For many years Romero was associated with the Triumph brand. I was a kid working at a Triumph shop at the time so he was a natural hero for the bunch of us because our boss flat-tracked a Triumph as well. Robin Miller's obit is spot on and captures the essence of the era.
I remember reading about him when I was a kid. I'll have to watch "On Any Sunday" again because I can't remember if there's any footage of him there. Mert Lawwill had lots of screen time so I imagine Gene is in there somewhere.
Flat track racing must be one wild ride and he was one of the best.
back then, those guys had to do it all to accumulate points to win the national series #1 plate.
Including TT, which, to the best of my knowledge, is now totally defunct, having been shouldered aside by European style motocross. Gene Romero was a master of TT along with flat track. It was only as his career progressed that he had to take up road racing because that was what the run for national points required.
Back in the day, you could take in the flat track action at Ascot Park in Gardena on Saturday night, then go watch TT the next day at any of several outlying tracks.
Including TT, which, to the best of my knowledge, is now totally defunct
There is still at least one TT on the dirt track calendar. Peoria TT has been run for decades and hasn't been off the calendar since I can remember. This year there are more like 5 TTs including Peoria, Springfield, Buffalo Chip, Wild Horse and Daytona.
I'm not 100% sure but I thought there was a pretty in depth look at the Peoria TT in On Any Sunday II. Romero was in fact featured in both of them. Dave Aldana too, and he did a segment in the 3rd installment called On Any Sunday, Revisited.
Aldana and Romero were both from the same neighborhood in So Cal. Romero got the nickname "Burrito" from one of his mechanics. Aldana tells the story that the two of them became known as the "Burrito Brothers" when they were racing.
My wife said something to me about Burrito Romero while she was reading the news.....I was like "Gene Romero?" She confirmed that and said he'd passed. 72 years old....and a life well lived. God Speed Burrito.
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