12/4/2011 NEW YORK STATE STOCK CAR ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCES OUTSTANDING HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES
Clifton Park, NY The New York State Stock Car Association Hall of Fame committee has selected a long-time car owner and five drivers with diverse backgrounds for induction into the NYSSCA Hall of Fame on Saturday, January 28, 2012. “Due to scheduling conflicts, we’ll have our ceremony at the Saratoga Automobile Museum at 11 am Saturday and the NYSSCA banquet induction that evening in Albany,” said HoF chairman John Keegan. “We’re looking forward to honoring car owner Mike Budka, late model and small block legend Walt Mitchell and modified stars Rich Ricci, Donnie Ackner, Jimmy Shampine and Dave Lape. A lot of people just think supermodifieds when they hear Shampine’s name but he was amazingly successful in his modified as well.” Budka has fielded cars for a number of top drivers but the 1980 and ’81 NYSSCA President will likely be remembered best for a “dynamic duo” who each took a turn winning big in his #64, “Jumpin’ Jack” Johnson and “Super CD” Coville. Budka came on the racing scene with a late model in 1978 and claimed some 33 feature wins at Fonda, Albany-Saratoga, Brookfield and the Devil’s Bowl with Jay Bleser at the wheel. 1981 brought a move to the big block modifieds, with the B+H Automotive team then turning to the CVRA small blocks five years later and eventually recording some 40 feature wins at Fonda, A-S and the Devil’s Bowl. And while the #64 was competitive everywhere, it was especially good at Albany-Saratoga no matter who was in the cockpit. Budka’s other drivers were a “who’s who” of area modified stars, among them Jeff Trombley, Ronnie Proctor, Ray Dalmatta, Bob Savoie, Alan Johnson, Bobby Varin and son Joey, with whom he closed out his long and successful career. Mitchell, who raced briefly before going into the service in 1962, returned to the ovals in 1966 and by his retirement in 2000 had recorded nearly 300 wins. He carried some 13 championship trophies home to Waterloo, ten for LM titles and the other 3 in the 358’s. He was the king of Weedsport, Canandaigua, Five Mile Point, Fulton and Woodhull at various points in his illustrious career and had his best season in 1979, when he went to Victory Lane 22 times and won 12 of the 14 features he finished at Fulton. But his 1991 Woodhull triumph in a DIRT Skoal Series race over Doug Hoffman and Steve Paine may well have been Mitchell’s most memorable score. Whether driving for himself or for such owners as Harold Sherwood and Brad Herrington, Walt Mitchell was always his own man and a respected racer. Rich Ricci, who has spent decades overseeing the illustrious racing careers of sons Rich Jr and Mike, was a great racer in his own right from his 1959 debut at Rhinebeck. He was the man to beat on Accord’s bull-ring for many years, claiming ten championships, but also won “on the road,” scoring at the much larger Orange County, Lebanon Valley, Nazareth and Utica-Rome Speedways. And he came close to a win on the Syracuse mile as well, running second to longtime rival Jeff Heotzler when the small blocks made their Syracuse debut in 1980. At Lebanon Valley, Ricci holds the distinction of winning the 1972 Race of Kings himself, then repeating 21 years later as an owner with Rich Jr. at the wheel. The father/son team also claimed the 1994 Mr Dirt Track USA event and the 1997 Lebanon 200. The family success was also notable, as Mike was point champion and Rich Jr second at Lake Mok-A- Tek Speedway one season, with the standings reversed at Accord. Amazingly, Rich and Rich Jr have each been Accord champion ten times with Mike claiming another five. Between them, Ricci Sr. and Jr. have won some 175 features at the Catskill Mountain speedway. Donnie Ackner started his illustrious career in the Sportsman division at Lebanon Valley in 1973 and six years later was the track champion. He then advanced to the modifieds and amazed the Valley faithful by winning the 1980 championship as a rookie, the only driver ever to do so. All told, he won 11 features on the high banks, highlighted by a win in the 1981 Mr Dirt Track USA event, between his rookie year and 2008. Equally tough in a small block, Ackner was the 1991 Albany-Saratoga champion and stands seventh on the all-time win list at the Malta oval, while at the Devil’s Bowl, where he snared four titles, his 32 wins ranks him third behind only Kenny Tremont Jr and Don Scarborough. He and the Kearn’s Brother’s #97 were indeed a formidable team, combining great preparation with Ackner’s driving skill and patience. Jimmy Shampine was a man who could do it all. He envisioned ever more innovative designs, built them in his shop, then drove them to Victory Lane. He started the radically offset supermodified revolution, then when others started catching up hung the motor and driveline even further out the left side before developing a rear-engine car that was so fast it was outlawed. Shampine’s feats in his supers are legendary, with the 8-ball claiming some 87 wins, including a trio of International Classics, at Oswego and enough on the road to put his career total at 113. But he also had 26 wins in the asphalt modifieds, including an Oswego All-Star League event, and another 13 with his dirt modifieds. He prevailed at Waterloo and Weedsport but was best known for dominating at Rolling Wheels in 1970, where he won nine times, including five in a row, by running down the best in the business from deep in the field. Had he concentrated solely on the modifieds, his numbers would be even more impressive. But whatever Jimmy Shampine focused his mind on, he excelled at, even building his own sprint car before his life was cut short in a freak incident at the 1982 Oswego Modified 200. Dave Lape is the only inductee still active and at the moment, shows no sign of slowing down. He started in late 1964 at the age of 16, running at Victoria Speedway and Fonda in a lightweight coupe from Riverside Park, and has had a superb career marked by spells when he was almost unbeatable. Third behind Jack Johnson and Lou Lazzaro at Fonda with 99 wins, Lape first visited checkerboard square in 1969 and won at least one Fonda feature over 32 seasons, claiming seven track titles in the process. His #22 has paid homage to his childhood heroes, mechanic/owner Bob Whitbeck and driver Pete Corey, throughout his career. But Fonda wasn’t the only place Lape has been blazing fast. His gold plated resume shows an Eastern States 200 win at Orange County in 1984, 37 wins and three track titles at Weedsport, nine wins at Rolling Wheels including the 1989 Rolling Wheels 200, a July win on the Syracuse mile and two track titles at the Utica-Rome Speedway. Lape also had a stretch where he was untouchable at Albany-Saratoga, claiming 24 wins over the years along with the 1982 modified championship in a season where his dozen wins left him tied for the most A-S wins in a season with fellow superstars Jack Johnson and Brett Hearn. Many of Lape’s 127 DIRTcar wins came at a time when he and wife Jackie seemingly lived on the Thruway, but their efforts brought them the 1977 and 1982 Mr DIRT titles, an honor shared by a select few. And amidst all this travel and racing, the duo, along with close friend Andy Fusco, annually promoted one of the DIRT tour’s most popular stops at the Can-Am Speedway through their LAPCO Promotions. The 2012 NYSSCA Hall of Fame inductees truly represent an amazing level of accomplishment.
12/2/2011 I know this is a long shot but thought I would ask anyway. When I was a child my dad and I used to go to Oswego Speedway. He had told me that he used to race but admitted that he was not very good and did not do it for long. I was doing some family tree research and found a news article with my fathers name (Ernest Kingsley) in it. It stated that he finished 3rd in Heat race #1 on August 1st 1964 at Glen Aubrey. I was just wondering if there is anyway to find out more info on this Ernest Kingsley. I know my fathers Cousin Edward Kingsley was a well known racer who was severely injured in an accident on Sept 14th 1963 at Shangri-La in Owego. Any info would be appreciated Thank you, Jeremy Kingsley
12/18/2011 Jeremy - If i hear of anything I'll pass it along. The two fellows I can think of around here that might know would be Jim Zacharias and Joe Buchek, they've seen it all. Jeff
12/1/2011 Hi to all my stock car racing friends, Hope everyone is keeping between the white lines and off the walls. I am pleased to announce that the dates and locations have been finalized for the two Cuba Lake Raceway (CLR) North and South luncheon/reunions to be held in 2012. CLR South - will be held on February 22nd at our same location, Golden Corral, that we have been at for the last 4 years in Brandon, FL(just east of Tampa and at a I-75 exit). The price of the luncheon including tax and tip will be the same as the last 4 years too at $11.00 per person thanks to the manager that works with us each year. I will be sending out all the particulars the first part of January for you to send in your reservation and payment. Last year we had a record turnout of 49 50's race drivers, owners, builders and fans of that great era of stock car racing. Mark you calendar now for Feb. 22nd and see you in Brandon at the Golden Corral. CLR North - will be held on July 25th at the home of all our luncheon/reunions "Moonwinks" since 2003 just north of Cuba, NY and 1/4 mile from the famous Cuba Lake Raceway high above beautiful Cuba Lake. The date is set and I will be sending you all the invite info. you will need about the first of June 2012. This will be our 10th anniversary and some very special things are happening behind the scenes for the luncheon/reunion this year. Mark your calendars now for July 25th and one of the largest gathering of 50s stock car racing people in the USA and Canada. Ford Easton
PS any questions etc. e-mail or give me a call email@example.com 727-522-4042
11/29/2011 Thanksgiving day was so nice, I pushed the car outside for some pics before I started tearing everything off of the chassis. At this point, the chassis is now completely "bare" and bolted to my makeshift rotisserie (2 cheap Harbor Freight engine stands - 1 front & 1 rear) in preparation for finish welding. Should be ready for sandblast & powder coat before Christmas. Bill Fitzsimmons
12/18/2011 As you can see in the photo's below, Bill's build is as impressive as Rip's.Thank you both for sharing.
