I sent this to the Stockton online news earlier today:
Over 30 years ago, history was made at the San Joaquin County Fairgrounds.
30 years ago, my friend Scott Brelsford, former Harley-Davidson Factory team rider, and legendary tuner Erv Kanemoto, stirred the racing community by being the first to successfully use a Kawasaki road race engine in a specially-manufactured flat track chassis prepared by chassis builder the late Doug Schwarma of Champion Frames, Hayward, California.
The results 30 years ago shook the professional racing community. This revolutionary motorcycle was reminiscent of the Andy Granitelli/Mario Andretti STP turbine car effort at Indianapolis Motorspeedway, which too was banned following that historic race. Immediately following the Stockton Mile, it became apparent to the racers that they would have to adapt to the new formula or lose.
Kenny Roberts, then current national champion, along with Kel Carruthers, went to the same chassis manufacturer and had a similar chassis built around Yamaha’s road race engine. Yamaha’s budget far out-stretched the Brelsford/Kanamoto effort. Roberts gained the attention of the AMA professional racing sanctioning board. There along with the Harley Davidson factory representatives, they outlawed this new formula from AMA professional competition.
Roberts was credited with conceiving this revolutionary concept and history was corrupted. The facts are that an historical event occurred at this track, the Stockton Mile at the San Joaquin Fairgrounds the last time the races were held here 30 plus years ago, and it was at this track that history was made and forced a change in the AMA professional motorcycle racing rules forever... with the win of the Brelsford/Kanemoto Kawasaki.