Racin' & Internet Stuff:
By Tom Avenengo
Volume # 26
It seems that I had some incorrect info in my column last week, with this, about the late Eric Koster:
“Note #1: At the end of my column will be his obituary. But I did find this in a forum that I frequent:
“His ashes will be strapped into a Modified at OCFS this Saturday night for one last Feature!”
It seems that was incorrect. However, something is being planned for Eric during Eastern States Weekend, at OCFS. Sorry for that wrong info!!!
I didn’t see too much of the Cup race from
Some of my thoughts:
1. On September 18th, OCFS will have its annual “Eve of Destruction” night. Last year, from what I had heard/read, the place was packed. In a way, with the previous weeks features rained out, I thought it would have been good to have maybe both features run in front of that packed house – figuring that some that were in attendance might be drawn back - to watch racing in the future. So now, I thinking – maybe they should schedule one race with maybe the Sportsman class, to be held on the 18th so the expected full house crowd could see some actual racing? Doubt it would happen though.
2. Hey! Would this work? Everyone is saying how NASCAR has fallen on hard times with a lack of butts in the seats and TV viewing of their Cup races being down. So, might this work:
Hold time trials as usual. Top qualifier, only, gets a bonus of 100 points, to ensure that there would be no “sandbagging” during qualifying. Then, after qualifying, say numbers 20 through 35 are placed in a “hat”. Those numbers would mean the way the field would be “inverted”, so if they picked out number 24, the 24th fastest qualifier would start on the pole, while the fastest qualifier would start 24th. From 24th on to the back would be those that qualified from 24th on back, along with the “Go or go home” drivers – if NASCAR still had that ridiculous rule, that is.
3. As far as I’m concerned, the ARDC Midgets put on one whale of a show last Friday night at the Accord Speedway. There were quite a few “slide jobs” during the night. What was somewhat surprising was the closeness of times between the fastest laps for the Midgets, Modifieds, Sportsman and Spec Sportsman.
Fastest heat times:
Midget – Bruce Buckwalter – 12.854 = 70.028 MPH
Modified - Danny Creeden – 13.007 = 69.194
Sportsman – Mike Ruggiero – 13.275 = 67.797
Spec Sportsman – Mike DuBois – 13.721 = 65.593
Fastest feature times:
Midget – Tim Buckwalter – 13.244 = 67.955
Modified – John McGill – 13.227 = 68.043
Sportsman – Darrell Ford – 13.453 = 66.900
Spec Sportsman – Ken Hinsch – 13.856 = 64.954
Going back, in time:
Note: Most of the following information was found here:
Covering the days of August 12th to 19th
Clark "Shorty" Templeman ... Born ... Shorty drove in the AAA and
USAC Championship Car series, racing in the 1954-1962 seasons with 42 starts,
including the Indianapolis 500 races in 1955, 1958, and 1960-1962. He finished
in the top ten 16 times, with his best finish in 2nd position, in 1961 at both DuQuoin and
Rufus Parnell "Parnelli" Jones ... Born ... A retired American
racing driver and racecar owner. He is most remembered for his 1963
Rick Muther... Born ... USAC / CART driver from the 1960's & 1970's.
Rusty Wallace ... Born ... A former NASCAR champion, NASCAR Nationwide Series car owner, and television broadcaster with ESPN and ESPN on ABC.
Eddie Rickenbacker bought
Robin Pemberton ... Born ... Pemberton was a crew chief for several NASCAR teams over 17 years, heading teams for Rusty Wallace, Mark Martin and Kyle Petty. Pemberton was field manager for Ford Racing immediately prior to being named VP of Competition for NASCAR in 2004.
Andy Petree ... Born ... A NASCAR veteran who has been a driver, car owner and two-time NASCAR NEXTEL Cup-winning crew chief for the late Dale Earnhardt, made his television debut in 2007 as an analyst on ESPN and ABC's multi-platform NASCAR coverage.