11/25/2011 I received another update from Rip Ripley Sr. in relation to his son's re- creation/build of the Geoff Bodine #99 Valiant. As you can see in the picture below, he has done an outstanding job. You can read more about the build here. Next up for Rip is a George Kent Pinto...
11/21/2011 I received these photographs from my neighbor Chris Cook who, in turn received them from his neighbor and avid race fan Marilyn Hall of Campville, Ny. These are of her now deceased husband Robert 'Punk' Hall and were taken on July 3rd, 1953 at the Walton Fairgrounds Horse Track. I didn't realize that they had raced at Walton. Marilyn would enjoy hearing from those who may remember Punk and their car, please contact her through the site @ contact us. - Jeff
10/26/2011 For Immediate Release Contact: Ron Hedger 518-885-7481 THANKSGIVING WEEKEND RACING PROGRAM TO FEATURE NASCAR AND INDIANAPOLIS STARS ALONG WITH LOCAL TOPICS Saratoga Springs, NY In recent years, it has become a tradition for Capital District auto racing fans and participants to close out the Thanksgiving holiday with the Lost Speedways program at the Saratoga Automobile Museum. Typically the museum’s most popular offering, the Saturday, November 26th program will open with memorabilia sharing at 11: 30 am followed by a series of presentations beginning at 1 pm. “We started out talking about speedways that are no longer in operation and recalling the ‘good old days’ of area auto racing,” said museum trustee and event organizer Ron Hedger. “That theme continues, along with the display of memorabilia, but the day has also become a ‘gathering of the clan,’ so to speak. Fans see competitors of the past, friends catch up with each other, retired racers rerun battles of bygone days and new friends are made during enthusiastic conversations. It’s my favorite day of the museum year.” NASCAR Late Model Short Track division historian Ken Parrotte will be a newcomer to the program, offering an illustrated presentation on the division highlighted by the appearance of five-time division champion and Southern 500 winner Jim Reed. Reed, a resident of Peekskill, NY and a successful racer in the region before heading south and west, was among the nation’s most popular and successful drivers at the height of his career and will take questions from the audience. Parrotte will also read a letter from famed stock car and Indy 500 champion Parnelli Jones about his days in the division and his memories of racing against Reed, the dominant driver in the series. Another newcomer to the 2011 program will be former Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year Denny Zimmerman, who was the first Soap Box Derby regional winner to qualify at Indianapolis. Zimmerman, known to New York racers and fans from racing at the Utica-Rome and Albany-Saratoga Speedways, will be on hand to recall his time on the NASCAR Sportsman circuit, his Atlantic seaboard travels with asphalt guru Eddie Flemke, Red Foote and Rene Charland as the Eastern Bandits, and his open cockpit days. After quitting the stock cars, he advanced from URC sprint cars to Indy cars, highlighted by an eighth place finish in the 1973 Indianapolis 500 that earned him Rookie of the Year honors. Zimmerman will be joined by Skip Matczak, long known as an owner of both modified and supermodified racers, who will recall the early days of the Albany-Saratoga Speedway. Especially interesting will be Matczak’s recollections of the night the throttle stuck on his gorgeous modified and Buddy Krebs disappeared into the woods with the engine still at peak rpm. The New Englanders will be joined on the diverse program by a trio of returnees who are always extremely popular. Motorcycle racing expert Mark Supley will discuss playing polo on motorcycles, famed announcer Jim King will recall the glory days of the short-lived Cairo Speedway and historian Bill Ladabouche will illustrate the glory years of Plattsburgh’ s Airborne Park Speedway. Additionally, if time allows, Hedger will give an overview of the huge NASCAR exhibit set to occupy the museum’s main gallery beginning in June, 2012 that he is developing. Attendees are encouraged to bring their memorabilia to share with others, under the watchful eye of museum volunteers. Regular museum admission prices will prevail, with museum members, as always, admitted free. Directions and other information can be found online at www.saratogaautomuseum.org.
10/23/2011 Our condolences to the Ferguson, McCredy, and Wimble families for their loss. - Jeff
9/27/2011 I have 78 black and white photographs taken by J. Ralph Jones at 5 Mile Point between 1957 and 1959. I have a photo of the two flagmen. Fourteen photographs are of wrecks. Photos of race winners: Dane Gregory 130, Bill Northrop 42, Dutch Washburn 125, Roy Brown 75, Dick Camfield 123, Kenny King 53, Freddy Fafferty 51, George Neer 48, Elmer Cornell 80 and 89, Steve Stachura 74, Gene Hellmers 112, Don Diffendorf 23, Bill Stroshal 8, Doug Ford, Spike Mcqurrin 31, Jim Perkins 21, Jack Theabold 46 and 54, Ray Benjamin 33 and 1, Al Williams 77, Bill Strowshal 8 , George Halydon 94, Dick Merrill 19, Stan Lupka 16, Jimmy Lott 85, Jim Hardell 83, Bob Raney 56, Artie McLaughlin 7, Carl Abbot 57, Gordy Struble 49, Paul Dol’Q 2, Ed Rafferty 151, Jerry Pittsley 13, Amos Fancolulli 173, Don Shaw 28, Barney Bannard 99, Bob Renny 77, Dave Keneise 81 and 194, Jack Loughney 58, Bill Baxter 41, jack Bruce 166, Carl Fellows 158, John Florence 88, Tommy Ellis 105and 76, Don Hakes 56, Red Barnhart 100, Jack Pier 15, Ed Lathrop 83, Joe Donahue 47jr, Don Oralls 66, Glen Scott 175, Chas Douglas 158, Bobby Lewis 115, Hall Knight 24 and my favorite driver Bobby Bucher 22. Dave Martin
10/3/2011 Dave related to me that the pictures cost $0.15 each back then, so this is $12.00 worth of pictures that will be posted - they're priceless and can be viewed here. Thanks to Dave for his generosity.
