Daytona - Ormond Speed Trials

These epic speed trials occurred on the sands of Ormond and Daytona Beach from 1904 through 1910 and established the Daytona area as a speed center.

The two attachments below provide articles from the March 1906 edition of The Automobile Magazine covering the Ormond Beach speed tournament for that year. This tournament was an annual festival that occurred between 1904 and 1910.

This is a collection of articles describing the Ormond Beach Speed Trials of 1907. Automobile Magazine provides the best and most comprehensive account, but other articles from the Indianapolis Star are useful as well. The 1907 speed trials were something of a disappointment as the entries of both cars and drivers were less spectacular than in previous years.

This article from The Automobile was published shortly after the 1906 Ormond Beach Speed Tournament. It addresses one of the issues of the early days of American auto racing as people in the automobile industry frequently criticized the use of purpose-built race cars in racing competition. The debate was firmly on the agenda of the American Automobile Association (AAA) agenda at the time.

This article discusses plans for the Ormond Beach speed tournament of 1908. Note the predictions of the tide and how much time the beach would be available to run cars each day.

One name largely lost in the history of leadership officials within early days American auto racing and automobiles is Alfred Reeves, who is mentioned in the attached article. Reeves was the first automobile editor in the United States (1902 - New York Mail) and is best known for a long career heading up the the Automobile Manufacturer's Association (AMA) well into the 1930's.

Attached are a couple of articles from the Indianapolis Star reporting on contests at the Ormond Beach speed tournament from March 1908. The first article was published March 4, 1908 and reports on a 125 mile race for amateurs. In these races the cars would typically go a marked-off distance of the beach, a few miles, and then circle back to complete several laps.

These articles summarize the planning efforts for the 1909 Daytona-Ormond speed tournatment - all were published in the Indianapolis Star.

Attached is a brief article on the Daytona-Ormond speed tournament was published in the Indianapolis Star on March 24, 1909 (attachment Daytona032409). The article reports on the opening day of the seventh annual speed tournament which not only featured automobiles but motorcycles and bicycles as well. The day presented two auto races and one each of the two-wheeled vehicles.

The article in attachment Ormond111209 was originally published in the November 28, 1909 Indianapolis Star. It discusses planned entries for the 1910 edition of the Ormond - Daytona Beach speed tournament. This would be the last running of this annual speed festival although land speed record runs would continue through 1935.

Attached are four articles concerning planning for the 1910 Daytona-Ormond speed tournament. The first (attachment DaytonaNews122009) appeared shortly before Christmas 1909 in the December 20 Indianapolis News. Here we learn that event promoter, "Senator" W.J. Morgan had announced that the famous beach race would not be held in 1910.