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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
 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

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 fjeaston@aol.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
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
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.

10/3/2011 Bill Wimble called, and, sadly, Marg passed away. Lew Boyd

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. -

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.

8/16/2011 Contact:   Ron Hedger @ 518-885-7481 or 518-369-1941
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!!
Bill Reese@racefan2g@sbcglobal.net

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.

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

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

7/7/2011 Hi,

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.

Best regards,

Andrew Bland

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

  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 fjeaston@aol.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

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 ?
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

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

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 ?
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,
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
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

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......

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
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

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

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

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: wangsta18@gmail.com

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
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....

Real nice story on BEN STEPHENS, I always loved to watch him race. Larry

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

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

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

3/20/2011 John & Ed - thank you both, all info added to Larry Mickelsen's 1971
Langhorne photos
- if you want to send the photo's then let me know. - Jeff

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

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

3/13/2011 - Thanks John, take a look at this weeks and keep your program handy,
I have plenty of
Larry Mickelsen's 1971 Langhorne photos that I can't identify. - Jeff

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

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


2/27/2011 Thanks Al.

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

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

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.

Eddie Robbins

2/2/2011 Thanks for the kind words and support Eddie, tell Joe and Mary I said
hello. Jeff

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
Pre-registration is requested (but not mandatory) at  www.modifiedreunion.homestead.com
Organizer – Jerry Binner – 407-790-9724 or jbinner@att.net

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.

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
fjeaston@aol.com. 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
Bill Brainard, Ed Ortiz, Tommy Rose and Squirt Johns sign.
Mac Francisco @ Shangri-La, 1966.
Poley likes his babies...
They both like cake...
Baby's make good pillows...
Ronnie Rhodes of Long Eddy, NY.
Marvin Moyer at Nazareth National.
Frankie Schneider in 'Old Bess'.
Jackie Evans aside Lee Osborne's sedan.
Johnny Boyd's car burns down at Langhorne, June 15, 1958.
Roger Beagell and Dave Kneisal at 5MP.
Bryan Osgood at Shangri-La.
Geoff bodine and Roger Treichler.
Zack, Jeff P, Jeff A, Mike, Rick - friends for life.
The bugs mix it up..
Clay Smith Cams
Cutdown Crankshaft.
T.K., Rip, Geoff - nice job!
Bryan Osgood
What a nice job.
Ben Stephens lines up at White Lake in the Osterhout 18.
Isky 1023
Isky 1024
Clay Smith 270X
Modifying Chrysler Mushroom Tappets.
The Dimensions.
Bill Rafter's Buzz Bomb
Bruce Fleishman