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1949-1985…the first 150 or so




This page will take you through my lifelong history of racechasing and trackchasing. It won't be all pictures of racetracks because that's not how it was.

This page will take you through my lifelong history of racechasing and trackchasing. It won’t be all pictures of racetracks because that’s not how it was.

 

 

Pre-1980 – 71 tracks

 

 

As a kid I played basketball every minute of the day for years.

As a kid I played basketball every minute of the day for years.



RNL scores 30 pts

1 Peoria Speedway – Mt. Hawley Peoria Illinois United States Pre-1980 (circa 1955) DO

 

In 1965 I was just getting my driver's license and the "new" Peoria Speedway had just opened.

In 1965 I was just getting my driver’s license and the “new” Peoria Speedway had just opened.

 

Peoria Speedway....still my all-time favorite track.

Peoria Speedway….still my all-time favorite track.

 

2 Peoria Speedway – Farmington Road Peoria Illinois United States Pre-1980 (1965) DO
3 Davenport Speedway Davenport Iowa United States Pre-1980 INNER-DO
4 Davenport Speedway Davenport Iowa United States Pre-1980 OUTER-DO
5 Sterling Speedbowl Sterling Illinois United States Pre-1980 DO

 

We always had fun at Rockford Speedway.

We always had fun at Rockford Speedway.


 

I first started going to Rockford during my high school years. I've always had a good time at Rockford especially with the fall "Nationals" event.

I first started going to Rockford during my high school years. I’ve always had a good time at Rockford especially with the fall “Nationals” event.

 

6 Rockford Speedway Rockford Illinois United States Pre-1980 PO
7 Rockford Speedway Rockford Illinois United States Pre-1980 PRC
8 Freeport Raceway Freeport Illinois United States Pre-1980 OUTER-DO
9 Kenosha County Speedway Wilmot Wisconsin United States Pre-1980 DO

 

Seeing the USAC stock cars race at Milwaukee was the first "big time" racing I had ever seen.

Seeing the USAC stock cars race at Milwaukee was the first “big time” racing I had ever seen.

 

We never came back from the Milwaukee races a single time without stopping at the Mars Cheese Castle. When I pass it today I still stop!

We never came back from the Milwaukee races a single time without stopping at the Mars Cheese Castle. When I pass it today I still stop!

 

10 Wisconsin State Fair Park West Allis Wisconsin United States Pre-1980 OUTER-PO
11 Sycamore Speedway Sycamore Illinois United States Pre-1980 OUTER-DO
12 Salem Super Speedway Salem Indiana United States Pre-1980 OUTER-PO
13 Road America Elkhart Lake Wisconsin United States Pre-1980 PRC
14 Belaro Speedway Billings Montana United States Pre-1980 DO

 

I saw several events at the Capital Speedway during it's asphalt days. When it changed to dirt I was rained out of an All-Star sprint race and never did see competition on the dirt.

I saw several events at the Capital Super Speedway during it’s asphalt days. When it changed to dirt I was rained out of an All-Star sprint race and never did see competition on the dirt.

 

15 Capital Super Speedway Oregon Wisconsin United States Pre-1980 OUTER-PO
16 Interstate Speedway Sheridan Wyoming United States Pre-1980 DO
17 Shelby County Speedway Harlan Iowa United States Pre-1980 DO


 

Some of the best racing I ever saw was during the special events on dirt at Hawkeye Downs in the middle of the summer. If you know anything about Iowa racing you'll appreciate a feature lineup like this.

Some of the best racing I ever saw was during the special events on dirt at Hawkeye Downs in the middle of the summer. If you know anything about Iowa racing you’ll appreciate a feature lineup like this from the 1972 Gold Cup.

 

18 Hawkeye Downs Speedway Cedar Rapids Iowa United States Pre-1980 DO
19 Fairbury Legion Speedway Fairbury Illinois United States Pre-1980 DO
20 Grundy County Speedway Morris Illinois United States Pre-1980 PO
21 Santa Fe Speedway Hinsdale Illinois United States Pre-1980 OUTER-DO
22 Santa Fe Speedway Hinsdale Illinois United States Pre-1980 INNER-DO
23 Atlanta International Raceway Hampton Georgia United States Pre-1980 OUTER-PO

 

I found myself out in California with the U.S. Marines in 1972. I had a weekend leave and spent it at Riverside.