Sam Schmidt ... Born ... A
former Indy Racing League driver and current IRL and Indy Pro Series team
owner. While testing in preparation for the 2000 season, Sam Schmidt suffered a
crash at Walt Disney World
George Connor... Born ... AAA driver from the 1930's , 40's & 50's who ran the Indy 500 14 times with a best finish of 3rd in 1949.
Iggy Katona... Born ... An American stock car racer from
John Blewett III... Died ... John Blewett III was killed after an accident at the Thompson International Speedway in Thompson CT. John Blewett III got into an accident, while driving his NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour racecar during the New England Dodge Dealers 150. John died as a result of an accident, which involved his brother Jimmy Blewett. The brothers were racing for the lead following a restart of the race on lap 107, when Jimmy hit a wall and then struck John Blewett's car. John Blewett suffered head and neck injuries and had to be extricated from his car. John was one of New England's most accomplished and most popular stars of the last 10-12 years, winning 10 times in the top modified tour and several other track championships and regional honors.
Tony Bettenhausen won the AAA sanctioned George Robson
Memorial 100 Mile race on the 1 Mile Dirt Oval Good Time Park in Goshen,
Nelson Piquet ... Born ... A Brazilian race driver who was Formula One world champion in 1981, 1983, and 1987. He is one of the few men to win at least three world championships in the history of Formula One (the others being Jack Brabham, Jackie Stewart, Niki Lauda, Ayrton Senna (3 each), Alain Prost (4), Juan Manuel Fangio (5), and Michael Schumacher (7).
Died ... He became a toolmaking machinist with
Pacific Electric Railway. In 1913, he went to work for Harry A. Miller, a
successful manufacturer of carburetors. Offenhauser
helped Miller turn a flood of ideas for racing engines into metal. Engines that began to win races. As early as 1922, an
eight-cylinder Miller engine won the
Chuck Booth ... Died ... USAC driver from the 1960's.
Larry McCoy... Born ...
Larry was born in
Johnny Boyd ... Born ...
Boyd drove in the AAA and USAC Championship Car series from 1954 to 1966 with
56 starts. He finished in the top ten 31 times, with his best finish in 2nd
position, in 1959 at
Mark Donohue... Died ...
Known for his ability to set up his own race car and drive it consistently on
the absolute limit. Donohue is probably best-known as the driver of the 1500+ bhp "Can-Am Killer" Porsche 917-30, and as winner
of the 1972
Note: I’ve seen his name spelled two different ways – Donohue and Donahue.
Racing on TV - http://www.racefantv.com/USTV.htm
Starting last week, I’ll let you go to the link, above, and see what’s on and when. Hope ya don’t mind!
Track news – (for tracks in my area):
This coming Friday:
$2000 to win 30 Lap Modified Race Plus Sportsman – Spec Sportsman Pro Stocks – Pure Stocks-Lightning Sprints & CAMERA & AUTOGRAPH NIGHT
This Saturday – a regular show with Modifieds, Sportsman, Pro and Pure Stocks M/SP/PRO/
This Saturday - ATQMRA Midgets, Dirt Sportsman, Pro Stock, BMS Modified, Street Stock, 4 Cylinder, Bandoleros
OVRP – the dirt track: http://www.oaklandvalleyspeedway.com/
This Saturday – a regular show which consists of:
600 cc Wingless Micro's, 270 cc Winged Micro's, 600 cc Wingless (Rookies), 270 cc Winged (Rookies), Regular Slingshots, Super Slingers and Junior Slingshots
The History of the Sport:
the years, there have been at least four auto races held on triangular shaped
one-mile dirt track in
Total purse: $7,344.00
Entrants: Only 17
Pole: Emil Andres with an average speed of 86.414 MPH
Failed to qualify: Walt Ader and Rex Mays
Lap leaders: Emil Andres – laps 1-3 and Tony Bettenhausen laps 4-100
It took 1 hour 14 minutes and 56.54 seconds to run the 100 miles. Bettenhausen averaged 80.062 MPH.
