Racin' & Internet Stuff:
By Tom Avenengo
Volume # 2
First things, first:
I started working on this column late on Sunday afternoon. Here it is 4:15 PM on Tuesday, and it’s snowing like all get out, outside. Glad I went and voted (school stuff) earlier today. It’s been snowing about the hardest I’ve ever seen it – really. Weather folks are saying the heavy snow might cause problems with downed wires and trees etc, etc. At 5:20, we lost power, and I lost some of this column, too! Then on a nice, sunny Wednesday afternoon, yesterday, as I was working on this, yep, you guessed it – power went off – just enough to mess up things in ‘puter land. Later on, in the afternoon, I had an appointment with my Chiropractor, and while there, we talked about the power on/off deal. He told me he has a battery backup for his, so I guess I’ll have to get one for my ‘puter. I hope wherever you are, things are (were) better!
Some of my thoughts:
Later on, in this column, are links to various items, both motor sports related and some not related, as usual. Quite a lot has been said about the “Luck” of Jimmie Johnson – actually gaining spots when he pitted, just prior to a yellow coming out in last Sundays Cup race. A lot being said about NASCAR confiscating the Dave Blaney driven # 66 Cup car as soon as he “parked” it.
What I can’t figure out is why NASCAR has gone to a red/black flag to signal the end of its practice sessions. Why can’t they just use the good old-fashioned checkered flag? Hmmm, maybe they can’t claim they “invented” the checkered flags, huh?
Going back, in time:
Going back to late February, in: - from 23rd on:
On February 23rd, in:
Goldsmith wins the final NASCAR race held on the beach at Daytona,
Richard Petty won his first NASCAR Daytona 500.
Sammy Swindell won the World of Outlaws Sprint Car race at the Ascot Park, Gardena, CA. ( Click here for the race report. )
On February 24th, in:
My sister, Rosemarie (Tiny) Back, was born. She’s still active as h*ll. How she does it – I really don’t know.
She got the nickname “Tiny” because she was a few inches short of even being five feet tall.
Sir Malcolm Campbell in his Bluebird set a new land speed record of 253.968 mph at Daytona Beach, FL
On February 25th, in:
Allison ... Born ...
A NASCAR race car driver, best known as the driver of the Robert
Yates Racing #28 Texaco-Havoline Ford. Born in
Richard Petty , coming back from a lap 66 tangle that dropped him 2 laps back, won the NASCAR GN 'Richmond 500'. Buddy Baker finished 2nd in the K&K Dodge, 13.6 seconds behind Petty's Petty Engineering Dodge, the only other car on the lead lap.
"Pee Wee" Southcott ... Died ... He was one of
On February 26th, in:
Alexander Winton driving his Winton Bullet, set the
first speed record ever achieved at Daytona Beach,
Johnny Cash was born.
SCCA The Sports Car Club of America is incorporated
Flock drove one of the Kiekhaefer Chrysler entries to the win in the
NASCAR Grand National race on the
Mario Andretti won the Daytona 500 in a Holman-Moody Ford. Andretti took the lead to stay on lap 168 and held a 22 second lead over teammate Fred Lorenzen when a caution came out with two laps to go, ending the race under caution. James Hylton finished third in a Dodge.
Duke Nalon ... Died ... AAA midget, sprint and Indy car racer .
George Rice (Viola) died. He was the ARDC’s champion in 1947.
On February 27th, in:
Horn... Born ... AAA driver from the 1930's and 40's.
Ted Horn has the best 9-year streak of finishes in
Revson... Born ... Formula One and the Indy car driver. The nephew of
Revlon Cosmetics industry magnate Charles Revson, he was an heir to his father
Martin's fortune (reportedly worth over $1 billion). During a practice run for
the 1974 South African Grand Prix in
Ball... Died ... AAA driver from the early 1950's.
