Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Monday, June 27, 2011
Saturday, June 25, 2011
Friday, June 24, 2011
Fort Wayne, Ind. (June 24, 1953) - The big cars will make their first appearance of the year at the Fort Wayne Speedway on Sunday, racing under the sanction of the Central States Racing Association.
A field of 30, including some of the fastest big cars racing under the CSRA banner, is expected here for the Gold Crown race. A purse of $2,500 has been posted for the eight-event card.
Among the early entries are Bud Randall of Union City, Ind., current leader in the Central States Racing Association point standing; Tom Cherry of Muncie, Ind., and Red Amick of Los Angeles, Calif., driving the Tom Cherry Specials; Jimmy Campbell of Kansas City, who will be at the wheel of a $20,000 Offy, and many others.
Time trials will get under way at 1 p. m., with the first race carded for 2:30 p. m. Two staggered reverse start races, an eight-lap conventional start race; international handicap dash, helmet dash, the semi-feature and feature event make up the big car program.
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Moss, who had been running second for the first eighth laps, took over the lead when Mosier was forced to take a pit stop during a restart on the ninth lap. Moss then held his lead the rest of the way, having only brief challenges from Pokey West and Mel Morris.
The race had to be restarted six different times due to numerous accidents, but there was no personal injury and only minor damage to the cars involved.
Morris and West battled continuously during the race for the number two position, with Morris finishing ahead of West by two car lengths. Finishing in fourth place, but quite a distance behind the leaders, was Ron Perdock, with Benny Hofer in fifth and Byron Buchele taking sixth. The rest of the cars that finished the race were all lapped at least twice.
In earlier events, Mosier came close to a track record in the time trials, with an elapsed time of 26.32 seconds, and also came home as the first heat winner. Bud Darting, Mel Morris, and Larry Jenkins picked up wins in the other three heat races, and Benny Hofer won the Semi-Main event. Tex Redlinger won the consolation race.
The most exciting race of the night, and maybe the most exciting of the year, was the second heat race. The entire bleacher section was screaming with frenzy during all 10 laps, as the first four cars ran bumper-to-bumper and side-by-side. It was Darting, West, Moss, and Helm, in that order for 9 laps.
Then Moss made one last challenge, which took him around West on the backstretch; and as he tried to pass Darting on the high side of the 4th turn, he slid high into the crumbs, letting West and Helm back around him. Moss got his car straightened out in time to place 4th.
1. John Moss, Iowa City, Iowa
2. Mel Morris, West Liberty, Iowa
3. Pokey West, West Chester, Iowa
4. Ron Perdock, Washington, Iowa
5. Benny Hofer, Rock Island, Ill.
6. Byron Buchele, Muscatine, Iowa
7. Mark Mosier, Washington, Iowa
8. Dan Robertson, Muscatine, Iowa
9. Bill Abney, Muscatine, Iowa
10. Bud Darting, Wilton, Iowa
Saturday, June 18, 2011
1999 - Dale Hackwell Jr. and Dan Bohr were feature winners at the Howard County Fairgrounds in Cresco, Iowa, on Sunday, June 20. In the modified main, Bohr passed Ken Hofner on a restart with two laps remaining to score his fourth consecutive victory. Chuck Stanton would finish second. In the IMCA late model 25-lapper, Hackwell would lead flag to flag in winning his first feature of the season. Jim Gallery and Greg Bruening would follow Hackwell to the checkers.
1994 - Dave Weltmeyer outran Jon Lemke to capture the ARTGO Challenge Series 100-lap event at I-44 Speedway in Lebanon, Mo., on Saturday, June 18. Matt Kenseth would take the initial lead only to be passed by Weltmeyer on lap 6. Lemke quickly settled in behind Weltmeyer and for the next 75 caution-free laps the top two pulled away from the rest of the field. Weltmeyer took the checkers a couple of car lengths in front with Lemke, Steve Carlson, Kevin Cywinski and Larry Schuler rounding out the top five.
1988 -Jack Hewitt pulled off the tri-fecta, winning three sprint car features over the weekend. Hewitt would collect $5,000 in winning the All Star Circuit of Champions feature on the half-mile at Mid-States Raceway in White City, Ill., on June 17. On June 18, Hewitt would win his third straight USAC sprint car feature at Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio on June 18. Hewitt would pass Kevin Huntley on lap 18 of the 30-lap A-main to score the victory. Hewitt would receive an extra $2,000 from J.W. Hunt, the evening's event sponsor and Hewitt's sprint car sponsor as well. The next night, June 19, Hewitt would lead wire to wire in the 40-lap All Star Circuit of Champions contest at Whitewater Valley Speedway in Liberty, Ind. Hewitt's only serious challenge came from Joe Gaerte, who stayed within a few car lengths for the entire race but couldn't muster a pass.