9/26/2011 Jeff, Thank you very much for the picture. It’s great to have it and the info about it. I attached a few pictures of what the car looks like now. I am doing some work on it so when I get done with it I’ll send updated pictures. Thanks again, Carl Schroeder
9/11/2011 Hello, I was wondering if you have any information on car #412 which supposedly raced in upstate NY at Westport, Waterloo, Beavertown, and Lafayette in the 1950’s+. I recently purchased this car and intend to patch it up. Any information would be helpful. Thank you. Carl Schroeder
9/26/2011 Carl - Very cool car, I think I saw that for sale a year back or so, someone sent it to me and we already had a 3 window so I passed - regardless, very cool. I found one picture of it, taken by Dave Allen who later became my high school shop teacher. I think this was taken at the NYS Fairgrounds so you can now say you have an original car that ran at Syracuse as well - in 1962. I've never heard of the driver listed - Tom Kuppinger - and he didn't qualify for the feature, or at least he's not in the results from 1962 at the Fair, they usually had around 100 entries for the 34 or so spots in the race, so alot of guys went home early. I see he only has a single stromberg on, and some pretty wild headers. It's the only pic I've seen of the car 'back in the day' - I'll add it to our guestbook and if I get any other feedback I'll let you know. - Oh yeah... Please put a flathead in it. Take it easy - Jeff
9/11/2011 Hi: Bill Wimble called yesterday. It turns out that Marg Ferguson (formerly McCredy) has a series of serious medical problems and is hospitalized. Bill said she would very much appreciate cards/well wishes. The mailing address is: Marg McCredy 1248 Los Brisas Drive La Costa Village Daytona Beach FL 32129-9141
Thanks - Lew Boyd
9/3/2011 Hello, My name is Joe Napoleon the son of the late Frank (Bugsy) Napoleon, I have a fair amount of old photos,a few newspaper clippings and an old original Weedsprt gator news program. I recall as a kid going to waterloo and riding on the grader as he worked on track prep before race day as well as many other tracks and recall the Bodine boys in the pits. I noticed in one of the archives it shows my dad in the point standings with the old #51, if you would like I will gather some of this info and move on to you all to help with your project here. Keep up the good work, I would love to find one of his old cars the 66,51 or the 19 and do a restoration on it, if someone had a lead on that I would love to hear about it. Please advise
9/6/2011 Joe, I'd be happy to display anything you'd wish to share. If anyone knows of the whereabouts of any of Bugs Napolean's cars, please let me know and I'll pass along the info to Joe. Thanks - Jeff
8/31/2011 Larry Mills from Deposit, NY. Qwner of the junk yard jet made famous by many of the southern tier drivers - Doug Worthing, Brian Weaver, Mike Nagel to name a couple, passed away on 8-30-11. Just thought I would let you know. Larry Dilello
9/6/2011 My condolences to the Mills Family, thank you for letting me know Larry. - Jeff
8/18/2011 Jeff, It was great seeing you and your father last night at Utica-Rome Speedway. I wanted to thank you and the rest of the fine people who are involved in the midstate antique stock car club, and the opportunity you give people to see the cars of the past and to learn about the great people who drove them. My late grandfather, Cliff, appreciated it very much that you took the time to restore one of his cars that he once drove to many victories, and it means alot to our family that this car is available to be displayed at any event you are able to bring it too. Last night was the first race that I have attended since his passing, and the last race I was at before last night he was with me. He was truely my hero and someone who was a major force in my life, and I took great pride in watching the fans visit his car and hearing some of them say "Wow, this was one of Cliff Kotary's car and I remember when he won.....Because of your hard work and the rest of the members, the people who have passed on their lives are not forgotten by the people who knew them, saw them race, or raced against them, and it means alot to those of us who are still here. I have attached a couple photo's that were taken of myself with Bill Wimble at the track as I thanked him for his kinds words at the time of my grandfather's passing. Thanks again for being such a great advocate of racing and a friend whom my grandfather thought the world of. Mark
8/27/2011 Thank you Mark, it's people like you that make our hobby so worthwhile. See you again soon and tell you Dad we said hello. - Jeff
8/18/2011 Good Thur. evening to all, Hope you are still enjoying this super summer we have been having everywhere. Been great here in St. Petersburg and good to be back home after our stay in WNY and museum visits in Ohio and Indiana on the way home. We also visited the Hyundai car plant in Montgomery AL for a plant tour on how our car were made. You think of a car plant as being hot, smelly and noisy but this one sure isn't. We went everywhere in the plant on an electric kart except for the paint bld. as they want that perfectly clean. I have never seen so many robots in one place in my life. Plant is very modern and the temp. smells and noise are about gone because of the computer based robotics. Workers seemed very happy too as they don't have to do the high labor things anymore that are now done with the robots. Plant is just off I-65 on the south side of Montgomery so check ahead if you plan on going through there in you travels for a tour. You can sign up on line or call them to get on a tour. The CLR event was attend by 140 + folks that all seemed to have a great time. The roundtable program was very well recd. and Larry Dye kept the whole program from greeting folks to the ending statements a super day for all. As usual the room we allocate for attendees to display their pictures and other memorabilia was a real focus of attention this years. We all thank those so much that brought things with them to display. The food was out of this world again this year. What a great job Steve, Karen and their staff do for all of us. If you can get a better meal in WNY anywhere than here for this price let me know as I want to know where it is. I am attaching a number of pictures that were taken inside and out for your viewing pleasure. Cars outside were Sammy LaMancuso's MOPAR, Art Clark's "B" modified and Ron Baker's late model he runs now. Ford
8/16/2011 Contact: Ron Hedger @ 518-885-7481 or 518-369-1941 NASCAR LEGEND ADDED TO LOST SPEEDWAYS LINEUP Saratoga Springs, NY For longtime auto racing fans and participants, the Saratoga Automobile Museum’s Lost Speedways program has long been a must-see event. Set once again for its traditional “Saturday after Thanksgiving” date, the program’s impressive list of participants was bolstered this week by the addition of NASCAR legend Jim Reed of Peekskill, NY. “Longtime audience member Ken Parrotte of West Monroe, a racing historian whose focus is the old NASCAR Late Model Short Track Division, had offered to do a presentation for 2011,” said event organizer Ron Hedger. “We were looking forward to that when Ken had an opportunity to meet with Reed to further his research, a meeting that led to Reed agreeing to join us on November 26th. We’re absolutely thrilled to welcome the five-time national champion and 1959 Darlington Southern 500 winner to the Saratoga Automobile Museum. “We’re well into the planning of a huge main-gallery exhibit exploring the growth of NASCAR from its southern base to today’s coast-to-coast Sprint Cup series. It will run from June through November 2012 and Jim’s visit will preview our largest racing event ever. In fact, some of the cars I have lined up for the exhibit come from the era when Jim ranked among NASCAR’s most successful racers and we hope he will come back to participate in the events we’re planning in conjunction with the NASCAR exhibit.” Besides Parrotte, other presenters confirmed for Lost Speedways 2011 include our motorcycle racing expert Mark Supley, famed announcer Jim King, who will recall the short- lived Cairo Speedway and historian Bill Ladabouche, who will chronicle the history of Plattsburgh’s famed Airborne Park Speedway. “I have some other presenters in the works and if they can attend, the program will only get better,” summed up Hedger. “And, of course, we encourage everyone to bring their memorabilia to share before we start the program. Jim Reed will be bringing some of his treasures, providing a rare opportunity to relive the early days of NASCAR through the eyes of a true legend.” Lost Speedways 2011 will commence with memorabilia on display at 11:30 am with the formal presentations set for 1 pm. Regular museum admission prices will prevail, with museum members, as always, admitted free. “Porsche: 60 Years of Speed and Style in North America” will be newly opened in the museum’s Golub Gallery at that time while the Racing in New York gallery will feature “NASCAR in New York.” The Saratoga Automobile Museum is located on the Avenue of the Pines in the Saratoga Spa State Park.
8/9/2011 Hello ...I have recently been going through thousands of photographs taken by Clifford Smith of Gardenville, Pennsylvania. Among them are these 4 photos labeled "Stock Car Race, Langhorne, PA". Thought you might like them for your site. There's no date but I especially like seeing the boys in the trees to watch the race!
Carol Jacobs Norwood
See the spectators in the trees?
8/27/2011 Great Shots Carol - I see a Nash and Hudson along with the 'tree spectators' - thank you for sharing -Jeff
8/4/2011 Jeff: I believe picture you posted is Bruce driving a 99X car that was after he drove my Dad's car. I think i have seen pictures of this car, may be on your site.I think this car was yellow and silver, but I do not know who owned it. My dad told me that they wanted to race his 99X at Waterloo. As the story goes he called Waterloo and asked if they could race there. The reply was "Sure if you can keep up with us" and now I know the rest of the story about the famed speedway.They actually flat towed from Newfane NY to race there. The car originally was numbered 99, but because there was a 99 car registered my dad added the X and it stayed on the car. I can remember my dad talking about the track as being a treacherous place to race. I believe they ran well there. The car they built in 1963, the red and white 34 Ford was built as a "Waterloo car" with the express purpose to win the fair in '63 and now we know the rest of that story. I am kind of hoping someone might have some pictures of the red and white 99X coupe. Thanks Jeff and keep me posted! - Bill Bentley
