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and the racing is a lot faster.....All Year Round!

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Race Results

 Charlotte County Speedway Hangover Enduro Results

 Eve of Destruction Results - Charlotte County Speedway

 USA Sprints 2004 Southern Thunder Tour Champion Andy Kelly

 Southern Sportsman Results at DeSoto Speedway

 Mike Hovis wins Brian Davidson Memorial 150 at Charlotte County Speedway

 Todd Anglani wins LLM at Hialeah Season Finale

 East Bay Features “POWDER-PUFF” Racing Return On A Cool December Night

 Dawayne Bryan wins AACS at Desoto Super Speedway

 Billy Mowery wins Corteco Gulfcoast Modified Race at Charlotte County

 East Bay Gets Visit from Craftsman Truck Rookie of the Year David Reutimann

 Auburndale Ends 2004 Season with a Busy Night

 Styer wins on final lap of LLM at Hialeah

 Martin Pierce tops LLM 100 Lapper at Desoto

 Roger Smathers tops 55 Car Enduro at New Smyrna

 Dwayne Dempsey Wins a Pair in Winter Spectacular III

 Snowball Derby Postponed until next Saturday

 Fontaine wins AACS at Desoto Super Speedway

 Three Wide Highlights CRASH-A-RAMA at SpeedWorld

 Rick Sirmans Wins 100 Lap Feature at New Smyrna

 Wayne Jefferson Big Winner at Desoto Super Speedway

 Spencer Taylor tops FASTKIDS at Auburndale

 Robbie McAuliffe wins 75 Lapper at Sunshine's Final Night

 Jeff Choquette tops 35 car field to win 39th Annual Governor's Cup

 Richie Henry takes 50 lap LLM Feature at Hialeah

 Jeff Choquette Wins Governor's Cup, Rick Sirmans takes FMSC 100

 Six Classes Crown Six 2004 Champions At East Bay Raceway Park

 Pamela Weaver big winner at Auburndale

 Ron Campbell tops 25 lap OWM at Sunshine

 Eric Black returns to Victory Lane at New Smyrna Speedway


Citrus County Speedway

Southern Short Track Stock Car Racing

Motorheads Directory of MotorSports

Letters From Our Readers

  Some thoughts on Promotion
Tuesday, October 24, 2006  

I did read your article and agree with you on the scheduling aspect. Great article. If we can get the track owners, etc. to work together on rules and cost cutting measures it would also help. Perhaps track owners could work together on a tire and gas program among themselves so, for example, tire choices would be limited to maybe 2 compounds for all tracks. Use a harder compound so they last longer. Track owners working together might be able to get a better deal if they buy all their tires as a group.

And their concession supplies, gas, communications equipment, etc. Even safety equipment could be shared if tracks worked together. Why should every track have to have special equipment if tracks shared? Just some ideas that I think can be borrowed from some of the DIRT tracks I've been to.
Please feel free to share my ideas if you want. I'm sure you're better with words than I am.


  Short Track Safety
Monday, June 12, 2006  

With all the emphasis on safety in motorsports at the top tier professional level (NASCAR, IRL, Champ Car, NHRA and IHRA to name a few) you would think that some of this effort would cascade down to the regional professional racing organizations, and ideally to all of the weekly racing venues.

I attended a local dirt track this past weekend owned by a publicly traded motorsports organization and while watching the lower level classes race I could not help but notice how many of the competitors were sawing at the wheel without the aid of racing gloves. I did a quick internet search and found that a new pair of fireproof gloves could be purchased for less than 70 dollars. Yes, I did say 70 dollars. Aside from the valuable fire protection offered by racing gloves, these short track dirt racers would get some protection from rocks, mud, miscellaneous parts and from boiling water that might erupt from a failed cooling system. It doesn’t surprise me that this would occur at a non-sanctioned short track but not at a facility owned by an organization who’s own website claims they are the second largest motorsports organization based in the United States.

I didn’t pen this article to harp on the lack of racing gloves (not to mention other safety gear deficiencies) in the support divisions, but to describe an unusual response to a situation on the track by the safety workers of (dare I say) a professional racing organization. Four laps into the headliner Late Model division feature two cars spun at the entry to turn one and a third car spun backwards and made contact at speed. The wreck was brutal totaling at least one of the cars and severely damaging the others. One of the fuel cells ruptured dispensing a full tank of racing fuel onto the track surface. With the dirt hard and slicked over the gas pooled in the tire grooves at what appeared to be an inch or more deep with the majority of the fuel running down to the pit exit creating a large puddle estimated at 6 by 12 feet.

Fortunately none of the cars involved sparked what could have been a dangerous fire and I (along with many others sitting in the turn one bleachers) fully expected the remains to be carefully removed and the fuel spill to be burned off. Instead the track crew (calling them safety workers would be an oxymoron) sprinkled about five pounds of kitty litter and using shovels tried to sweep away the puddles. Several tow trucks drove through the puddles splashing the fuel into a wider area. Then, with a pair of track crewmen standing to the high side of the fuel spill they wave the cars on to run in the puddle as if it were water. Without protest the remaining 15 or so Late Model drivers aimed their mounts at the puddle and then stomped the gas spraying a fuel mist into the air and on to the track crew workers.

As Forest Gump would say, “Stupid is as stupid does.” And the depths of stupid were definitely tested on this night. So you have a cloud of fuel that you could smell and see under the lights, track workers dowsed with fuel and race cars with exposed headers spinning their wheels creating racing fuel rooster tails. Tick, tick, tick….Then they drop the green flag and for the next 20 laps or so I thought we would surely see a tragic fire erupt. Sparks showered off the rear brake on the lead car lap after lap and several of the other cars would burp the throttle resulting in a bellow of flame from the headers right in the area of the fuel spill. Finally the checkered flag waved and fortunately no fire occurred. I was glad it never erupted but equally irritated that this would continue to be the way the track crew would respond to future fuel spills. You can’t always be lucky.

On the way out of the track the smell of fuel was hanging in the air and the track worker was relaxing with a smoke at the puddle at the exit of pit road. Another dance with the devil won.

In closing I would hope that all track operators, competitors and sanctioning bodies would do more, expect more and plan more for what could happen. I want this sport to survive and to thrive, but if we don’t do a better job we’ll be looking for another place to play…..Oh yeah, don’t hit the track without your racing gloves.


  Awards Nights
Saturday, January 21, 2006  

Looking forward to the Awards Night when the drivers are applauded for their achievements and endurance is rewarded.
Also for the ones who pay for the trailers, cars, motors, tires, fees, fuel. These are the MAJOR sponsors. The ones who place their mark or name (advertisement) upon the metal chariot with the number.

Oddly enough they (this group) aren't even invited to the banquet. If they are, no tickets are available. I understand entire pit crews are attending, the ones that hold the drinks. PERHAPS some arrangement can be made, next year.

Thank You,
Henry B.

  Spec Motors
Saturday, September 24, 2005  


My name is Andre Fortin and I am from Quebec, Canada. This email is regarding Spec engine.

I have been in this business for a solid 30 years and on all sides of the fence, being driver, car and engine builder and race track promoter.

As race track promoter, I have introduce Sealed engine in 1998 and crate engine program in 2001.

Does it work?

Definitly. But not just by saying''next year, we'll use this part number crate motor and that's it''.

First: Only one motor part number per brand should be used: one GM, one Ford, one Dodge.

Second, you need a specific engine builder to help out in the project because, at some point, these engine like every other one will have to be rebuilt. Only one engine builder should be use in order to have that system to work. He also will be the original source of engine. All engine should go through his shop, dyno test and then delivered. He's the one you will rely on whenever there is a problem, doubt or a Monday inspection.

Third, whenever it's being introduce, give your guys a 2 or 3 years grace period so they can use up their old equipement. Use restrictor plates, smaller carbs, add weight and things like that to slow down the ''old engine'' cars.

Fourth, like everything else, it has to be checked and followed carefully. Don't take them apart. Dyno them. Have the racer(s) remove it from the car right after the race and, on Monday morning, dyno it. Has to match original dyno chart. Period. Be very very firm on penalty if somebody mess with the engine, something like for first infraction, rest of season ban, second infraction lifetime ban. Don't forget that this guy is trying to mess up what you are trying hard to build.

Fifth:That's about it for the engine side.

Sixth: Now, never forget that the budget the top drivers don't spend on their engine program, they will spend it somewhere else, tires, shocks, brakes, new, state of the art, latest chassis design, etc.. So all this will have to be taken into consideration. There is no need to have a cheaper engine program if the chassis//suspension set up triple in price.

Seventh: Last but not least and I think this one is the worst drawback and hardest to manage because it will hurt the spectators side. Now that you have cut the power in half, you will end up with over tire//under power cars. So here, you'll have to do something to compensate for that, either narrower and or rock hard long lasting type of tires. Both is the best wtg. Never loose sight that this is an entertainment show, not a follow the leader type of event that you want.

I could go on longer but here you have the basic for a good spec engine program. But be carefull, nothing takes care of itself. Never, ever forget that we are in entertainment business and a follow the leader type of race is a sure way to empty your grandstands.

If you liked what I wrote and I could be of any help in the futur, please feel free to contact me.

Respectfully yours,
André Fortin

PS: you have my permission to use this letter for any purposes of your choice.

  Sunshine Speedway
Tuesday, December 7, 2004  

I am saddened to hear of the closing of Sunshine Speedway in your article. I grew up in the Chicago area. Several years ago we lost the 1/4 mile track I grew up at and miss it so much.

In the early 80's I moved to Tampa for college. I would attend Sunshine most weekends. It became my second favorite track. I still would get to the area 3-4 times a year and would always make sure I would catch a race. Was the land sold for development? My Chicago track has given way to an Ultra and Aldi foods. Short tracks are becoming harder and harder to find. It is sad.


  Fastruck Article
Friday, July 9, 2004  

I was pleased to read your article on the partnership agreement with Skinner and Diehl. The article was one of the most fair and balanced articles I have read about the series over the past 2 years. You seem to know just how to present the issue giving the credit to those whom have worked hard like Diehl to make the series while reserving the right to take a watch and see how it goes forward.

I agree that the Skinners involvement will be a positive force in making the series better, and as you said in your article Diehl has been able to "seemingly able to cope with whatever comes his way" and this latest move will be no different. Thank you for your well written article along with your spin on the future of Fastruck. Rich Pellerito #13 Fastruck


  Good Job Rebecca
Monday, March 22, 2004  


Sorry I have not responded but we had big snow storm up here late Monday-early Tuesday and I have been working overtime.

I wanted to tell you that you did a great job on the article about Dad. Hell of a job! Everyone likes it and everyone has said how much they enjoyed it and how they liked how you brought out the personal side and all the family stuff.

I even heard the old man tell Mom 'She sure did right by me, didn't she?" He IS pleased! He don't talk a lot but you sure can tell!

My Mom loves it!! After she read it she went on and on and on about it. You made her day I think.

He never even mentioned the photos!!!! Of course he knows, he isn't dumb, but he didn't say a word!

I think we're safe!

You did a damn good job.


Monday, March 22, 2004  

Dear Ms. Richards:

We just wanted to write and comment on your interview with Doc Lehman. You did a wonderful job bringing so much information out about him.

We have met Doc a couple times over the years and appreciate all he has done for racing in Ohio over the years and what he does now for drivers through the racing papers we get and his website.

We learned a lot about him we didn't know and you did a wonderful job.

Doc has done alot for many people in the Ohio area. We know for a fact that every holiday he and his wife make big donations to the local Salvation Army and food pantries with things aimed for little kids and helps Ohio tracks raise money for kids programs. Also every holiday he and his wife take cases and cases of baby food to local charities so babies in Wayne County will have food and formula for the holidays. (We read about this in a Ohio paper once).

He has also helped many, many people in racing and we heard about a time at the World 100 last year when two people came to the ticket window and forget their money. One young man was in a wheelchair and had just recently had surgery. He and his wife were near tears because they drove for over 300 miles and Doc saw this so he paid for their tickets and made sure they had gas money to make it home.

Thank you and we will follow your articles and the Karnac website all the time now. We are glad to have found it.

Thank you, Michelle & Chuck

  Thanks KARNAC
Thursday, March 4, 2004  

I am sooo thankful. I found this web page. I was born & raised in South Miami, FL. I saw my first stock car race at Medley Speedway. I knew at that time. I was going to race. I did, at Medley & Hialeah Speedway. I loved it. Two of my best friends raced when I did. They were Bobby Brack, Melvin Payne. I remember: Harry Vernon, Bobby Johns, Red Farmer, Banjo Matthews, Allisons. Ernie Reeves, Marion Edwards, on & on.

I saw Lee Petty race at Medley. also the BIG GUYS at Daytona. On the beach /road track.

Now I can keep up with my old home track. I used to follow NASCAR. tHEY HAVE GONE TO ME. i AM GOING BACK TO THE OLD DAYS. nOT REALLY. wE RACED PRE WAR CARS. a LOT DIFFERENT THAN TODAY.




Wednesday, December 3, 2003  

To whom this may concern,

I really enjoy your web site, I think your missing out on a Florida Legend that us Georgia folks really enjoyed watching him race back in the 40's,50's 60's, 70's, 80's,And thats Harvey Jones of Tallahassee Fl.. I think he could really add some past to your Legend page.

Mark Roland
Newington, Ga.

  Pete Orr
Wednesday, December 3, 2003  

I just wanted to say thank you for keeping the Pete Orr site available. It means alot to us to be able to go there and remember.

Julie Wyatt,
North Carolina

  Eau Gallie
Wednesday, December 3, 2003  


67-74, I drove a mini-stocker # 78. Randy Davis was # 76 and David McCabe # 77.

It was fun then as the entrance (pit) fee, I believe, was only $ 2.00 .

Very few pit crews existed then and everyone helped everyone. I learned alot from Ernie Bass and Leon Williams of Orlando that I could apply to my mini-stocker. I missed your first reuniuon as I now live in Wetumpka, Alabama. I would like to be notified of the 2nd reunion. I will be there. I have for several years the opportunity to work the Talladega Super Speedway as a Part time Security Guard.

Allmost every race I see Bobby and Donnie Allison along with Red Farmer whom I remember racing at Eau Gallie with a 55 or 56 Ford F-97. Keep me informed and I will relay all information to these former competitors and hopefully at the next reunion they can come.

If you have some pictures of the mini-stockers of that era, I would appreciate them being posted to the Eau Gallie Speedway photo's.

Thank you for all you have done,

Pat Walsh,

  Governor's Cup
Wednesday, December 3, 2003  

Hi Jane & Jack,

Remember once noticing that results for a couple of Governor's Cups were missing from your KARNAC pages and made a mental note to send you results of earlier years if and when I came across them.

This morning I came across the pre 1991 results, which should fill in some blanks. I don't know of anywhere else that the history and prestige of the event is archived as well as your site! If the GC ever again becomes as popular and prestigious as it once was, it will in be, in large part, due to your efforts.

Thanks for all you do.

Bill Posey

  Speedweeks for Lake City
Wednesday, November 19, 2003  

comments: I am interested in conversing w/ the promoter of Lake City
Can you assist???