On January 4, 1953, he was involved in midget car accident at Carrell
Tim Flock , after Fireball Roberts was disqualified, was declared winner of the 160 mile NASCAR GN race on the beach & road course. Roberts led every lap in the Fish Carburetor Buick, but a post race inspection found slightly altered pushrods, elevating Flock to first. Flock had been disqualified from the 1954 race win, leaving the circuit as a result. Flock returned to drive Carl Kiekhaefer's Chrysler in it's first race.
Marshman won the 35-lap TQ Midget race at the
Jackie Evans won the Modified race at the Hialeah Speedway, Miami, FL. ( Click here for the race report. )
Petty overcame a day filled with tire problems to win the Daytona 500.
Chunks from disintegrating tires shattered the windshields of top contenders
Curtis Turner, Dick Hutcherson and Marvin Panch, knocking them out. Petty's
On February 28th, in:
Mario Andretti... Born ... One of the most successful Americans in the history of auto racing.
I thought he was born in
This writer was
honorably discharged from the
Joe Gaerte... Born ... World of Outlaws sprint car driver.
Foyt won the 500 mile NASCAR GN race at
Tony Schumacher drove his Top Fuel dragster through
the 1/4 mile at 330.23 mph at Firebird International Raceway in Phoenix,
On February 29th, in:
Gregory... Born ... Masten Gregory was born in
Petty wins the only Cup race run on February 29 (leap day), winning the
Racing on TV - http://www.racefantv.com/USTV.htm
Thursday, February 25th:
I have no idea as to what “HD Theater” is, but they have some shows on about the 2010 World Rally Championship. Those are some shows that I feel should be on SPEED TV – not some of the junk they have on at night.
10:00 PM to 10:30 PM on HD Theater – 2010 World Rally Championship preview
10:30 PM to 11:00 PM on HD Theater – 2010 World Rally from
Friday, February 26th:
PM to 3:00 PM on SPEED – Nationwide practice from
PM to 4:30 PM on SPEED – Cup practice from
4:30 PM to 6:00 PM on SPEED – Final Nationwide practice
PM to 8:30 PM on SPEED – Cup Qualifying from
PM to 10:30 PM on HD Theater – World Rally from
PM to 11:00 PM on HD Theater – World Rally from
Saturday, February 27th:
PM to 1:30 PM on SPEED – Nationwide qualifying from
1:30 PM to 2:30 PM on SPEED – Cup practice
2:30 PM to 4:00 PM on SPEED – Final Cup practice
PM to 8:00 PM on ESPN2 – Nationwide race from
PM to 10:30 PM on SPEED – AMA Supercross Special from
Sunday, February 28th:
PM to 6:30 PM on FOX – Cup race from
3:00 PM to 4:00 PM on SPEED – FIM World Superbike race 1
PM to 5:00 PM on SPEED – FIM World Superbike race 2 from
PM to 11:00 PM on HD Theater – 2010 World Rally from
Note: Not knowing where you might live, I sure hope the weather forecast for Thursday/Friday doesn’t interfere with your ability to watch some racing on TV!
Not really much to report on this week. Hopefully something will break over the next week. But, again, I’ll make mention of the Motor Sports car show for OCFS:
From the OCFS website:
“The 2010 Nostalgia night will be held on June 5, 2010. As in the past we will have the stars from days gone by, we are currrently looking to add to our already great list, if you have any requests for someone we may have missed in the past, let us know and we will do our best to get them to come to this event. Click here to send your request.” Oh, the “Click here” – that leads you to an e-mail address, which is: firstname.lastname@example.org
The History of the Sport:
Some things about racing here in the Northeast in 1949:
1949 – For midget racing, the downhill spiral picked up more speed, while stock car racing gained a lot of ground. What was so nice about stock car racing, back then, and for a short time thereafter, was that you could use the same car on both dirt and paved tracks. Eventually, “specialized” cars took over, and with that, the race fans, in a way, got “cheated” from seeing ALL the good drivers compete against each other at most of the weekly run tracks.
