Subject Topic: Langford Speedway Post Reply
Message posted by Web Master on 03 December 2005 at 3:34pm - IP Logged
Quote Web Master
Discuss the history of Langford Speedway.

Message posted by Tom Askey on 22 December 2005 at 3:05pm - IP Logged
Quote Tom Askey


        Really enjoyed this site! As a kid these guys were my hero's! Dominion          Day races were the best, (May 24th) some cars would be in the big Victoria Parade. Those were great races, I was fortunate enough to have Jack Smith as an auto shop teacher, at Vic High. Later when I got to race at Western Speedway, I got to actually be on the track usually during hot laps with a few of the oldtimers, and realized what talented mechanics these guys were, when week after week, I'd try to beat there car's. Unfortunately our family was in the crowd when the spectator fatality occured, that unlucky lady was about 5 rows below us! Very sad. Thanks for a great article....Tom Askey

Message posted by Brian Pratt on 27 December 2005 at 2:55pm - IP Logged
Quote Brian Pratt
Thanks for the comment Tom. Happy to report that Jack Smith will be recognized by the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame in a couple months in Toronto. I think Ross Rockett nominated him. I've never heard a bad thing said about Jack. He seemed to be everyone's hero to those who had the great good fortune to know him.
Brian Pratt

Message posted by Murray Jones on 27 January 2006 at 9:37pm - IP Logged
Quote Murray Jones
My mom sent me a picture of herself at age 5 (she is over 65 now). She is sitting in an open racecar with the #11 on it. I can send it to you if you like. My mom doesn't recall the history of the photo. It's pretty cool though.

Message posted by Brian Pratt on 27 January 2006 at 11:42pm - IP Logged
Quote Brian Pratt
Sure, that sounds cool. Was it the rear-engined machine? Send it to

Thanks again,

Message posted by Murray Jones on 29 January 2006 at 1:57pm - IP Logged
Quote Murray Jones
It is a front engine machine. The picture is in the mail! Cheers!

Message posted by Richard Goodall on 01 April 2006 at 11:38pm - IP Logged
Quote Richard Goodall

Really enjoyed this article and the great old photos.  I was a very good friend of the late Phil Foster who built cars in the 30s that were driven by Bud Green.  As a young fellow I often dropped into Phil's semi retirement shop on Coverdale Ave.and enjoyed the stories.  He used to say "well you see, no one had much money back then and so you used your ingenuity.  It was not uncommon to see an overhead valve head adapted to a flathead block.  Everyone tried to get an edge over the next guy.  There was one man in Victoria who made a mould to hammer heavy aluminum into and form the classic sprint car back end."

Langford Speedway was paved as I understand it by the generosity of Victoria resident Franny (pronounced "Frawney") Morse.  Franny was a great guy and was very active well into his 90s.

Thanks for the memories.



Message posted by Brian Pratt on 09 April 2006 at 11:10pm - IP Logged
Quote Brian Pratt
Great to know you had a chance to meet Phil Foster. I've seen his name as far back as the 1920s, racing Model Ts at The Willows in Victoria. His Speedway Service station seems to have been an important place for the racers to gather. I've also come across the fact that he was a collector of vintage cars going back to the early days of the automobile and people like singers from the Metropolitan Opera in NYC visited him to see his car collection.

Was the guy with the mould John Dalby? The few times I got to speak with John he would laugh at the sprint car tail that Corky Thomas had on the back of his Lucky Lady big car and mentioned that it was a relic of his own work.

Pike Green (again before he passed away) mentioned Franny Morse and his contribution to the development of Langford Speedway. Pike was always keen to give credit where credit was due and woe betide the person who got it wrong!