Steve Hixson
DirtCar Racing Promotions
Chattanooga, TN

  Great Job!!
Tuesday, November 18, 2003  

Thank-you for a complete newsletter that lets us catch all
the action on the tracks....Saves our son, Troy Groeb from
having to detail all the races. We are in MI and cannot
make all the races...We try to catch at least one a year and
that is not enough. Our season ends too soon here.

Jeanne and Ernie Groeb

  Did Somebody Die at Sunshine???
Tuesday, November 11, 2003  

Did somebody die at Sunshine Speedway lately? Every time I go to check their latest results, it's about 3 or 4 weeks OLD. Like now it's Oct 14th results and I know they have raced since then. Would appreciate someone waking up the dead there, maybe Bonnie Hill.

Thanks, A Texas Gator

  Eau Gallie Speedway Reunion
Friday, September 5, 2003  

I didn't know that a reunion was happening in May. Let me know what is planned for next year and I will love to attend. I'm a former mini-stock driver # 78, Pat Walsh who raced at Eau Gallie, 1968-1974. I now live in Alabama outside of Montgomery and try to catch as many races I can each year. I also work Track Security at Talladega Speedway. Thank You for keeping the memories alive.


ANSWER: Lou White definitely plans on another reunion in 2004.
When the date is set, karnac will be the first to announce the

Jane Smith

  Racing at DeSoto Speedway, Bradenton, Fl
Monday, July 7, 2003  

Why is it that the latest writeup you have about the limited late models is February of this year? Is it lack of input from DeSoto, or what? We race there and of course my son has come close several times (seconds and thirds) and finally, no wrecks, no car problems, we finally win and no remarks, no writeup, nothing.

Answer: We post stories from Desoto as soon as we receive them
however we do not have a set person who writes for Desoto from
KARNAC. You need to write the track and ask them why they are
not putting out a story and maybe this will help.

Jane Smith

  Going down Memory Lane
Thursday, June 5, 2003  

I was born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida , and my first stock car race was in the late 1950's at Phillips Field in Tampa. Every summer of my teen years, in the late fifties and early 1960's, was spent in the Tampa Bay area going every Friday and Saturday nights to Phillips Field initially, then the SaraMana Speedbowl, Sunshine Speedway, and later, Golden Gate Speedway.

While at home in Jacksonville during the school year, I regularly went to Speedway Park when Pat Patrick sponsored races at the half-mile dirt track in Jax on the corner of Lennox and Plymouth. Later it was called Jacksonville Speedway.

In the very early days of the 1950's that track hosted NASCAR
events when the Hudson Hornet & Olds Rocket 88's dominated the circuit with drivers like Tim & Fonty Flock, Marshall Teague, Herb Thomas, Buck Baker, and Lee Petty. The early days had local race drivers like Bill Snowden, Tommy Moon, Piggy Bennet, David Ezell, Rod Eulenfield, and Bill Shaw. I also saw LeeRoy Yarbrough race there before he went on to a successful NASCAR career.

Modified and Sportsman gave way eventually to Late Model Sportsman, and Jacksonville Speedway eventually closed in favor of a new racing complex north of the city, and about that time, I joined the military and never returned to Florida to live, but I have never stopped going to races in the areas I have lived.

But my most special recollections came on the paved tracks in the Tampa Bay Area, and in the E-Mail below, I relate a special first night of racing, and how the Reutimann racing family made me a race fan for life.

In discovering your Florida History Website, I thought you might be
interested in my recollections of the late fifties and early 1960's stock car racing, and the many names of great racers from that era from that part of the state. I just wish I had saved all the photos and programs from all those tracks during that era. There are many, many greats I left off. Jack Arnold, Benny Moore, Gordon (GE 123) Lee, Billy Gill, Butch Hurst, Sonny Alderman, and Dave McInnis, to name a few more. Speaking of Dave McInnis, your photo gallery shows him in the Palmer Garage "T-Bucket" modified no.5 that I saw
him win with at Sunshine Speedway on many occasions. He also drove a no.32 Late Model '55 Chevy to many wins, and yes, he was from Largo,
or was, at that time.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this and my tribute to the Reutimann family below.

Respectfully, of all the Florida racing greats, yours truly, Rick Johnson, Austin, Texas.

Good Luck to You and this great website.

I cannot begin to tell you how excited I am to find this website! I am 56 years old and owe my lifetime interest in stock car racing to the Reutimann family.

In the summer of 1958, I witnessed my very first stock car race. I was 12 years old and was spending my summer vacation from school with my older sister in Tampa. My brother-in-law had an interest in racing, so the first weekend I was there, he took me to Phillips Field, a quarter-mile flat track around the University of Tampa's football field on the Hillsborough River. I remember the stands were totally full, and as the cars steadily streamed on the track, suddenly the whole place errupted in clapping and applause when a white Chevy coupe with a dark blue top and glittering gold double zero numerals pulled onto the track. A very thin young kid in a royal blue satin shirt was driving this coupe powered by an in-line chrome six cylinder engine. I asked my brother-in-law what was the commotion about? He said "that is Buzzie Reutimann, and he has won several Class B feature races in a row here, and he comes from the back of the field each and every week to do it. And wait until you see how many cars he has to pass!" He was right. I couldn't believe that they could get that many cars on so small and narrow a track.

On the feature parade lap, the pole sitter could see the rear of the back row cars entering the first turn as he crossed the start-finish line. And exactly as my brother said, that wonderful humming in line six ( I can still hear it) steadily made its way to the front and the checkered flag in just 20 Laps, the length of the feature race. He swept that night, winning his heat, the semi-final, and the "B"Feature. I remember also that almost all the "B" racers had flat-head 8 cylinder Fords, just a hand full of sixes were on hand. But Buzzie's six mowed them all down.

I remember that the most competitive car Buzzie had to deal with was another six, the yellow and back no. 5-D WARGO- sponsored car driven by Dave Scarborough, who did manage a couple of weeks later to break Buzzie's string of wins. The fastest flat-head that night was an orange and blue coupe no. 73U, driven by Otis Brayton. ( It's amazing to me how these details have stuck in my memory all these years since).

But I also need to talk about the Class "A" Modifieds that night. There was another double zero in that division, looking almost exactly like the one Buzzie was driving in Class 'B". It was Buzzie's father, Emil , who we later came to affectionately call "Pappy" Reutimann.

I remember the "A" cars were much faster and louder and had three to six gleaming chrome carbuerator caps on overhead valve V-8's. I also remember that, whereas the most Class "B" cars were flathead Ford powered, the Class "A" cars were mostly Chevy-powered, although I do remember a driver who drove a dark blue coupe no. 30 that my brother-in-law said had a Cadillac engine. I remember he started on the pole alot, but steadily fell backward in the field. I think his last name was Hutchinson. Dick Hope won the feature that night, and I remember a car called the "Purple People Eater" driven by Jimmy Alvis, I believe it was no. 21. He later had his greatest success driving a pretty blue metallic no. 4 coupe.

I also remember Pancho Alverez because he was my nephew's favorite driver. Also, the Flying X car, we called the "road grader", a bright orange chopped Crosley driven by Buzz Barton. Incidentally, this car and others like it later caused a driver split that resulted in the traditional modifieds running at the "SaraMana Speed Bowl"and the new "Sunshine Speedway" in St. Pete. Barton's car, and others like it ,eventually evolved as "Super Modifieds" staying at Phillips Field, but later eventually racing at both the successor at Tampa, Golden Gate Speedway, and the St. Pete track.

Other names I remember that very first night at Phillips Field in Class "A" Modifieds were Johnny and Red Batton, Bill Roynon, Jimmy and Frank Riddle, Dale Alderman, Chet Rutledge, and Phil Diaz. I remember Jimmy Riddle always wore red bermuda shorts that season, and they really stood out next to his jet black no. 14 when he posed for the camera next to his car. The car also had a black stripe painted in the center of a white hub, and on the Class "A"'s the front tire on the drivers side lifted off the pavement as the cars accelerated out of the turns onto the straight. It was fun to see Jimmy Riddle's "stripe spinner" stop when the wheel lifted off the pavement.

Anyway, that was the first of every Saturday summer night for me at Phillips Field that year and the next. I would do anything........chores, errands, to earn enough money during the school year to spend my summers in the Tampa area and go to those very competitive close races.

Eventually, we left Phillips Field and followed the traditional Modifieds to SaraMana and Sunshine Speedway, and eventually I got to see Wayne Reutiman drive the no. 00 Jr car, and Wayne and Buzzie drive Late Models at Sunshine and Golden Gate, first in 55' Chevies, then '57 Chevies.

I always rooted for all the Reutimanns, but to this day my favorite was Emil "Pappy" Reutimann, who I was able to see win feature races at Phillips and Sunshine Speedway before he retired, and I entered military service during the Viet Nam era. I never returned to Florida to live, but have gone to local race tracks whereever my life's journey has taken me, and it brought tears to my eyes the night I turned on the Speed Channel, and there was a beaming Buzzie in victory lane with his son, David, and the memories flowed back to that summer night in 1958 when this very young kid was showing em all the way arouund the track in that gliitering pristine little 30's Chevy coupe.

God Bless all the Reutimanns , especially "Pappy" Emil in heaven and son Dale, and I hope to see David in victory lane in Winston Cup in the near future, and I hope the sponsor respects the rich racing tradition of this Zephyrhills family, and adopts the white and blue paint scheme, with of course, the glittering double zero number on the car.

  Golden Gate Speedway
Thursday, June 5, 2003  

I was wondering if you could direct me to some information regarding Golden Gate Speedway. I was a 5 year old kid in 1963 and clearly remember going to the races. Dick Pratt, Wayne Reutiman, Buzzy Reutiman, Will Cagle, Pete Foltz, Jack Arnold, Frank and Jimmy Riddle, Donnie Tanner. I was born and raised in Tampa and would like to see some old photos or general information regarding this old track. I even recall Gordon Solie doing the track anouncing. Thanks for your time.

David Giddens
8530 Ehren Cutoff
Land O Lakes, Fl.


  For Jane Smith
Thursday, June 5, 2003  


This e-mail is for Jane Smith, who I assume visits New Smyrna Speedway on Saturday nights in order to get the wealth of information in her Karnac columns weekly. I hope Jane can come over and visit with me some Saturday night while she is at the track. I drive the #7 late model and park regularly towards turn one in the middle of the pits.

It would be good to get to meet the one who keeps most of us informed about race results at New Smyrna Speedway. Due to lack of sponsorship I have not been attending weekly as I'd like to do, but hope one of these weekends we can meet. Thanks for a great website.

Charlie Merz
#7 Late model
New Smyrna Speedway

  Eau Gallie Speedway Reunion
Wednesday, May 14, 2003  

I only wish the track were still in existence today. I never missed a Saturday night as a spectator. Started going there in 1958 as I recall. I moved from Florida in 1973 to the Seattle area however but I still remember the names well who will be at your picnic. I hope someone puts the pictures and memorabilia on a website for future reference. I will never forget the good times there. I wondered whatever happened to Harry and Henry Pullen and typed in the Eau Gallie speedway name on Google this a.m. and found this
site. My how surprised I was.

Take care,

Richard L. Joslin
Kent, Washington

(No relation to the Orlando Dick Joslin) Thats how I came to know about Eau Gallie Speedway and did meet him once in 1958) I loved his little 38 Ford
back then.

Wednesday, May 14, 2003  








  Open Wheel Mods
Tuesday, February 25, 2003  

Thank you for the awesome article on lowering the cost of open wheel modified motors. My husband, Bruce Watkins, had a OWM built to run on asphalt with the SARA series. He stopped racing because we couldn't compete with the amount of money most of the car owners had invested. We campaigned at East Bay raceway and are blessed to race there every other week.

It's nice to know an even playing ground is on the way, by 2004.

Thank you, again.

Caron C. Watkins

Friday, December 6, 2002  

Hey Guys....




answer from Jack Smith

DeSoto Speedway in Bradenton races them regularly
during the year and have a big Winternationals event
in February each year.

Jack Smith

  Hello All
Friday, December 6, 2002  

I just found your site today and love it. We used to
live in Merritt Island but have since moved to GA.,
so I love to keep updated with what's going on dowh
there (I was saddened to hear about Pete Orr, he was
a hecka of a driver.) Anyway, I have a question for
you all. I was reading in a mag. this month that
Fireball Roberts won a road course race at the
Titusville-Cocoa speedway this month 46 years ago.

Do you have any info on that track or the one that
used to be in Melbourne, and I think there was also
one in Palm Bay (not sure about that one, might just
be a rumor). I'm sure you all are very busy so I'm
not expecting e-mail back but I will keep looking on
your site for any info. Thank you for your time, and
have a happy holiday.

Scott McCauley
a fan of the sport

(Jane Smith wrote him an answer on 12/5 to check out
our history section and would check on the road course

Wednesday, October 16, 2002  

Thanks To All Who Helped:

First of all, I would like to thank Karrie at Macs' Place in Floral City for their cook-out and their patrons who attended.

I want to thank my family, Harley and Virginia along with their two sons: Sport, wife Becky and their kids, Wes: wife Erica and their kids; Uncle Jerry and Aunt Sharon from Inverness.

Thanks for your support Sharon, Roy, boys Jimmy, Johnny and Jake, and Renee. And Giz' parents Tommy Sr. and Lorene, all from Kissimmee.

Lee Keller, who races with Timmy and Mikie at Citrus County Speedway, for his support through all of this. And Mr. Keller for helping to spread the word about the cook-out.

Kim Bollinger for the wonderful write up in the Chronicle, Tuesday the 8th of October. You went beyond the call of duty with our thanks.

Victor Stanley and Peanut Higgenbotham for being our very good friends for so many years. God Bless Both of You. Tommy would be pleased with you two for your help.

Can't forget Billy Hooker and Jimmy Ware, the promoters of Citrus County Speedway. Thank-you for your help and kindness. So many friends He had, thank you all.

Larry and Edwina MacMillan, thank you so very much. And that includes Judy and Ernie Reed, Jeff Bollinger a very good friend to Tommy. I thank you all at our race track and community.

Special thanks to Uncle Bob Rogers and Madeline. Wayne and Margie Carter. And my son-in-laws Bill Cluts, Bobby Lontz, and Timmy Saunders and all my grandchildren. Also, Vic, Valerie and family.

To My Boys: Timmy and Mikie, race on...your Daddy is always with you. riding on your shoulder.

To My Girls: Kathy and Heather, you will always be Daddys' Little Girls.

TammyLyn Lontz and Bonnie Wilson, he also loved you "remember good things and Happiness."

As for Ed: Our first born...you were my pride and joy, but your Daddy loved you with all his heart.

Monday, August 5, 2002  






  Wayne Anderson Fan
Sunday, July 14, 2002  








  Robin Smith Miller
Friday, July 12, 2002  

Unfortunately your writer has managed to show her ignorance
and to bring discredit to your publication.

Sterling's attempt to say that the people throwing the
litter onto the track were not the "mainline" NASCAR
fans was completely missed by her.