8/27/2011 If I find any I'll let you know Bill - Jeff
8/1/2011 Bill Bentley sent this e-mail to John Bisci, and subsequently sent it to me: Hi John: Sorry to hear the news about Bruce Fleishman. My Dad, Jack Bentley built and owned the 99X that Bruce won the eleven features in 1962. The 99X car was the 38 car in 1961. The car was built by my Dad and Kenny Meahl. The 99X was basically the same car but had a much better motor. My dad built the motors and B and M speed shop did the machining such as balancing the assembly. My dad's friend and co-worker Dick Napora tuned the distributors. He claimed that the engine in the 99X was the sweetest running flathead ever built. Guess eleven feature wins testifies to that! Ron Wagner won the track championship in 1962. I guess the 99X had a couple of DNF's as best as I can remember. I was 12 years old and going to Lancaster every Saturday nite was really cool. Bruce Fleishman was a talented driver with the smoothest style ever! At the end of the 1962 season I believe the car was sold to Tom Leeson in Rochester. I can remember them coming to get it with a car transporter and the stock car was the only car on it! If any body has any history about the car I would be interested. Bruce was actually a hired gun to drive the car as I can remember no one else driving it. The car as the 38 in 1961 was built as a twin to Jeryy Cook's NASCAR coupe numbered 38 except my dad's car had a flathead engine. The 76 late model VanValkenberg drove was built out of my fathers shop in 1970-71. There is basically no history on the 99X car. had one picture of the car I carried in my wallet for years. My dad passed away about a year ago. He asked me if I had any pictures of the 99X and I showed him the picture. He said Dick Napora wanted ton see it and that was the last I saw it. There are pictures on Jeff Ackerman's site: Racing in Retrospect (Midstate Antique Stock Car Club) There is a picture posted under the Waterloo Speedway which is found under odds and ends Tracks of our Racing Heritage. The picture I attached (Billy Rafter's B bomb) shows Ron Wagner's car I believe numbered 55. The 99X is next to it which you can only see the top. Same tow car as shown in the Waterloo photo, I believe a white 55 Olds. I hope this information will help you to research further information about the history of WNY stock car racing. Bill Bentley
8/4/2011 Bill - thanks for passing along the information. I too am sorry to hear of Bruce Fleishman's passing on July 26 - I met him at B&M Speedshop, very nice fellow - he knew his flathead radius cams and told me much about the Crane 425 which he said had a 'pop' to it. When he contacted Harvey Crane about it, Crane asked how the car was running, and if he was winning with it. Bruce said it ran great and he was winning. Harvey related that they had one down there in Florida doing the same thing and not to worry about it... That lead to the 425-2 which was a 2 pattern cam with a different exhaust lobe, and the 'pop' went away.. RIP Bruce. And Bill - Here's a better pic of the 99X, although I like the 22 bug also. - Jeff
8/1/2011 Mr. Ackerman, My name is Bill Reese. My father, Bob Reese, drove at Morris, Brookfield race tracks in the early '50's and I am looking for any information i.e., clippings and/or pictures that someone may have of him. He drove #E-99 and a blue and white #97. I wish I could provide you w/more information, but that's all I have. I really appreciate any help you can provide!! Sincerely, Bill Reese@firstname.lastname@example.org
8/4/2011 Hopefully this will help you out Bill - I'll pass along anything I get. Thanks -Jeff
8/1/2011 You may already know, but Sonny Stickles' wife passed away on Saturday, July 30, 2011 at a hospital in Albany. I stopped down to see Sonny yesterday. He's doing pretty good under the circumstances. Willis Wightman
8/4/2011 We'd like to extend our condolences to Sonny on the loss of his wife Carol. Jeff
7/31/2011 Hello; I am a local author and historian, and I am researching the short-lived Webb Island race track, where I went with my dad when I was about 5. Does anyone in your group have photos, memories, documents or any info related to this track? Any help would be appreciated thanks -Jim Loudon
8/4/2011 If I hear of anything, I'll pass it along to you Jim. Thanks - Jeff
7/28/2011 Hello friend, Born and raised in the racing world, I am a race junkie. Having said that I’m searching for a few things: most specifically photos from shangri-la (poster contest) in 1981, photos from shangri-la mid 1970s-1980, possibly photos of Harry Benjamin (hometown wysox pa). I would greatly love and appreciate any help, information, photo, direction you may be able to share with me. Thank you in advance for your time. Shelly Salsman Michelle.Salsman@gmail.com
8/4/2011 Photo's of Harry sent, if anyone has any pictures of the 1981 poster contest, please send them along to Michelle. And thanks Michelle, you gave me an idea for the Southern Tier Shoebox... Jeff
7/24/2011 Hi- I have a question. I am building a 59AB flathead race engine. I want to run the Mushroom tappet. I have purchased new old stock Studebaker Champ 6 cylinder mushroom tappets. The question is this the tappets are longer than the stock ford tappet. Are the mushroom tappets like in your pics are they cut down if so who does this? Any info on this set-up would be great. I also know I have to have bronze sleeves made for the lifter bores. Where can I purchase the Cutter to cut the bottom of the bores? Or is this basicly all machine shop work? Please forward this email to the correct person if you are not the correct person for this type of info Your website is the best informative website on racing flathead parts on the web Cheers Johnny Wright
7/26/2011 Johnny – Thank you for the nice compliment. Now, to your questions (hang on….) -The Mushroom Tappet is what I believe to be the best set-up ever available for the Flathead. When Fred Offenhauser bought out Harry Miller’s shop remains at the bankruptcy auction, he went to Ed Winfield to ask about the camshaft, lifter and valve arrangements. Ed told him ‘make everything bigger’ but Fred couldn’t afford to do it so the compromise was the radius ‘cup’ design that Winfield devised and Goosen drew. (See Ron Ceridono’s book 'The Complete Ford Flathead V8 Engine Manual' and look for Barney Navarro). What Winfield was getting at was the lifter base, (and cam lobe) if Fred could have afforded it, the Offy would have had mushroom tappets. They offer the same quick action of the radius tappet setup with greater stability and wear characteristics. What I have are actually Chrysler Tappets, and yes they have been cut down, (I haven't experimented with Studebaker Tappets - yet). There are two ways to go about this – you can cut them down at the oil relief line (approx. 1.350” length), and then use a 3/8”-24-UNF bolt along with a jamb nut to make them adjustable (that’s what mine are, and what I would recommend – that will make your life easier when you degree the cam..) ~ OR ~ you can cut them off at the same height (approx. 1.612” length) as the original Whittman mushroom lifters – and make them un-adjustable. This would be lighter but labor intensive to either get the lash in correct, or degree the cam – you’ll need an old Black and Decker valve grinder with the lifter attachments in order to do this accurately. And plenty of time I’ll add. Barney Navarro did it this way feeling it was best, he’s right – it’s lighter and will never go out of adjustment – but with good springs (Isky 185G) shimmed to 90 lbs on the heel of the cam you’ll be able to turn 6500… is that good enough? You’ll also need to machine the base of the Chrysler to 1.200” – the one’s I have are 1.180” but I’d replicate the Whittman’s. The bronze sleeves I have are Johnson part number B203GP – dimensions as below – use oil impregnated bronze if it’s available, you could file a little slot on the thrust side of the lifter for additional lubrication as well.. The bushings are press fit into the block (chill them first) and then back cut for the Mushroom base tappet clearance – it just has to clear the cam.. then ream for the lifters (break all edges). The 5/8” reamer is likely available through MSC Industrial Supply Company http://www1.mscdirect.com as are the bushings and 1 ¼” cutter. Please review my drawing and picture below for reference. Thanks for the question, it helps me get it clear in my mind. - Jeff
7/11/2011 Thanks for the reply Jeff,
Cams are such a mystery to me and I'm pretty much at the hands of the experts to inform me on what I should use. My goal for this flathead build is to come close to or beat Rick Schnell "Slider" record. I was over visiting Earl Floyd and he just happened to have a spot face back cuter that he had custom made to run mushroom lifters but never got around to building an engine with them. One advantage that I learned is you can reduce the cam lift so you can run at higher RPM's. My only drag racing experience is with Earl's cars. He just runs injected nitro, 180 degree crank, and a magnito and he's getting abour 400hp. Not enought to get close to Schnell's records so I'm kicking around the idea of running 2 Paxton Supercharger. I know one will work, but the engine will look balanced with 2 hanging off the front. I'm not looking at producing more than 8lbs of boost.
I'll try to keep you posted as I progress. I don't even want to think of how much this setup is going to cost but I know it will take years to complete.
Thanks again for the info,
7/19/2011 Best of luck to you Andrew, please keep us posted of your progress. Jeff
First I want to say I enjoy reading your Flathead Tech section and find myself reading it over again frequently. Thanks for providing such great information.
I'm not new to building Flatheads but my next project will be a bit different than a the standard, off the shelf parts, builds I've been doing. I'm in the process of building a flathead for a front engine dragster. I have an aluminum filled block that will be building for this project and I'm wanting to run with the lightest rotating assembly and valve train as possible. The Studebaker Mushroom lifters weigh in at 71 grams, which is a little weight savings from standard hollow adjustable lifters.
My question regarding Mushroom lifters are: 1. Can the cam lob width be the same as a stock flathead cam lob width? 2. Can he cam profile be that of a stock flat tappet?
The reason I ask is I'll also be running a Nordon 189 degree crank and I've been unable to find any Flathead cam blanks so I'm machining the blank myself to have it ground.
I like the idea of radius or roller lifters but I'm not ready to slot the lifter bore.
