Wednesday, April 11, 2012

1968 - Independence, Waterloo Tracks Go IMCA

Independence, Iowa (April 11, 1968) - The Independence Racing Association, which involves the Waterloo and Independence racetracks, has voted to affiliate with the International Motor Contest Association (IMCA), according to co-promoter Lyle Shriver.

“We had a meeting with the drivers and we've decided to fly the IMCA banner this year,” the genial Shriver said. “We've checked everything out and we are satisfied that IMCA won't interfere with our own association.”

The move by IRA should solidify the new three-track circuit, created when Cedar Rapids decided to switch its racing programs to Friday night from Saturday.

Hawkeye Downs in Cedar Rapids, under the promotion of Frank Winkley, already operates under the IMCA banner, while Indee will race Saturday night and Waterloo on Sunday night. Shriver was enthusiastic to say the least about the set-up.

“It's the greatest thing for modified racing that's happened in the last five to ten years as far as the three tracks are concerned,” Shriver said. “We plan to cooperate to the fullest. Winkley and our group will check special events so we don't conflict with each other and I really don't anticipate any problems.”

Shriver said he expects a membership of about 100 drivers and car owners between the three tracks. With that, about 40 cars are expected to be at each program, although an ideal race field is about 28 cars.

IRA has plenty of top drivers signed up. Many were or still are big favorites at The Downs, including Red Droste, Mert Williams, Cal Swanson, Bob Hilmer, Bill Zwanziger and Chub Liebe. The latter, however, is expected only to compete part-time at The Downs.

Others include Ed Sanger, Curt Hanson, John Webb, Roger Kruse, Dave Maxson, Stan Stover, Gale Card, Rich Krafka, Bud Jensen, Glenn Martin and three Minnesota hotshots - Paul Fitzpatrick, Leroy Scharkey and Jack Smith.

Some improvements are now being effected at the Indee oval where the guardrail is being moved to the front of the grandstand and vapor lights are being installed. Drivers will have the benefit of more lighting, but less reflection.

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