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1950 World Tournament
Murray, Utah - Aug. 7-12, 1950

Permission granted by author, Gary T. Kline of
"The Official N.H.P.A. History of the World Tournament 1909-1980", Reflection Press, Dayton, Ohio
Gary T. Kline's book on past world tournament (before 1980) is recommended reading for any horseshoe pitching enthusiast. With his kind permission, we bring excerpts from his fabulous collection of data, to wit:

1950 World Tournament

The field in this tournament was jammed with 29 players with World competition experience. Of the seven rookies, headed by Monasmith and Anderson, only Hefner would not make a return appearance. Twenty-three of this group would eventually find themselves in the all time top 100 in career victories!

The superstar of this tremendous event was the great world champion, Fernando Isais. Fernando was attempting to equal the known record of four consecutive titles. Allen won in '33, the later sanctioned '34, '35 and '40 for his four straight. Newspaper bits and pieces say Jackson won in '14, '15, '16, '17, and '18 but as yet this is still unproven. So in 1950, people were under the impression Isais had the opportunity to become the first man to win the title four consecutive years. He was such an overwhelming favorite only Allen and Jones were given Ii chance of unseating him from the championship throne.

Tuesday's eight game schedule found a sprinkling of upsets. Utah favorite, Ray Ohms, upset the number two qualifier Lindmeier. Louis Dean surprised DeLeary, 50-30. Texas State Champion, B;d McFarland, who still holds the record of appearances in the championship flight by a Texan, had the thrill of beating all three Aliens in the event. In the daY'H final match, he shocked Ted, 00-39. Isais' closest match was with Paxton, Isais winning 50-42. First day leaders were Isais (8-0), Jones (8-0), Gray (8-0), DeLeary (7-1 ), Allen (7-1 ), Brown (71), Gatewood (7-1), Tamboer (7-1), Lindmeier (6-2), Shaw (6-2), and Ellis Cobb (6-2).

Wednesday action left Isais, Jones and Gray all 16-0 with the rest of the field beginning to thin. Next were Allen (10-1), DeLeary (10-1), Brown (14-2), Gatewood (13-3) and Cobb (13-3). On Thursday the three-way tie waH broken. In the 19th game, Jones was upended by Ray "Half Pint" Gatewood and Gray toppled by DeLeary. Gray, in the course of the evening, waH knocked off twice more including a loss to Ted Allen. Now the leaders were Isais (24-0), Allen and Jones (23-1), DeLeary (22-2) and Gray (21-3). All other contestants by now had at least six defeats.

A scheduled banquet limited Friday action to five games. In game 26, Ellis Cobb, who would be left with a life-long memory, ambushed the great Casey Jones, 50-43. In a match of the giants, Jones beat back Allen, 50-43. The contenders were now Isais (29-0) and Jones, Allen and DeLeary all squeezed together at 27-2. With only six games to go, Isais seemed to be in command.

Saturday was the day James Johnson of Kentucky was heard from. In later years, Jim moved across the river to Ohio where he fondly red his nickname, "Pop". Jim was one of the many in a long list of players who thrived on knocking off the best. Pop created the often heard saying in Ohio of "Beat the Champ"! In the final evening of play, Pop first nailed DeLeary, 50-31, and then derailed Ted Allen, 50-49, handing them their third defeat each.

Things had become brutal for the hopefuls. In the 31st game, Titcomb stung Jones, 50-37. In the 32nd game, Jones pounded DeLeary, 50-22. Also in the 32nd, Isais moved closer to locking up the title in a 50-41 victory over Ted Allen, dropping Ted from the chase. In the 33rd round, DeLeary rang the peg for 85 percent to Isais' 82 percent, giving Stan a 50-43 win and ruining Fernando's perfect record. In round 34, Isais with a victory retained his crown. In the 35th round, Isais pushed Jones back to a second place tie with Allen by holding off Casey, 50-46. This set up a one game match for second place. In this game, which went 140 shoes, Jones once again beat Allen, 50-48. Allen seemed now to always lose the big ones.