Sterling is from the South and in the South we have a
different way of communicating a point. Metaphorically
speaking, he was describing a mentality that is prevalent
at most racetracks.

It is obivous that Robin S. Miller has never been to a
race, or she would know exactly what kind of people are
in the "Cheap Seats". I am sure she would not get along
well with them unless she was willing to "Show her tits."
That is the mentality that Sterling was talking about.

I am sorry that she is so self rightteous as to have
missed that.

W.S. Smith
Camden, Ohio

  The fans in the cheap seats
Friday, July 12, 2002  

I am totally flabbergasted after reading Robin Smith
Miller's story. The fans in the cheap seats! I cannot
believe how out of context Sterling Marlin's comments
were taken, and how misunderstood those comments were.
If the author of the story did any back research at all
about NASCAR, or Sterling Marlin, they would know this.

First of all, Sterling Marlin IS the personified redneck,
image of NASCAR. He has not changed. In fact, to this
day he still works on his daddy's farm (ask Jeff Gordon
or Jimmy Johnson how to plow a field). Stelring referring
to the CHEAP SEATS was not an insult but just a common
mans reference to where Sterling himself would be sitting
if he were attending a race as a fan although he probably
wouldn't have chosen to throw things at the drivers.

Sterlin Marlin is one of the friendliest, most laid back,
non-pretentious drivers on the circuit. I see no cause
for the author's senseless and uneducated tirade from one
comment that was totally misunderstood. Sterling might
not be a rocket scientist, but he certainly is a man with
good and integrity that would NEVER insult his fans.
Ask anyone who has been around the NASCAR sport. Sterling
is respected by his fellow drivers, and his fans, especially
the ones in the CHEAP SEATS.

Israel Hatzenbuehler
Dallas, TX

  Robin Smith Miller on Sterling Marlin
Friday, July 12, 2002  

Dear Editors,

Whenever I read articles like "The Fans in the Cheap Seats"
I always ask myself, "does this author know anything at
all about NASCAR other than what's on the film clips on
the ll o'clock news?"

Miller obviously doesn't know Sterling Marlin very well.
For one thing, if Sterling had to buy tickets to a race,
that's where he'd probably sit - in the cheap seats. So
would I. But would I even think about throwing garbage
on the track under any circumstance? No. And neither
would Sterling.

I'm especially appalled by the "class warfare" tone of
this article. Guess what? Nobody held a gun to these
peoples' headsand made them buy these tickets. Miller
implies that because these folks elected to pay for seats
at Daytona instead of the electric bill, they're entitled
to throw debris on the track when things don't go their
way. Baloney!

Anyway, I've read that the morons in these seats didn't
even pay for them. They were complimentary seats given
away by Pepsi, and each seat had a Pepsi seat cushion
provided. (The 15 watt bulb comes on in Miller's head
with the realization, "So that's where all those seat
cushions came from").

One last thing. While the comment about NASCAR forgetting
its roots is somewhat valid, its preposterous to claim
that Marlin's forgotten his. Marlin is one of the roots of
NASCAR. This is the guy who's daddy sold a cow so he could
buy tires for a race. How do you forget roots that deep?
I wonder if Miller knew about the "Coo Coo and the cow"
story? I doubt it.

In summary, it's just poor, reactionary journalism to
attack a driver and accuse him of political incorrectness
for making a valid observation of where the debris was
raining from. Would it have been better if he'd said the
"economically disadvantaged seats?" Anyway, congratulations
to Karnac and Robin Smith Miller for providing a fine
example of what journalism looks like without that pesky
research thing.


Len Rasmussen
Navarre, Florida

  Yellow Flags
Friday, July 12, 2002  

There is no race that should finish under the yellow flag.
How can a driver say they won a race when they are just
driving around a track knowing that on one is going to
pass them. How many races have been won on the final
lap?? Come on give the fans in those cheap seats their
moneys worth. After all if it wasn't for those fans
the drivers would not be putting any money in the bank.

  Fans in the Cheap Seats
Friday, July 12, 2002  

I was wondering where the comments Sterling Marlin said
are located. I have not read anything about this. I have
read articles about journalists personally attacking those
same loyal fans in the cheap seats by calling them
"morons" and such.

So who's really to blame in all this? The media is against
the fans for standing up for what they believe in...And
at the same time against any driver who calls seats the
"cheap seats"???

You want to see loyal fans?? Try going into turns 3-4
during one of the Daytona race weekends. I myself drove
1000 miles to spend 3 days at an area without showers
or adequate camping facilities.

Sterling was not way off base by saying that (if he in
fact did). See how you would feel if your driving was
impared by thousands of objects falling down on you
while driving at 65 mph. That was their speed when all
this was happening. You'd be pissed off too.

  Re: The Cheap Seats
Thursday, July 11, 2002  

Dear Robin Smith Miller,

I am writing to you concerning your article "Cheap Seats".
I must disagree about your opinion of Sterling Marlin. I
did not see the interview concerning the seat cushions so
I do not know what was said before or after Mr. Marlin
made that comment. You only put in that one statement
and I believe because of that it was probably taken out of
context as alot of journalism is.

I have been following Sterling's career for quite some time
and one thing that I do know is that he is not one to put
fans down. I have seen him stay at an autograph session
way past the alloted time so that everybody there could get
to meet him that came. I have seen him happily sign 10
items for one lady even though the people in charge had
said only one signature per person. I have seen him stop
and stoop down to sign a small child's shirt.

Sterling does not come from riches. Everything he has he
and his family struggled for. Yes, he has money now and
and he's been blessed but he knows where his paycheck comes
from. This is a man who worked a farm and went racing,
sacrificing sleep and alot of other things. This isn't a
man who is stuck up. He may not talk fancy and proper
but he's not stupid and I know for a fact that he respects
his fans.

As far as your comment"...the fact he never read the NASCAR
rulebook either.", I assume you are speaking of when he got
out of the car and tugged his fender. Anyone that knows
anything about racing and keeps up about it would know that
he was following an order from his crew chief and there was
nothing else he could do. If he restarted on that tire after
the red flag it would have blown and possibly caused a
huge wreck. He was going to have to pit anyway and get way
back anyway.

If he had it to do all over again I believe he'd do it again.
A stupid move in your opinion? Maybe so, but then, your not
a NASCAR driver, are you?

Am I expecting my letter to change your opinion of Sterling?
It would be nice but I know that that is unrealistic. I just
wish that you would check into Sterling's character a little
harder before you smear his name again. See how he treats
his fans then take a long look at how Rusty Wallace or Dale
Earnhardt Jr. treats their fans.

Get to know your victim instead of writing "Enquiring minds
want to know" articles. Just so that you know, I am one of
those fans that sit in the 'cheap seats'. My husband and I
struggle to make bills and raise our kids and if we're
really lucky we get the honors of see Sterling race in person
in the cheap seats. We're not drinkers but when I feel like
a beer I grad a Coors Light.

Being that I am a cheap seater and I didn't feel no offense
in what Sterling said why should you?? Just my humble

Terri Cummings

  A Blast From The Past
Tuesday, July 9, 2002  

Hi Jack,

You most likely have forgotten about me but I still love
the sport and follow your site. I enjoy reading the
stories and look forward to the colorful commentary
provided by the many racers and fans. I wish there is
something I could do to help or assist Leroy Davidson
and his efforts.

Although Leroy and I were never that
close, we did speak to each other occassionally and
always felt he was being honest and sincere with me.
We were direct competitors but attempted to work together.

I was pleased to see that John from DeSoto was too
attempting to help Leroy out.

I wish him all the luck in his battle and hope your article
packs the place for the upcoming meeting with the airport

DeWayne Musick(former speedway owner)

  Cavin Councilor
Sunday, July 7, 2002  

Ms Miller,

I just read your article on the unfortunate passing of
Cavin Councilor. My family and I were quite shocked to
hear of the accident. My 12 year old son met him in 2000
at Lowes Motor Speedway when he was signing autographs at
the GM 500. My son informed him that he drove a quarter
midget and Cavin took a bit of extra time with David, and
told him that if he ever needed advice he could e-mail
him. David took Cavin up on this a couple times including
when he was doing a school exhibit on NASCAR safety. Cavin
wrote back with quite a bit of information including photos
of some of his cars. David still has the photo of him and
Cavin at Lowes among his quartermidget trophies. Our
family's thought and prayers are with Cavin's family in this
difficult time. He was a true gentleman and racer.


John Roberts
EMail: john.roberts@disney.com

  Bill Bigley Article
Wednesday, June 26, 2002  

I enjoyed your article on Bill jr racing. I grew up in
Naples watching Bill Sr race on the oval many Sat nights.
Bill sr was an exciting racer to watch. I know where Bill
Jr received alot of his knowledge. Naples was a wild place
to race with the likes of Lenord Chesser, OB Oceola, Bob
Defenflower, Bill Sr. I used to go to the Airport garage
to hang around and listen to racing stories. Question,
Does Bill Bigley Jr. have a web site? Thanks for the
article, as you can see, it brings back alot of memories.
P.S. When will Bigley be in a cup car? Soon I hope.

Roger Motes

  An Opinion On Charlotte County Speedway
Thursday, June 20, 2002  

To all of you who don't know or trust Leroy! He built that track himself and put many years and lots of sweat into it. He made a dream come true not only for himself but, all the racers and fans around here.

The old Charlotte County speedway was closed for years and the Naples track run by the Bigley's (yes Bill Bigley Sr and his now almost really famous son) is now a swamp buggy and go cart track. Leroy gave us a place to go watch racing and some of us later on got into our own cars.

Before he opened we traveled to Naples or Bradenton to get our fix of racing. It sure was nice to have a track so close to home to visit. I am not a personal friend of Leroy's (he would not even know me if he saw me). I am not getting into bull with all the legal stuff, I just have an opinion that I thought should be shared and hopefully even get back to the airport authorities as a backing for Leroy. He did it once he can do it again.

I was not at the meeting with the airport but, from the sounds of it the lease to the current renters was never approved by them. I know from renting anything that if the lease is not approved in writing to a sub-leaser nothing is valid. One thing I did see over the years is that when anyone stopped Leroy and said Hi to him he always had a minute to talk or even at least give you a smile and say Hi back and at least acknowledge you.

I have met Chris Feldon many more times than I ever met Leroy and the only thing I ever got from him was a hello. He never carried a conversation on farther than that even when you tried to. He always made me feel like I was bothering him. Leroy many many of us have missed you. I am so glad you are trying your best to get the track going again.

We all have heard many sides of the story at "As the Track Turns" (pun intended lol) we however only want to go fast and turn left. You can do it again. You are strong willed and you do what needs to be done. You do have more people behind you than will ever post on this board. Hey you as they say broke into the track and fixed some of the track itself. That to me does not sound like a vandalism.

If it is then they have need more vandals like you these past years. I sure hope others speak up and agree with me. I know there are going to be posts against this but, I would love to see more positive responses for a change. All I can say is God Bless you and God Bless Charlotte County speedway, the racers and fans! We need our weekly fix!

-Charlotte Race Fan

  Auburndales Tech Man Smitty!!!!!
Sunday, June 9, 2002  

I have been going to Auburndale the past few weeks to get
an idea of how the guys in the 4 cly bomber class are
running. If you ask me there's definitely more than pure
stock motors under some of those hoods!! I was pretty
bothered by the way I have seen the tech area mainly
Smitty handling the cars when they come in I mean now
these cars have to be weighed when they come off the
track, that's fine the problem I have is when I see a
sign that plainly states "Drivers must have helmets in
their lap and hands on the steering wheels." Well what
I have seen is drivers going through with hands out the
window and helmets are hanging up on the right side of
the car. Well so much for that rule!!! Then a few week-
ends ago Smitty had the top three cars that finally
made it through the weighing and didn't get DQ or didn't
opt to not go on and pull out there flywheels for
absolutely no money and spend close to an hour or more
pulling well hehad those 3 cars pull down. Those cars
were the #17, 88 and 3. In the rule book it tells
nothing about the flywheel whether it can be cut or how
much it should weigh you know important info like that.
All it says is a stock. Well when #3 had her's out it
was a stock flywheel no cutting or anything on it. Which
this is the way everyone thought the rule book meant. #27
his had been shaved down some but according to Smitty as
long as it weighs between 18-22 lbs its legal. Well
surprise, surprise! Especially to a couple of the drivers
that DQ'd themselves because they knew that their's had
been shaved to lighten it up. So #27 was legal. #88
well he was DQ'd for a locked rear-end. Okay the very
next weekend Smitty does a visual inspection of the top 3
finishers flywheel!! This is the problem, if one weekend
he says that a flywheel can weigh 18-22 lbs then how the
next weekend can he lay on the ground and look at a fly-
wheel and tell you it does or doesn't pass. I mean is
he so damn good that he can weigh these things with his
eyes. I don't think so!! I ran out at Auburndale about
4 yrs ago in the bomber class and was wanting to come
back so there would be another female driver in that
class again. But I can't even get my car set up because
the rules are not what they say in the book. Even the
wheels it says they are to be two inch off set side to
side well now Smitty says 3 is okay. Give me a damn
break!! I just feel something needs to be done out there
I mean trust me if I am gonna keey up with the way these
guys are flying out there then I guess I'll just cheat
like they are. Well thanks for letting me bend your ear.
If you have any suggestions on what to do about this
e-mail me back at Aracinmama@aol.com.

  Mario Gosselin
Monday, June 3, 2002  

The link
2000.shtml) explains why Mr. Gosselin caught my eye. Aside
from his obvious driving talent, well it's been many years
since I've noticed a driver with the situational awareness
that he exhibits when interacting with his fans. I believe
he is seeking a primary sponsor. As someone just happen-
ing upon the Pro Cup series, perhaps you could pass along
a few suggestions. One is that he and the other teams
get their frequency updates to Racing Electronics.

It is very well likely that the information like the link
you provide was right in front of me, but I had to search
a bit before attending the race to find a frequency sheet
which I did obtain from Racing Electronics. It may have
added to my evening had the frequency information been
entirely complete. I am a rarity in that I plug all the
cars in. Though I know they must squeeze Father Time, it
would be nice if the bios at the Pro Cup place all had
links and contact information.

Should a sponsor not from the local area be as fumble
fingered as I, well, I want them to be able to readily
find Mr. Gosselin because I'd like to see him succeed.
This was my second attendance at USA and I would like to
compliment the facilities as well as the Hooters Pro Cup
series. I found all the drivers during the autograph
session to be professional and I would like to thank
each and every one of them for taking the time to talk
to the fans. I will come back to USA because of the
great racing and the hospitality that the track, the
fans in the stands and the racers exhibit.
Thank you again.

J. Marsh

  Sunshine Fan
Tuesday, May 28, 2002  

I am a fan from Sunshine Speedway and I hear it is
closing. There are lots of great drivers there but
there is one that stands out to me and no one seems
to do a story on him and for his age he is a great
driver and slowly moving up from starting in go carts
and now in mini stock at Sunshine Speedway.

