Tuesday, August 17, 2021

1968 – Grady Wade Takes Sedalia Feature

Grady Wade accepts his trophy from Ms. Debbie Hansbrough, the Missouri State Fair Queen, following his victory in the IMCA sprint car feature at Sedalia. National Speedways' Al Sweeney looks on. 

Sedalia, Mo. (August 17, 1968) - Opportunist Grady Wade of Wichita, Kan., parlayed a good-handling car and a hard, slick track into a 30-lap feature victory before some 6,300 Missouri State Fair auto racing fans Saturday afternoon.

Wade, starting on the front row outside by virtue of a racing rule that inverts the fastest six qualifiers, captured the lead from Dale McDaniel of Houston, Tex., on the first circuit and went on to win in record-breaking time.

Second place went to Dick Sutcliffe of Kansas City, who started in third spot and outdistanced McDaniel midway in the race. Sutcliffe was closing the gap on Wade's #25 Chet Wilson sprinter as the checkered flag fell, and his pressure undoubtedly had something to do with Wade's rapid time of 13 minutes flat for the 15 miles. The old mark was 13 minute and 19 seconds, set two years ago by Jim Moughan of Springfield, Ill.

Fourth spot in the feature went to Gordon Woolley of Waco, Tex., trailed closely by Benny Rapp of Toledo, Ohio, Ray Lee Goodwin of Kansas City and Jerry Blundy of Galesburg, Ill.

Heat winners were Ralph Parkinson of Wichita Falls, Tex., Thad Dosher of Topeka, Kan., David Ross of Jetmore, Kan., and Woolley. Bill Utz of Sedalia won the STP trophy dash.

The slick track contributed to a number of spinouts, including one by Al Murie of Kansas City during the feature which brought out the yellow flag for two laps.

In the day s only mishap, 21-year-old Ron Perkins of Bethalto, Ill., lost control of his car during qualifying trials and slid into the outside rail of the south turn, after which the race car flipped twice, once sideways and once violently end for end

Perkins was shaken but otherwise uninjured, thanks to his car’s sturdy roll bar The vehicle sustained only minor damage, although it was sidelined for the balance of the afternoon.

The race sanctioned by the International Motor Contest Association and supervised by National Speedways, was the first of seven speed events scheduled during the 1968 exposition.

Results –

1. Grady Wade, Wichita, Kan.
2. Dick Sutcliffe, Greenwood, Mo.
3. Dale McDaniel, Houston, Tex.
4. Gordon Woolley, Waco, Tex.
5. Benny Rapp, Toledo, Ohio
6. Ray Lee Goodwin, Kansas City
7. Jay Woodside, Wichita, Kan.
8. Chuck Lynch, Springfield, Ill.
9. Thad Dosher, Topeka, Kan.
10.David Ross, Jetmore, Kan.

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