by Paul Kuyawa
Well, don’t say it both myself and Dana have been quite this
winter. Sometimes things like this happen. I was taught a new phrase
by Dana to deal with the situation, it’s called FISH. I will let you
figure it out but I contains two of the best cuss words ever
Nothing much new here at the High Groove camp. I did have a chat
with the man of Anderson Speedway, Mr. Rick Dawson. Dawson has been
extending his hospitality to us for the third straight year. Dawson,
who broke his arm during last years Little 500 is up and about and
gearing up for the worlds richest and most prestigious asphalt
sprint car race the Payless Little 500.
Steve Sinclair has graced High Groove’s phone first a Wilmot
miscue and then it was business. I can proudly report we will see
Smoke this year and California’s superstar the young Kyle Larson.
Tony Stewart will be competing in his own number 14 Chevrolet sprint
at our favorite track the Plymouth Speedway located on the
picturesque Sheboygan County Fair Park on June 15, 2013. Larson is
next to grace the IRA at the Oshkosh Speed Zone in Oshkosh, WI on
June 21, 2013. You asked for it your getting’ it two of NASCAR’s
biggest stars running sprint cars with the Interstate Racing
Association. This report came directly from IRA guru Steve Sinclair.
If you have never seen this glorious race event you are cheating
yourself out of one of auto racings true great races. Dana and I
have been to the last two Little 500’s and have had the times of our
lives. It is a true pleasure of being with sprint cars elite.
Dave Sink, also known as Mr. Little 500 has a new column entitled
PavementSprints.com. He has extensive information for any one
needing your pavement sprint car update. Check out Sink’s Power
Ratings to see how your favorite pavement pilot is doing.
Many of the drivers that will see action in this years Little 500
are coming out of the Jim Hanks owned Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint
As of April those occupying the top spots in Sink’s power ratings
is Ronert Park, Ca. superman Jo Jo Helberg. Helberg has as heavy of
a right foot as anyone. Jo Jo has scored a Must See victory already
in 2013 at the Mobile Al. Speedway. He ran fourth at the Five Flags
Raceway in Fl. Helberg is the defending MSRXSS champion and set to
make it two in row. High Groove had the pleasure to meet this young
man and complete a Crowd Pleaser article for Sprint Car and Midget
Second in the Sink Standings is Ryan Litt of Canada. Litt
blistered the Five Flags Must See season opener at Five Flags Fl.
with a win. Ryan is back in his familiar 07 this season with backing
from BS&R Radiator. Look for the black and orange 07 to be a threat
when ever he unloads.
New column rules this year. If we right about we would like an
extendind discount on t-shirts or free is better. Help celebrate
Runnin’ the High Groove’s 18th anniversary. It’s been a long time
since we started and have been mooching free pit passes from track
operators and track owners. It’s still fun and makes me Happy,
Sitting third in the Sink pool is two time Must See champion Tamp
Fl. diver Troy DeCaire. DeCaire has another new team this year. Troy
will be driving for Davey Hamilton Motorsports, Hamilton, an
Indianapolis 500 veteran, will put a quality ride under DeCaire with
backing from TruFuel carring number40:1. DeCaire will also be
driving for the team of super owners Lenny Puglio and Dick Fieler
this one is expected to carry number 68.
Occupying fourth in Sinkville is Brian Gerster out of Fishers In.
With a new track record at Five Flags and a second place finish at
Mobile along with a another quick time award Gerster is poised to
take as much Must See cash as possible. Gerster drives for Dick
Meyers and the number 50m RAM Engineering team. For this years
Little 500 Gerster will be piloting the red number 27 entered by
Davis/Gerster with backing from Seal Wrap Repair Tape. While this is
a noble steed in the trusting hands of Brian, this writer would like
to see him put the Meyers car in the Little 500. This car is very
fast wherever they go and would be another super car to grace the
Anderson high banks
Looking to be another Sport Allen, my daughter says who? You may
need a few gray hairs to remember 1984, yes 84, to remember the
headlines this 13 year old made when running in the Little 500. Laws
in Indiana seem perfect for teen agers to apply their trade to the
This season a 14 year old from Valrico FL. will attempt to
qualfify for the 2013 Little 500. His name is Garrett Green, he
scored major points with railbirds finishing seventh at Glen Niebel
Classic at Anderson In.. Green had never turned a lap at Anderson,
nor had he run a non-winged car before. Not bad for being 14. Green
is part of a three car team owned by Gary Green, Garrett’s Dad. Team
Green will also bring along Florida pilots Brian Gringras and Mathew
Hall. Green may also do some dirt racing while in the Midwest.