Monday, June 13, 2011
by Lee Ackerman
Bob Kosiski was born on October 15, 1934 in Omaha, and grew up with four brothers and as a teenager worked part-time in an auto repair shop that his father, Joe Kosiske owned. (More about the name change later). Bob got his racing career started almost by accident, in 1950 in Central City, Nebraska when a relative, Stan Williams didn’t show up and so Bob drove the car. “I’ve been hooked on racing every since,” Bob said.
After graduating from South High School in 1952, Bob started taking his racing seriously. He started racing a 32’ Ford Modified Coupe that his dad owned. They raced at Riverside Speedway in South Omaha, Playland Park in Council Bluffs and Grandview Race Bowl in Bellevue. In 1953 Bob won his first track championship at Riverside beating out Bud Burdick, Bob Parker and Carl Lillenthal.
Bob continued racing Modifieds at Playland, Capital Beach in Lincoln and Norfolk until 1957 when he married his high school sweetheart, Grace. Shortly, thereafter, he started a two year stint in the service. While he was in the service, they recorded his name incorrectly as Kosiski not Kosiske, and he just never bothered to change it.
After getting out of the service in 1959, Bob returned to racing, but decided to step up a notch and starting racing with the International Motor Contest Association. Driving his dad’s 1959 Thunderbird, he did very well his first year winning racing at Hutchinson, Minnesota and LaCrosse, Wisconsin. Bob finished eighth in points behind legends Ernie Derr, Dick Hutcherson, Darrell Dake and Ramo Stott.
In 1960 Bob started out the season running the Daytona 500 and was doing well until his Thunderbird’s rear end gave out and he retired from the race. He returned home and started running IMCA and on August 29, 1960 scored the biggest win of his career at the Minnesota State Fair in St. Paul, defeating Dick Hutcherson, Ernie Derr and Ramo Stott in the 100 lap feature at the Minnesota State Fair. Bob set an IMCA national 12 lap record that day for ½ mile tracks.
Things were going well for Bob and he scored another win at Madison, Minnesota, but then tragedy struck and Bob’s father Joe, was killed in an auto accident near Rock Rapids, Iowa the morning following the win at Madison. Bob did not race again that year and still was still able to finish fifth in IMCA points that year.
The death of his father hit Bob hard, and he came close to quitting racing. In 1961 he decided to stay closer to home and he began racing at Sunset Speedway. While he didn’t win often early, he began to run better and better running the modified coupes. In 1963, he drove for Ernie Matz in a car that would become Bob’s signature number, 53. They would finish fourth in points.
In 1968 Sunset introduced the Late Model class as a companion class to the Modifieds. Bob won the track championship in the Modifieds, but on July 2, 1968 became the first driver in Sunset history to win two features by winning both the modified and late model feature.
Bob had a tough start to the 1969 season as a stuck throttle but him into the guard rail. Bob suffered a bruised kidney and some cracked ribs and was forced to set out for several weeks. In 1970 Bob won the track championship at Whitehead Speedway near Nebraska City and was edged out at Sunset by Bud Burdick.
In 1971, Bob went on a roll at Sunset that would see him win 7 consecutive track championships. He also won the track championships at Whitehead in 1971 & 72. In addition, he scored major wins at Fairmont, Minnesota, Denison, Iowa, and the Nebraska Fair Championships (the first of five in a row) at Lincoln in 71.
In 1973 Bob won just about everywhere he ran including six straight wins over a two week period at (Sunset, Harlan and Corning) as well as the Nebraska Late Model Nationals at Doniphan and the Nebraska Fair Championships in Lincoln.
In fact with Bob tuning the engines his three sons would win two National and six Regional NASCAR Weekly Racing Series titles. They would also dominate the NASCAR Busch All Star Tour winning that title twelve times. Due to their accomplishments Joe and Steve have both been inducted into the National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame.
In addition, Bob remains active in the affairs of the family business, Kosiski Auto Parts as well as helping out at Nebraska Raceway Park (which is part-owned by Joe, Steve and Ed). In the last several years we have seen the next generation of Kosiski’s hit the track. Joe’s son Andrew, Steve’s sons Brian and Robbie and Ed’s daughter Kortney have all began racing locally. If you go to I-80 Speedway at Nebraska Raceway Park and look down in the pits before the races you will most likely still find Bob under the hood of one of the grandchildren’s race cars tuning the engine.
Bob was inducted into the Nebraska Auto Racing Hall of Fame in its inaugural year, 1998.
Sunday, June 12, 2011
Saturday, June 11, 2011
1978 -Tim Panghorn of West Allis, Wis., held off Rockford, Ill.'s Kevin Olson to win Sunday night's Badger Midget Auto Racing Association feature at Angell Park in Sun Prairie, Wis., on June 11. Panghorn surged to a commanding lead early in the 25-lap affair but a caution bunched up the field on lap 13. After the green flag, Panghorn used the high groove while Olson utilized the low side and they waged battle for the remaining 12 laps until Panghorn was able to edge Olson by inches at the checkers.
