing Association. They had started off an off-shoot of the Denver Midget Racing Association."

JL: "Really?"

GP: "Yeah, then I got Earl Kouba's old Norberg in '54 and ran that for years. I hung around with Don Malone, and Malone is actually the one who got me into racing. In 1955 he got killed at Arapahoe Fairgrounds. But, he was driving the #55 of Earl Kouba's for awhile. I straightened the car out for him and that's how I got the Norberg. He gave me the chassis for doing the work. Then in '57 I got a ride in Warren Hamilton's Offy. It was the twin to what Don Daly and Pete Hedrick were driving. Later I drove Curt Stockwell's car."

JL: "I believe you drove for Bob Olds as well."

GP: "I finished 6th in points driving for Bob Olds. I drove a few more cars later on, but then I just kind of backed off and watched 'em after that. Since then I've been a flagman."

JL: "Were you ever in any real bad accidents?"

GP: "Foster Campbell and I tangled up in Grand Junction and put me in the hospital for 6 weeks. Kind of a bad deal, it completely demolished the Stockwell's #3 car. Been upside down a few times, but nothing serious except that time."

JL: "Any last thoughts on Lakeside?"

GP: "I always seen a lot of famous race drivers go through there, and I always figured someday I'd get to run there. And I did it!"

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My thanks once again to Mitch G. for help!:bow:

Mitch G.
12-30-2009, 08:16 AM
Here's Gene in the Norberg he got from Earl Kouba for helping fix Kouba's car after the Don Malone accident. That's Carl of "Carl's Pizzeria" at the tail of the car, and Carl's father in the window. From Bill Hills' "Decades of Daring" book.
http://www.autoracingmemories.com/forums/picture.php?albumid=118&pictureid=1472
Gene in the beautiful Jack Kline Offy in 1966
http://autoracingmemories.com/forums/picture.php?albumid=118&pictureid=1473
Running in a BCRA big car race.
http://autoracingmemories.com/forums/picture.php?albumid=118&pictureid=1474
I remember Gene mostly running the Chuck Jamison Chevy II, #98, leading Cal Chambers and Eldon Hearn at Lakeside, probably 1971.
http://autoracingmemories.com/forums/picture.php?albumid=9&pictureid=427

Jerry Lee
12-30-2009, 11:40 AM
Man, thanks Mitch for posting those great photos! I was kind of hoping you would repost that Jack Kline Offy pic from 1966, and you did! One of my favorites. Love the suburban background there.

I also love the fact that Carl's Pizzeria is still there on 38th Ave., and if you go in to have a bite, there are still some old Midget and Modified pictures on the walls to enjoy.:D

JimmyK
02-10-2012, 06:36 PM
The #18 is a Vic Felt chassis circa 1946. It was originally powered by a Norberg engine when Earl Kouba had it. Earl put an Offy he bought from Dean Gardner in it after suffering one-to-many blow-ups with the Norberg (which was bad-fast when it was together). Here is another shot of Gene in his new car. Plus a shot of it with Vic Felt. Also a shot of Gene in Warren Hamilton's car.

numbbers
02-10-2012, 08:17 PM
I met Gene at the Rocky Mountain Rod and Custom Car Show in November. I had my car in the show, and Gene was there with a couple of classic midgets. I had no idea that he drove for Curt Stockwell, in both the midget, and the Offy champ car, right after my dad quit driving the cars. It was great to get to meet Gene.

webby
02-10-2012, 10:37 PM
I think my mom knew Gene in High School.

Jerry Lee
02-10-2012, 11:03 PM
Here's a still of Gene from the 1994 Lakeside cable TV documentary where the "Two Minute Interview" came from.

http://autoracingmemories.com/forums/picture.php?albumid=305&pictureid=4807
(J.L. McGuire collection)

Gene Pastor is also a member of the Denver Timing Association if I'm not mistaken.

RJ Butz
04-03-2012, 02:30 AM
Hey, guys - think you will like these - some of uncle Dick's collection I'm workin' on. Is that George Brewer the flagman? Enjoy!

Mitch G.
04-03-2012, 09:44 AM
RJ, great photo's!! I'm not sure who the flagman is, but I don't think it's Brewer.
In the second shot, they are lining up for the trophy dash at Lakeside Speedway, that is Bob Olds, the owner of the car that Donnie Wilson is strapping into, on the pole. The Hainds & Ludwig "Marigold Cafe Spl.", behind Wilson, Don Spyder Anderson at the wheel (though not in photo), the guy to the far left, behind the Marigold car, is non other than the legendary Sam Sauer. You have an Offy on the pole, Pastor in a Chevy II outside, and two SESCO Chevy's in the back row. That #98 was owned by Chuck Jameson, it was a Kurtis copy, always a nice car.

RJ Butz
04-03-2012, 01:16 PM
Thanks for the info, Mitch - didn't think that was Brewer either. Also funny info on first photo - Richard said the trophy girl was struggling to keep her bikini bottom on(she's holding the straps to keep it on) after it started coming apart!