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North Park Bmx Pittsburgh, Long gone local track
mxer746
post Jan 18 2008, 12:34 PM
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Hi,
Hope Im putting this thread in the correct forum, just wanted to see if anyone remembers this track. I know South Park isthe place and has been forever, but I grew up on the North Park track and it was my little version of BMX heaven. I wish I had a few photos to share but they are in storage somewhere... Just a few short memories I have to give ya. My first race I was 6yrs old in 76 flat start in a lime box on the ground, pie plates for everyone..masking tape around the bell bottoms. My bike had a 16" wheel in back and 20" in front and a plastic gas tank with motorcycle handlebars to make it look more like a motorcycle...They would hold jumping contests ocassionally on race day. The contest was mostly for distance. It was a slight downhill to flat landing. Bikes would break. Very exciting to a 6yr old. They held probably the first ever single speed bmx 'mountain bike' race without even knowing it. I think they called it an enduro. A moto would start on the gate jump off the track at the first turn go down into the woods and follow arrows on trees for a while then back up a fire road to the last straight to the finish. Most of the kids would drop their bikes and lay on the ground after the finish. That was the last time I think they ran that format, it took all day too. A few years later the track included a really cool drop off maybe 4 or 5 ft after the last corner, that savy riders would bunnyhop the flat ground before the drop and catch a little backside instead of slamming down further on the landing. In the 80's they paved the starting hill, and it was pretty big for that time. There was a National or two there, and a step up jump that when it was first built was really cool. A dirt jump off the track in back they called "the wall" as I remember it was about as vertical as a dirt jump gets, kids would fakie by mistake and fall back down the thing. We would stack old car tires to see who could clear the most. Too much fun. Ok sorry for long post, I get carried away sometimes.....
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Gary Mason WWR
post Jan 18 2008, 02:02 PM
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Remember it well , they had saturdays national at north park then sundays at south park . Bitd that was a first for me . I think i got my picture in a mag taking a picture of jumpin John Jup??? Both those tracks were fast and smooth for the time . I grew up in s.e Pa so I love down hills .
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mxer746
post Jan 18 2008, 08:55 PM
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QUOTE (Gary Mason WWR @ Jan 18 2008, 03:02 PM) *
Remember it well , they had saturdays national at north park then sundays at south park . Bitd that was a first for me . I think i got my picture in a mag taking a picture of jumpin John Jup??? Both those tracks were fast and smooth for the time . I grew up in s.e Pa so I love down hills .

I remember the stories about how the South Park track was so fast and downhill, so I think I ran a 46/16 first race and was really having tough time gettin up that first straight which as I remember had a slightly uphill slant to it, then it paid off after the first turn.
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Dante
post Jan 19 2008, 09:14 AM
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My first national was there, I came in as a Expert not a good Idea, 12 x i think, had my [please review the site FAQs] handed to me. My team mates stayed novice and did quite well, Old Wooden Wheels Racing, Gary Mason on this Forum I think went
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Chris C.
post Jan 19 2008, 10:10 AM
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I remember racing there when this place and South Park shared a national weekend. I remember liking SP much better for some reason.
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Deanna
post Jan 19 2008, 10:21 AM
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Yep, I remember racing at North Park and going the next day to the South Park National. North Park had one heck of a downhill first straight. I also believe lightening striking a fence or the starting gate at a national and someone getting zapped.

Hopefully someone can put up some pictures.
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mxer746
post Jan 19 2008, 12:51 PM
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QUOTE (Deanna @ Jan 19 2008, 11:21 AM) *
Yep, I remember racing at North Park and going the next day to the South Park National. North Park had one heck of a downhill first straight. I also believe lightening striking a fence or the starting gate at a national and someone getting zapped.

Hopefully someone can put up some pictures.

I know I have a mag with NP in it, Ill get a scan when I find it. I remember that lightning strike, I think it hit the starting hill and I remember people saying one of the riders went flying off the side of the hill. I dont think anyone was seriously hurt. Its cool to find folks who remember NP BMX, thanks!
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njracer
post Jan 19 2008, 06:48 PM
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Posting pics from a mag is kinda a touchy subject right now.
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Rebel Rouzer
post Jan 24 2008, 12:49 AM
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I was there in '83 and saw the lightning strike happen. I hated lightning back then, not real fond of it now either, lol. I also remember something about the first straight. There was either a double or a triple that was so deep, if you didn't clear it you lost major time. I may be wrong. Anyone else remember that? Sadly, no pictures from me either.
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Jsea73
post Jan 25 2008, 11:53 PM
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Hey i remember North and South Park those tracks had the best berms and were smooth as silk, I have some pic on my MYSPACE page NOSTALGIC BMX, I will find some more soon and put them up, when i get some time, they are from old magazines back in the day, I will start looking for some more pics tonight and when I get some time Sunday 1/27/08 i will post em on my Myspace,,,
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