Message posted by Richard on 26 April 2006 at 10:24pm - IP Logged
Quote Richard

Hi Brian, 

If Phil mentioned the name of the guy who made the back ends for the cars, I do not recall, but John Dalby would be a good possible.  There are so many stories Phil told me I could go on for hours and nice to hear from someone who remembers him.  He was a wonderful mechanic from the old school who grew up with the automobile.  When he was 14 yrs old, he apprenticed for a Mr. Dandridge on Oak Bay Ave. where my grandfather took his 1914 EMF for repairs.  Phil remembered him and also the car.    When I knew Phil it was the early 60s and he had since sold his collection except for one car, a 1914 Model T which was donated  to the Museum in Victoria upon his death.  He often spoke of the early days of racing model Ts and I wish I had tape recorded his anecdotes.

One final note speaking of Corky Thomas.  When he and his old friend and racer Bob Simpson were well on into their 70s they would take their old big cars out to Western Speedway on a weekday and race each other around the track and I for one wish I had been there with a camera.  They have since taken that final ride and we will miss them.

Best regards





Message posted by modelbuilder on 11 December 2006 at 8:57pm - IP Logged
Quote modelbuilder

Great Site!

Enjoyed viewing the photos, would anyone know IF the cars are availble in plastic model kits or which modification does one need to perform to build a model of the cars seen in the photos?


Message posted by Gary S.A. Haslam on 05 November 2009 at 7:09pm - IP Logged
Quote Gary S.A. Haslam

Excellent article, I am looking to writing the life story of my dad, George Haslam, he is mentioned in this article. He began his racing at Langford Speedway near Victoria, BC. Racing was an important part of his life and a true passion for him during the 1940s and 1950s. His brother Jim Haslam was also into racing. My dad was proud of the Gilmore Special that he drove, he said it had schofield heads. I am seeking to collect as much information, documentation and photographs as I can acquire. Also wanting to converse with anyone that knew George Haslam. My contact info is as follows:

Gary S.A. Haslam, 6312 Buckskin Place, Surrey, BC, Canada, V3S 5H5, 604-574-3037,


Message posted by sherry on 10 December 2010 at 12:22pm - IP Logged
Quote sherry
Just a few thoughts - brings back lots of memories for me even though I was really too young to hang around the race track in the 40' brother, Cameron Cross (Cam later went on to become a pilot with C.P.Airlines) was a huge race car fan and his best friend was car owner/driver Ken McMurray (anyone out there remember Ken who lost his life far too young???)  - after a race and a few beer at Ma Millers, the "gang" would often head to "Mary's" on Fort Street for a late nite/early morning breakfast........Just remembered another old friend of my brothers, Howie Stanley - his dad had a gas station on Oak Bay Ave........thanks for the memories...By the way, for anyone out there who may remember Cameron, he is hanging on in a seniors home in Misssissauga, Ont.......not in very good health at all and definitely wishing he were out here in beautiful B.C.

Message posted by arefisfiell on 20 October 2011 at 11:44am - IP Logged
Quote arefisfiell
Hello im new to the forum and wanted to introduce myself, im a bike builder in florida and love it, lots of fun and lots of cool ass people to hang out with . Anyways thanks for allowing me to join the forum.

Message posted by barney39 on 17 December 2011 at 6:34pm - IP Logged
Quote barney39
Just finished reading the great article and looking through the photos. Brought back a lot of memories.As kids,we would climb the Oak trees behind the fence on the north corner of Langford Speedway and get a bird's eye view of the races.On the Sunday morning after a race,we would walk under the grandstand looking for money that might have fallen from someone's pocket.I also remember Joey Chitwood and the the Daredevils who would put on a show at the track once in a while.
We lived on Millstream Road(Bob Simpson and his family rented a house from Harvey Aikman right across the street)before the TCH was put through so all the race cars would have to pass our house to get to the new Western Speedway.It was quicker for us to walk home from the races than those driving as the traffic lineups were huge.


Message posted by Donna (Reid) Bergholz on 25 July 2019 at 2:56pm - IP Logged
Quote Donna (Reid) Bergholz
Hello, Would anyone know where the 1940's Sprint car that was put together by John, Alan Dalby, Harry Greenwood and my Dad Don Reid (and I am sure others too) - be - my brother and I would LOVE to take a picture of it. At one time I thought it might be in Victoria or on Salt Spring Island. Thanks for any help!!

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