7/10/11 Andrew - Thank you for the kinds words, to your questions: 1. Yes 2. Yes Hows that? For those of you familiar with my ramblings, well - let s just say I warned you.. The long of it is that I found this to be a interesting question, and I started measuring cams. They are all over the place.. Stock and Reground Steel cams are 0.660 to 0.670 lobe width, 59A cams are 0.525 to 0.560 width and 8BA cams are 0.515 to 0.525, and that's just the few I measured. So then I went to the Mushroom grinds I have and they measured anywhere from 0.475 to 0.525 width for the lobe, so splint the difference I'd say and shoot for 0.500 to 0.525 width - I don't think the extra material hurts and may wear better. The profile is an interesting question as well, and has many variables as I'm sure you're aware. The Mushroom cams that Isky and Clay Smith produced came with a 'cam kit' - lifters and likely springs. Springs are no problem, I'd use the 185G Isky's but lifters are another story. The Johnson or Whittman type lifters sold with these cams had a 1" diameter body and 1.195" base. The Plymouth mushroom lifters - which like the Studebaker's - can be used with a bushing in the lifter bore - are 1.295" at the base - one set I have (which are modified) are 1.180" at the base.. you see where I'm going here. I don't know what the Studebaker lifters are at the base but if you're going to use one of the Isky or Clay Smith profiles, you'll want to match the lifters as well or you'll have to 'noodle out' what you want for opening and closing times as well as duration, overlap etc. I read once where Barney Navarro was using the Chrysler tappets with either a Potvin or Winfield flat cam - he was going to Bonneville with that engine however so the additional duration would have been advantageous, but I don't think that's what you would want in a dragster. I'd stick between 270 and 280 duration to get out of the hole, but then I've never drag raced. I read somewhere where Rick Schnell - (who, as far as I know - has recorded the lowest ET with a Flathead; 7.724 @ 173.73 MPH) used a Isky 433 with a 112 or 113 lobe center - of course he was using a blower and wanted to eliminate some overlap, I don't know what you're going to use for induction but I thought I'd throw that out there for thought. The best guys to talk to about a cam are going to be Ed Iskendarian and Jerry Cantrell of Schneider - Ed ground the mushrooms and Jerry did a 180 cam for John Flach so I know he can handle this. I think the mushroom cam is an excellent choice for your very interesting project, when I talked to Speedy Speirs last year he related he was getting over 300 HP on the dyno (at over 7000 RPM!!!!) with an Isky 1023 Mushroom Grind. I've attached a few pics of the grinds below - I wish you the best of luck - please keep up updated as to your progress. Thanks - Jeff
6/9/2011 CUBA LAKE RACEWAY 9th annual 40s 50s and 60s stock car racing luncheon July 27th 2011
This is your invitation to attend the 9th annual CLR luncheon for all those that remember or have a love of stock car racing from those wonderful years of the 40s 50s and 60s. Drivers, car owners, mechanics, track personnel and track owner/builders from the tracks of WNY, Ontario and NWPA during that time will be attending. A large contingent of drivers, track owners, track personnel and fans from the Jamestown, Buffalo, Rochester, Elmira and southern Ontario area attend each year. Last year drivers and others that were involved with the racing came from 7 States and Ontario to attend the luncheon. By receiving this invitation, you and your family and friends are invited to attend this years event (bring your wife/husband or companion as they have a great time too). The past CLR luncheons have become very popular with the whole stock car racing world it seems and I suggest you get your reservations in as soon as possible before it is completely sold out. This is your chance to be with and talk with these greats from that era of racing. A number of the young lyons that are the stock car champions currently, also attend to meet the drivers they have only heard about. Moonwinks can handle 200 people max. and still have room for all of us to move around for visiting with friends, old and new, fans and lovers of 40s 50s and 60s stock car racing that will be there for the luncheon.
When: July 27th 2011 (Wed)
Where: Moonwinks, just north of Cuba, NY ( 3 miles ) on rt. 305 and 1/2 mile from the CLR track. Watch your speed on I-86 and in the Cuba area as tickets are given out for any speeding infraction.
Invitation deadline: I must receive your reservation and payment by: July 15th 2011
Time, luncheon info. and Cost: registration starts at 10:30 am with lunch starting at approx. 12:15. We have use of the restaurant until 4:00 pm so there will be plenty of time for our roundtable program, mc and all of us to visit with friends, new and old, and field those questions from the fans and get driver autographs and pictures. This year by working with the great folks at Moonwinks, the luncheon cost is the same as has been for may years now, $14.00. It has always been my goal from the 2003 banquet forward to have the cost as low as possible so anyone that wants to attend can afford to do so. Our sit down served luncheon will begin with a special for us only "racing salad", rolls & butter, beverage( choice of coffee, tea, iced tea or lemonade). Mixed drinks, wine or beer may be ordered, but are at an additional cost. This year you and your companions will have the choice of one of the following two entrees: Scampi style haddock or Roast Turkey with stuffing & gravy. You must let me know how many of each with your RSVP. The entree you choose will come with potato and vegetable. Our luncheon will then conclude with a very nice dessert. Steve, the manager of Moonwinks, is also a lover of 40s,50s and 60s stock car racing and those of you that have attended past banquets will remember the great feed he puts on for us. Steve will go out of his way this year also to see that we are treated as Queens and Kings. Our luncheon will be "dutch treat" for all attending and the price of $14.00 per person includes everything food wise, beverage (except noted above), tax and gratuity. Remember I must receive your RSVP and payment by: July 15th 2011 at the latest as no day of the luncheon payments will be allowed. Because of the guarantee required by Moonwinks, no refunds can be made. I will not be sending you tickets back. We will have your name and your companions on a master list that will be marked at registration on the 27th. Your only job the day of the luncheon is to register, sit back, visit, eat, enjoy our roundtable program and relax. Dress code is casual.
Program: This year for the entertainment portion of the luncheon/reunion we will be having a roundtable discussion with questions/answers by four very articulated and knowledgeable gentlemen that represent 40s, 50s and 60s stock car racing in the areas west of Syracuse in NYS, Sothern Ontario and North West PA . Our MC, Larry Dye will be the moderator of the program. We have done some of the stories at the CLR south luncheons here in Florida over the last two years and they have proved to be very interesting and well received by all in attendance. You the attendees will be able to be involved by filling out up to two questions on cards that will be given to you at registration. Below are the bios for the four folks that make up the roundtable participants:
Russell(Butch) Fleetwood, Butch was born in Buffalo in 1942 and educated at Burgard HS. He started in the 40s with his love of racing riding with his Dad in the push truck at Civic Stadium. During the late 50s he raced with the help of his Dad at Civic Stadium and most WNY dirt and asphalt tracks. 65-69, campaigned a street asphalt stocker for one year and 4 years in a modified sportsman. 71-98, Butch did officiating at Holland, Perry, Lancaster and Cayuga. He was also involed with T.Q Midgets. With the background in racing above Butch also "knows" everybody in racing from the 40s on. You won't believe some of the stories and info. he will be sharing with us from those great years of racing in the 40s onward.
Rick Kavanagh, Although Rick is about a generation younger that most of the alumni of the drivers and others from racing years ago he never the less grew up up in the classic era of dirt track racing. Rick's father Ken and another gentleman purchased Merrittville Speedway at the end of 1955 season and Rick has been involved with the operation of tracks his Dad has owned over the years. He also has become friends with many of the people involved with stock car racing from those great years of the racing. He became co-founder of the the Merrittville Speedway Reunion Committee. Rick brings with him many stories and good info. that he will be sharing with us at the luncheon on racing in southern Ontario.
Bill Green, From Andover, NY where he was born many years ago and continues to reside there. Bill has been very involved with the Allegany County Historical Society website writing many stories and doing research on area people, veterans and most important to all of us Stock Car Racing as it was in the 50s and 60s in the Southern Tier of NYS. He has a collection of around 2000 photos from Cuba Lake, Angelica, Holland and Perry. I have gone to Bill a number of times when I get stumped and he has always helped me out. You will be impressed with the knowledge he has on Stock Car Racing and the people.
Randy Anderson, Randy's area of expertise is for the far south west section of NYS and NW PA. He has had a love-affair with racing since his father took him to the races at Stateline Speedway in the late 50s. He has been a fan, participant, historian and film maker over the years. He is currently a crew member on a late model and has been since 1985. He is the "unoffical historian" at several tracks in the area and produced a DVD on Roll-O-Bowl and last year a DVD on Stateline, the first ten years. We will all enjoy the info. Randy will bring with him to the roundtable.
RSVP: Send payment, $14.00 per person, along with your name and the name of any companions attending with you and the entree choice for each of you to: Ford Easton, 5200 28th St. N. # 651, St. Petersburg, FL 33714. Make your check or mo payable to: Ford Easton. Should you need to contact me, phone 727-522-4042 or e-mail email@example.com. Remember I must receive your reservation and payment by July 15th 2011. If you or any of your companions were or are a race car driver please indicate that to me when you send your reservation and money. Those of you that I know personally that drove, don't need to indicate it. I just don't want a driver to slip by me without me knowing they drove.
6/5/2011 HELLO. My compliments on the very nice article on Ben Stephens by Mr. Ackerman. I can relate very closely to part of the story as my dad was the owner of the car #18 that Ben talked about. I was only a kid of about 10 at that time but to me there was nothing cooler than racing at the bullrings. The only part of the article that I found wrong was that my dad's name is incorrect. The correct name is Vernon Osterhout. Keep up the good work on the fine website that you have. Thanks, Tom Osterhout
6/12/2011 Tom - I've corrected your father's name in the article, I'm pleased you enjoyed it. Ben is a great guy, lot of fun. Thanks - Jeff
5/26/2011 Mr. Ackerman, sir... I just got off the phone with John Mooney... I know you've interviewed him (previously)... I'm an old 'neighborhood ' Chenango Bridge, NY buddy of his from Wa-a-a-y, WA-A-A-A-AY, Back in the day. Here's a link to 'what's Happening in Jersey, a relatively new site , perhaps you might want to link to ? www.robbinsvillehotrods.com Check it out in your spare time. Thanks, regards, and Keep up the good work on your site----- Nostalgia , ALL the way ! ! Tom Glock
6/4/2011 Hi Tom, Anything for Mr. Mooney... thanks for the link and compliment, I've added the site on our links page. Take it easy -Jeff
5/23/2011 Wow, Grew up at Shangri-la watching the Ford Bullet do battle with S360. Of course the good guy wears the white hat right. :-} Also watched him at Langhorne, and a few other road trips. Seeing the car brings back awesome memories. Delivered newspapers to McClure’s Ford as a kid and saw the bullet every day in the garage and the guys working on her. Never forget the owner (Al) standing there in overalls over his dress clothes with the welding torch lit putting goggles on. Quite an impression for a kid, a businessman and owner doing what he loves – working on the bullet… Will you post pictures as you fix her up? Can’t believe you found her. Sure wish she had one of those awesome 427 power plants! Awesome web site. Will be back. Tom Brasington.