He is
the one and only Mike Birk Jr. He is second in points
and has been borrowing a car since his black and yellow
Hungry Howies car was wrecked. So all I ask is for maybe
a story or some more pics of him.

from his #l fan
Rosemary (Rosie) Kutzli

  Billie May
Thursday, May 23, 2002  

Great article, just wished there was more about her and
her family. Also, would be nice to see her name up there
with Robin, Jane and Sharon!! Billie does a fantastic
job on her articles. Thanks for your time.


  DeSoto Ticket Taker
Tuesday, May 21, 2002  

Dear Karnac,

Thanks for reporting and not hiding the news about the
ticket taker at DeSoto, we can pray now that justice
will be served and he will have to pay it back and
give back to the community as well. I think a good
punishment would be picking up all the cigarette butts
and trash at the track a day for every dollar he stole!
Crime does not pay.

Montry Thompson

  Carol Wicks letter
Sunday, May 19, 2002  

Dear Karnac,

I just read the article that Carol Wicks wrote about
Desoto Speed Way. It was very complimentary and honest,
thank you for taking a risk at asking a by-stander's
opinion. I agree with most of what she said, except
just one thing, DeSoto is my #1, I hae been to five
tracks since I started watching B.J. We went to
Nashvile, ASA, I still prefer DeSoto. I like the family
atmosphere and the sound is very good, and the announcer
is very easy to understand. Some of the other tracks
sound is so bad you can not hear anything but nosie.
We have a good thing in Central Florida. Thank you for
your time.

Montry Thompson

  Columbia Motorsports and Its Decisions
Monday, May 13, 2002  

To Whom It May Concern:

This past Saturday night 5/12/02 at Columbia Speedway
there were five Late Model racers at the track. After
practicing and running the heat race, there was a meeting
between the drivers, owners, crews and Columbia Speedway
Officials about the feature race to be held. At this
time, the drivers were informed that there would be a
fifteen lap mini feature and a $200.00 pot to win.
Immediately everyone looked at each other and said 200.00!
At this time the drivers decided for 200.00 it was not
worth the risk to put your car on the track and that they
would not race for 200.00. The Officials discussed the
situation and decided they weren't putting their cars on
the track for 200.00. So we loaded em up. A 200.00 pot
is in a way degrading because it tells the drivers and
crews that when they bring their cars to the track, they
are not appreciated. I mean the fans don't come to the
races to look at an asphalt oval racetrack, they come
because they enjoy watching the sport and they have fun
because it is good entertainment. Without racecars and
the drivers, etc., there would be no racing for the owner
to make his living. He relies on the drivers and their
car owners and the crews not to mention the fans who
pay to watch races not cars being loaded on the trailers
because of a stingy owner who apparently doesn't appreciate
his drivers. Don't punish us, we are doing our jobs,
we are bringing the cars to the track and we bring the
fans to the stands. But I guess there will always be
racing and there are plenty of tracks to be raced, it
doesn't have to be Columbia. Although Columbia has
always been a great place to race, it has began to sink
under the current management unlike years of the past
where every seat was packed and every pit stall was full.
Look back and compare then from now and tell me you
can't see the difference. In all truth, we would love
to continue to race at Columbia because we owe the fans
who have come and supported us and they should be
punished, we just like to be regarded as an importance
to the sport and not to feel unwanted or needed.


  Weekly Results
Sunday, May 5, 2002  

I just wanted to let you know that whomever is writing the
results for the races is the BEST!!!!

Everything is covered perfectly...Thank You!!

Please assist the writer that does the website for NSS or
...give him some tips. Everything is all together and
hard to read.

Thank You

A fan up north!!!!

Answer: Thanks fan up north - I do the writing for Orlando
SpeedWorld, NSS, and a number of big races. As for NSS, I
don't know who does their's.

Thanks again - Jane

  DeSoto Action
Wednesday, April 24, 2002  

I am a DeSoto Speedway driver's wife and I love all
divisions of racing including my husband's. DeSoto
does not keep their web-site updated as well as your's
and it doesn't have an overview of the races. Although
I love late models, I don't think it is fair to cover
the late model race in great detail and not the other
classes, some classes only list results. In this
something you can change??? I miss some of the races
due to helping on the car and would love to know
what happened. I know alot of DeSoto drivers have
started coming to your page...although SARA and AACS
comes to DeSoto they are not the classes that run
at the track every Saturday and they are not DeSoto

Please help keep us updated.

  Would Like to Know
Wednesday, April 24, 2002  

I would like to know if someone wins week after week and
they have a relative that works as a tech, why wouldn't
the track take the bull by the horns and question what's
going on. I know there is a challenge rule, but from
what I can tell the other drivers either get parts from
the person or don't want to look bad by challenging.
I don't think it should be up to the drivers to challenge
anyway. The track officials should see what is going on
and put a stop to it, just make it fair for everyone.
The Road Warriors is a STOCK class, no modifications.
I have heard drivers talk about their racing cam in
their car or their stroker kit, I'm not sure but I
don't believe this is stock. There is more than one
or two people doing this, the track should put a stop
to this, the drivers have to race with these people
and shouldn't have to put theirselves in a position to
get run into the wall by speaking out!! I hope this
is the E-mail to the people at Charlotte County Speedway,
if not please supply me with their e-mail. Racing is a
competitive sport and should be made to be even for
everyone on the track. Thanks in advance for your fair
repair of this problem, I hope.

Wednesday, April 24, 2002  

I attended the Jackaroo Sauce 250 at New Smyrna Speedway
on Saturday, April 6, 2002, and thoroughly enjoyed the
race, and competitive nature of the racing. One minor
complaint. Upon entering the track there were Hooter
girls selling race programs at $3.00 a pop. Guess what!
When I arrived home after the race and had time to
thoroughly look at the program, I discovered that it
was a program for the 2001 season. Three dollars is
not a big deal, but I sure think that they should at
least sell you an up-to-date 2002 program. The race
and TV schedules in the program are useless to me,
after all this is the 2002 season, istn't it??

Saturday, April 20, 2002  

I grew up in Orlando and went to the old Orlando and Sun-
brock Speedway. Phil Orr drove at both tracks. One car
I remember was #14. He also drove at Daytona.

Was Phil Pete's father?

I enjoyed looking at the old pictures.

Lee Burgess

Thursday, April 4, 2002  

Help please!

We are taking my 13 year old on a surprise visit to
Universal Studios and also wanted to have him see a
racing car event as he loves race cars. I do not know
anything about it. We will be in Orlando June 1 to June
8th. Any suggestions? We can travel 1-2 hours for an

I saw the Orlando Speed Bowl had an event on the 7th.
I could not find a web address for them do you know
how I can contact them?


There are two races that might interest your son. One
is on June 1 at Lakeland's USA International Speedway
which is straight down I-4 towards Tamps (about 45
minutes from Orlando). They will have a Hooter's Pro
Cup race that day and you can reach the web-site at
usaspeedway.com. You can get reserved seats, general
seats, and back grandstand seats and they have a great
group of guys. A few of the Winston Cup stars have
come from this group. I remember seeing a very young
Matt Kenseth there and Scott Wimmer just to name a few.

On June 7, Orlando SpeedWorld, which in on Hwy 50 and
not far, will have what we call CRASH-A-RAMA. This is
Figure 8 school bus racing, boat-trailer racing, camper-
trailer racing and whatever else they can think of.
Usually this event packs the stands and kids love it.
Orlando SpeedWorld and New Smyrna Speedway (sister tracks)
are at newsmyrnaspeedway.com.

If you need anything else, please contact me.

Jane Smith
East Coast Editor

Thursday, March 28, 2002  

We were at the Bronson race track Saturday, March 16
when Krystal hit the wall in the first turn and was
airlifted to the hospital. Would like to know how
she is doing.



Krystal was released from Shands Hospital early on
Sunday, March 17. Everything checked out okay and
she may just be back racing this weekend.

Jane Smith
East Coast Editor

  Safety at Charlotte County
Thursday, March 28, 2002  

We could not believe it when we realized they did not
have an ambulance on site and had to wait over 25
minutes to transport an injured driver. Not once
but twice in the same night. If their insurance
company is aware of this, they are all negligent.
We have visited and participated in all forms of oval
track racing and this is the first track we know of
that is not required to have an ambulance at the
site before any competition is allowed. Please
someone investigate. Drivers and pit crews WAKE

Wednesday, March 27, 2002  

If there is such a concern for this type of racing, why
are people like Red Vann and his brother still allowed
to race?? Just remember Ocala last year, when he t-boned
Aric under a caution. Something needs to be done with
these two idiots. They got ran out of Desoto or should
I say carried out. Maybe that is the language these
type of people understand. I only wish more people had
the guts to do what those boys at DeSoto done. Maybe
this would stop.


Sunday, March 17, 2002  

Since some people like to bash Jason Boyd on Karnac, I
would like to praise him for the outstanding job that he
has done in his short career. Here is just a little of
the history on Jason.

Jason started racing at the age of 14. His first race
was at New Smyrna Speedway in a Mini Stock. From the
moment he put his foot on the gas peddle, he has not
let it up. He knows where he wants to go in racing
and he is willing to work his way up to that point.
How many drivers do you know who at the age of 16, in
1998, can say that they have won the Late Model Track
Championship at Volusia County (which was NASCAR at
the time) and go on to finish 7th over all in the nation
that year in the NASCAR Late Model division. The other
drivers at the NASCAR banquet in Nashville, Tennessee
could not believe he was only 16. And by the way that
was the lst year he had driven a Late Model.

He has driven Mini Stocks, Modifieds, Limited Late Models,
Late Models, Super Late Models and last year was called
the day before the Goody Dash race in Bristol to come
and drive a Dash car. He got to Bristol the morning of
the race, had never been in the car before, had no
practice and had never driven on the Bristol track before.
He got in the car and finished 7th that day in the race.
Ask any of the NASCAR drivers, Bristol is a demanding
track to drive.

In 2000 he won the Modified Track Championship at Orlando.
In 2001 he ran the SARA Late Model Series and finished
2nd in points, and also set the most fast times for the
year. He also raced the Modified at Orlando and finished
3rd in points and he ran the Racecar Engineering Sunbelt
Super Late Model Series and finished 6th in points at
Orlando. In the Super Late Model he won 2 features and
finished 2nd to Dick Anderson at Lakeland. He was also
the first person in the history of Orlando SpeedWorld to
ever win the Dick Joslin Modified and Jerry Joslin Super
Late Model race on the same night, this was also in 2001.
In 2001, he won 3 out of the 4 Springfest races at
Lakeland and was leading the 4th race when his motor burnt
a piston.

The year 2002 has just been unbelievable so far for Jason.
He won all the Limited Late Model races in the Springfest
at Lakeland and took the points there. Then went on to
Speedweeks at New Smyrna and made history there. He is
the only person in the history of New Smyrna that has
ever won all 9 nights. The only person who ever came close
was the great late Richie Evans. He is running the
Goodyear Challenge Series this year and won the lst race
of this new series. He also has set fastest times in
all of the time trials. Out of the 13 races that he
has raced this year, he has won 13 times.

People can say what they want to about Jason, but he cares
about other people. He gave all of his earnings the
night of the Pete Orr benefit races at Orlando to Pete
and his family along with alot of other drivers. He
won the feature that night in the modified and the Super
Late Model. When he won the Modified Championship at
Orlando in 2000, he gave his trophy to Jimmy Winks, who
was the driver of the 2x Modified before Jason. When
he wins a rae he gives most of his trophies to the kids
either in the grandstands or in the pits. I know because
my grandkids have 2 of them. When he races where they
have to throw Frisbees up in the grandstands at driver
introductions, you will not see Jason throw it. You will
always see Jason walk to the fence and give the Frisbee
to a small child who would not other wise have a chance
to get one because of the older kids or adults that
would grab it first.

In Jason's short career, he has won well over 100 features
and been in the top 5 too many times to count. He will be
the first to tell you that when he goes to a race, he goes
to win. He says 2nd place is the first loser and he hates
to lose. That is what makes a great race car driver and I
truly believe that Jason will be one of the great race
car drivers in history. So please, you may not like him
but you have to give the boy credit. He can drive the
wheels off of a racecar.

If you are wondering how I know so much about Jason's
career in racing, my husband and I have been with Jason
since his lst race at New Smyrna Speedway. If you could
have been there that night, you would never believe
that this is the same kid that wore that baggie red
Dentyne drivers suit (and by the way, he has grown into
it finally). Jason, we are so very proud of you and we
see the dedication that you have for racing. We know
you are going to go all the way.

We love you,

Johnny and Lou White

Wednesday, February 13, 2002  

Why aren't there ever any stories on Karnac about
Bronson Speedway?? I have noticed that there has been
a ton of improvements since Mike Cope took over. Is
there selective reporting going on or what? It seems
like only certain tracks are deemed "newsworthy". Last
I knew Bronson has been around "Florida Stock Car
Racing" for quite a while, so whats the story?


Thanks for taking the time to write. In 2001, we ran
several front page stories on Bronson Speedway. We also
covered the sale of the speedway to Mike Cope with a
front page story.

We are aware of the improvements being made at Bronson and
have had a reporter make a quick stop there to check it
out. And when the 2002 season opens, we will have at
least one story detailing the improvements to the track,
which personally is one of my favorites.

Beyond that, race tracks which have a media person on
staff get more coverage than those that don't. That
applies to newspapers and other racing and non-racing
publications both online and in print, not just
KARNAC.com. Race tracks MUST have a media person who
sends out information on the track if they want to get
adequate coverage, that is just the way the media game
works. It has nothing to do with "playing foavorites".
I personally have written several editorial pieces on
this subject which are available on KARNAC.com.

We hopefully will have many features on Bronson this year,
and will also hopefully cover the race results, etc. on
a timely basis. The speedway can do much to help themselves
by ensuring they do have a media person on staff this
year. Also bear in mind the responsibility for media and
press of a positive nature about any track, lies solely
with the track management itself. This again is the nature
of the media world, whether in racing or otherwise.

We would love to have a dedicated reporter for KARNAC.com
at Bronson every Saturday night and if you know of a
possible candidate, please let us know or send them our


Jack Smith

Monday, February 11, 2002  

Could you tell me why you do not post results from
Thundercross? I can not access their website and your
website does not have the results.

Also, why don't you have the results from Putnam County
after Feb. 2 on the open wheels??

Thank you
Gloria Rosenthal

Reply sent by Jack Smith:
Hello Gloria

Be glad to answer your questions and thank you for writing.

1. We do not post results for Thundercross because
Thundercross does not have a sophisticated ownership/
management that understands the importance of public
relations and the promotion of their drivers and track
events. Therefore they issue no releases or news to the
public except occasionally through their low budget
website. We have tried for three years to get them to
understand the benefits of having someone at the track
be media conscious, to no avail. And as the current
ownership won't even return our phone calls we certainly
are not going to spend resources sending reporters to
cover their shows during this very busy time of year in

The only data we have of recent note is the following
from Feb. 6, 2002:

64 John Wilson
9 J. Holden
5D Dennis Lynch
7 Thomas Hill
68 John Mosley

l3X Brian Roseman
23 Bob Brubaker
77 Lou Colletti
27 Steven Robinson
120 Scotty Smith

23H Dan Hamstra
225 Jesse Briteiling
10 Randy Hall
50 Devin Viebrock
6X Brent Sutton

3r Kevin Thomas
29J Wayne Johnson
3AC Dave Darland
70 Dickie Gawes
3F A.J. Fike

Putnam County results can be found in our tracks section
at the following address on KARNAC.com

Note that Putnam County has cancelled the remainder of their
speedweeks schedule due to poor attendance and other

Hope this helps.

