For Quick Hitching.
Our Pacific coast correspondent sends us additional particulars of the hitching contest that took place in San Francisco recently for a handsome silver emblem presented by The Examiner of that city. As has been stated, Lemuel Rudolph, the driver of Engine No. 7, won the trophy for his company. The first exhibition was from the stalls to the pole, the driver to be on the floor and mount his engine after hitching. Time, thirteen and three-fourths seconds. Then Rudolph was sent to bed, stripped to his undergarments, His big fire boots, with the loose trousers surrounding the legs, were set up in convenient reach, and one of the committee mounted guard to see that he remained fairly tucked in between the sheets until the gong started him. The committeeman does not know yet just how he got into those boots and breeches, but he was out and away in an incredibly short time, making kangaroo jumps down the hall while he hauled up and fastened the trousers. Five leaps carried him down the stairs, and the same quick work was gone through with when he arrived at the pole, where Danger and Harry had beaten him and stood awaiting his coming.
This time the doors were pulled as well as the hangers, and Danger and Harry tightened the traces with the first indication of movement on the part of the portals. They started the four-ton machine on an up grade as though it were a bicycle-wheeled sulky, hauled it across the sill with a rush, and sent the hind wheels rolling over the 4&:io-foot mark in twenty-five and one-half seconds from the tap of the gong. This looked like winning time, and after sending Rudolph to six engine to nuke a run from bed to harness with the aid of the sliding pole the committee made a dissection of his performance, with handicaps taken into consideration. It took five and one-half seconds for Danger and Harry to lap the forewheel’of the engine with their noses on the th>or hitch ; this would cut the thirteen and three-fourths record to eight and one-fourth seconds, which Rudolph subsequently showed he was capable of by starting with his horses under the harness, hooking up, mounting and pulling clear in six seconds. The pole cut five seconds off his run from bed, and this would cut the turn out and roll performance to twenty and one-half seconds. The committee resolved, however, to let the two performances stand without any deductions unless they were beaten or tied, in which event the lightning driver was to be given a chance against his competitor on equal terms. The combined time therefore went on record as thirty-nine and one-fourth for two hitches and a turn out.