Thursday, August 7, 2014

1959 - Pete Folse cops feature at Knoxville; Blundy second

Knoxville, Ill. (August 7, 1959)- An estimated 3,500 fans jammed the Knox County Fairground track at Knoxville Friday night to watch some of the nation's top drivers compete in the IMCA sanctioned speedway-type auto races..
The 20-lap feature attraction, National Circuit Sweepstakes, saw Pete Folse of Tampa, |Fla. boot home his No. 2 Offenhauser ahead of the field.
The winner was dueled all the way by Jerry Blundy of Galesburg, who held the lead early in the race. Red Hoyle of Colona, Ill., who had trouble earlier in the race when his throttle stuck, took third place in the feature. The winning time for the event was 9:05.08, a track record.
The first track mark of the evening was recorded in the inaugural dash, a 7-lap race, which saw the winner Duke Hindahl of Pekin clocked at 3:10.27. Colby Scroggins of Los Angeles, Calif., was second in this heat while Folse was third and Blundy fourth.
One of the best battles of the evening came in the five-lap match race, which saw Blundy finish just in front of second place Folse. This pair scrapped for the No. 1 spot the entire distance.
The National Speedway Dash for seven laps went to A. J. Shepherd of Wichita, Kan., who edged Fritz Tegtmeier of Elgin for the front-running position. This race was interrupted after two complete laps when the car driven by Bud Stearn of Long Beach, Calif., caught fire. The race was continued after the fire was extinguished, but no time was kept.
Scroggins won the American triumph dash, touring seven laps in 3:12.28 with Blundy taking second place.
Arnold Knepper of Belleville, Ill., won the American Pursuit race. In this 10-lap affair cars are eliminated when completely passed. Kneppcr's time was 4:39.42.
Folse turned in the best qualifying time of the night at 26.65 for the half-mile. This was just off the track mark of 26.62 set by Bobby Grimm of Indianapolis, Ind., in 1957. Blundy's qualifying time was 27.01.
Al Sweeney, National Speedways president, was starter for the races.

National Circuit Sweepstakes:
1.     Pete Folse
2.     Jerry Blundy
3.     Red Hoyle
4.     Colby Scroggins
5.     A.J. Shepherd
6.     Fritz Tegtmeier
7.     Duke Hindahl
8.     Jimmy Jones
9.     Phil Ashline

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