Jack Smith

Wednesday, February 6, 2002  

I just wanted to say thanks for the update as there are
alot of us sitting at home waiting to know what our
favorite drivers are doing in this early season. So
sorry I am not there as this is the first time in 17
years I am missing speed weeks in Daytona. Again,
thanks so much and maybe see you all next year.

Nancy Modglin

Tuesday, February 5, 2002  

Just wanted to send a note of thanks for the use of
your site's classifieds. I posted an ad at Charlotte
for months, complete with pictures, without ever
receiving an inquiry. After posting on Karnac, the
car sold at the asking price without hassle. Thanks
again... the check is in the mail.

Hugh Hackney
Street Stock 28

Monday, February 4, 2002  

I grew up in Humble, Texas with Ronald Laney. We
went to elementary school togehter. Not only was
he a hell of a driver, he could do it all from atvs,
bicycling, to water skiing. Hell, he could ride a
unicycle like it was nobody's business.

I was saddened to hear of his death and he will be
sorely missed by his friends here in Humble. He was
a good friend.

Monday, February 4, 2002  

I am a friend of Ronald Laney. I just wanted to write a
little short letter to him. I will miss you dearly and
will be thinking about you 24/7.

Thursday, January 24, 2002  

Greetings! I just found your website and I
enjoyed seeing Dave Westerman's pics of Sammy
Swindell, Doug Wolfgang, and Steve Kinser from
the 70's and early 80's. Could you send me his
e-mail address. I was hoping that maybe he could
sell me some prints of those pictures. Thank

Corey Martin
Dexter, Missouri

You can contact Dave at announcerdave@usa.net

Monday, January 14, 2002  

We will be coming to Pensacola for the ASA race. Could
you please provide me with some hotels that you would
recommend. It is hard to know what kind of area you are
getting into if you don't have insight from someone.

Your information would be greatly appreciated. I look
foward to hearing from you soon, as I would like to
make reservations as soon as possible.


Answer to Pam:

If you will go to fiveflagsspeedway.com, they have a
lodging section. I am sure that they are in a good area
and if they are like the motels around here, if you
tell them when you make the reservations that you are
attending a track event, they usually give you a discount.
Have fun.


Monday, January 7, 2002  

Apology to Mad Race Fan:

I would like to personally apologize for my lack
of putting down where the "Race for Kids Sake"
is being held. I could give you every excuse
in the book but the fact is that I am just human
and made a mistake. I will correct the problem
and put the story back up and hope that you will
forgive me in time. The track is New Smyrna
Speedway located in Samsula, Florida.

Again, I apologize but I made the mistake and
I take responsibility for it.

Jane Smith

Monday, January 7, 2002  

Jack, where are the damn editors? As a former
Florida racing official, I like to keep tabs on
whats happening down south. I visit your site
regularly to do so, and have become used to the
biased reporting and glorification of karnacs
involvement in racing. I thought this was a site
for all Florida's racing community. I guess I
was wrong.

The reason for this note is an article you have
just posted recently which can be found at the
link listed here:
Your editoral staff neglected to include which track
this is taking place at. Many of the Florida folks
may know which facility holds this annual event,
but not everyone that visits your site does. This
is a major editorial mishap.

And just for the record, your comments about John
Barker are just an indication of your knowledge
of racing and journalism. Your whole staff of
writers (with the exception of Bill Green) would
not make a pimple on the ass of a true journalist
like John Barker.



I usually don't respond to unsigned letters but I
am feeling a bit sparky after a bout with the flu
bug making its rounds in the Sunshine State. First
off, thanks for writing, we appreciate all of our
readers comments.

I do apologize for the lapse in our reporting of
the Volusia event and we have pulled the article
until we can get a clarification on the location,
etc. I assume the event will be at Volusia
County Speedway, but we'll see. I actually
hadn't seen that story until you brought it to
my attention, and thank you for that.

What exactly was it about the Barker editorial
that didn't sit right with you?

Jack Smith

Sunday, December 30, 2001  

I think you should do a page on Jim Gray, there's alot of
history behind that man. I know, I grew up watching him
whether he was behind the wheel or not.

Thank you
Kimberly Martin Smith

Saturday, December 29, 2001  

I recently started working for Jax Raceways and several
drivers, car owners, and fans have requested that we
make sure that we get updates to your site. I need to
know what info. you would except? (point standings,
weekly reports, finishes, etc.) and how is the best way
to get it to you?
Tammy Stone
Program Coordinator
Jax Raceways

Tammy - I would be happy to post your weekly race results
and point standings. Just send them to info@karnac.com.
Also, please send any special race events that you would
like to have posted on the events board.


Saturday, December 29, 2001  

I just moved back to the area and really enjoyed racing at
Putnam. I was wondering if the concrete kill u walls are
going to be moved or something done about them? I'm sure
I'm not the only one that has thought this. I would like
to race again at this facility but the concrete walls are
keeping me away. I apologize if I sound rude but I feel
something needs to be done about it. Any comments about
this or points of view would be greatly appreciated.

Sincerly, James Byers
thank you for your time

Saturday, December 29, 2001  

I would go to alot more races if they were advertised.
Thundercross, as most tracks, don't advertise in the
local papers, karnac is no help. I will spend my bucks
elsewhere. No wonder Florida racing is in such a mess.
Could be a big fan.


Rich - I would be happy to post schedules and race results
for Thundercross. All they need do is e-mail me and send
me their schedule. I am willing to help you and Thundercross.


Saturday, December 29, 2001  

The Florida Mini Sprint Association will be running
Speedweeks on February 3rd at Volusia Speedway Park
and February 6th, 7th, and 9th at Thundercross
Motorsports Park in Okeechobee, Florida. For more
information go to www.geocities.com/jesse7racing

Saturday, December 29, 2001  

I would like to have more information on Valvolines
grassroots racing.


Friday, November 30, 2001  

Just wanted you to know that we read the Karnac board quite
often. Back in September you did an article on racey
ladies and just wanted to let you know that there is
another outstanding lady driver that hasn't gotten a
lot of exposure based on her racing accomplishments this
year. This lady happens to be 17 year old Ashley Larson
(my daughter) and she was the one that everyone wanted
to beat this year. She raced in the Enduro class at
Sunshine Speedway coming away with the most wins this
season. She won 6 feature races out of the 15 she
participated in. She recently won the 100 lap
championship race that took place on November l7
bringing home a trophy that was taller than her.
She didn't get any recognition for this win as she was
running 2nd when a lap car took her out. With three
laps to go she got her spot back only to finish 4th
on a flat tire. She ended up with the win because the
three that finished ahead of her were all deemed illegal
and she was the next one in line which of course she
was legal coming away with the win. At this point, all
of the fans and racers were gone for the evening and
this was the final race of the season. Many of the
male drivers admitted that they learned so much from her
this year by following her. Of course Sunshine doesn't
keep points for this class, so therefore they don't get
awards and/or a lot of exposure for these driers.

She also competes in go kart racing where she just
finished 2nd in the Nation racing with the Horstman
Gold Cup Series of the World Karting Association.
Thanksgiving weekend was the most prestige race of them
all, with that being the Grand National Race where she
came away with a Fast Time Award and was the Grand
National Champion in the Medium Class as well as the
Heavy Class.

I just wanted to provide you with this information with
thoughts that you might be interested in doing a story
on her and what she has accomplished this season which
was the first in the big cars. She previously has
appeared on Short Track USA and was the first person
to receive the Q Family Student Racer Scholarship in

Any questions, please feel free to call me at (727)
573-1712 days or (727) 546-1325 evenings.

Thank you,
Pam Larson

Tuesday, November 27, 2001  


I wanted to thank all the drivers, crew members,
and fans who came to Sugarland Motorsports Park
Sunday. We had a great time and a great turnout,
seventy four cars, that's right 74 cars. We had
some great racing, where the drivers had fun, and
no problems. I know the track got rough and we are
not happy about it, and you can bet that Pete is on
top of it. This is my first time to work with
Pete, and I must say it's fun. Pete is really
trying to make this one of the best tracks in
south Florida. We had a really good show and what
about the payback, WOW, you drivers who finished
up front know what I'm talking about. We are
working hard to make this a great track but we
need your help. We know most of whats wrong, but
eeryone looks at things different, so please send
me a kite or stop by the tech area and tell me what
you think. Together we can make this one of your
favorite tracks.

Thanks again,
Hoppie, the tech man

Tuesday, November 20, 2001  

Hi everyone, just wanted to wish Karnac a very
Happy Thanksgiving and a very Merry Christmas.
Hope to see you'all around at a track next year.
Thanks for all the communications between us. You'all
have done a Fantastic job. Keep it up. Once again,
Thanks from your fans at JPRACING45 (Mod Mini). P.S.
Joe did get Rookie of the Year and 5th in points. Not
bad for his first year. Take care and Be Safe.

Joanne Lucas

Tuesday, October 30, 2001  

Bin Laden Defeats Kolan

It wasn't even a battle. You couldn't wait to bail out. People
don't like to buy tickets in advance because it ties up their
money and forfeits interest. There were a good bunch of people
coming to Easy Bay, I got at least nine people I know from
around here to attend. Grab that alligator, get a shovel and
go tunnel into the side of the landfill, I don't think Bin
Laden will direct any Anthrax or planes there. Man he sure got
your little buns where he wanted them. As a very long time
supporter of E. Bay Raceway (we winter in Largo, Fl) we'll
continue to support Sunshine Spdy which is the best track and
racing down there - no more drives across the Gandy for us.


Tuesday, October 30, 2001  

I don't know who's decision this was to cancel the Winternationals
but from a racing standpoint it was a burn decision. Other than
the weekend of the disaster I don't know of other races being
cancelled...the anthrax thing is a cop out...then I thought there
was some sanity returning when information was obtained that
USCS was going to race that weekend...then the All Stars
threaten to sue...for years I have been an All Star supporter
preferring them over the WOO totally. This Winternational
thing makes me doubt where my loyalities lie. The Terrorists
sure scored a direct hit here.

T.H. Bilang, Lakeland, FL

Monday, October 8, 2001  

HEY!!!thanks for the bit on the race, most racers in Fl. forget or do not know that one of the best race tracks in the world is in their
backyard. It's sad to say 99% of the oval people I race with even
try to understand this great form of Motorsports. They tell me
that it is too hard to follow etc. I can't seem to get them to use the good brains that they have....or get them to try and understand
how much skill it takes to really do well at this type of racing.
When I am asked why I roadrace, I try to explain how it fels to turn
left...right...drag down a straightaway, it's a perfect apex, and
do it door to door at 270 mph. All I get in return is a dumb look
and "what the heck is a apex?" Anyway, thanks again for a nice


Tuesday, October 2, 2001  

I got an e-mail from Jack Smith saying I had sent out an e-mail
containing a virus, hell, I had no idea, come to find out it was
e-mailing itself to everyone it could via my address book. I am
pretty sure I got rid of it, nobody else informed me this was
happening except you guy's. When I opened my e-mail it had all
these return e-mail's that I had never sent, I'm like what the hell
is going on??? Then I read the e-mail from Jack Smith and I
promptly corrected the problem. I don't know what it was or why
it took over the e-mail but that was crazy stuff, anyway, thanksagain Jack and everyone at Karnac for telling me, if you know anything
about this please let me know. I'm pretty good with with the ole
pc but this virus has me baffled. I have virus scan but this sure
slipped by it, if you could recommend something I sure would be
thankful, take care. TAZZ

Thursday, September 27, 2001  

Racing is like any other sport. The questions was asked why they had so many fights in hockey. The answer was "because they let them".
Racing isn't any different. From NASCAR on down to the local tracks. A good example is the last Winston Cup race.

Until they are penalized, they will continue. And not just in fines. Make them sit out a couple races and lose the points and it will stop.

I have been involved in racing for several years. Some drivers just can't pass a car with out running into it. The driver's ability just doesn't compare with the quality of the machine in a lot of cases. But that is the way they start/learn and it is difficult to change them. I realize that some drivers get into a defensive mode and have to just be pushed out of the way.

I have seen many drivers have good cars and will be able to pass cars and take the lead, but they immediately go into a defensive driving mode, and are left in the dust. Dale Earnhardt was a very good agressive driver, but he was also the best defensive driver that ever ran. But if you pushed him out of the way on one corner, he pushed you back on the next.

Thank You
John E. Abernathy

Sunday, September 23, 2001  

I think that the message board is a great asset since I am
from up North. I can log on whatever and see what is going

I feel it keeps me in close contact to what is going on.

Thank you for this. I was so upset when New Smyrna removed
their board. Just thought I would let you know my feelings.

A Mother!!

Sunday, September 23, 2001  

Note to Ms. Fancher in regard to Hagar interview:

Interesting how a 15-year old could amass a Pennsylvania
Sate Karting Championship at the same time he was serving
as crew chief for Kolp-Furr Racing and Moore Racing for
driver Jeff Kolp, as your article says Mr. Hagar was doing
in l980. I've been around racing for 25 years and don't
remember seeing a single 15-year old crew chief. I think
you need to either (1) check your dates, (2) verify your
data through a reliable source, or (3) write in a manner
that clearly and accurately states the facts.

In addition, I grew up with Hagar in Pennsylvania and know
that, other than some of the family background, very little
of what you say is factual. Before publishing an article
such as "If It's Got Wheels", maybe you should verify a few
facts. People all over Pennsylvania and probably Florida as
well, are shaking their heads and laughing in disbelief at
your article.

Thank you

Sunday, September 23, 2001  

DeSoto Speedway - Enough Already

Ok, here it is cut and dried.

John Sappraicone has made a poor business choice. He over-extended himself to buy the track. There wasn't enough money left from the sale of his properties to provide operating capital beyond the inital purchase. Also, he bought it with an unresolved EPA judgement against the property.

This year, when the books are blanaced and checks are cut, some vendors and suppliers the track owes money to are only partially paid in an effort to at least pay out something to everyone, and it's a hard set of choices to make. John and Camille are struggling to keep the track alive, and it shows. Whether it be from mismanagement, poor planning, or whatever reason, the situation can't continue for too much longer. This reminds me of something I learned from lifeguard training. "When a person is drowning and you try to help them, be careful! The victims will flail, thrash and eventually grab onto you in an effort to cling to anything that floats, trying to survive. If you let the victim do this, you both will drown."

So, the questions are, we keep our distance and tread water while we watch him slowly sink to ensure we aren't dragged to the bottom too? Do you think he might understand there are those there that can and want to help him and he might settle down enough so that he won't cause harm to those interested enough to try to work with him?

I'm beginning to wonder if it's too late, because we can see, he is busily expanding his energies attacking other tracks and racing series rather than worrying about saving DeSoto Speedway and his self esteem in the racing community. Is it possible we can't hear his cries because there is too much water in his lungs?