The only other driver to complete all 100 miles was Ted Horn.
Behind them were: Charles VanAcker (98 laps), Duke Dinsmore (97), George Connor (97), Buster Warke (96), Walt Brown (94), Steve Truchan (92), Milt Fankhousere (53), Fred Carpenter (53), Eddie Zaluki (43), Jackie Holmes (32), Bill Holland (16) and Emil Andres (14)
If one were to go to
Dirt Oval (
Corey Ziegler was 9th n the Crate Sportsman feature and Molly Chambers was a DNQ in the 600 Modified feature at Penn Can.
Storms was 20th at Brewerton and 10th at
Webb had a 14th in the SK Light feature at
In the 76 lap feature for Modifieds at Wall, Roger Coss ended up 5th.
Mike Mammana was the feature winner at Big Diamond in the Sportsman class.
At Selinsgrove, Davie Franek was 4th in the make-up 358 Sprint Car feature and was the winner in the regularly scheduled feature.
Tiffany Wambold was 6th in the 270 wingless Micro feature at Borgers on Friday and 2nd in the 270 Rookie feature on Saturday, at Borgers. Luke Shostkewitz was 4th in the 600 wingless Micro feature on Friday.
At Kutztown, Tiffany was 18th in the 270 Micro feature
Hackel IV was 18th in the 358 Modified
Johnny Guarino was 13th n the Modified feature at New Egypt.
At Sundance Vacations, Nick Pecko was 4th in the Modified feature.
At Accord, in the ARDC midget feature, Justin Grosz was 19th. In the Spec Sportsman feature, Kyle Rohner was 2nd, Jason Roe 11th, Kayla Smykla 19th and RJ Smykla 22nd. In the Sportsman feature, Mike Ruggiero was 5th, Brian Krummel 7th, Anthony Perrego 8th and Brad Szulewski 15th. In the Modified feature, Jimmy Johnson was 9th, Danny Creeden 14th, while Clinton Mills and Greg Hastie were both DNQ’s.
On Saturday, at OCFS, Mike Ruggiero was 4th in the Modified feature while Danny Creeden was 10th, Tim Hindley 18th and Billy VanInwegen 20th. Clinton Mills was a DNQ. In the Sportsman feature, Brian Krummel was 1st, Keith Still 2nd, Joe Conklin 4th, Matt Hitchcock 6th, Doc Young 17th, John Lodini 21st and Matt Janiak 23rd. Zack Vavricka was a DNQ
On this past Tuesday night, at Kutztown, in time trials for the Kutztown Fair Nationals to be held last night (Wednesday, August 18th), in the Wingless 600 Micro Sprints, Joe Kata starts first in the B main and Brittany Tresch is 17th.
So far, 16 drivers have qualified for the “A” Mains, per a system of points in heat races. Eight will qualify from the B Mains – one “B” for the 600’s and one for the 270’s.
I held off sending this column in until 1:00 AM on Thursday, in hopes of having some kind of results from the Wednesday show, but no results were available by that time.
More racin’ stuff:
I’m a member of the Yahoo! Race History Group. One thing being discussed over the last week was how a certain area at a racetrack is known as “The pits”. Any idea?
While at Accord last Friday, I happened to
talk with Jimmy Maguire. I made mention
of the Racing Expo at Hinchliffe Stadium in
While catching glimpses of the Cup race in
Dirt Modifieds at Loudon?
Although I doubt it will happen – dirt mods on the paved mile+ track, there were a couple of dirt modifieds running some laps at Loudon the other day. It seems the track is looking for other types of racecars to possibly run up there – maybe with the Indy cars next August. A couple of threads are out there on the Internet.
Other forums/message boards and websites:
You might find some interesting reading if you go to the links below.