6/4/2011 Tom, We're really pleased to have it as well and will post pictures as we get to restoring it. I have a 390 FE that I've been collecting parts for, although we picked up a side oiler block for my brother this past winter.... if you can see where this is going..... I don't 'think' he'd know the difference, would he? BTW - Diff is a really good guy too, I'm sure you knew that, take it easy - Jeff
5/23/2011 Jeff , I received the write up of Al McClure's # 15. in my mail today, from a friend. Very good reading. I haven't been to your site in a while, and I am impressed by your growth, Keep up the good work, er: racing ! My question to you is was there an other Al McClure # 15 after that car? Because I didn't see anything about Geoff Bodine as driving for Al McClure, as we know, that he did ?. Did you happen to get a read on the article by "Ron Levanduski", in the ELMIRA STAR- GAZETTE, Elmira, NY, in the Thursday, May 19, 2011 edition ? http://www.stargazette.com/article/20110518/SPORTS10/105180411/Levanduski- Area-man-s-labor-love-Bodine-Modified-re-creation Bob Ripley Jr ( "Slant 6" - from a couple years back ) has built, all on his own, a "clone " of the # 99 Chevy Big Block Powered Valiant body race car of the early 70's, that Geoff drove for T.K. McClean in the early 70's. Geoff later went on to drive for Al McClure. Great site, and we expect to be seeing you soon, Regards, Bob Ripley Sr.
6/4/2011 Bob - I have seen the progress of Rips Bodine replica on the Hamb and RaceNy, he's done an excellent job. When I saw the chassis a few years ago at the 07 Racing Collectibles show, I thought he was doing a great job then and now that it's all come together, it's just fantastic. It is a labor of love, just as he related in the attached article, and it can take years of spare time just searching for parts, and then fabricating. We know, you don't just sprinkle some rust out in the back yard in the fall and up sprouts a coupe in the spring.... Thank you for sharing with us - I took the liberty of attaching a few photos of the car (that I 'borrowed' off the Hamb and RaceNY - all photo's by Rip) below so other's can see the results of Bob's hard labor. I honestly don't know much about Geoff's involvement with Al McClure, in the book 'High Point Men' by Robert N. Sieber (which is excellent by the way) there is mention of Geoff joining up with Al McClure for the Permatex 200 on Feb. 14th, 1975 - I'll assume they ran together a bit before and afterward as well, with Al's last effort being at Daytona in the late 70's with Dick May. You probably know more about Geoff's involvement with Al than I do. There was most certainly more McClure 15's built after our car. Our's was built, as far as I can ascertain, over the winter of 1968-69 for the 1969 season which was Bill Strosahl's last year of competition. Graeme Bolia took over for 1970 and at that time, the team had at least two coupes in service from previous years (from the photos I have, I am certain of this). These cars were modified slightly through 1971 (hoods and cowl changes) until the last (big window) coupe was built for 1972, our car was still in service at that point so they still had at least two coupes in 1972 - 1973. IN 1973 they built the Pinto, 1974 it's the big window coupe and Pinto. In 1975 our coupe is now owned by Harry Benjamin, the McClures' have built their Mustang II - which I beleive was thier last modified with Bolia. That leads up to Bodine - so that would make at least (3) more modifieds built after our car by Al McClure. Hope that answers your question. Tell Rip to keep his chin up, I have to admit that when I read he blew up the George Kent 427 at SLII practice, I laughed.... it happens... My father once told me "you can blow one up putting it on the trailer." He knows. Sooner or later, if you run it hard, it's going to have problems. Anyway, he's done a great job and I wish him the best of luck getting it ready for June 18th, take it easy. - Jeff
5/10/2011 Read your article on "bugs" with great interest; there was another "Nance" that was very influential in their development in the Midwest; Laverne Nance operated Nance Speed Equipment in Wichita KS along with his son. Sadly both have now passed and that wealth of knowledge is lost to us forever....interesting that you should mention the aircraft influence on racing as Nance also subcontracted for the big three (Boeing, Cessna and Beechcraft).....one of the first oil coolers I bought from La Verne had a Pratt/ Whitney part number on it....thanks for your efforts in keeping that era alive..........Mike Fatkin
6/4/2011 Mike - I really love that era of the 'bugs' and found it interesting in my research to see that they were very similar throughout the country. It's been my thought that this could be a very viable class still - no body required, just a frame and running gear, some safety regulations and specifications - put the class in the hands of the builders again, and do it affordably. I guess I have the option in our club... wouldn't it be cool to see a bunch of these buzzing around? - Jeff
5/8/2011 For the past few years, when my high school buddies have the opportunity to get together, we do so at my place. Last weekend worked out for everyone, and we had a great time. Never thought we'd be pushing 50......
5/6/2011 Hello again, I previously asked you about a Clay smith 282 cam I have here, and you very nicely emailed me a Clay Smith cams spec sheet. Through a computer clean up I have lost said spec sheet, Damn damn damn. If you could send it to me again that would be very much appreciated. Last time I had it, it was a small resolution and difficult to read, is it possible you could send it bigger if you know what I mean? There is a section of your site talking about cutdown cranks and you show a black and white pic of said crank with dimensions of what to cut and were to cut it, Again if you could let me have a higher res of that picture that would be very nice indeed. Do you know if any body cut down the Merc stroker cranks? I have a 99 block here and want to build a biggy using it, but still want it rev up real good. Look forward to receiving your reply. Many thanks Martin. Ps these 99 blocks sure have thick cylinder walls dont they!, And quite a fair bit heavyer than the 59 series block. Looking through the keystone hole the wall almost comes to the edge hole, and looking through the larger round holes between the cylinders the wall does come to the edge of the hole! Most anywhere I measure the wall is .270 - .320 thick! This is stock 3.1875 bore, look like it would go to, If I really wanted to go big, 3.5 bore and leav at least .090 upwards wall thickness!!! I would obviously sonic check the block before doing such an extreme bore, but as I measured to see if would go 3.375 safely the answer was a very big yes.