I found myself out in California with the U.S. Marines in 1972. I had a weekend leave and spent it at Riverside.

 

24 Riverside International Raceway Riverside California United States Pre-1980 (June 18, 1972) PRC
25 Illinois State Fairgrounds Springfield Illinois United States Pre-1980 DO
26 Eldon Raceway Eldon Iowa United States Pre-1980 DO
27 Farley Speedway Farley Iowa United States Pre-1980 OUTER-DO
28 Marshalltown Speedway Marshalltown Iowa United States Pre-1980 DO
29 Southern Iowa Speedway Oskaloosa Iowa United States Pre-1980 DO

 

This group of track's may have the best dirt racing in the country.

This group of tracks may have the best dirt racing in the country.

 

30 West Liberty Fair Speedway West Liberty Iowa United States Pre-1980 DO
31 LaCrosse Interstate Speedway West Salem Wisconsin United States Pre-1980 OUTER-PO
32 Queen City Speedway West Chester Ohio United States Pre-1980 PO
33 Northern Kentucky Speedway Union Kentucky United States Pre-1980 DO
34 Lawrenceburg Speedway Lawrenceburg Indiana United States Pre-1980 OUTER-DO
35 Baer Field Raceways Fort Wayne Indiana United States Pre-1980 OUTER-PO
36 Champaign Motor Speedway Champaign Illinois United States Pre-1980 DO
37 Daytona International Speedway Daytona Beach Florida United States Pre-1980 OUTER-PO


 

Who didn't like Richie Evans?

Who didn’t like Richie Evans?

 

38 New Smyrna Speedway New Smyrna Beach Florida United States Pre-1980 PO
39 Ocala Raceway Ocala Florida United States Pre-1980 DO
40 Volusia County Speedway Barberville Florida United States Pre-1980 DO
41 Daytona Beach Memorial Stadium Daytona Beach Florida United States Pre-1980 DO
42 Deland Speedway Deland Florida United States Pre-1980 DO
43 Golden Gate Speedway Tampa Florida United States Pre-1980 PO
44 Farmer City Raceway Farmer City Illinois United States Pre-1980 DO
45 Knox County Fairgrounds Knoxville Illinois United States Pre-1980 DO
46 Reading Fairgrounds Reading Pennsylvania United States Pre-1980 DO

 

With the addition of our first son, J.J. our family was started.

With the addition of our first son, J.J. our family was started.

 

Manzanita aka Manzy was our home track while we lived in Phoenix (1974). It's still one of my all-time favorites. I learned to eat "cheese crisps" there.

Manzanita aka Manzy was our home track while we lived in Phoenix (1974). It’s still one of my all-time favorites. I learned to eat “cheese crisps” there.

 

47 Manzanita Speedway Phoenix Arizona United States Pre-1980 OUTER-DO
48 Manzanita Speedway Phoenix Arizona United States Pre-1980 INNER-DO

 

I loved going to the Copper World Classic at PIR. I saw that event about ten times and Jim Thirkettle #5 was always a favorite of mine.

I loved going to the Copper World Classic at PIR. I saw that event about ten times and Jim Thirkettle #5 was always a favorite of mine.

 

Somewhat incredibly these workers are trying to get this super modified, which flew over the wall, back to it's rightful owner after dark when the racing was finished.

Somewhat incredibly these workers are trying to get this super modified, which flew over the wall, back to it’s rightful owner after dark when the Copper World racing was finished.

 

49 Phoenix International Raceway Phoenix Arizona United States Pre-1980 PO
50 Phoenix International Raceway Phoenix Arizona United States Pre-1980 PRC
51 Central Arizona Raceway 11 Mile Corner Arizona United States Pre-1980 DO

 

Las Cruces Speedway kna Southern New Mexico Speedway, Las Cruces, NM hometown of my in-laws. (2002 photo).

