Ace up B-29 crews that hit the water.”

Everett Brashear also known as Everett Brashear was born on January 17, 1927 in
Beaumont Texas. Without any interest in motorcycling, his life began on a
five-day journey from Houston, Texas, to San Diego, California, where he
reported for boot camp during World War II. “I got assigned to a minesweeper
and spent 19 months at sea,” he said. “On Tinian, we’d run ‘ping’ lines around
the island and pick up B-29 crews that hit the water.” After the war he
returned to his home town but didn’t start racing until 1948 because of post
war shortages. You couldn’t buy a motorcycle,” he
said. Eventually he was given a loaner motorcycle by a local Indian
dealer. During his third race, Brashear crashed wrecking that motorcycling and
injuring his shoulder. In
1949, Everett was high-point rider in the novice class. In 1950 he had finally earned enough points to move up from
the novice class to the amateur class. “I
ran that 45 Scout flathead on the Class C AMA Amateur circuit and transferred
to Expert in 1951,” he said. “We had half-mile tracks all over Texas. The whole
Southeast was a circuit for dirt-track guys. Class C was the same nationwide
and traveling all over was pretty tough. We’d team up and split the expenses.”
He had very tough competition at the time. Others running Indian motorcycles at
the time were the top racers: Bobby Hill, Bill Tuman and Ernie Beckman, known
as “The Indian Wrecking Crew.” “The Indians
were the faster bike in those days, back when Floyd Emde won Daytona,” said
Brashear. “Hill built the fastest Indians I ever ran against.” Indian was
facing financial issues so Brashear had to start looking for an alternative
motorcycle. “A friend of mine found a 1941 WR,” he recalled, “a pretty fast
bike that Harley built for Class C. The only ‘overheads’ were normally the
foreign bikes. You could run a 30-cubic inch overhead valve against the 45-inch
flathead. In 1951, I was winning a lot of races as an Expert and was getting to
be the hot guy. The Harley-Davidson factory was helping me out a lot with parts
and pieces.” Brashear
won his first national at Sturgis, South Dakota, in 1952 on Harley’s new
foot-shift four-speed KR (the WR was hand-shift) “Winning Sturgis on the KR
made me look good to Harley, and they started working full-time with me. By the
end of the season, the bike worked really good at the mile at DuQuoin, and I
won on the mile-and-a-half at Memphis, Tennessee—the only mile-and-a-half we
ran on.” Long ovals were seeing speeds reminiscent of the board tracks of the
1920s. Memphis was banked, to boot, “and so fast,” said Brashear, “that I
didn’t have the sprockets to gear it high enough.” No one was as skilled as he was on
mile and half-mile dirt ovals. He won four nationals in 1953 and he was
considered by most to be the rider to beat the Grand National Series in 1954.

He was severely injured during a night race that took place in Alabama in May
of 1954. His motor cycle had sputtered so he pulled over to check it out and
another rider came and hit him on the poorly lit track. He suffered multiple
injuries including a severe head injury where he eventually lost the sight in
his left eye. Years after continuous racing Brashear had a bad crash yet again
which made him give up racing for good. After retiring in 1960 Brashear decided
to work in the motorcycle industry having multiple positons. He ran a Harley
Davidson dealership for short while, then became a district manager for
Triumph, an insurance agent, eastern sales manager for Yamaha, national sales
manager for Kawasaki, head of Husqvarna distribution and, finally, a
representative for aftermarket manufacturers. He had spent a total of 47 years
in the motor cycle industry he retired for good in 1996 and in 1998 Brashear
was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. He currently resides in San
Diego, CA and keeps himself busy with a small business that builds custom golf

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