6/4/2011 Martin, Sorry it has taken so long to reply, I've been busy as of late. Attached are the items you wanted in 200 dpi, that's as big (dense) as my old scanner will allow. I'd use a Merc. crank if I was doing it again, I had Ford 'pop up' pistons which is why I chose to use the Ford truck crank I had - I would also attempt to contour the ends of the counterbalances as in the Ansen pic, I cut mine off with a hacksaw flat and we ended up with a lot of heavy metal to balance it. $$$$$$.... It revs up like "you're stepping on a cats tail" was the way Bob Hayslett described it, he was right. 3 & 3/8 bore is pretty big for the street, why not leave a bore for later if you need it? That would be my advice, best of luck to you. - Jeff
5/2/2011 Jeff, Here is some more help with those '71 Langhorne pics. I really appreciate the offer from you and your Dad on the '36 but I just don't have the time to devote to that or any other project. I have had a few guys looking for stuff and I would be glad to turn them on to you for that car if you would like. Anyway here is the info on the cars 81 - Norm Janwich. Program says owner is Mulaney Tire '63 Ford and you can see the Mulaney Tire on the side in the pic. 84 - Yes that is Frank Myroncuk. Program says '67 Cougar and that looks like a '67 Cougar 87 - Program says Eddie Rafferty '36 Chevy owner Bob Page There are several 8's. Maybe you can tell the car year and make. I can't. 8 - Jim Tyler '38 Plymouth 8 - Jim Shampine '39 Ford (obviously not his car) 8 - Whip Davis '36 Chevy 8x - Paul Rochelle '37 Plymouth 93 - There were two. Pete Corey '36 Chevy and Blackie Watt no year named Chevy 9 - There were three. One was Chuck Boos so that's not it. Th other was a '63 Ford so that's not it. SO that leaves Bill Corazzo '38 Chevy and that car looks like a '38 Chevy. Hope this helps! Ed
5/8/2011 Thanks a bunch Ed, that is a big help, much appreciated. - Jeff
5/1/2011 Hi, My name is Carl Decloedt and I’m from the Philippines. This email is really a stab in the dark at this point and I’m hoping that you can help me. I currently am in the process of restoring my 1949 Chevrolet Styleline Deluxe. It is all original and I wish to keep it that way. However, there are some things that I want to change, namely the oiling system of the engine. I have seen that in the US, some machinists have already been able to drill this type of crankshaft for full pressure oiling and I am very interested in this. My problem is that I am on a tight budget and being all the way here in the Philippines will make shipping the crankshaft back and forth to them quite expensive, not to mention the cost of the process itself. I have read in your guestbook that Larry Witter may have information on this process and I was wondering if you could help me get in contact with him. I am looking for some specifications that would allow me to have the work done at a local machine shop instead. As I said, this is really a stab in the dark, but any help to point me in the right direction would be greatly appreciated. Thank you and best regards, Carl
5/8/2011 Carl, I forwarded your e-mail to L. Witter, hopefully he can help. - Jeff
4/28/2011 DIRTcar TO PARTICIPATE IN SARATOGA AUTOMOBILE MUSEUM’S SPRING AUTO SHOW Saratoga Springs, NY Race cars are traditionally a major component of the Saratoga Automobile Museum’s huge Spring Auto Show, set for Sunday, May 15 from 10 am to 3 pm in the Saratoga Spa State Park adjacent to the auto museum. For 2011, SAM is pleased to announce that representatives of DIRTcar, the nation’s premier sanctioning body for dirt modified racing, will be on hand to provide information on their upcoming events. The centerpiece of the DIRTcar exhibit will be the modified of Lebanon Valley Speedway star Keith Flach, who will be on hand to sign autographs and discuss his state of the art racer with fans visiting the show. “With the Saratoga Auto Museum featuring both the New York State Stock Car Association Hall of Fame and a variety of racing exhibits, it’s the perfect place to tell eastern New York fans about our museum in Weedsport and the upcoming Hall of Fame weekend,” offered DIRTcar representative Amanda Hirko. “And a number of our inductees for 2011 have ties to the Capital Region as well.” DIRT Hall of Fame inductees to be honored at the May 29th ceremony include long-time Fonda and Albany-Saratoga Speedways driver Jerry Cook, a six-time NASCAR National Modified champion, Rexford’s Irv Taylor, a Sportsman star of the 1960’s at the Fonda and Victoria Speedways and Pennsylvania star Doug Hoffman, a winner on the DIRTcar modified tour for many years. The event will also recognize the accomplishments of Audrey Payne and Carol Haynes as Gater News Woman in Racing, Gene DeWitt car Owner Award winner Frank Cozze Sr., Leonard J Sammons Memorial Award winner Bill Ladabouche and Ron Ste. Marie, winner of the Mechanics Award. The Hall of Fame ceremony will be held at 2 pm at the museum, located at the Cayuga County Fairgrounds Speedway in Weedsport, with the third annual All-Star Weekend finale to follow at the nearby Rolling Wheels Raceway. “We’re thrilled to have DIRTcar participate in our show with a show car and information and expect to send representatives to their induction ceremony to acquaint central New Yorkers with our many racing related activities here,” said Ron Hedger, coordinator of the Saratoga Automobile Museum’s racing related programs. “We’ll set them up in front of the museum with the Atlantic Coast Old Timers display of vintage open cockpit racers and the Mo-Hud region of the SCCA’s many racing sports cars and race fans can enjoy all that in addition to the huge car show next door. They will also be able to visit the Racing in New York gallery in the museum, as a museum visit is included in the car show admission.” More information on the Saratoga Auto Museum’s two-day spring event, featuring the Saratoga Spring Invitational, the Euro Show and the Spring Auto Show, is available online at www.saratogaautomuseum.org.
4/24/2011 Also received these from Dave Newell, thanks Dave, they're great also.
4/24/2011 Received these in the mail yesterday from Eddie Robbins - Thanks a lot Eddie, they're great! - Jeff
Fred Smith Photos:
4/21/2011 Hi, my name is Scott Poole my father and grandfather both raced in Morris. I am trying to find photos of them and their cars. I think one of my dad's numbers was 42 but i think I can remember a car 56 as well unfortunately both have since passed on and I was just a youngster when they raced so my memories are sketchy. I can remember a gentleman that was called Ace that resided in West Oneonta that my dad raced for as well. Any pics or info would be greatly appreciated.
4/24/2011 Scott can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
3/29/2011 Jeff, I checked the program I have for the sprints in 1979 at 5MP - no luck. Probably cars just came up from the Pennsylvania. I did have some luck with the 71 Langhorne from the 71 program:
37 - George Hedges '38 Chevy 5 - Buddy Camp '37 Stude 51 - Terry Edwards '37 Chevy X51 - Nobody listed 52 - Tommy Comerford '40 Chevy 66 - Tony Cramer '39 Chevy 6 - Charlie Angerman '37 Chevy 7 - Franz Wohlgemuth it says '62 Falcon but that car looks like a 'Stang so that could be wrong 75 - No Driver but owned by Scibelli Bros. Racing '67 Mustang 77 - Charlie Gimore '38 Plymouth
OK now you can sell me the '36 Chevy. Ed Rohr
3/27/2011 24 Norm Schmidlin, 37 George Hedges, 40 Billy Cassella, 5 Buddy Camp, 51 Terry Edwards in wt. coupe, x51 ???? Riverhead driver in gold coupe, 52 Tommy Comerford, 66 Tony Cranmer, 6 Charlie Angerman, 7$ Al DeAngelo, 75NY Mustang ????, 77 Charlie Gilmore. sincerely John Jansen in Fl.
4/3/2011 Thank to you both in helping identify the Langhorne Pictures, much appreciated. - Jeff
3/27/2011 My boy Napolean enjoyed another birthday yesterday, his 12th - it was a howling good time....
3/22/2011 Real nice story on BEN STEPHENS, I always loved to watch him race. Larry Mickelsen
3/27/2011 Thanks Larry, Ben's interview was a lot of fun, he's a great guy - one of the nicest you'd be fortunate enough to meet. People are really enjoying your pictures too, thanks for sharing them. -Jeff
3/21/2011 In the Langhorne pics dated 3/13... in the last pic posted.... Fred is standing on the right side of pic talking to one of Ray Hendricks crewman lol. How Ironic how history caught a pic of the historian. Mark Terry
3/27/2011 Good catch Mark, I 'm sure Larry knew what he was doing..... Jeff
3/16/2011 Jeff, How’s it going? I found some info on a couple of your pics with ??????? listed as the driver in 1970 from the 1970 program. I’ll see if I have the 1971 program and get back to you. X50 – Marty Himes, Bayshore , NY 1937 Chevy, XL1 – Sam Beavers, Whitehouse Station , NJ 1937 Ford. Ed Rohr
3/14/2011 1971 Langhorne photos of X50 Marty Himes, 2 Phil J. Spiak, 35 Ron Bouchard, 36 Hal Browning I think. I wish I knew how to send photos, Ihave photos from 1960s-mid 1970s at Langhorne, Lancaster, Oswego Shangri-La, Fonda, Fulton, Malta, Utica-Rome, Pocono, Trenton, Stafford, and Airbourne Park Speedways. also Lebanon Valley. John Jansen
3/14/2011 Hello, Attached are some photos I have from the early 60s from GAR. The photos were taken by J & J Speedway Photos Love your web site, they were the good old days and the best of times. Please let me know if you can use these photos, and if you need more info feel free to contact me. Les Jaycox
3/20/2011 Thank you Les - they're great - and can be viewed here. - Jeff
3/6/2011 0 Sonny Seamon, 11 Jim Hoffman, 15 Hank Dudley, 101 Wally Katulka, 120 Neil Tooley, 09 Ed Flemke or Bob Santos at Langhorne 1971. John Jansen
3/2/2011 Hi Jim,I think what you're seeing on the car #441 is a "Bardahl" sticker or I've also seen a picture of this famous race car with a "Pennzoil" sticker. These were located on both sides,behind the number. As far as the the "grey ghost", you asked about, "the gallopin' ghost" was painted on the right front roof. In the front center of the roof, were the letters," D+J" which stood for Donna + Jerry.I t was built and raced by Al Larabee and then sold to and raced by Jerry Wisnoski. There were never any sponsors on the car. It was one of the prettier cars at Brookfield and Morris. I've lent it to Norwich Car Museum and it's with other local stock cars. Let me know if I could be of further help. Dave Conde, owner.