Las Cruces Speedway kna Southern New Mexico Speedway, Las Cruces, NM hometown of my in-laws. (2002 photo).

 

52 Las Cruces Speedway Las Cruces New Mexico United States Pre-1980 DO
53 El Paso Speedway Park El Paso Texas United States Pre-1980 DO

 

My love of wingless sprint cars began at Ascot Park with drivers like Dean Thompson.

My love of wingless sprint cars began at Ascot Park with drivers like Dean Thompson.

 

Who remembers Ascot Park for their 100-car enduros?

Who remembers Ascot Park for their 100-car enduros?

 

54 Ascot Park Gardena California United States Pre-1980 OUTER-DO
55 Ascot Park Gardena California United States Pre-1980 INNER-DO
56 Ontario Motor Speedway Ontario California United States Pre-1980 PO
57 Speedway 605 Irwindale California United States Pre-1980 PO
58 Corona Raceway Corona California United States Pre-1980 DO
59 West Capital Raceway West Sacramento California United States Pre-1980 DO
60 Craig Road Speedway North Las Vegas Nevada United States Pre-1980 PO
61 Dixon Fairgrounds Speedway Dixon California United States Pre-1980 DO
62 El Toro Speedway El Toro California United States Pre-1980 DO
63 All American Raceway Roseville California United States Pre-1980 PO
64 Cajon Speedway El Cajon California United States Pre-1980 PO

 

Evelyn Pratt ran things with a tight rein for the CRA sprint cars. Here she works at El Centro.

Evelyn Pratt ran things with a tight rein for the CRA sprint cars. Here she works at El Centro.

 

65 California Mid-Winter Fairgrounds Imperial California United States Pre-1980 DO
66 Mesa Marin Raceway Bakersfield California United States Pre-1980 PO
67 Orange Show Speedway San Bernardino California United States Pre-1980 PO

 

My first stop at the nationals saw Ronnie Shuman win in 1979. On this visit in 1982 my stepfather Bill and son J.J. came along.

My first stop at the nationals saw Ronnie Shuman win in 1979. On this visit in 1982 my stepfather Bill and son J.J. came along.

 

How many people have seen the famous Knoxville Raceway looking like this? I stopped during the winter on my way to a working assignment in Iowa City.

How many people have seen the famous Knoxville Raceway looking like this? I stopped during the winter on my way to a  working assignment in Iowa City.

 

71 Knoxville Raceway Knoxville Iowa United States Pre-1980 DO

 

I bought this 1980 diesel powered (what a mistake!) Caddy in late '79 from a New Jersey dealer when we moved to Connecticut.

I bought this 1980 diesel powered (what a mistake!) Caddy in late ’79 from a New Jersey dealer when we moved to Connecticut.

 

With a growing family trackchasing took a back seat for about 15 years!

With a growing family trackchasing took a back seat for about 15 years!

68 San Jose Fairgrounds Speedway San Jose California United States Pre-1980 DO
69 Saugus Speedway Saugus California United States Pre-1980 PO
70 Speedway 117 Chula Vista California United States Pre-1980 DO

 

 

 

1980 – 20 tracks

 

 

In business I had the chance to hang out with celebrities including Joey G. and Wolfman Jack!

In business I had the chance to hang out with celebrities including Joey G. and Wolfman Jack!

 

This was one of the multiple occasions where I played "Elwood" of the Blues Brothers on stage at our national sales meeting.

This was one of the multiple occasions where I played “Elwood” of the Blues Brothers on stage at our national sales meeting.

 

Blues Brothers 1


Blues Brothers 2

East Bay is one of my top 10 all-time favorite tracks. I've been there more than 20 times which isn't bad for a trackchaser. I like the late models best there but I've seen some great sprint car racing there too. This shot of Doug Wolfgang comes from East Bay.

East Bay is one of my top 10 all-time favorite tracks. I’ve been there more than 20 times which isn’t bad for a trackchaser. I like the late models best there but I’ve seen some great sprint car racing there too. This shot of Doug Wolfgang comes from East Bay.

