Saturday, July 22, 2023

1961 – Funk Cops Playland Race

Council Bluffs, Iowa (July 22, 1961) – A Kansas wheat farmer combined speed and driving skill Saturday night to harvest victory in the International Motor Contest Association late model stock car races at Playland Speedway.

Lenny Funk, Otis, Kan., had things all his way as 3,577 race fans saw him wrest the lead away from Johnny Beauchamp of Harlan on the third lap of the 100-lapper.

By the time he had received the checkered flag, Funk had lapped every car on the track with the exception of Beauchamp, now living in Atlantic.

The Kansan lapped fourth place finisher Ramo Stott of Keokuk on lap 52 and Dick Hutcherson, also of Keokuk, on lap 69.

At the end, he had more than a half-lap lead on Beauchamp, who returned to Playland to prove the spectacular accident he was involved in a few months ago at Daytona, Fla., had not affected his racing ability.

Buried among the also-rans and lapped by Funk on the 35th circuit was another Keokuk dandy, Ernie Derr, the defending IMCA point champion.

Results –

Heat #1 – Ernie Derr, Keokuk
Heat #2 – Gerry Harrison, Topeka, Kan.
Heat #3 – Ramo Stott, Keokuk
Trophy dash – Lenny Funk, Otis, Kan.
Consolation – Bill Moyer, Des Moines
Feature –
1. Lenny Funk
2. Johnny Beauchamp, Atlantic
3. Dick Hutcherson, Keokuk
4. Ramo Stott, Keokuk
5. Bob Reynolds, Edmond, Okla.


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