Ned has figured prominently in West Coast historic racing for many years, usually driving his green (with yellow wheels) Frazer Nash "Le Mans Replica". Ned also owned other Frazer Nash cars, including a wonderful 1934 "Chain Gang" model and a Frazer Nash-328 BMW. He competed in these cars in the Copperstate 1000 and many Governor's Cup Rallies in Arizona, the state he has called home for many years.
In the 1960s and '70s I was active in Competitive Trail Riding, the horse version of a rally. In the course of this activity I competed in many Arizona events, where I first met Ned who was also very active in the sport. Several years went by with no contact between us until, during the third or fourth Monterey Historics, I was waiting with engine running on the pre-grid when a helmeted driver ran up and said: "You're Al Moss!" I responded: "Yes, I know that". "Well I'm Ned Curtis". That was it until we met again the following year and renewed our old friendship.
A few years later, Ned called and invited me to be his guest/navigator on the Arizona Governor's Cup rally in the Chain-Gang 'Nash, an opportunity not to be passed up Shortly after the start I became hopelessly confused with all the necessary calculations and, rather than saying anything to Ned, merely kept the Chevrolet with four people inside exactly one minute ahead! I was certainly far from unhappy when the fuel pump quit and we had to get towed to the next town. That was when I found that Ned was not at all serious about the competition, just wanting a fun ride. After that, we had a ball. A few years later he invited me to be his guest on the first Copperstate 1000. We started out in the 328, ran the main bearings racing at top speed up Yarnell Grade, trailered back to his Cave Creek ranch, dug out the Le Mans Rep, and rejoined the rally the next morning.
The point of all of this is to help portray Ned as he was; a fun-loving, big-hearted puppy dog of a man, always cheerful and willing to offer assistance when needed and share what he had with others.
Ned passed away Friday night, May 8th. He is survived by two daughters, Linda and Penny, a son, Alex (also a car nut) and seven grandchildren.