A Former Employee

Sunday, September 23, 2001  

Jane Smith, I honor your thoughts. Americans have forgotten just how lucky they are, and the attitude is only getting worse with our kids. I don't know how many times I have been out at the racetrack, watching people not displaying any sense of patriotism when the national anthem is playing. I really believe we started losing the "loyalty" of our public upbringing when they stopped saying the pledge of alligiance in school. I did all the way through elementary school years and I was proud to stand up and recite the pledge of alligiance. Ask a kid nowadays, whatever age to recite it and I'll bet they can't. I have been to many different countries in my life, (dad's military career and mine) and I can tell you from personal experience...the U.S. is the best country in the world. Category by category, we have more rights, freedoms, and opportunity than ANY
other country in the world. We are even better off than our Western
Allies in Europe. Yes, as an American citizen, we are entitled to many rights and freedoms, but we must always stop and think...(not just in a national disaster)...think about all of the men and women who sacrificed not just their lives, but all the sacrifices made by all of our military people. As a military member you give up so many things that are a natural part of the average American. The public thinks that those in the military made it made and are overpaid...
wrong! Lets see...Can't really settle down in one place for very long...are not paid equal wages for your counterparts in the civilian world...have to pack up the family to serve time in some country whose culture is quite different from yours and will take work on your part to adapt until you reach DEROS (Date Estimated Return from Overseas)...etc..and the biggest of all...you may have to...at the drop of a hat...give your life for your country and the civilian public you swore to protect. "That's your choice" you say...you're right...CHOICE...thats what it is all about. Because of all of our military, you as an American citizen, have a whole lot of choices, don't take them for granted. We have become very spoiled as a society, in a shamefully greedy way...me, me, me, more, more, more.
I love the patriotic fever going through the nation right now...from my heart...I hope it will last longer this time. You are an American, be proud of it, and the next time you hear the national anthem, stop what you are doing (safely of course) turn to face the flag or music, take your hat off and remember all those, past and present, who served to protect the many rights we enjoy. We have to start with our children.


Monday, August 27, 2001  

Good story Lou Ann. Never will forget as a child riding in 76 Street Stock holding the checker flag for my Dad. My love for racing put me in a drag car for a couple of years, but now I'm just a spectator. Yes women do have their part in this no matter what they do.


  DeSoto Letter (and a response)
Sunday, August 26, 2001  

Hey Jack,
I'm not trying to be a bother to you, but the whole putting down Desoto thing is hurting a lot of racers. I for one have been building my car for three years now, it's close to being done. I don't have a lot of money, I can't afford to get another rear end done or a new set of springs ( front and rear ). Plus a lot of other things that will need to be changed to race at another track. I love the Karnac site and visit it every day. I think that you guys have enough power to make or break a track. I can't afford to rebuild my car to run at another track. I go to Desoto every weekend and I see the same problems that everyone else sees. I wish you guys could work things out so people like me could race again.

Darrin Ellis (#71 street stock I hope)

Publisher's Response:

Hello Darrin

Thank you for writing.

We are not putting down DeSoto Speedway at all, there are in our opinion however certain issues the current owner needs to address with respect to the track. DeSoto Speedway is, again in our opinion, one of the finest racing facilities in the South.

We do not believe it is in the best interests of racing to not have the same safety measures in place for practice as is done for Saturday night shows. All the qualified safety experts, as well as County Officials we have spoken with concur with this opinion.
We consider the absence of Fire Safety and Rescue personnel on Thursday practice a blatent diregard for the driver's well being.

We also take serious issue with the 'bullying' tactics used by the owner with drivers, as well as sponsors and others such as the medical and safety teams. There are far too many of these instances happening, all to the detriment of DeSoto Speedway and the racing community at large.

Stock Car Racing does not exist in a vacuum, but instead must interact with the broader community and in particular the business community. Without the support of the local business community these types of facilities have very little chance of financial success, and regardless of one's love for the sport of racing financial success is paramount for a track owner.

We have been trying and are still willing to help supply the expertise needed to repair past damages in the Manatee-Sarasota community, and to expand both the fan and driver base. However unless the current owner is willing to take a different approach to dealing with the important issues facing DeSoto Speedway, there is little of substance that we can do to help.

Once again I must stress we are not putting down the Speedway at all, just the current owners methods of operating the facility. Having been asked to leave the speedway while trying to address some of these issues in a professional manner with the owner, we certainly don't feel the welcome mat is out. We are always willing to talk with anyone who has a sincere desire to improve the conditions and situations that affect us all.

We wish you the very best in your racing endeavors and please stay in touch.

Jack Smith

Wednesday, August 15, 2001  

Hi Karnac,

Sorry I missed being introduced to you last Saturday night at Auburndale. A great thing you have done for the sport and the drivers. Keep up the great work.

Joanne Lucas JPRACING45/JoeIrwin

Wednesday, August 15, 2001  

I enjoyed your column on Young Racers and can say first hand you are a 100% right.

My son RJ Williams and I started his racing career when he was l0 years old racing 4 cyl. full body cars with the Racing for Kids Club. He is now 18 and has been racing with adults 3 and 4 times his age since he was 15 at Orlando SpeedWorld, Auburndale Speedway and the Old Lakeland Speedway. We have had some really up set old timers when a young kid whips them. The young man is so Talented and lives and breaths Racing. He has worked at a local Machine Shop since he was 16 and works hours on end on his Street Stock that he runs now in Auburndale.

The older generation Drivers just think they are spoiled brats but let me tell you he is as dedicated as much or more than them. And he knows it cost a lot of money to even Race his Street Stock. The Fathers that have the money to put them in a real race car, in a great series, more power to them. I wish I had the finances to do so.

Truly a great article and keep them coming.

Sincerely, Robert Williams, Sr.

Tuesday, August 14, 2001  

Once every once in awhile I enjoy going to other tracks in Florida for a change of scenery. Last Saturday nite I had the pleasure of being at Auburndale Speedway for your Street Stock Challenge.
WHAT A SHOW!!! Kudos for a fine way to let the local racing community know what you do and where you are from. I had not heard of you until then and it turns out that a contributing author
(Dave W.) is the announcer at my home track. Your webpage is bookmarked now and will be visited regularly. Again, thanks for a great show. Both Auburndale Speedway and KARNAC were a great hit.

Buddy Levitt

Saturday, August 11, 2001  

Just read the article "Monkeys and Peanuts". I must say that I can relate to the syndrome. I am on a crew for an outlaw car that races at Sunshine Speedway. In my travels on my way to the track, I stopped and picked up some boiled peanuts for the crew. We sat around waiting for the race to start merrily munching the peanuts and swapping lies.

our feature race came we were doing fine, second place as a matter of fact. But the car behind us thought that we had better brakes and that we wanted to share them in each turn.

When it came time to go through
tech, well needless to say drivers exchanged words and the next thing you know it looked like a hockey game had broke out. $250 fines for all involved. Loved your story and just thought that I would share mine, NO MORE PEANUTS IN THE PITS

#56 Outlaw Bonin Motorsports

Saturday, August 11, 2001  

Great plan! I think this is way overdue. What happened to Sunshine? I see that name wasn't mentioned.

I think if the tracks could work together with scheduling big events
all could benefit. Also, if some of the tracks could switch away from the only Saturday night to race Friday or Sunday we could all benefit too. In the future maybe some team owners, drivers and sponsors could help out by adding some input. Florida has way too much untapped potential. See how huge NASCAR has gotten with some great promotion! Short Track Racing should be the same.

I think one of the first steps is standardizing some rules so the same cars could race more than one track, then we could have a Street Stock series. Street Stocks comprize the largest car count at all the tracks and usually put on the best show.

Ask for input and you'll find some good stuff.

Kyle in Naples

Saturday, August 11, 2001  





Friday, August 10, 2001  

Mr. Smith,

I read your article "What's wrong with young racers" and I just wanted to commend you on the work you did. I am Jason's girlfriend and I don't understand why people get so mad because his father helps him. I see alot of fathers helping their children at the race track.
I also happen to be a friend of B.J. whose father helps him. There is nothing wrong with having help especially from a loved one. So what if Jason's dad builds his motors, so does B.J.'s dad. I just wanted to let you know that I really enjoyed reading your article and I hope everyone that has visited Karnac has read it. Maybe then, will the poeple who don't like Jason actually take the time to get to know him as well as I have over these past nine months. Thank You again.

Tiffany Norman

Friday, August 10, 2001  

I don't believe that I have ever corresponded with you. I like what you said about younger drivers especially since I have a 14 year old son doing a heck of a job.
My son is Terry Wright and he is in the rookie year of running in the Thunder Trucks at St. Augustine Speedway. The past weekend he ran his l0th race and got his first feature win. What a terrific job he did as he started outside pole and went to third on the fire then managed to come to the front and lead the last three laps.
I have watched the fans in the spectator side when the winners are being interviewed and you see children come to the fence to see the drivers. Let me tell you that I have never seen the stands clear and EVERYBODY lined the fence line to watch this young racer climb out of his truck. The spectators have watched him get a little better and run a little closer to the front each of his races and it was overwhelming to see their reaction to him winning.
Terry is a clean driver who started out in go-carts at 6 years old and wanted to run in the Thunder Trucks class from the first time he watched them at what was then Florida Speed Park.
I love the way he has earned the respect of the other drivers, his
team, track officials and the fans.
Thanks for listening to a proud parent brag a little.
Rhonda Wright

  Owners meeting
Sunday, August 5, 2001  

Just wanted to take a minute to thank everyone at Karnac for the effort you all have put forth in getting the track owners together to look for ways to improve the state of racing in FL. Having Citrus County Speedway for a home track has made it a little easier to believe that is hope for local short track racing. We all would like to see things the way they used to be. 'For me it used to be Stafford on Fri, Danbury on Sat, and Thompson on Sun. That was some of the best Modified racing at the most beautiful tracks in New England. They all almost failed, and are now a shadow of what they once were. Danbury is gone. Lost to a shopping mall. Short sightedness and greed were what caused its demise. What is most shocking about what happened is the fact that this tracks average Sat night crowd was 10000 fiercely loyal fans. A race track can be lost all to easily. Right here in our own back yards we have tracks that are holding on by a thread. They need all the help they can get.
How about some unified rules, as much as we all love to bash them, Nascar has the formula down pat in most of its divisions. Track owners should try and put together their own series, possibly consisting of one or two dates at each participating track throughout the year. The fans will come out to see their local favorites take on the home town favorites. The key to success for a program like this is probably not to many dates, good purses for the drivers. and a meaningful point fund for the series champion. It would work. Richie Evans was often the track champ at more than one venue as well as the National Champ for one reason. He had good equipment, he was a great driver, and he was always around. He could run at any track in New England. The rules were the same at every track. Again Nascars formula or a form of it would work for us.
Thank for your patience in hearing my piece about what you are trying to accomplish. I don't want to wear you out so I'll cut it off here.
Keep up the good work.
And by the way I liked the message board much better when you had to post your name and E Mail address.
Rich DaSilva

  Excellent editorial!!!
Friday, June 15, 2001  

Excellent editorial!!! This was very well written and I have to admit, it brought tears to my eyes too! Desoto is where we first started going to watch racing when we moved to Florida 17 years ago. (we drove there every Saturday night from Naples, as the old Naples track had just closed when we moved here) That was when Tom Stimus owned it. We met Bobby, Donnie and Davey Allison while we there. (of course, we got autographs too) It was always a good show when we were there. Never any disappointments as far as good, clean, family fun. Thanks, Robin for bringing back some old, but good memories. Vicki Beckner

  Stock Car Racing is no Little League Baseball game
Friday, June 15, 2001  

This is the first time that I thoroughly visited your website. I am impressed with all the information that you bring to racers and race fans as well. Your message board is also interesting, since the drivers, owners, crew chiefs and race fans can give their opinion and input to the sport of racing. Let's call it a sport, not a profit endeavor. In most agressive contact sports, like football, ice hockey, rugby, lacrosse, most players shake hands after the game.

I have been around stock car racing for many years and I still see the anger and rage, towards fellow competitors, officials and everybody else. I also see competitors helping each other when they need parts or help even if they compete in the same class.

Stock Car Racing is no Little League Baseball game and you all know what can comThis is the first time that I thoroughly visited your website. I am impressed with all the information that you bring to racers and race fans as well. Your message board is also interesting, since the drivers, owners, crew chiefs and race fans can give their opinion and input to the sport of racing. Let's call it a sport, not a profit endeavor. In most agressive contact sports, like football, ice hockey, rugby, lacrosse, most players shake hands after the game.

I have been around stock car racing for many years and I still see the anger and rage, towards fellow competitors, officials and everybody else. I also see competitors helping each other when they need parts or help even if they compete in the same class.

Stock Car Racing is no Little League Baseball game and you all know what can come out of parents behavior at these games. This is a serious and dangerous sport, the "Intimidator" was one of many "Casualties" not only on Super Speedways but also on short tracks.

I prefer that everybody lets out their grievences on the internet than at the track, but it's still in print.

Track owners and officials are trying their best to keep everyone in line, but it's not always easy.

Please keep it friendly and safe for everybody.

Action Cam Videoe out of parents behavior at these games. This is a serious and dangerous sport, the "Intimidator" was one of many "Casualties" not only on Super Speedways but also on short tracks.

I prefer that everybody lets out their grievences on the internet than at the track, but it's still in print.

Track owners and officials are trying their best to keep everyone in line, but it's not always easy.

Please keep it friendly and safe for everybody.

Action Cam Video

  Photos Wanted
Friday, June 15, 2001  

Me and My husabnd went to the Bronson speedway in Florida, to watch the 100 lap race, Any how a driver through my son an autographed little rubber ducky, After the races we took our son back to the pit to meet the driver that gave the rubber ducky to him. Well the team took a picture of my son sitting in the car and said they were going to post his picture on Karnac.

He was a number 05 driver in a red stock car and I have looked all over karnac but can't find the driver because I do not know his name could you please help me. It would mean alot to my son. Thank you very much,
Melanie Sweat

  Long Time Fan
Friday, June 15, 2001  

Hi there;
My name is Jay Powelson and I lived in Jax from '70-'75. I used to attend races at the old Jax Speedway on Plymouth Rd. The track was closed in '73 I think and I didn't go to too many more races after the move. For years I have wondered what happened to drivers like Shugart, Eddie McDonald, Eldon Yarborough,Rance Phillips and many others. Are they still alive or still driving or what? Sure would like any info you can give me. Lots of good memories of the old track and people we met there.My interest in NASCAR and racing got its start there and has never diminished. Thanks for your site and the info it contains. Best to you, Jay Powelson

Friday, June 15, 2001  

Robin, your article on making the GatorNationals and Gatorade Lakeland race was great! My son and I (Joe Irwin 45Ministock) also attended the GatorNationals and also got into the car and drove to Auburndale Speedway where he races on Saturday nights. As we arrived at Auburndale at 5:20 to pick a pill for position by 6:00, we realized that we also must LOVE racing. After line-up was put on the board we were running our feature race LAST. Yes we must LOVE racing because we left St.Petersburg Friday morning 5:00AM to get to Gainsville and arrived back to Aurbundale 5:20PM Saturday. But all in all it was my son's best finish so far, 4th out of 20 cars. As tired as WE all must of been after Saturday night arriving home 2:30 in the morning, there is only one thing I must admit. RACING IS IN OUR BLOOD AND WE ALL LOVE IT. Take care and keep writing, Joanne Lucas 45 mod mini

  The Man in Black
Tuesday, February 20, 2001  

Thank you for that great article, I really agree with the last paragraph. Just like you said, Michael, Jr., and himself in third, coming out of the forth turn, last lap, Daytona, and doing what he loved to do. What a great picture he saw in front of him, knowing one of them was going to win. I am sure that God had a hand in that. It was too perfect. Don't get me wrong, selfishly I would rather have him here, for all of us to keep watching, but that cannot happen. I have followed (loved) Earnhardt for 20 years, racing ain't going to be the same, he made it happen. No one will ever fill those shoes.......................