Track Forum: - http://www.trackforum.com/forums/
Jayski: - http://www.jayski.com/
Open Wheel Racers3: http://www.openwheelracers3.com/
Race Pro Weekly: http://raceproweekly.com/
Back “In the day” I was a big Brooklyn Dodger fan. How well I remember the day that Bobby Thomson hit that forever-famous home run. Sadly, Bobby has passed away, at 86.
The Giant who hit the home run for the ages now belongs to them.
As first reported by the New York Daily News, Bobby Thomson — the man who hit "The Shot Heard 'Round The World" to win the 1951 NL pennant — died "peacefully" at his Georgia home on Monday night. He was 86 years old and had been in poor health.
Thomson played for five teams over 15 seasons, hit 264 career home runs and
was a three-time All-Star. But he ensured his name will always be remembered on
3, 1951, the day he hit his dramatic home run off
Thomson's blast landed in the left field stands at Polo Grounds and capped a four-run ninth-inning rally that was emblematic of the Giants' season. The team trailed the Dodgers by 13 1/2 games on Aug. 11, but went 37-7 to finish the season and force a three-game tiebreaker series with their crosstown rivals. Thomson's home run to win the decisive third game was so big that it basically made the ensuing World Series a historical footnote. (Who ever remembers that the Giants lost to the Yankees in six games?)
Though a 2001 Wall Street Journal story alleged that the moment was a product of stolen signs, Thomson never admitted to knowing what was coming from Branca.
But that's neither here nor there as today is a day to remember the man who experienced baseball's ultimate feeling before players like Carlton Fisk, Kirk Gibson, Kirby Puckett and Aaron Boone(notes) ever did. There are undoubtedly going to be a lot of nostalgic baseball fans reminiscing about that game and even more "The Giants win the pennant!" impressions going on over the next few days.
way, once you go to the link below, I really can’t fault you if you turn this
particular video off. It’s how our
National Anthem was sung this past Sunday, prior to the Cup race in
Other (non racing) news:
A 29-year-old mother of three can’t take it anymore, so now two little boys are gone, forever. She also had a daughter, 5 years old. The boys were two years old and 18 months old. Personally, I’m having a hard time figuring out the ages of the two boys – it’s only 6 months between. Possible?
Most of the companies surveyed also plan to shift more costs to employees to encourage them to limit spending as one of several efforts to rein in rising costs, according to the report by the National Business Group on Health.
The group, which
represents large employers on healthcare issues, based its findings on a survey
of 72 of its member companies in May and June. Members include many of the
More on this can be seen here:
Is this true?:
Rather long one this week – from an e-mail I received:
This could be a scandal of epic proportions and one that
Roll the clock back to the weeks just before Chrysler declared bankruptcy. Chrysler, like GM, was in dire financial straits and federal government "graciously" offered to "buy the company" and keep them out of bankruptcy and "save jobs." Chrysler was, in the words of Obama and his administration, "Too big to fail," same story with GM.
The feds organized their "Automotive Task Force" to fix Chrysler and GM. Obama, in an act that is 100% unconstitutional, appointed a guy named Steve Rattner to be the White House's official Car Czar - literally, that's what his title is.
Rattner is the liaison among Obama, Chrysler, and GM.
Initially, the national media reported that Chrysler 'had made this list of dealerships.'
The Washington Examiner, Newsmax, Fox New and a host of other news agencies discovered that the list of dealerships was put together by the "Automotive Task Force" headed by no one other than Mr. Steve Rattner.
Now the plot thickens.
Remember earlier we said that there was neither rhyme nor reason why certain dealerships were closed? Actually there's a very interesting pattern as to who was closed down. Again, on May 27, 2009, The Washington Examiner and Newsmax exposed the connection. Amazingly, of the 789 dealerships closed by the federal government, 788 had donated money, exclusively to Republican political causes, while contributing nothing to Democratic political causes. The only "Democratic" dealership on the list was found to have donated $7,700 to Hillary's campaign, and a bit over $2,000 to John Edwards. This same dealership, reportedly, also gave $200.00 to Obama's campaign.
Does that seem a little odd to you?