 

72 East Bay Raceway Gibsonton Florida United States February 6, 1980 OUTER-DO
73 Big H Motor Speedway Houston Texas United States March 6, 1980 DO

 

Welcome to Devils Bowl001 

 

Some of my best ever "race chasing" days were at the Devil's Bowl Speedway just outside of Dallas. Here youngsters Brad Doty, Tim Green, Jimmy Sills and Kenny Schrader listen in at the driver's meeting.

Some of my best ever “race chasing” days were at the Devil’s Bowl Speedway just outside of Dallas. Here youngsters Brad Doty, Tim Green, Jimmy Sills and Kenny Schrader listen in at the driver’s meeting.

 

74 Devil’s Bowl Speedway Mesquite Texas United States March 13, 1980 DO
75 Stafford Springs Motor Speedway Stafford Springs Connecticut United States April 13, 1980 OUTER-PO
76 Danbury Fair Racearena Danbury Connecticut United States April 19, 1980 PO

 

L-R, Randy, Jim Sabo, Pete Kreyling, John Kane. On one of our many visits to Eldora and the World 100.

L-R, Randy, Jim Sabo, Pete Kreyling, John Kane. On one of our many visits to Eldora and the World 100.

 

Carol knows enough to go to the top! Here's her buddy Earl Baltes famous builder and promoter of the Eldora Speedway.

Carol knows enough to go to the top! Here’s her buddy Earl Baltes famous builder and promoter of the Eldora Speedway.

 

77 Eldora Speedway Rossburg Ohio United States April 27, 1980 DO
78 Orange County Fair Speedway Middletown New York United States May 3, 1980 OUTER-DO
79 Lincoln Speedway New Oxford Pennsylvania United States May 17, 1980 DO
80 Dover Downs International Speedway Dover Delaware United States May 18, 1980 PO
81 Grandview Speedway Bechtelsville Pennsylvania United States May 20, 1980 DO
82 Flemington Speedway Flemington New Jersey United States May 26, 1980 DO

 

I've seen my share of radical designs during my trackchasing travels.

I’ve seen my share of radical designs during my trackchasing travels.

 

83 Silver Dollar Speedway Chico California United States June 6, 1980 DO
84 Nazareth Raceway Nazareth Pennsylvania United States July 3, 1980 DO
85 Lebanon Valley Speedway West Lebanon New York United States July 8, 1980 DO
86 Albany-Saratoga Speedway Malta New York United States July 15, 1980 DO
87 East Windsor Speedway Hightstown New Jersey United States August 1, 1980 DO
88 Indianapolis Raceway Park Clermont Indiana United States August 9, 1980 PO
89 Wayne County Speedway Orrville Ohio United States August 28, 1980 DO
90 Mansfield Raceway Mansfield Ohio United States August 29, 1980 DO
91 Wall Stadium Belmar New Jersey United States November 29, 1980 PO

 

 

 

1981 – 16 tracks

 

 

This is Bing Metz winner at the Atlantic City Convention Hall. Bing is now an active trackchaser.

This is Bing Metz winner at the Atlantic City Convention Hall. Bing is now an active trackchaser.

 

92 Atlantic City Convention Hall Atlantic City New Jersey United States January 31, 1981 INDOOR-PO

 

Silver crown racing at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa.

Silver crown racing at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa.

 

93 Florida State Fair Speedway Tampa Florida United States February 6, 1981 DO
94 Great Southern Speedway Angie Louisiana United States March 15, 1981 DO
95 Illiana Motor Speedway Schererville Indiana United States May 23, 1981 OUTER-PO
96 Sharon Speedway Hartford Ohio United States June 10, 1981 DO
97 Raceway Park Blue Island Illinois United States June 16, 1981 PO
98 Eighty-One (81) Speedway Wichita Kansas United States July 1, 1981 DO
99 Red River Valley Speedway West Fargo North Dakota United States July 13, 1981 DO
100 Kankakee Fairgrounds Speedway Kankakee Illinois United States July 17, 1981 DO

 

We followed Dick Trickle all over Wisconsin and Illinois and lots of other places. He is one of my all-time favorite drivers.

