More from the Tijuana Internaccional
Along with the map and video from earlier today, here are some photos from the 1966 or 67 road races held on the temporary street circuit along the beach in Tijuana. There’s some street action with the Formula Vees entering turn one at the end of the long beachside straight, the drivers in the production class lining up for their LeMans start, and some track shots of some MGAs and Sprites. Excellent stuff here.
Now that looks like a happy bunch of drivers.
The two happy drivers closest to us are Harry Codianne (white shoes) who owned a repair shop in Pacific Beach and raced an Elva Courier MK IV at Tijuana and Francico “Chacho” Carillo, a news anchorman on Canal 12, Tijuana. Keneeling at left is Mark Ferlin, a WWII fighter pilot who had previously raced a MKI Sprite which he sold to a young Tijuanan whose godfather was the Mayor of Tijuana at that time. With his fingers on the helmet is Francisco “Pancho” Araujo, who had a checkered career as an automobile dealer. The other fellows names appear in the program printed for November, 1967 races at Playas de Tijuana, which is where the pictures came from.
That event was rained out and the program overprinted for March, 1968. I raced my MG BGT there. See the program here:
In the standing drivers photo, the race is under way. The man with a stick is the Tijuana Mayor, who started the race and propped the green flag by his foot. Next to him, white Tiuana Autosport Club shirt, is Francisco Araujo. The MG TF is driven by Fred Puhn, who invented the spun aluminum wheels, the Santee sports car, and the Quasar sports racer. He and Mickey Pleasant, Bugeye Sprite driver, had a race-long battle won by Fred.
The formula Vees are not entering the turn at the end of the long (half-mile) straight, but exiting the turn before Start-Finish straight. You can see from the course map that the ocean is west of the turn, a right-hander that takes you from westbound to northbound. Paddock and pits were inside the race course, accessed by either the short road from straight to pit entrance or from the short straight after the top-of-hill left.
Sports Car Graphic report on the still earlier race (March 1967) can be seen here:
My experience racing there (March 1967, March 1968) is here:
I must have missed the Arizona Sports Racing Association’s races at Playas, as shown in your video. The number 16 MGB sure looks a lot like mine, doesn’t it? Mine is here:
I’m really enjoying seeing the old films from Riverside, Paramount Ranch, Pomona. Thanks for that.
Addendum re: the “Le Mans” start picture: it was not traditional, in that I made the drivers buckle in to their cars, and designate a crewman to run across the track and hand the driver the key to the car.
About the course: when I joined the TASC and agreed to help them plan the November, 1967 races, I convinced them to add the two right turns and two left turns around the block north of the park, and to enclose the paddock/pit area within the course.
Prior races had been on a long box with a u-turn at one end and two lefts at the other. And run clockwise, at least once. See a report of one of those races at:
I’m the grandson of Harry Codianne in the picture above, and I was wondering if anyone had any status, pictures, or stories about my Grandpa. If you do please contact me, you can face book o email me, or if you prefer my cell is 858-652-0511, please get back to me thanks.
You do realize your Aunt Francie nd Uncle Ed used to drive also, ask them they might be ble to tell you things that your father might not know about Granddad. My Mom knows lot. Did you know that he turned down chance to race in the Indy, but he turned down because his wife didn’t want him to becuse of how dngerous it was.