Saturday, August 22, 2020

1970 - 11,200 watch Ernie Derr cruise at State Fair

Des Moines, Iowa (August 22, 1970) - Ernie Derr made it look easy as he wheeled his 1970 Dodge Charger to a one-lap victory in the 200-lap new model stock car race in record time at the Iowa State Fair Saturday afternoon.

The 48-year-old Keokuk veteran, who won the event, a year ago and had set the old course record in 1967, easily out-sped Ron Hutcherson of Keokuk and Irv Janey of Cedar Rapids before a crowd of 11,200.

Derr's time for the 100-mile test was 1 hour, 32 minutes 8.68 seconds, more than 2 and half minutes better than his old mark of 1 hour, 34 minutes and 44.07.

He took the lead for the first time on the 54th lap, moving ahead of Janey, and held it for all but eight laps after that.

Janey moved in front on the 92nd go-round but Derr passed him again at the start/finish line and held to the finish, not even losing his lead when he made a gas stop at the 126th lap.

Janey's time for the 100 laps of 45 minutes and 48.52 seconds broke the mark of 46 minutes and 4.82 seconds by Derr in 1967.

Derr also shattered a record in the time trials with a clocking of 25.23 seconds. Dick Hutcherson of Keokuk had set the old one of 25.83 seconds in 1967 and four others besides Derr were below that in the trials - Fred Horn of Marion, Ron Hutcherson, Janey and Mel Morris of West Liberty.

Morris was in front through much of the early going, losing the lead to Janey on the 47th lap.

The field was slowed for just two laps when Harlan Conn hit the wall and by a minor spin out.

With Derr far ahead of the pack in the last third of the race, Hutcherson and Janey put on a battle for second with Hutcherson moving ahead on the 73rd lap and holding it to the finish.

Results –

1. Ernie Derr, Keokuk, Iowa
2. Ron Hutcherson, Keokuk, Iowa
3. Irv Janey, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
4. Mel Morris, West Liberty, Iowa
5. Mike Derr, Keokuk, Iowa
6. Gordon Blankenship, Keokuk, Iowa
7. Bill Wrich, Kennard, Neb.
8. Fred Horn, Marion, Iowa
9. Butch Hall, Russell, Minn.
10. Gerry Harrison, Topeka, Kan.
11. Tom Beck, Waterloo, Iowa
12. Gary Allensworth, Des Moines, Iowa
13. Bob Perry, Springfield, Mo.
14. Dale Roper, Fairgrove, Mo.
15. Bill Schwader, McCausland, Iowa
16. Dale Keeling, Dixon, Mo.
17. Shorty Selsor, Des Moines, Iowa
18. Vern Covert, Topeka, Kan.
19. Larry Sponsler, Des Moines, Iowa
20. Chuck Janey, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
21. Johnny Snow, Bolivar, Mo.
22. Sandy Sandstrom, Kansas City, Mo.
23. Morey Willis, Van Horne, Iowa
24. Roger Brown, Waverly, Iowa

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