We followed Dick Trickle all over Wisconsin and Illinois and lots of other places. He is one of my all-time favorite drivers.

 

101 Slinger Super Speedway Slinger Wisconsin United States July 21, 1981 PO
102 Springfield Speedway Springfield Illinois United States August 14, 1981 DO
103 East Moline Speedway East Moline Illinois United States August 23, 1981 DO
104 Butler Motor Speedway Butler Michigan United States August 28, 1981 DO
105 Winchester Speedway Winchester Indiana United States October 3, 1981 PO
106 Caesar’s Palace Grand Prix Las Vegas Nevada United States October 16, 1981 TEMPORARY-PRC
107 Nashville International Raceway Lebanon Tennessee United States November 1, 1981 OUTER-PO

 

 


1982 – 19 tracks

 

 

Sometimes Carol picks the "alternative" vacation in lieu of trackchasing. Nice suit huh?

Sometimes Carol picks the “alternative” vacation in lieu of trackchasing. Nice suit huh?

 

108 Bristol International Raceway Bristol Tennessee United States March 14, 1982 PO
109 South Florida Fairgrounds West Palm Beach Florida United States April 2, 1982 PO
110 St. Charles Speedway St Peters Missouri United States May 20, 1982 DO
111 Anderson Speedway Anderson Indiana United States May 29, 1982 PO
112 Speedway 7 Conneaut Ohio United States June 9, 1982 DO
113 Wisconsin International Raceway Kaukauna Wisconsin United States June 27, 1982 OUTER-PO
114 I-30 Speedway Bryant Arkansas United States June 30, 1982 DO
115 Raceland Commerce City Colorado United States July 24, 1982 DO
116 Charleston Speedway Charleston Illinois United States July 31, 1982 DO
117 Kokomo Speedway Kokomo Indiana United States August 2, 1982 DO
118 I-70 National Speedway Odessa Missouri United States August 9, 1982 DO
119 Paragon Speedway Paragon Indiana United States August 18, 1982 DO
120 Wilmot Speedway Wilmot Wisconsin United States August 28, 1982 DO
121 New York State Fairgrounds Syracuse New York United States October 9, 1982 DO
122 Oswego Speedway Oswego New York United States October 9, 1982 PO
123 Lernerville Speedway Sarver Pennsylvania United States October 12, 1982 DO
124 Pennsboro Speedway Pennsboro West Virginia United States October 16, 1982 DO
125 Hagerstown Speedway Huyett Maryland United States October 24, 1982 PO

 

 

 

1983 – 12 tracks

 

 

126 Silverdome Pontiac Michigan United States February 27, 1983 INDOOR-PO
127 Mobile International Raceway Irvington Alabama United States March 27, 1983 PO
128 Rensselaer Raceway Rensselaer Indiana United States April 24, 1983 DO
129 Hales Corners Speedway Hales Corners Wisconsin United States April 30, 1983 DO
130 Mitchell’s Motor Speedway Bloomington Indiana United States May 11, 1983 DO
131 Joliet Memorial Stadium Joliet Illinois United States June 4, 1983 PO
132 Cedar Lake Speedway Somerset Wisconsin United States June 11, 1983 DO
133 Casey Park Casey Illinois United States June 18, 1983 DO
134 Terre Haute Action Track Terre Haute Indiana United States June 19, 1983 DO
135 Sunshine Speedway Pinellas Park Florida United States June 26, 1983 PO
136 Fremont Speedway Fremont Ohio United States July 22, 1983 DO
137 Cowtown Speedway Fort Worth Texas United States July 30, 1983 DO

 

 

 

1984 – 8 tracks

 

 

138 Lone Star Speedway Kilgore Texas United States May 5, 1984 DO

 

Despite the Spoon River Speedway being only about 25 miles from where I grew up I only went there once. When I did it was a real dust bowl!

Despite the Spoon River Speedway being only about 25 miles from where I grew up I only went there once. When I did it was a real dust bowl!

 

139 Spoon River Speedway Canton Illinois United States May 19, 1984 DO

 

Workin' Woody was the World of Outlaws full-time push truck pictured here at Skagit Speedway.