in the Northeast, midget racing opened up with a 14 race schedule at the
Kingsbridge Armory in the
At Hinchliffe Stadium, they opened up with midget racing in early April, with some Sunday afternoon shows. Starting on May 3rd, they went to two night a week shows, on Tuesday and Friday nights. That didn’t last long, as there were slim crowds for those midget races. On Tuesday, May 17th, the stock cars took over the Tuesday night shows, while the midgets remained on Fridays. The last midget race, at Hinchliffe, in 1949, was held on August 5th, due to small crowds, and they were replaced with stock cars.
Bob Disbrow had 4 feature wins. Mike Nazaruk had three, while Art Cross, Don Morris and Ernie McCoy each had two. Single feature wins went to: Stan Disbrow, Jim Reed, Len Duncan and Fred “Jiggs” Peters. Art Cross was the track champion.
new track – paved, was put in Veterans Stadium in
also won the
midgets raced at the Hatfield,
A 100lap race was held in October, and Ralph Pratt won. He was followed by Len Duncan, Ted Russo and Mike Little. On the 58th lap, Chet Gibbons was fatally injured in an accident.
More on the 1949 season will continue, next week.
Former Dirt Oval runners:
Last weekend, out in
Melissa Tsouhnikas was 1st in an Animal Light feature. Kolby Schroder was 1st in a Briggs Heavy “A” feature and 1st in a Briggs Medium “B” feature. Ricky Wolfe, Jr. was 3rd in a Briggs Heavy “B” feature. Randy Brundage was 2nd in an over 35 feature. Kevin Linton was 6th in the “Pro” feature. Not sure if a Dan Miller has run at the Dirt Oval in the past, but he was 2nd in a Briggs “G” feature. Sorry if I didn’t mention any others!
Other racin’ stuff:
Maybe I’m in the minority here, but I was kind of thrilled, back in 1996, when Tony George came out with the IRL and the proposed idea of having more American drivers in the IRL and the Indy 500. Unfortunately, what we have now is something I consider to be “CART II”. There’s an interesting thread, already 8 pages long, over on the Track Forum, a thread titled: “Yeah - No Americans signed this week”. Check it out, here: http://www.trackforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=133915
And a couple of more threads about American sponsors and American drivers:
"The Problem" Isn't Foreign Ride Buyers, It's American Sponsors.”
“Instead of a new car, why not more American drivers?”
More racin’ stuff:
Somewhere on the
Internet, I’ve read that Dave Blaney will not have the primary # 66 car for
Here’s a link to the entry list, on Jayski’s website – 46 cars as of Wednesday:
With it being the anniversary the birth of Johnny Cash, this Friday, the 26th of February, I thought it would be nice to have a couple of his videos this week.
From his TV show: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Cru2ld06-A&feature=related
Other forums/message boards and websites:
Note: In this section, from now on, I’ll be making mention of some certain things being said on the Internet, and will give you links to those items, along with links to various websites, message boards and forums. Hope you get a kick out of what some people are saying.
Track Forum: - http://www.trackforum.com/forums/
Well, from what I saw on TV last Saturday, in the Nationwide race from
I’ve always enjoyed what Matt McLaughlin had to say over on Frontstretch. Here is what he had to say after the Daytona 500:
Jayski: - http://www.jayski.com/
The birth of NASCAR, More about Jeremy Mayfield, tire
More on this: NASCAR Confiscates #66 Start & Park Entry:
Hoseheads: - http://www.hoseheads.com/
Dirt Track Digest’s forum: http://www.dirttrackdigest.com/forum/index.php
Here’s a website for you to check out – especially if you’re into restored race cars:
Note: I see that they have, as of 2/24/2010 an incorrect date for their appearance at OCFS. The correct date is June 5th – per the OCFS’s website and per the ACOT Newsletter that was received on 2/24/2010, via the US Mail. June 5th at OCFS is their “Nostalgia” night, which seems to get bigger and better every year. Info on the “Nostalgia Night” is shown above, in “Track News”.
