The 101 Association, Inc.
For the preservation and enjoyment of 1928 to 1931 Indian Scout Motocycles
"You can't wear out an Indian Scout"

Max Bubeck

From:    "indnchf1947" <>
Date:    04/08/2011

Sad news for the forum:
Max Bubeck passed away Friday Morning April 8th 2011.
He will be missed by all at the local motorcycle rides.
Godspeed Max!

©2000, Max Bubeck as told to Jerry Hatfield,

Being born in the LA area was a very fortunate happening for me. By 1933
at age 15, I already had my first motorcycle, a 1930 101 Scout. It
wasn't long before I got acquainted with the local "hounds," as we were
known then, and every week end we would be off to some event, usually a
TT race, field event, or beer bust.

One of the favorite spots was about 15 miles east of LA at Sam Parriots'
in Puente Ranch. The LA 45 Club put on steak feeds and field meets at
least twice a year and one of the big attractions was a straight,
blacktop road that ran for a mile, then made a dogleg turn to the right,
then left and up a hill. This was known as the Puente Strip.

By 1937, we would convene our motorcycles in "drag outs" or speed runs
at least once a month on early Saturday mornings before there was any
traffic. By 1939, Frank Christian had built an electric-eye timing clock
so we could get accurate times. This was a great help to the local
racers and speed-trialers to check their machines for performance. It
was in October of 1941 and I left home early Saturday morning on my '39
Indian Four, headed for Puente. The route was east on Valley Blvd to
Fifth Street, in Puente, a right turn across some railroad tracks, then
a left turn onto the strip.

As I came around the corner at about 30mph, I saw three machines just
starting on a run. The one on the left was Ed Kretz on his #38 Sport
Scout race bike, and the others were a couple of Harleys. I thought, why
not see if I could catch them, so I pulled the Four back into second
gear and got on it. I was gaining on all three, and soon passed the
Harleys but Kretz was still ahead. I was slightly to the left of him and
my front wheel was along side his rear wheel, both of us still in second
at 75mph. Ed looked over his right shoulder, saw the Harleys behind him,
snapped into high gear and laid down on the Scout. I did the same on my
Four and the Scout started to pull away at 90mph. So I edged into his
draft about three feet behind and managed to stay there at over 100mph.
The immediate reaction after clearing the timing traps was to sit up and
get on the brakes because that dogleg was pretty sharp at that speed.

So Kretz did the usual and turned around to see how far ahead he was of
the Harleys. I still laugh when I think of the look on his face when he
saw me three feet behind him! His eyes bugged out and almost pushed his
goggles off! As we slowed, I came alongside of him and he said, :Where
did you come from?" I said, "I was there all the time." My speedometer
stop-hand read 114mph and when we got back to the timer, we found out we
had hit 112.50mph.

I later took the Four through at 108.43mph, without the benefit of the
draft---this was just as I rode it on the streets---headlights, fenders,
saddlebags, the works. Sam Parriot tried to talk me into talking off the
extra garbage and trying again, but I was happy with that speed.
Remember---this was 1941, when few machines would clock an honest

Kretz asked me to take his Scout through and see what I could get out of
it, as I was about 40 pounds lighter. It clocked exactly 112.50mph with
me on it, too. This was the week before the big 200 mile race at
Oakland. Kretz had the best qualifying time at 94mph on the very rough
one mile track, paved with a low bank on the turns. Kretz, of course,
had the pole and at the end of the first lap had a 200 foot lead, which
kept increasing every lap until he lapped the second-place rider on the
32nd lap.

Soon after that, there was a very bad accident in the south turn, which
resulted in two deaths and several others taken out of the race. How Ed
didn't go down is a miracle of some sort. Movies taken of the accident
make you shake your head in wonder that Kretz didn't end up in the pile
of motorcycles sliding into the fence. Later, when asked how he got
through, Ed said he closed his eyes and held on. Anyway, Ed managed to
get through the mess without going down and lead until the 117th lap,
when his front chain broke and put him out of the race. Front chains
weren't supposed to break on Indians with the oil bath but his did. I
guess Indian must've gotten a batch of bad chains, improperly

Those were great days! As well as riding my '39 Four on the streets and
on trips, I also rode the Four in cross-country events like the
Greenhorn 500-miler. I had the privilege of travelling with Ed Kretz,
and sometimes Jimmy Kelly another good Indian rider. We usually piled
into the car late on Saturday, and drove long, hard, and late at night
to make some Sunday racemeet at some distance from LA. Many were the
pranks and jokes. The world was our playground and we would never grow

©2000, Max Bubeck as told to Jerry Hatfield

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