Everyone head to Gas City after qualifying ends for the Little 500.
This is only a touch of things that will be happening at the 65th
annual Little 500. This is an awesome event culminating with a three
wide start of fire breathing 410 sprint cars for 500 laps around the
high banks of the Anderson, IN. Speedway. Be there or be square.
Ooops forgot to mention they all need to make two pit stops. How
does a direct drive sprint car get that done? Ask Chet Phillip and
Aaron Pierce both had innovations capable of changing things during
the Little 500.
Remember the week starts Monday May 20 with a MSRXSS
Since this is my 18th year I think some thanks are in order. The
late Doris Quinn gave me my first shot a long 17 racing seasons ago
in the Checkered Flag Racing News.
Dana, my daughter, who could ask for a better person to hang out
at the races with. She’s my daughter, yep she types, she’ll put you
in your place if you give her any lip, but most of all, my daughter
loves auto racing, I don’t know how that happened. Driver’s Dana
will love to meet you and give you some ink. She will do you proud
as she has me. I love you Dana.
Dr.Dick Berggren, founder of Open Wheel magazine. He once gave
this writer a second chance with a letter of denial and some
suggestions. With this guy’s help there was an IRA feature article
in Open Wheel penned by yours truly.
John Musser who is a Super Friend not too many get in this
category. This now retired school teacher from Kenosha has taught me
many things in life by just the way he acts and treats people. He is
a fabulous race chaser and simply a blast to go the races with.
John, I hope there are a few more trips together. I often give him
the business about being from Iowa about being the next great sprint
car driver. When I write about his ability to call pigs it’s the
truth. Suuee John you’re the best.
Carmen Manzardo, another Super Friend. I had the pleasure of
working on Carmen’s super-modfieds during the wonderful 70’s.Carmen
an IRA champion in 1977 bewildered most by running a big block
Chevrolet on an unconventional car that featured coil over shocks
and a bridge chassis that resembles today’s down tube cars amongst
other features that have been locked up in my brain since 1977.
Carmen and I remain best friends and talk weekly. I can report
Carmen is ok and refurbishing his motor home. Many thanks, Carmen
Kim Mock, another champion that deserves Super Friend status. Kim
and I spent many an hour trying to get corporate dollars to race
sprint cars . Trouble was we were not very good. We spent time and
money trying to figure it out. It was not until Jeff Robinson came
along, on lone from Manzardo, that Kim was off and winning races and
championships. Kim is privy to Buster’s Pappy’s Punching Palace and
Pizza Emporium. Kim is now the one that I call when needing a ride
to the races or a loan. He is also now known as IRA’s pit bull, Mr.
Mock I thank you.
Tommy Sexton Jr. a real gasser and he has been a good friend for
a long time. It was not until recently he started hauling Dana I to
the races when room allows. Tommy is good guy that can press the
down the throttle as hard as anyone. Tommy it was a pleasure to have
written a Crowd Pleaser about you.
Kelly Spease, a Super Friend, for a million years. This pony
tailed cat really knows how to make a sprint car go fast. His
set-ups sometimes sound unconventional but they get driver to
victory lane. He tells me all but I either forget or refuse to spill
my guts. Many do not realize this but Kelly is directly responsible
for at least three championships and has helped anyone that asked
and listened. His championships came with Rick Kelsey at the Kenosha
County Raceway and two IRA titles with Travis Whitney. Thanks Kelly
you will be paid back soon.
Jeff Robinson another friend that taught me a ton about sprint
cars. Jeff I had a blast it was a great run.
Todd Rhey, he is Jeff’s son. He owns and operates Rhey Graphics.
Rhey Graphics is responsible for all the really cool looking race
cars wherever he applies his artistic touch. He is also responsible
for the very cool High Groove Media Service decals seen on all very
cool and fast sprint cars.
Last but certainly not least is my Dad, Paul Sr. What can one say
about their personal hero and the best man to ever walk the face of
the earth next to our Savior Jesus. He took me to my first race and
allowed me to continue to follow cars going in circles for my entire
life. He reached into his pocket which allowed me to compete for
several years with the Badger Kart Club. He is a proud Grandpa.