Thank you, for listening.
Jody Dutcher

  Hialeah Fan
Thursday, February 1, 2001  

Just read your article "Flashback to Yesterday". I've been going to Hialeah since I was a teen and I'm 54 now, do the math... I watched the track have it's ups and downs and seen it's miraculous rebirth this last year. I have to say I am really proud to be a Hialeah Speedway contributor and fan. Your article was like a walk down nostalgia boulevard, even though I go to the track every single weekend and test & tune every Friday some things you forget. It's good to have a reminder. Your article was a wonderful reminder of what has been and what we need to hold on to. It is a tear to your eye, lump to the throat kind of article. Bless you. I personally would like to thank you, Rick and Jack for all your support and coverage that you have given to the S.F.R.A. and Hialeah Speedway. I enjoy KARNAC.COM and your radio show, congratulations on your success. Next time you are down, and near the just out of turn four stands, if you have the time, look us up. You have some mighty big fans down here too.

All the best to you,
Norma Jean Remick

  Todd Bontrager
Saturday, November 4, 2000  

I don't know if you consider this an error or not. Todd Bontrager is
the nephew of Ray Bontrager, not the son. Ray's brother Harley is
Todd's father and I'm almost positive he never raced. At Hialeah, I
heard them announce that he was Ray's son, so just thought if I let
enough people know, they will eventually get it right.

-A fan

  Racing is a Family Sport
Wednesday, October 25, 2000  

I love in North Carolina and go to several different race tracks. Every track has security and most have it in the stands and in the pits. The fans pick a driver or know a driver personally and should something happing to him or her there tempers spill over and the problems start. I read about the person getting attacked on your web site and it has happened up here as well. I think it is a shame that for many racing is a sport that families are into together, they work on cars together during the week, help others in the pits during race nights and the few that fight should be taken out of the tracks and told they are not welcome to come back anymore, even if they are one the winning race teams. The track owners and promoters need to enforce there track rules and prosecute anyone that attacks someone be it a driver, a pit crew member or even more shameful a fan!!!!

I enjoyed the racing in Florida for many years before moving and look forward to returning during vacations. Love the web site helps me keep up with some old friends and drivers.

Thomas Zumwalt

  Longtime Florida Fan
Wednesday, October 25, 2000  


I am writing this letter to let you know I really enjoy your website. It brings back a lot of memories. I grew up being involved in florida stock car racing, I was the first "Little" Miss Ocala Speedway. My Grandfather raced all over florida. I saw on the
Fred Coxon Collection that he was asking if anyone knew who the #10 car was in a photograph at New Symrna Speedway, well that would be my Grandfather... #10 Ed Tripp. I have also been told that my Grandmother has some photo's that will be on your site, do you have
any idea when that will be? I enjoy all the news your site has, and I get to hear about people I haven't seen in a long time.

Thank you,
Wendy Pourciaux (Allen)

  Need Police at Races
Wednesday, October 25, 2000  

Dear Jane: I agree with almost everything you said, except what caused Wayne to do what he did, well from where I sat David bumped Wayne at the 3rd turn and put him in the wall. Now I agree that was not right what he did but that is what caused the anger, We must have STATE TROOPERS at every race to have control, these tracks in Fl. do not practice this. Most tracks that I went to do this. I am a race fan now for over 40 yrs, I travel 100 miles to see my friends race at these tracks but if this happens agin I will no longer come to these tracks with ALL my friends.

Anthony J. Liscio,
Port St Lucie Fl

  Track Fights Unwanted
Wednesday, October 25, 2000  


You know I have grew up around short tracks my whole life and I have seen my share of on track fights. And I have never seen anything good come out of one yet!. As a racer I have been plenty mad and wanted to beat some no driving dummy's butt a few times, But I have always figured out all it would do is cause more problems and make me look just like him.I have known the Andersons for years,They are always ready to show their intelligence! I just think it is time they are held responsible! If you got mad and ran in the back of someone's car and then got out and punched that person in the head you would be looking at vehicle assault and assault and battery. Whats Up With Letting Them Go!!!!! And not having any security at an event like that is purely ignorant.

Short track racing has taken itself to a familiar low!

Ken Smith,
Smith Motorsports

Tuesday, October 24, 2000  

Your Racin' Talk Radio endeavour seems to have been well-received and I'm looking forward to hearing the internet broadcasts here in Orlando. I have listened to the excerpts and both Rick and Scott did a fine job. As time goes by I know the broadcast will get better and better. For their first time out, they did a fantastic job keeping the show going. Please pass along my congrats to all who did their part to make the first show a success.

Tim Williams

  New York - Florida Connection
Tuesday, October 24, 2000  

Has there been any schedule set up for modifieds for this feb. We had a great time last year and have several other drivers that would like to come for the 2001 races. New York has really took off this year with lease type of cars, and the drivers weresurprised by our success last year and are looking forward to the trip in
Z1 mod crew chief

  Prayers at Races
Tuesday, October 24, 2000  

I run street stock #88. Last night the track had the pledge to the flag and never had a prayer. I heard thru the grapevine that some one said that we did not need one. Like to know your thoughts on this. Thank you.

Ronald J. Cook

  Response to Jane Smith Column
Friday, September 29, 2000  


I read your letter and have to say I agree. I have followed IMCA (International Motor Contest Assn) out of Vinton, Iowa for many years. If you want to see a success story look at the IMCA web site and read the article about the Super Nationals held in Sept in Boone, Iowa. They had 694 - yes 694 cars show up for the event. This includes 406 modifieds, 119 stock cars, 106 hobby stocks, 43 late models and 20 sprints. The modifieds are the success story. Why - very simple - you can race across the United States with IMCA - over 200 and possib ly 300 tracks. The same rules and IMCA works to keep the cost down. I feel it is time to look at IMCA for Florida. Do promoters want to see car counts go up and cost go down. Here is their opportunity. All they have to do is listen to the experts, enforce the rules and stick with the program. Car counts will go up I can give you a list of tracks to prove it. Car counts mean more fans, more money and everyone wins.

Please give me your thoughts.
Thank you.
Race Fan

  Response to The Silent Legend
Thursday, September 28, 2000  

Hi Missy,

I very much enjoyed your story on Billy Myers on Karnac. While he lived and raced out of Ft Lauderdale and Hollywood he was never Bill Myers, but always Billy. I was at Hialeah the night he was hurt in 1961 and it was a terrible sight. Despite the injuries he came back and later had a very successful career in late models, driving some very potent Fords for Miami attorney Thurl Ulrey. I hung around his West Hollywood shop, Tom and Bill's Garage, in the mid-60s, where plenty of top notch race cars were built and engineered. They fielded late model Chevys for Randy Tissot and later the Fords Billy drove.

Our family began a Winston Cup team, Tilitco Enterprises, in late 1972 and we made our debut at Atlanta in July 1973 with Tissot as the driver of our Chevelle. For the 1974 season we hired a full time crew chief, someone who knew racing and would help us get to the next level......Billy Myers. For a time our engine builder was Bob Wallace but he was past his prime and the relationship proved to be an embarassment to all. When Billy raced down here in the early 60s he drove a beautiful '32 Ford sedan, maroon with a bright white No. 2 on the door. That is the way I'll probably always remember a very special guy, Billy Myers. I have a couple of good photos of Billy I will scan to you. Again, nice interview and I'll look forward to your next effort.

Regards, Marty Little, Ft Lauderdale

Tuesday, September 26, 2000  

I don't understand why each series doesn't get a set number of tickets for each driver in their series from each track they are going to race. Only for the grandstands, and only five to ten per driver that cannot be used in the pits.

See when we go out of town and stop at restaurants, gas stations, hotels, etc.. we are asked about what we race, where we race, and when we race. Recently on our journey to S. Alabama with the SARA series I was asked by someone I met over the phone booking our rooms, if I could get two tickets for her and her son. You feel bad to say no that you can't get them so I was going to purchase them myself and drop them by the hotel she worked at. Well, after talking to the promoters of that track they put her name on a list at the grandstands, and I was delighted, because she brought a total of three people with her. They were not even sure where the track was, but her son was into Nascar racing and this track was right in their area. I can guarantee they will be back. They had a blast and I'm sure they had to buy food and drinks from the concession stand. This is where the tracks really make the money,so how about giving up a few tickets to find some new fans and keep the future of short track stock car racing alive...

Think about it.... It's a good choice for everyone in promoting fans for the drivers, customers for tracks, and enjoyment for all.

-Florida Late Model Driver

  Eau Gallie
Wednesday, August 9, 2000  

My name is Ken Penney, my Father owned the Eau Gallie Speedway and also a Dirt track in Rome Ga. In the 50s He sponsored Harry Pullen one year and had Bobby Allison come to Eau Gallie during speed weeks. he lives in Vero Beach now and I would like to hear from someone who remembers him and those days of racing. My e-mail address is penney611@aol thanks ps i have a lot of unbeliveable pictures from florida stock car racing in years past.

  What Happened to Auburndale Speedway?
Saturday, July 22, 2000  

I have been going to races for years and Auburndale Speedway is my hometown track. Back when I was a lot younger (I'm 23 now) Auburndale raced Late Models, Modifieds, Limitied Sporstman, Street Stocks,Mini Stocks, and 4 and 8 cylinder bombers plus extras like Figure 8's and stuff like that. Now I know why they quit the Figure 8's because I was there that evening a couple of years back, but they no longer run Late models, Modifieds, or any big-dog cars like all the other tracks I venture to every weekend like Inverness My favorite, SUNSHINE speedway 2nd favorite and Desoto , East Bay, etc......Auburndale used to have all these classes WHAT HAPPENED? Besides thefact Its 10 minutes down the road compared to 1.5 - 2 hours for all the other ones it used to be a really great track.

thanks a bunch Smokey Mike

  Fan Reponse to TBARA Accident
Monday, July 17, 2000  

Folks: We are just one of the spectator families that were in Turn #1 during the TBARA feature when the horrendous accident happened. On our right was one injury and on our left was another. We escaped unhurt, only sprayed with auto fluids. I will never forget looking up an seeing the bottom of the race car flying by me at an enormous rate of speed, engine racing wildly, and fluid and fence parts spraying my legs and face, as we were diving into the back of our truck.

I have been in two wars, numerous police actions, and 28 years of military service, and I can honestly say that I have never been so scared for my families safety. We want to commend the entire speedway staff, St. John's County personnel and all the responding personnel, for the prompt, and professional assistance provided. I also want to thank you for ensuring some time ago, that the retaining fence was constructed properly and without comprimise. Our family owes our life to that fence! Thank you for caring for the fans. You always put on a great family show...don't let this unfortunate incident change any of that. We are in email contact with "NASCAR Mike", and understand that young Shaun is not doing too well. He remains in our hearts and in our prayers.

We will return.... Scott & Beverly Verkuilen

  Jason "Heart Break Kid" Story
Tuesday, July 4, 2000  

Go Bliss GO
Hey Bliss - great story - thanks for sharing it - Would love to come and see you race when the whole Mert family is in Florida next year !!!!! That will be us ( the loud kiwis ) in the stand cheering you on !!!!! Hope that I can one day have a famous page too to show you - lmao Take care ( no more bike stunts ) Mertie ( Erin )

That was a wonderful story...I am glad to hear that he is O.K. and doing what he loves to do. My dad Larry Martin races modifieds and races at St. Augustine sometimes. I will have to look him up the next time we are there. He seems like a great person who has had to overcome alot. If so, could I have his email address? Thanks and again great story! Erica Martin

  Hialeah Cyclone/Pure Stocks
Sunday, June 25, 2000  

How in the hell can a cyclone out run a pure stock and still be anywhere near legal . I was there and as a former crew chef in pro 4 and can tell you there is no way that should ever happen. Only at Hialeah could a cyclone out power a pure stock like that on the straight away. I'm sorry to see it that way because this is what almost killed Hialeah before. Each class is supposed to be a step up ,thus better quality. WHATS NEXT STREET STOCKS OUT RUNNING THE SPORTSMANS. Please some one open their eyes before Hialeah is but a dream. I have been coming to Hialeah since 1971 and am there about 80% of the time its open. Lets straighten the classes out and save Hialeah. The step up in class is there for a reason and the fans are not dumb enough not to see what is happening. If legal in Cyclone then would be under powered in purestock, just as when street stock sometimes rarn with sportsmans last year. They could not keep up, but helped the car count.

thank you

Tony Ruehle

  East Bay Questions
Wednesday, June 7, 2000  

Can anybody tell us what happend in the last few years to the LIM. SPRINTS? It seems that the track does not feel that the fans want to see us run, although they still feel that they should raise the prices when we run. ( which is every other week) It does not help the matter any that 80% of the time we are foced to run last, which is around 11:30 to 12:00. I know it takes a rocket scientist to figure this out, but alot of people have to work on Sunday, go to church, or even just like to get home before 1:30 am. So for that reason they leave before we get to race. It is kind of hard to get a sponcer invoved with a car if they only see it twice a month. We spend money and time just like the other classes, only difference is that we only get half as much track time as the others. The people in the grandstands always here about the money they helped raise for the 50/50 points fund, they said just last week it was 16000 dollars last year, then tell me where did the rest of it go. I noticed the points champion in our class last year earned a whopping 750.00 dollars. He would have made more than that by wining two featues back to back! I guess they dont think our class is as competitive because no one laps the feild 5 times in a 25 lap race,or we dont bring out 10 cautions per race.


  Long Distance Fan
Wednesday, June 7, 2000  

I having been on your website its a very good one
for someone like myself thats lives in Illinois but
wants to keep up on the racing in Florida my second
home. My family and I are coming down there. Will be
there June 13th through June 18th at Dunnellon is
there any good race tracks around there to watch a
race. Then on to Maderia Beach the 18th of June
through 5th of July any good tracks down that way.
Like to watch winged sprints, late models, mods.
everything on dirt. Could you email me a list of
tracks with in a 50 mile radius to go watch. I listen
to Bubba when down there is he a good racer or just
like to brag, like to see for myself. Thanks for the

Kevin Catt

  Response to Jane Smith Column
Wednesday, June 7, 2000  

I thought your summary of the Orlando Race was pretty tame. I was there, (I am the on track announcer, and the full time announcer at New Smyrna) And it was the usual Cope shoving match we always see.
Mr. Excitement was at it again. Same thing at St. Augustine in race #1 when I called that show.