Steve Rattner is the guy who put the list together. Well, he happens to be married to a Maureen White.
Maureen happens to be the former national finance chairman of the Democratic National Committee. As such, she has access to campaign donation records from everyone in the nation- Republican or Democrat. But of course, this is just a wacky "coincidence," we're certain.
Then comes another really wacky "coincidence."
On that list of dealerships being closed down, a weird thing
Johnson happens to be founder of Black Entertainment Television and was a huge Obama supporter and financier.
These guys own a half dozen Chrysler stores under the company title of RLJ-McClarty-Landers. Interestingly, none of their dealerships were ordered closed - not one!
While all of their competing Chrysler/Dodge and Jeep dealership were!
Eight dealerships located near the dealerships owned by McClarty and Johnson were ordered shut down.
Thus by pure luck, these two major Obama supporters now have virtual monopoly on Chrysler sales in their zone. Isn't that amazing?
Go look in The Washington Examiner, the story's there, and it's in a dozen or so other web-based news organizations; this isn't being made up.
Now if you thought Chrysler was owned by Fiat, you are mistaken. Under the federal court ruling, 65% of Chrysler is now owned by the federal government and the United Auto Workers union!
Fiat owns 20%. The other 15% is still privately owned and presumably will be traded on the stock market. Obama smiles and says he doesn't want to run the auto industry.
As horrifying as this is to comprehend, and being as how
this used to be the
This is Nazi Germany stuff, and it's happening right here, right now, in our back yard.
There are voices in
Keep your ear to the ground for more on this story. If you've ever wanted to make a difference about anything in your life, get on the phone to your national senator or representative in the House and demand an investigation into this.
Benjamin Franklin had it right when he said, "All that's necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."
Car Czar No More
An amazing thing happened as this story was going to press. Obama's Car Czar, Steve Rattner, resigned on July 13 and was promptly replaced by former steel workers union boss Ron Bloom.
According to CBS News, Rattner left "to return to private life and spend time with his family."
Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner said, "I hope that he takes another opportunity to bring his unique skills to government service in the future."
By the way, Rattner is under
investigation for a multi-million dollar pay-to-play investment bank scandal in
But, we're certain that had nothing to do with his resignation.
And, according to several news sources out there, there are rumors he's being investigated for what could be pay-to-play scandal involving the closing of Chrysler and GM dealerships. Really? Again, that couldn't have anything to with his resignation -- that's ridiculous! Like CBS said, this guy just wants to "spend more quality time with his family."
Obama has 32 personally appointed "czars" who answer to no one but him, all of whom are acting without any Constitutional authority.
But hey, we're sure they all have "unique skills,"......as Tim Geithner likes to say!
SOOOOO. HOW'S THE HOPE/CHANGE WORKING FOR YOU?..
Check it out at the following websites.....
This goes beyond corruption in high places - to gross criminal actions on the part of our government!
I hope you will spread this far and wide, and hopefully the taxpaying public will demand some of that transparency we were promised ... followed by criminal prosecution of the perpetrators!
What a crooked government we have!!!!!
Vote 'em all out ... November, 2010
Closing with this:
Once, there were three bats. They
lived in a cave surrounded by three castles. One night the bats made a bet to
see who could drink the most blood.
The first bat comes home one night and has blood dripping off his fangs. The other two bats are amazed and asked how much blood he had drunk.
The first bat said, "See that castle over there? I drank the blood of three people." The second bat goes out on his night and comes back with blood around his mouth. The other two bats are astonished and ask how many people's blood had he drunk. The bat said, "See that castle over there. I drank the blood of five people."
The third bat goes out on his night and comes back covered in blood. This was totally amazing to the other two bats. They ask how much blood he drank. The 3rd bat said, "See that castle over there?" and the other bats nod. "Well," says the third bat, "I didn't."
May “Guardian Angels” sit on the shoulders of all of our race drivers and race fans, and guide them safely around the tracks!
As usual, you can reach me at: email@example.com