1972 - Chuck McWilliams of Walton, Ky., drove his '72 Plymouth to victory in the 100-lap USAC Stock car race at the Marion County Fairgrounds in Knoxville, Iowa on June 11. The victory for McWilliams was witnessed by 10,500 spectators. McWilliams finished the race on a bald right rear tire but the 36-year-old veteran knew that a pit stop would have been costly. Second place finisher Lem Blankenship of Keokuk, Iowa, made a stop for a tire change earlier and that cost him the win. Ray Bohlander of New Berlin, Wis., Ken Ritter of Louisville, Ky., and Butch Hartman of South Zanesville Ohio rounded out the top five. Verlin Eaker of Cedar Rapids, Iowa was fast qualifier powering his 1970 Dodge Charger around the half-mile in 24.60 seconds.
1967 -"The Flying Frenchman" Johnny Beauchamp won the 25-lap modified feature at the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds in Davenport, Iowa on Friday night, June 9. Beauchamp started in the third row, made his way to the front quickly and won going away. He had no strong challengers throughout the event as Bill McDonough, Lyle Bohne, Jim Gerber and Dean Montgomery rounded out the top five finishers.
Friday, June 10, 2011
Thursday, June 9, 2011
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
The Class of 2011 includes Les Burianek, Jim Gerber, Ron Hochstetler, Benny Jamison, John Mudd, Paul Newkirk, Charles “Chopper” Safley and Karl Sanger.
The late Les Burianek of Cedar Rapids, Iowa (above photo) competed in Midgets before becoming an award-winning race photographer at the Hawkeye Downs in the 1950’s and 60’s. He also penned a column, The Finish Line, for the Cedar Rapids Citizen-Times.
Jim Gerber of Davenport, Iowa the son of 2010 inductee Johnny Gerber, ran Jalopies and Stock Cars at Hawkeye Downs with great success in the 1950’s and 60’s.
Ron Hochstetler owns a towing service in Cedar Rapids and has provided tow trucks and safety equipment for Hawkeye Downs Speedway for over a decade.
Karl Sanger of Waterloo, Iowa (above photo) was a consistent top-10 competitor in the Late Model division starting in the 1970’s and continuing into the early 80’s. Sanger posted numerous feature wins, competing against some of the best drivers in the Midwest during that time.
Benny Jamison of Lisbon, Iowa, was a successful racecar builder and owner for many years, having the likes of Roger Dolan and Bill Beckman behind the wheel of his race cars.
The late Paul Newkirk of Cedar Rapids, Iowa (above photo) was an accomplished Midget driver in the 1940’s and 50’s before a race-related accident cut short his driving career. He then became a nationally recognized mechanic for the Zecol Lubaid Ford race team in the 1960’s, wrenching for legendary drivers such as Don White, Norm Nelson, Joe Leonard and Mario Andretti.
Johnny Mudd of Cedar Rapids, Iowa was a model of consistency in the Sportsman division, regularly placing in the top five in the point standings and winning track titles in 1999 and 2003.
Charles “Chopper” Safley of Springville, Iowa competed at Hawkeye Downs Speedway starting in the late 1970’s in the Street Stock division when the Downs’ was a dirt surface and into the early 90’s in the Pro Stock class when it turned to asphalt. He was the Street Stock track champion in 1979 and 1980.
There will be a meet and greet with the new inductees as well as previous inductees under the main grandstand before the evening’s program. Many former Wall of Fame inductees are expected be on hand for the evening's program.
Spectator gates open at 6:00 with racing to follow at 7:00.
Monday, June 6, 2011
Saturday, June 4, 2011
1993 - Larry Schuler of Minooka, Ill., won the 12th annual Chicagoland Showdown 100-lap ARTGO Challenge Series feature at Illiana Motor Speedway in Schererville, Ind., on Saturday, June 5. Schuler jumped from from 14th to sixth in the point standings with the runaway victory. Rookie Dudley Fleck of Cedar Rapids, Iowa drove a steady race and held off a furious last lap charge by Tom Carlson of La Crosse, Wis., for second place.
1976 - The world's oldest racing organization, the International Motor Contest Association (IMCA) has been sold, it was announced by President Kenneth Fulk. The new owners are longtime race promoters Lyle Kline and Gaylen Brotherson of Omaha, Neb., and Keith Knaack of Vinton, Iowa. The new owners announced that they plan to operate IMCA under nearly the same guidelines as previously set. The racing organization will be set up as a non-profit group where all income will go back to the member drivers, owners, purses and point funds.