him and push." "Come on, pull," they would shout. "Twist his
tail." "Good work, Dick." "Whisper in his ear." The sun was
low when Tex and Margaret corralled the last of the burros.
In the days that
followed the great burro race a storm swept across the western country. Skies
darkened over Beatty, and a cold wind whistled through the streets of the
little town. While Tex fought the wind to bring the burros back to the ranch,
Beatty residents sat around the Exchange Club discussing the great venture in
"The way our
boys stuck to it when they knew they didn't have a chance to win should be an
inspiration to all of us," said one.
"A project of
this size is usually undertaken by a town 10 times the size of ours," said
their mistakes and, above all, they agreed that next year the race will not be
run to Stovepipe Wells. Instead it will be run around Beatty, preferably with
each day's run starting and ending right in front of the Exchange Club. They
vowed that if the boys from Apple Valley dare to come back for next year's race
they will be in for some surprises. Training programs are already under
discussion. There was even talk of forming a burro-racing association and
staging intersectional meets.
easily establish a new national sport," said Mel Eads. "I think burros
should be brought back into the public eye."
As they talked,
their voices blending with the purr of the slot machines and the whining wind,
it became as plain as the ears on a burro that the spirit of the Old West, the
spirit that made Tonopah, Goldfield and Rhyolite, is not dead. It survives
among the 385 beaten but unbowed inhabitants of Beatty, Nevada.