3/6/2011 Thanks Dave - Jeff
3/1/2011 Please accept these photos from my personal collection for your website and archives. I have had the pleasure of attending several Maple Grove Reunions (with Mark Braccio) and I feel that these attached images should be added to the collection. Please note that the Gunkler photo Car #21 was owned by Lewis Clark of Lyons, NY. All other photos were from the Clint Meade, Skip Meade and Johnny Gunkler team from Clyde, NY. The Meade-Gunkler-Meade Racing Team will be inducted into the Clyde Sports Hall of Fame on April 2, 2011. The committee, has in their possession for display, a Track Champions Trophy from approximately 1958,1959 or 1960. Can you clarify the exact year the this was awarded? The Names on the Trophy are: Johnny Gunkler, Clinton Meade and Leon Sturtz. (photo attached) Thank you for preserving the history of the "good ole days." Steve Groat 50 Sibley St. Clyde, NY 14433
3/6/2011 Hi Steve, Thank you very much for the photo's, I'll build a page for you under the Waterloo tab and post them there - if you ever want to add more there will be room to do so. I honestly don't know what year the trophy could be from, from what I can figure out - it has been recorded (online) that Glen Reiners won track championships from 1955 -1958, it's also been recorded that Ron Narducci won two track championships during this time period as he returned to Connecticut to race in 1957...... Conflicting reports...... I do know that Cliff Kotary won his one and only track championship at Waterloo in 1960. That would leave 1959 as the only year I'm aware of as 'open' - I believe Sammy Reakes won it in 1962 and 1965, Larry Nye in 1964, Wee Willie and John McArdell may have won one as well, very little of this is written down so any research you find I would add. Your best bet would be to get ahold of Chuck Brownell of Newark, he organized the reunions - if anyone would know, it would be him. Thanks again. Jeff
2/23/2011 REALLY GREAT SITE,, KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK . THESE OLD CARS ARE HISTORY & NEED SAVED !!! AL LEAK
2/27/2011 Thanks Al.
2/15/2011 What a awsome site..THANK YOU !..my name is jim laubmeier and live in MORRIS...I,ve met you a couple of times over the years and always enjoyed talking to you. THEY have a RC track at the old SNB school and are goig to have a tribute race of the cars that ran in MORRIS..I<M going to tribute the 441 grey ghost and have a few ? I can,t make out what that drawing is my the car number..Why is it called grey ghost and was there any sponser's on the car...hood....THANK YOU
2/27/2011 Jim - I've sent you're inquiry to Dave Conde, if anyone knows the answers to your questions - it's Dave. When I hear back I'll let you know. Thanks - Jeff
2/12/2011 Do you have any additional info on Schooler cam grinds??....I grew up in the south alabama/florida region and remember his name on some of the modifieds in the area (Pensacola/Mobile). He appears to have been somewhat "reclusive" prefering word of mouth promotion above other forms; I do remember his cams having an exhaust note unlike any other.....thanks Mike Fatkin, Butler Community College
2/13/2011 Hi Mike, I really don't have much info. I have a few cams and know from people I've talked with - Cliff Kotary and his son Roy, and Speedy Spiers - that the flathead cams had more lift on the exhaust lobe than intake, by 0.002. John Schoolers idea was to get the fresh intake charge into the engine, you first had to get the exhaust out. He built a Studebaker engine for Mike Cerasky (Michaels) that Cliff Kotary drove - it had tuned exhaust and turned heads here in the Northeast, I've heard stories of it having a very unique exhaust note. It won consistently, (when the driveshaft stayed in place...) Speedy Spiers is still alive in Jacksonville, Fla. - he may know more than anyone about Schoolers cams, or possibly Harvey Crane. If you find anything out, let me know and I'll post for all. Thanks - Jeff
1/27/2011 CLR South - Here are the pictures attached I took yesterday at the event. 58 attended and that is a record number of folks for this annual southern get together. Great time had by all. Four drivers were in attendance that had raced at CLR back in the 50s and they signed all the repo. posters for a CLR Aug. 8th ad in 1954 that was done by my friend David Pupo from an orginal one he has. Ford Easton
1/25/2011 Jeff, The picture of Max Francisco at Shangri-la was about a month or two weeks prior to Labor Day race at the Syracuse Fair (grounds). That the last year the flatheads ran at the fairground; car was in one of the large heat race crashes and busted a radiator bracket but did manage to start the feature and made the 2 laps to get the $80 with a hotdog bun packed in the radiator to stop the leak. Our feelings for the Morris fairgrounds goes back to our first day of marriage as we went to attend the races but they got rained out. We still go to the races each year on our anniversary and it will be 48 years in May. We saw Joe and Mary Bouchek at the flea market on Wednesday (Volusia Co. Fairgrounds) Joe said to say hello. Mary selling and Joe collecting the cash. LOL Website looks great and I enjoy reading the Ackerman racing background, really neat.
2/2/2011 Thanks for the kind words and support Eddie, tell Joe and Mary I said hello. Jeff
1/23/2011 Doug Fetterly sent along this information:
Modified Reunion & Vintage Racecar Show Same day as the Richie Evans Memorial 100
Friday, February 18th, 2011 (Rain Date, February 19th) New Smyrna Speedway 12:00 Noon - 5:00 PM FREE Admission to all Drivers, Owners Officials And Fans of Northeastern Modified Racing
Former Racers are to receive Free Passes to that nights racing program. Vintage Racecar entries receive 2 Pit Passes. Both are courtesy of the New Smyrna Speedway Management
Former Guests Include: Will Cagle, Dutch Hoag, Bugs Stevens, Ron Bouchard, Bill Wimble, Bentley Warren, Doug Heveron, Jimmy Winks, Gene Bergin, Chuck Boos, Tony Hirschman, Leo Cleary, Mike Casterline, Don Stives, Jerry Dostie, Bill Brainard, Ed Ortiz, & over 100 more! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Pre-registration is requested (but not mandatory) at www.modifiedreunion.homestead.com Organizer – Jerry Binner – 407-790-9724 or email@example.com
1/17/2011 Hi to all, This is just a reminder to those of you or someone you know that is planning on attending that I need to receive your RSVP and payment by next Monday the 24th. Those of you that have sent in your RSVP and payment disregard this reminder. Going to be a big event this year as number is now at 43. Hope to see you or a referral a week from Wed. Ford
Cuba Lake Raceway South 7th annual Florida luncheon/reunion, January 26th 2011 at Brandon, FL
Cuba Lake Raceway South, Florida luncheon/reunion for all stock car, midget and sprint drivers, mechanics, car owners, track personnel and fans that were involved in and enjoyed racing in WNY, Ontario and NWPA during the 40s, 5Os and 60s and their companion(s). A special invite is also open to any 40s, 50s and 60s racing drivers and fans from around the Country or Province that will be on vacation or are full time or part time residents here in Florida too. Any guests that would enjoy our event are also welcome to attend with you. Note: CLR north luncheon, the big one(200 plus), is held at Moonwinks in Cuba, NY each July. This year on July 27th 2011.
When: January 26th 2011 (wed)
Where: Golden Corral restaurant, Brandon FL, exit 257off I-75 at SR 60. Go east on SR 60 after exiting I-75 from the north or south about 1/2 mile and make right turn(south) on S. Lakewood. It is well marked with overhead sign at light. Go south on Lakewood for three lights then watch for Golden Corral on left between Applebees and Carrabbas. Actual address is 815 Providence Rd. Plenty of parking room. Best to follow these instructions as new roads in area will mess up GPS devices. Time: Registration starts at 11:15am with lunch starting about noon or whenever everyone is registered and seated for the great buffet luncheon in our private room. Golden Corral restaurants are noted for their great buffets, if you haven't been at one, I guarantee no one will leave hungry. Luncheon will be "Dutch treat" for all attending and a RSVP is required along with a payment of $10.00 for each person attending (covers everything, food, drink, tax and tip). I must receive your RSVP and payment by January 24th 2011 at the latest as no day of luncheon payments will be allowed. When you arrive at restaurant go through line directly to our private room. Tell cashier you are with the Cuba Lake Raceway group (don't pay any money) and you will be directed to the left and will see our room on the far end to the rear. Our own attendent will serve you a drink of your choice(soda, tea or coffee) when you arrive. We will all hit the chow lines after everyone has arrived. Program: This year as in the past several years we will to be entertained with stories by those attending, mainly drivers and others involved with racing during those great years of racing so bring your stories and questions with you for a really good time again this year. We will end luncheon about 3pm so everyone can return home during daylight hours. This e-mail is an invitation via your computer or a copy in the usps mail. The banquet room we will be using can only handle 50 people. I suggest you send your names and money as soon as you get this notice as this annual event is gaining in popularity and very well may sell out this year. Dress code is casual. RSVP: Send payment, $10.00 per person, along with your name and each companion(s) name to: Ford Easton, 5200 28th St. N. # 651, St. Petersburg, FL 33714. Make check or M.O. payable to: Ford Easton. If you wish to contact me phone is 727-522-4042 and e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets will not be sent to you as your name and those attending with you must be on the master list at registration to gain entry to the luncheon in our private room at the restaurant. The $10.00 per person includes the great buffet, coffee, hot tea, iced tea and pop, free refills, tax and gratuity. Remember deadline for me to receive your RSVP and payment in the mail is January 24th 2011. I look forward to seeing all the drivers from CLR now living or visiting in Florida along with other drivers from the North East that drove in the 40s, 50s and 60s and your companions. I also look forward to seeing all the great fans from these years too. Going to be a great day of friendship among old and new friends from our racing world. Ford Easton, St. Petersburg, FL