Daytona Beach, FL Racer Dies, Mar 1929

Racer Lee Bible The "Triplex" Wreckage



Daytona Beach, Fla., March 14. (I.N.S.) -- The tragic climax of the international speed tests, which resulted in death to LEE BIBLE, racing driver, and CHARLES TRAUB, a camerman, today plunged officials of Daytona Beach into deepest gloom and brought this year's death-defying races to an abrupt close.
BIBLE, a mechanic in a Daytona Beach garage, was killed yesterday afternoon, while thundering down the nine-mile ocean speedway in "The Triplex," the seven ton American car he was driving in an attempt to shatter the world's automobile speed record set Monday at 231.36 miles an hour by Major H. O. D. SEGRAVE of England. BIBLE'S powerful machine skidded on a wet spot on the beach course, swerved violently, leaped into the air, struck a sand dune and rolled back onto the beach. He was traveling at a speed of 202 miles an hour at the time of the accident.
TRAUB, standing at the edge of the course taking a picture, was struck before he could leave his tracks. His body was cut in two. Practically every bone in BIBLE'S body was broken. Both were instantly killed. The ponderous, 36 cylinder
"Triplex" struck the cameraman squarely cleaving his body, which spurted fully 500 feet into the air.
When the big car toppled back onto the beach with BIBLE'S body beneath, pandemonium broke loose among the spectators, who rushed upon the beach. In the excitement several women fainted, and had to be carried away.
"I am through with the racing game forever," said J. M. WHITE, wealthy Philadelphia sportsman and owner of the "Triplex" this morning.
"I would not have had this accident happen for all the records in the world."
WHITE broke down and cried at the undertaking parlor. He announced that he had given "The Triplex" to MURRAY CRIBB, Macon, Ga., racer who is here, with the understanding that he sell it and give the proceeds to the widow, MRS. BIBLE, and her daughter, GRACE, sixteen. TRAUB, the other victim was also married. His wife and seven year old daughter, who are in Miami, were notified of his death.
Major SEGRAVE, who was on the Beach at the time of the accident waiting beside his record-breaking car, "The Golden Arrow", told International News Service today that he is through with high pressure automobile racing. He had planned to take the Beach for another try at the record in the event that BIBLE broke the mark he established on Monday.
"I've had enough and I am retiring," said SEGRAVE. "I have ordered "The Golden Arrow" crated and shipped back to England at once."
SEGRAVE said, however, that the accident would not prevent him from racing GAR WOOD'S speed boat, Miss American the 7th, at Miami, Florida on March 20-21. SEGRAVE has been trying out his boat here, Miss England, and has attained a speed in it of 83 miles an hour. The speed boat record is 91 miles an hour.
MRS. BIBLE was prostrated today. She was an eye-witness of the tragedy, and was one of the first to reach her husband's side.
"I never would have consented to my husband's driving the car had there not been insinuations that he was not capable," she said. "I was willing to have him show the doubters that he had the courage to do it. Had it not been for the accident, I believe he would have broken the record."
BIBLE lost his life in what he had termed "the golden opportunity of his lifetime." He was practically unknown in the racing game, and when his name was mentioned as the likely driver of "The Triplex" instead of RAY KEECH, who drove it to a world's record of 207 miles an hour last year, there was considerable comment, for BIBLE was practically unknown in the racing game. He was a Daytona Beach garage mechanic, forty-two years old. He had achieved some fame within the state of Florida as a dirt track driver. His driving at the state racing meets had been confined to small cars.
The American Automobile Association, under whose auspices the speed tests were held, forced him to make several preliminary runs in "The Triplex" to demonstrate he was capable of handling the big car at high speed.
Mayor E. H. ARMSTRONG of Daytona Beach, who was a prime mover in getting the international races for this city, expressed his deepest regret over the accident. He announced that beach racing was over for this season, adding, however, that it was through no fault of the beach course that the accident happened.
This was the second fatal accident in two years at Daytona Beach. A year ago FRANK LOCKHART, famous speedster, was killed when his car turned turtle while he was streaking down the course.

Olean Times New York 1929-03-14