Friday, February 3, 2012

Mark Williams 1951-2012 N.W. Hero

Oregon Flat Track Star, Mark Williams has taken his final checkered flag. I read where he passed on very recently and it bought back many incredible memories of this guy absolutely on the gas to the delight of his many fans in the N.W. Mark's Dad was a Flat Tracker and had a Triumph Dealership in Oregon,so the kid came up on first class equipment and he put it to good use. At 16 he was Oregon State Champion which was incredible considering the vast pool of talent he had to beat. I remember Mark mainly from Sidewinders in Portland where we counted on him to thrash the invaders from California, which he did repeatedly. When Mark got the Factory Norton ride in '76, the whole N.W. rejoiced is his accomplishments and really looked forward to some big things. He was a contemporary of Roberts and Gary Scott and we loved it when he beat up on them at Castle Rock and Sidewinders, so we were looking for a new NO.1.
It wasn't to be, Mark suffered a career ending wreck in practice for the San Jose Mile which left him paralyzed below the waist and his dreams dashed. Mark was a tough individual and didn't let it get him down and he lived an active life and enjoyed it strapped in Dune Buggies and on Snow Machines when ever he got the chance. I think there is a Sidewinders in Heaven and I can see Mark now Full Lock and Flat Out flying over the top of the hill and down around turn two. God Speed Mark.