Ep.9 - The Great Motorcycle Race

  Original Airdate: November 18, 1976
Writer: John Joseph
Director: Richard Thomas


  Jim-Bob enters a motorcycle race with Ike's bike. Ike and Corabeth adopt Aimee.


  "With each passing year of the 1930s we reached out for the hope that times were getting better, and that the Depression which had marked our lives was fading. But in hard truth, things remained much the same. There were changes though in our family. We didn't seem much different to each other until something would happen that made us look and see that time was surely changing us."



John is away fixing some pipes for spring water up at the Kramer place. Ben and Jason prepare to tar the roof. Ike arrives pushing his motorcycle which quit on him. Jim-Bob takes a look at it and discovers that the ignition wire has come off. He has a natural nack for mechanical things. Ike lets him take the bike for a spin and then lets him borrow it any time he wants when he sees how good he is.

Jim-Bob borrows Ike's bike and picks up Patsy Brimmer for a ride. When Ike makes a comment about how well Jim-Bob has taken to the motorcycle, Elizabeth remarks that Jim-Bob always does what Charles Lindbergh does like riding motorcycles and he plans to fly planes someday too.

The family has a fried chicken picnic outside in the front yard. Mary Ellen arrives with Curt and fresh rhubarb pie. Olivia learns that Jim-Bob is out riding Ike's motorcycle. She is quite upset expecially after John-Boy had hurt his leg on one. Despite John-Boy's assurance that Ike's bike is different and safer because of the sidecar, Jim-Bob pulls into the yard flying the sidecar off the ground on two wheels. Olivia is beside herself.

John-Boy and Ben go to see Mr. Stoker to secure an ad in the newspaper for the upcoming motorcycle race that he is sponsoring. They secure a deal to make and deliver posters for the race as well.

Jim-Bob goes to Rockfish with Patsy to enter the race. Mr. Stoker needs some convincing but James Robert Walton is entered into the race as entrant number 8. Patsy gives him a kiss.

Jim-Bob talks to his Mama about entering the race. He tells her that he is growing up.

Late that night John comes home and surprises Olivia in the bedroom. He was worried that she wouldn't be able to cope with Jim-Bob’s plan to race Ike’s motorcycle. She managed just fine without him. He remembers that he has a old football helmet and gives it to Jim-Bob to wear in the race.

The racers prepare at the start line in Rockfish. First place is a $5 gift certificate for Stoker’s garage. Despite a series of set backs Jim-Bob finishes in third place and wins a box of chocolates that he gives to Patsy.

Secondary Story:


Ike and Corabeth announce that they are adopting a baby from the orphanage.

Corabeth shows Elizabeth the room she has decorated for the baby they plan to adopt. It is a fantasy child’s room down to every detail.

Corabeth finally gets the phone call she has been waiting for from the adoption agency. The Godsey’s race off into a flurry of excitement to pick-up their baby boy. They bring home Aimee Louise instead. She is 10 years old and from Hampton Roads. Her parents drowned 2 years ago in a nautical disaster and she has been with the adoption agency ever since. The Godsey’s discovered that the baby boy’s mother decided to keep her child but wthen they saw Aimee all by herself they chose to bring her home with them. They take her over to meet the Waltons and Elizabeth takes her to see Myrtle her goat. Aimee thinks that Corabeth talks funny.

Corabeth has trouble understanding why Aimee has been having trouble adjusting to her and Ike. Grandma tells her that it will just take time for her to adjust.

Aimee learns that Ike and Corabeth had planned to adopt a baby instead of her. She storms into her bedroom and grabs her things with the plan to return to the orphanage. She doesn't understand why Corabeth acts so grand all the time. Corabeth admits that she finds it hard to express her emotion and all the love she feels for Aimee. They reach an understanding and begin to develop a relationship.


  "Jim Bob won a box of candy from the soda shop in Rockfish, and for the rest of us it was an unforgettable memory, the day our youngest brother took his giant step into the world."

Episode Notes & Interesting Facts:

  • This is the first episode to introduce Aimee Godsey.
  • Patsy Brimmer is now performed by actress Eileen McDonough, no relation to actree Mary McDonough (Erin Walton). The character of Patsy was previously portrayed by Debbie Gunn.
  • John rode a motorcycle in the war.
  • This episode is directed by Richard Thomas.

Additional Cast:



Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards(Corabeth Godsey), Rachel Longaker (Aimee Louise Godsey), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), Lewis Charles (Eddie Stoker), Eileen McDonough (Patsy Brimmer)


Music from this episode:

Instrumental theme when Elizabeth walks to Ike's store
Jim-Bob takes Patsy Brimmer for a spin in Ike's sidecar
Jim-Bob tries some daredevil stunts on the motorcycle which upsets his Mama
Common scene transition theme
Ike and Corabeth leave to accept their new adopted child
Music played for the crowd prior to the motorcycle race.
Jim-Bob finishes third in the race



Promotional Stills


Jim-Bob Walton The Great Motorcycle Race

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