Fernando had done what he set out to do and people were wondering if he would ever let go of the World Championship. Isais had the making!:! of an institution! In a sport where pitching in the championship class is an unforgettable thrill and honor, winning the championship the culmination of a life-long dream, how could a man avoid even the slightest slump to remain perennial champion? Fernando's consistency has to be a marvelous wonder. In other sports, players graduate, owners break up teams and the lust for money can destroy a dynasty.

The immediate future looked bleak for the rest of the contenders who were faced with an unsolvable problem. How can you break up a team of one? ? ?


1950 World Tournament Murray, Utah - Aug. 7-12, 1950
Qual W.L.R.Sp. Pet.
1. Fernando Isais Los Angeles, Cal. D.C. 34 1 2142 2566 83.5
2. "Casey" Jones Waukesha, Wis. 540 31 4 2108 2606 80.9
3. Ted Allen Boulder, Colo. 535 31 4 2096 2542 82.5
4. Stan DeLeary Phoenix, Ariz. 535 30 5 2134 2784 76.7
5. Lowell Gray Long Beach, Cal. 495 28 7 2030 2674 75.9
6. Dean Brown South Gate, Cal. 500 27 8 2065 2710 76.2
7. Ray Gatewood Los Angeles, Cal. 496 25 10 1986 2672 74.3
8. Louis Dean Pomona, Cal. 481 24 11 1984 2638 75.2
9. Don Titcomb San Jose, Cal. 504 24 11 2056 2738 75.1
10. Jim "Pop" Johnson Covington, Ky. 505 23 12 1972 2642 74.6
11. John Monasmith Yakima, Wash. 478 22 11 1854 2686 69.0
12. Roland Kraft LeCompton, Kansas 491 20 15 1958 2694 72.7
13. Marines Tamboer Wichita, Kansas 496 20 15 1825 2566 71.1
14. Ron Cherrier Northfield. Minn. 485 20 15 1655 2432 68.1
15. Alvin Gandy Topeka, Kansas 473 19 16 1775 2608 68.1
16. Ellis Cobb Aurora, Ill. 491 19 16 1701 2512 67.7
17. John Lindmeier Chicago, Ill. 536 17 18 1973 2676 73.7
18. Ira Allen Fresno, Cal. 474 16 19 1771 2564 69.1
19. Harold Shaw What Cheer, Iowa 491 16 19 1819 2680 67.9
20. Henry Harper Los Angeles, Cal. 490 15 20 1593 2466 64.6
21. Dale Dixon Des Moines, Iowa 490 14 21 1849 2632 70.3
22. Ray Ohms Salt Lake City, Utah 486 14 21 1729 2604 66.4
23. Ed McFarland Houston, Texas 468 14 21 1624 2466 65.9
24. Aden Swinehamer Aurora, Ill. 472 14 21 1671 2544 65.7
25. George Hilst Pekin, Ill. 483 14 21 1514 2370 63.9
26. Nels Peterson Rochester, Minn. 462 13 22 1607 2416 66.5
27. Tommy Bartlin Waukesha, Wis. 507 13 22 1601 2414 66.3
28. Gerald L'Abbe Englewood, Colo. 477 13 22 1745 2636 66.2
29. Norman Dixon Streator, Ill. 471 12 23 1766 2622 67.4
30. John Paxton Ottumwa, Iowa 463 11 24 1479 2384 62.0
31. Richard Allen Boulder, Colo. 490 10 25 1777 2656 66.9
32. Arner Lindquist Morgantown, W. Va. 485 9 26 1788 2674 66.9
33. Glen Anderson Moline, Ill. 474 7 28 1476 2396 61.6
34. Charlie Hefner Peoria, Ill. 463 6 29 1481 2390 62.0
35. A. Jay Byrnes Alhambra, Cal. 461 3 32 1099 2051 53.6
36. Nelson Vogel Manito, Ill. 464 2 33 1152 2076 55.5