Other (non racing) news:
Over these last 14 years, ever since mid 1996, I have had some “health issues”. My smoking, ever since a mid teenager, plus my diet, later on, were the culprits. And ever since mid 1996, I’ve been on various types of medications. Over time, due to cost, some of those meds were changed. And, over time, some of the meds I’ve been on, have made the news due to some not so nice things about them. Today, Wednesday, February 24th, I went over to Yahoo! to check out what was new. Well, guess what – now they’re saying that ASPIRIN might not be all that good for certain people – those that might, like me, take on a day. Check out what they’re saying, now:
Funny what 8 million dollars will make people say:
Yep, I’d probably say the same thing as Johnny Damon, when they had a press conference announcing that he’d signed to play for the Detroit Tigers for a one year deal worth 8 mil. Questions are: With Detroit being one of the hardest cities hit, money wise, will they draw enough fans to even pay for his salary?
Higher premiums for health insurance. I could see this coming – could you?
Closing with these:
I figure most men reading this will get a kick out of what follows – some tool “Definitions”:
A tall upright machine; useful for suddenly snatching flat metal bar stock out of your hands so that it smacks you in the chest and flings your beer across the room, denting the freshly-painted project which you had carefully set in the corner where nothing could get to it.
Cleans paint off bolts and then throws them somewhere under the workbench with the speed of light. Also removes fingerprints and hard-earned calluses from fingers in about the time it takes you to say, "Oh, shit!"
*A portable cutting tool used to make studs too short.
*Used to round off bolt heads. Sometimes used in the creation of blood-blisters.
An electric sanding tool commonly used to convert minor touch up jobs into major refinishing jobs.
One of a family of cutting tools built on the Ouija board principle ...
It transforms human energy into a crooked, unpredictable motion, and the more you attempt to influence its course, the more dismal your future becomes.
*Generally used after pliers to completely round off bolt heads. If
nothing else is available, they can also be used to transfer intense
welding heat to the palm of your hand.
*Used almost entirely for lighting various flammable objects in your
shop on fire. Also handy for igniting the grease inside the wheel hub
out of which you want to remove a bearing race...
*A large stationary power tool commonly used to launch wood projectiles
for testing wall integrity.
**HYDRAULIC FLOOR JACK:**
Used for lowering an automobile to the ground after you have installed
your new brake shoes, trapping the jack handle firmly under the bumper.
A large stationary power saw primarily used by most shops to cut good
aluminum sheet into smaller pieces that more easily fit into the trash
can after you cut on the inside of the line instead of the outside edge.
**TWO-TON ENGINE HOIST:***
*A tool for testing the maximum tensile strength of everything you
forgot to disconnect...
Normally used to stab the vacuum seals under lids or for
opening old-style paper-and-tin oil cans and splashing oil on your
shirt; but can also be used, as the name implies, to strip out Phillips
A tool for opening paint cans. Sometimes used to convert common slotted
screws into non-removable screws and butchering your palms.
A tool used to crumple the metal surrounding that clip or bracket you
needed to remove in order to replace a 50 cent part.
A tool used to make hoses too short.
Originally employed as a weapon of war, the hammer nowadays is used as a
kind of divining rod to locate the most expensive parts adjacent to the
object we are trying to hit.
*Used to open and slice through the contents of cardboard
cartons delivered to your front door; works particularly well on
contents such as seats, vinyl records, liquids in plastic bottles,
collector magazines, refund checks, and rubber or plastic parts.
Especially useful for slicing work clothes, but only while in use.
**And this is my personal favorite hand tool.....**
Any handy tool that you grab and throw across the garage while yelling,
"Son-of-a-b*tch" at the top of your lungs.. It is also, most often, the
next tool that you will need.
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