My suggestion is to ignore your critics, I do!

Please come introduce yourself next time you visit NSS.

Hank Sanders

  Sunshine Fan
Wednesday, June 7, 2000  

I was just thrilled to find your site! We live in Charlotte NC now, but lived in Clearwater for along time. It's great to see information about the track and drivers at Sunshine Speedway.

Thank you
Tracy K. Martin

  Response to Racing and the Media Article
Thursday, May 11, 2000  

I really enjoyed your article, The flair of your pen was great. Showing owners and teams how important marketing is. As motorsports writer from Connecticut covering Waterford Speedbowl and NASCAR Featherlite Modified Touring Series editor for New England Racing.

I have recently be come embroiled in a controversy with a fan on line
who, states that because most motorsports writer don't write for mainstream publications --- we create a second class of writing. The point the gentleman was trying make if you don't write for the regional newspaper or publication, we are self serving and out for a free lunch. His contention was that since I was a huge fan of the NFMT Series that we are detrimental to our sport. We have no journalistic integrity. If we don't promote our sport, who will? In
these time, newspapers now with smaller budgets and less writers on staff. I know some tracks that submit their own stories to the papers, these tracks are dependent keeping the seats filled.

We are fortunate in New England to have many small tracks and a couple International Speedways within our boundaries. Many fans are depend on local coverage to keep abreast recent events and upcoming events. With the web it has become easier for everyone to keep up to date on events as well as communicating with fans, driver and tracks.

Well, getting back to the person who is so quick to criticize Me first and all others who cover local racing and regional racing. This person would not come forward with as much as Email address. A number of us became very upset since we work hard every week for little and no money to keep the fans inform. I do not normally use my column as a soap box but, this week it will be standing on Tide Mountain when I write that column. I take my assignments seriously and won't tolerate, the garbage that is thrown at us by uninformed redneck lurkers who can't sign there work, anonymity is fine for cowards.

Again I thought your article was great, it was refreshing and it is true!


  Thanks For The Memories
Thursday, May 11, 2000  

I was fortunate enough to have raced against some
Very Good race car drivers - Rudy Brinson, Bill
Ingram, Dave Dunkin, and Bobby Register. The
most proud I was, however, was when I raced and
beat Dale Reutimann. It crushed me when Dale
and Emile were killed in their accident.

To my question - most all of the pictures that
were ever taken at the Auburndale Speedway were
taken by Sterling Photo in Lakeland. I have been
unable to find any source for information on
what happened to the historical photos taken.
Could you please share with me any info on
where these pictures may now be?

Thanks for the great site, it brought back lots
of memories!!

Robin Tice

  In response to Jane Smith's Column
Thursday, May 11, 2000  

I have read two of your comments regarding the way race tracks are run and operated by their owners. Could you please tell me what tracks you are referring to and what the problems are? I am a little confused because you speak in such generalities.

I feel that you need to be specific if anyone is going to make any changes in the way they are doing things. Over the past few years I have seen a decline in the way the buildings and grounds have deteriorated. I know you are right about the future of a track based on the way the operator runs it and takes care of it as well as the fans and the drivers. But what is the solution to the problems if there is no co-operation from the people running the tracks? The only answer will be the certain demise of the track and it will be a great loss to the people that put their money in to make the track available to the fans and drivers in the first place then we will all end up losers because of the owners greed.


  Sprint Car Fan
Sunday, April 9, 2000  

I thought I would tell you that I enjoy reading you articles. You
probably don't remember this but for many years my father raced the Florida Sprint Car Circuit. His name was Pete Crocker and the car number was 3X. I miss him as well as the sprint car racing that was popular during the 1970's
and 80's.
Keep up the good work. I will continue to read your articles.


  Desoto Opinion
Sunday, April 9, 2000  

Jack, since this is a business, I guess the drivers or fans of the
speedway don't deserve a break, huh? DeWayne seems to have become more
of a jerk than ever, but there are some decent people down there. It's ashame the situation has deteriorated to this point.
I sincerely hope this ploy hurts the track enough to force some changes,but I doubt it. The thing that is painfully obvious to me is the use ofthe track by the Musick's as some sort of tax shelter. I'm not quite convinced that they are concerned about profit.
None of this matters to the average fan or driver, though. We just want to race. In a perfect world, we would ignore the owner and go on with the show. The thing that occurs to me is, worst case scenario, the track closes, leaving a lot of folks with nowhere to race, or alternatives to Desoto that are not very palatable, such as long drives to Port Charlotte or Orlando.

People with obvious axes to grind with DeWayne would howl victory, while the rest of us can go suck eggs. I think Karnac is an excellent forum for racers and fans alike to post their opinions, but whether it's a strong enough force for wholesale changes at a track such as Desoto remains to be seen.
You and Rick do an admirable job, but this action seems personally
motivated as opposed to something that the subscribers have asked for. I believe the fans and drivers are being punished more-so than the owners. I'm still a fan of the forum, and I hope to see you and Rick at Desoto during happier times in the future.
Take care.

-Name withheld by the editor

  Charlotte-Sunshine Fan
Sunday, April 9, 2000  



  FSP Fan
Sunday, April 9, 2000  

Thank you very much for the report of the Saturday night modified race in St Augustine. Our "local newpaper" the St Augustine Record gave us about 2
I will be passing your web page address to all my friends and fans of racing.

Jason Lowe

  Pro late Models
Sunday, April 9, 2000  

I watched the Pro Late Models (PLM) last night for the first time and had anticipated that they would post some impressive lap times compared to our local LLM series. According to my stopwatch however, the PLM's were consistently running in the very high 15's and low 16's throughout their race while the LLM's were posting mid to high 15's per lap.

Did I misunderstand what the purpose of PLM's were? I thought they would be a "step up" from LLM, and run faster lap times. Actually, they were a bit of a disappointment.


  British Invasion
Sunday, April 9, 2000  


We are in the Fort Lauderdale area for 7 days from May 9th, could you tell me if there is any sprint car racing over that weekend in South Florida?

Many thanks,
John Adey,

  Sprint Car Racing
Friday, March 3, 2000  

I thought I would tell you that I enjoy reading you articles. You
probably don't remember this but for many years my father raced the Florida Sprint Car Circuit. His name was Pete Crocker and the car number was 3X. I miss him as well as the sprint car racing that was popular during the 1970's and 80's. Keep up the good work. I will continue to read your articles.


  British Fans Love FLorida Racing
Thursday, March 2, 2000  

Dear Sir or Madam.
I was given your name by American race fan website who thought you may be able to help. Myself and seven of my friends are fulfilling a dream by coming over to Florida in the second week of may (we live in the u.k). During this time we wish to see as much racing as possible in the Florida area and were hoping that you may be able to advise us on the best places to go and the dates/locations of these races.
In the u.k we do have racing but nothing beats real American racing.
The best import of yours we have is the brilliant "Legends".
I hope you can help me and my fellow friends in our quest.

-Best wishes Tristam Barden

  Unhappy with Safety
Thursday, March 2, 2000  

Hi there,I agree with the fun part, but as far as Auburndale is concerned, Martino DOES NOT care about safety,and $1000 to win??? ROFL, not happening there!!! We have been lucky to have a track so close. But I must
tell you, Martino has favorites, and its ALL about the $$$, not the enjoyment of the fans or racers, have you ever been there and sat on those bleechers? Its scary, and they are alot of things he was supposed to do and is just now
getting around to doing to try and keep the place. I know there will be bitchin and moanin and every track, I am not new to the sport,but I think the safety of the spectatators is a #1 priority,and I also believe that Saturday night racing should be fun,BUT SAFE. I am not alone in what I say about Martino,you'd be suprised how many people are tickled hes gonna go,I'm sure hes a nice man at times,but I 'll be glad when he goes somewhere else.
Thanks Stephanie

[Note:letters we recieve at Florida Stock Car Racing are reprinted as is or not at all]

  Palm Beach Speedway
Friday, February 25, 2000  

I am a resident of an adjacent community that too disapproves of the
proposed motorsports complex. I do not support the opinions expressed inthe Jupiter Farms or Caloosa negative letters to the commissioners. Wherewere the same concerns when the county proposed and completed the North County Airport? I am constantly buzzed by the noise of airplanes that as Irecall emit not only polluting noises but also exhaust emissions. In addition, the county disturbed over two miles of wet land to build an access road into the airport.

For those that ignorant in motorsports competition, mufflers have been
in use in stock car racing for over twenty years and are efficient in the reduction of noise. In the case of engine lubricants and coolants being discharged in the environment, there is no deliberate discharge. Racing chemicals are too expensive to discharge freely. In the event of accidental discharge, more care is taken at a racing facility than the shade tree mechanics that reside in either community.

As for the 3/8 mile track at Moroso Motorsports Park, talk to the
owners about what the county imposes in development restrictions in order to develop land that is free of vegetation. Our brilliant commissioners appropriated some county funds to promote motorsports in Palm Beach County, then invoke their delirious property improvement law which requires Moroso to purchase 15 acres in order to break ground for construction of the oval.

Lastly, most of the residents in both communities have horses and
think nothing of hauling their horses to equestrian facilities to compete or practice their sport. It would be a conscious effort for parents to be involved with their children in a facility that is designed for motorsport activity rather than releasing them into the environment along the Loxahatchee C-18 Canal, drainage canals
in the communities, or on the community streets which by the way is

-A fan

Wednesday, February 2, 2000  

Hi , What a great site. I spent many Fri & Sat. nights With Dave and Will both. They both drove cars for my father during the 50,s & 60s At this time i don,t have any pictures but will try to find some. Would be int. in any thing during 50,s - 70s. Golden gate, Tampa fair grounds.The old pig pin down town tampa. I have lots of great memories ffom then. Thanks Again for the great site. Racer all ways. Robert Mc Clanahan.

  Golden Gate Speedway
Sunday, January 16, 2000  

I truely wish it were still around , most of my child hood was spent there. My father and mother both worked there so I pretty much grew up there. My favorite driver was Jack Arnold , although I liked them all . I remember everything from the big tractor tire in turn four to the wooden tower in the pits. How we all loved those late night
protests that kept us there till the wee hours of the morning. I also
remember the feeling of standing in the flag stand , until Johnny Hicks would tell me to get down again. My father and uncle both worked in the pits, so it was great being able to go in the pits and see the drivers up close , even if they were about to have a brawl. The Dery's were very nice people to be around , including every one I ever met there. I can sometimes still hear , and smell the fumes from the sprint cars, although that was a long time ago. So although that's all I have I'm grateful to have that.I was born on December 6, 1968. I still remember the FLORIDA 200 , the figure eights , the bombers, sprints , early models and even ANDY CAPICE. If there are some more of you out there I'd be happy to read your stories.

Thanks, Billy

  What's Florida Racing Really Like?
Sunday, January 16, 2000  

I live in New York the land of DIRT Modifieds but my wife and I are strongly considering relocating to Florida. (It could have something to do with the foot of snow we got last night!) We haven't really decided where, but we're thinking about Orlando, Lakeland or Stuart.

As someone who likes to be able to go to good racing 2-3 nights a week, the racing scene is a pretty important part of my decision. I wanted to get your honest opinion about the state of short track racing in Florida. What are the best weekly tracks?

I have a preference for dirt track racing, but I just want to see good car counts, three-wide action, etc. While I was raised on Northern DIRT Modifieds, I could learn to like Late Models and I have to sheepishly admit that a lot of times, the Street Stocks put on the best show of the night.

In short, competitive racing of any type will fit the bill.

I am a race promoter in NY, so I'm also trying to get a feel for the area to see if I'd be interested in getting involved in promotion in Florida. And, my observations from your site.

1. Promoters should get rid of time trials and go to money-won handicapped heat races and features. It makes for a much better show. It actually makes guys race for their money -- and is more entertaining for the fans.

2. One of the threads has been standardizing the rules at area tracks. As someone who's a promoter with a DIRT track, standardized rules -- even if they're not perfect -- are the WAY TO GO! Our DIRT Mods are more expensive than they need to be BUT with the same set of rules at 20+ tracks, drivers will make the investment because they know they can travel all over and race. DIRT has been very successful at developing its tours -- in 1999, the 358 Mod series drew 50-60 cars per race -- while DIRT member tracks average 25-35 Mods on regular races. This is because the rules are the same at every track on the circuit.

The promoters have much more to gain by having common rules than they risk losing -- i.e. "star drivers." By having standardized rules, more drivers will consider moving to that division because they want to travel; if you can give them an economical package while letting them run 2-3 nights per week, they will support you.

In my opinion, in regards to standardized rules, cheaper is better. Try to put rules in place that will keep the costs of the cars down -- sure, let the big dollar Late Models come in, but handicap them via weight, smaller tires, gear rules, etc., etc. -- so the more limited, lower-cost cars have a very competitive chance.

3. SAFETY. In reading your message boards, I have to admit that I am really
concerned about the driver injuries/fatalities -- is this just a bad streak
of luck or are the problems that serious?

At my track, we ran Enduro cars every week, but it being a dirt track, we slicked the track down with water before turning them loose -- some people called it "cows on ice" and it wasn't racing in the traditional sense, but it dropped the "racing" speeds to about 35-40 mph -- we had an excellent safety record while still having a very affordable division. And the best result was that about 10 of our regulars are moving up to our 4-cyl. and Semi-Pro 8-cyl. divisions, so it was a great way for drivers to get started.)

4. I'm very intrigued by the Classic Cars -- they sound like a very
affordable division. I have to admit that I have a real soft spot in my heart for economical but "racey" divisions. When I lived in PA., I fell in love with Micro-Sprints (I think you guys call them Modified Midgets?).

Anyway, is the situation in Florida similar to other parts of the country -- runaway costs mean dropping car counts, less competitive racing, fewer fans, etc. etc.? I am a firm believer in sensible economy divisions.

Actually, I've just found out about cars called "Slingshots" -- they are 5/8th scale DIRT Modifed and Late Model cars. Turn key, they go for $5,300; ideal for 1/5th mile tracks, but can run on 1/10th to 1/3rd, with a top speed of 70 MPH. A SPEC division with a 600 cc Briggs and Stratton motor.
The cost to run them is dirt cheap -- tires are $25, wheels are $14. But the cars look "racey." Do you think there'd be any interest at all, or are there already too many tours. (I thought these cars might fit the bill because they look sharp, can run at kart and stock car tracks and are fairly affordable.)

Thanks for your time and keep up the good work with your site!

Bill Smith



 O'Reilly Southern All Star Dirt Racing Series Fast Facts, Talladega

 A Simple "Thanks" Will Help

 My Hope for 2008

 Short Track Racing is Going to the Dogs

 The Big Showdown That Never Happened

 Avoiding the Summertime Rainouts

 Is Racing Clean And Sober?

 Is Florida Speedway Co-operation All That Important?

 "Bathroom Wall" Revisited

 Wrecks, Black Flags, O My!

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