Workin’ Woody was the World of Outlaws full-time push truck pictured here at Skagit Speedway.

 

140 Skagit Speedway Alger Washington United States June 14, 1984 DO
141 Baylands Raceway Park Fremont California United States June 23, 1984 DO
142 Watsonville Fairgrounds Speedway Watsonville California United States June 29, 1984 DO
143 Huset’s Speedway Sioux Falls South Dakota United States July 11, 1984 DO

 

The first time I ever went to Hawaii for a race the event was cancelled by a hurricane!

The first time I ever went to Hawaii for a race the event was cancelled by a hurricane!

 

This competitor showed up at Hawaii Raceway Park back in 1984.

This competitor showed up at Hawaii Raceway Park back in 1984.

 

144 Hawaii Raceway Park Kapolei Hawaii United States August 18, 1984 DO
145 Santa Maria Speedway Santa Maria California United States September 14, 1984 OUTER-DO

 

 

 

1985 – 11 tracks

 

 

A lot has changed in racing since 1985.

A lot has changed in racing since 1985.

 

146 Cherokee Speedway Gaffney South Carolina United States April 20, 1985 DO
147 North Wilkesboro Speedway North Wilkesboro North Carolina United States April 21, 1985 PO

 

Riverside Park is one of many racetracks that have closed their doors since my last visit.

Riverside Park is one of many racetracks that have closed their doors since my last visit.

 

148 Riverside Park Speedway Agawam Massachusetts United States June 22, 1985 PO

 

Thunder Road is one of the more famous tracks in the country. I've been itching to go back for years. Maybe in 2014?

Thunder Road is one of the more famous tracks in the country. I’ve been itching to go back for years. Maybe in 2014?

 

Thunder Road....I will be back.

Thunder Road….I will be back.

 

149 Thunder Road International Speedbowl Barre Vermont United States June 27, 1985 PO

 

It's ironic that I don't see super modified racing very often and I would visit two of the bigger super mod tracks back to back.

It’s ironic that I don’t see super modified racing very often and I would visit two of the bigger super mod tracks back to back.

 

150 Star Speedway Epping New Hampshire United States June 29, 1985 PO

 

Supermods have always been big at the Bonneville Raceway Park near Salt Lake City.

Supermods have always been big at the Bonneville Raceway Park near Salt Lake City.

 

151 Bonneville Raceway Park Salt Lake City Utah United States July 24, 1985 PO

 

Luckily I was wearing a Bill Elliott t-shirt the day I first met him at the Evergreen Speedway (WA) in 1985.

Luckily I was wearing a Bill Elliott t-shirt the day I first met him at the Evergreen Speedway (WA) in 1985.

 

152 Evergreen Speedway Monroe Washington United States August 18, 1985 OUTER-PO

 

Rained out of a big ASA race here after just 30 green/yellow flag laps.

Rained out of a big ASA race here after just 30 green/yellow flag laps.

 

153 Minnesota State Fair Speedway St. Paul Minnesota United States September 2, 1985 PO
154 Placerville Speedway Placerville California United States September 4, 1985 DO

 

Steve and Karl Kinser were a force in sprint car racing for many years. Karl adds fuel at Hanford.

Steve and Karl Kinser were a force in sprint car racing for many years. Karl adds fuel at Hanford.

 

155 Kings Speedway Hanford California United States September 25, 1985 DO

 

 

I didn't think much of my visit to Rockingham. I couldn't see the race that well.

I didn’t think much of my visit to Rockingham. I couldn’t see the race that well.

 

156 North Carolina Motor Speedway Rockingham North Carolina United States October 20, 1985 PO


 

With a growing family there wasn't much time for track chasing in the mid-80s and for several years after that.

With a growing family there wasn’t much time for trackchasing in the mid-80s and for several years after that.


Jim, our youngest child, completed our perfect family.

Jim, our youngest child, completed our perfect family.

We looked like this going into 1985 when I knocked down a grand total of 11 tracks for the year.

We looked like this going into 1985 when I knocked down a grand total of 11 tracks for the year.

 

 


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