Mary says: #97 Ron Pierce and Mike Baldwin dueled for first in the 1977 Loudon Superbike event. Mike crashed just a few yards from the checkers and pushed his Moto Guzzi across the finish line, but was penalized a lap and dropped to 6th for having help with the push. Victory went to Pierce.

Ron Pierce, commenting on Facebook: What happened, the full story. Mike and I were going the same speed. I couldn’t get away from him and he couldn’t get away from me. We had a great race going on. I moved wide on a turn to let Mike get by (to watch him and see where he was making time and where I was making time.) He went high in the hairpin every lap. I call it the Mike Hailwood line. I tested him a few times on the inside but he didn’t try to block me (Mel taught me this move). The last lap I dove down low (what is known as the Bakersfield line), I used it for block passing. I had him right there. I stayed low on the last turn, his only line to win was high and outside. He lost his bike doing his best but I had the advantage.

That was a shame that they docked him a lap. I didn’t know the officials did that to him. Mike is one of those guys that you just loved to race with. He liked to get close and bump. He was a great racer and I truly enjoyed watching his career. What fun we had, it was never about money for me, it was always about the competition.

Bad luck for Mike; this may have been the last time a Moto Guzzi had a shot at a race win in the 20th century.