Claremore Daily Progress

Community News

September 26, 2012

Remembering... The Great Bunion Derby Andy Payne



Sixty cars of boosters trailed Payne out north as he quickened his pace, visibility encouraged and pleased by the thousands who had turned out to welcome him at the county seat.
At Sequoyah it was estimated that everyone in the community was ganged around the store there to urge him on, but Payne really perked up when he neared Foyil School.  
When everyone joined in shouting, “Howdy, Andy,” he could contain his joy no longer and stopped for about a minute, just long enough to get a drink of water and shake a few hands, then he was off for Chelsea.
In Chelsea, the overnight stop, three bands, from Chelsea high school, Nowata high school, and OMA, were on hand to greet the Rogers county boy.  
He saw signs hanging from every conceivable point in Chelsea, all urging him on, as the runners swung down Chelsea’s main street to the control station.
In Chelsea, Payne saw his mother, whom he had not seen for the five months, and was handed a $500 check from Will Rogers to help him along the way.
As Payne continued eastward in C. C. Pyle’s bunion derby he continued to wire the chamber of commerce asking that radium water brochures be sent to cities lying ahead.  
He picked up the circulars as he passed through the towns and distributed them all the way along the route.
Going into Norman, Illinois, Payne had sheared another 36 minutes off the lead. Peter Gavuzzi of Southhampton, England had picked up in the eastern leg of the trip.  
He still had a lead of 4 hours, 51 minutes over Payne, however.  
While suffering from a bad case of flu Andy took it easy and allowed Gavuzzi to build up his lead to 6 hours, but he stayed well ahead of the rest of the field.

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