Sadly Dad has been gone an excruciating eight years. Tears fill my
eyes as I write this. Dad look at lap one in the program for this
years Payless Little 500, turn up your hearing aids and hear the
announcer pronounce your name. Dana and I wanted to honor you. The
old beer commercial once said this one is for you. We will open a
cold one for you Dad. I miss you terribly most important I love you.
That’s all for now, as always, may God Bless. Remember next time
the IRA and we are Happy, Happy, Happy. Courtesy of High Groove
Winter in Wisconsin sucks, but its home. If you can put up with
some cold the spring, summer and fall are simply wonderful. I have
been in a self imposed hibernation for the most part of the winter.
It was a nice to get a phone call from one of the countries best
asphalt pilots, Tim Cox.
After last years Little 500 Tim’s Dad, Roger, adopted my daughter
Dana it’s been a great relationship since. Tim is not real sure of
his plans at this time. He will be making sure his son Jason Cox is
running up front in Dick Fieler’s sprinters as of right now. Plans
for Jason and Mr. Fieler are to run all the Must See Racing Xtreme
Sprint Series races and fill in with HOSS and Auto Value races when
they are available. This team is in its second year together and
both are happy with the arraignment. It is very rare for someone to
give two complete cars, truck trailer and all the goodies it takes
to go race., Mr. Fieler has done this for Jason and Jason is making
the most of it. I had the chance to talk with Mr. Fieler quite a bit
last year as Dana and I escaped Kenosha and wound up at the Cox
compound. This gentleman made us feel right at home never making
mention of his investment in Jason, rather how happy he was Jason
was driving for him. He realized Jason was short on laps but was
showing such improvement at every race and that he couldn’t wait for
the next race. We went to Salem with Tim and the family Dick flew
into Indiana just to watch Jason at Salem. He was genuinely happy
with a fourth place finish. “I know Jason has the talent to be one
of the best. I’m pleased that Jason and his Dad are taking such good
care of my equipment”. This is a true car owner that loves racing
our sport could sure use more owners like Dick Fieler.
A few notes from Tim, “Jason ran great in Florida and that made
the car owner very happy. Two thirds for his first trip south
certainly opened everyone’s eyes. I was told Jason was the fastest
They are in the process of rebuilding cars with the trip south
Tim told me he me “we really have not had winter to relax we have
been racing and rebuilding race cars”. We will take a trip to the
Cox shop soon and have more information as soon as possible.
While Tim is unsure about his racing plans someone please offer
this veteran wheelman a car to drive and he will put it up front.
Tim takes care of equipment is a true gentleman driver and would be
an instant asset to any racing team. Hire this guy quick.
As April arrives so does the long awaited racing season. While
there are several real good races coming up at some of our local
tracks the one Dana and I have been waiting for is the Pay Less
Supermarket Little 500 at Rick Dawson’ s Anderson, IN Speedway.
Those of us fortunate enough to have witnessed this spectacular
event cannot write enough good about the event. Traditional Sprint
Cars starting three wide on a high banked quarter mile and going
500 circuits is a sight that you have to see to believe. If you’re
near Anderson Indiana over the Memorial Day weekend do stop in and
witness this most amazing race. See it once and you will be hooked.
This is one of those races that as soon as it is over it leaves you
counting the days until next year’s race.
Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series kicks off their season on
April 13 at Five Flags Speedway in Florida. The following night the
winged asphalt pilots will take on the Mobile Int. Speedway in
Alabama. It’s then back to the Midwest for a show at Winchester
followed by the festivities of the Little 500 week in Anderson
Indiana starting on May 23rd with the Must See 60 winged race. The
rest of the week the wings come off for qualifying and the Little
500. Jim Hanks, leader of the Must See series has his boys hitting
the highway this year. In addition to the Midwest shows the group
puts on the winged sprinters will be making three trips to the state
of New York with two shows at Oswego, home of the Supermodifieds.
Check out the entire Must See goings on at their web- site
mustseeracing.com. All the news about the new Must See Supermodified
series as well as information about when the Must See shows will be
On the dirt side of things and closer to home the Interstate
Racing Association will open their 2012 season at the 141 Speedway
in Francis Creek, Wisconsin on April 21. Beaver Dam Raceway is next
on the schedule April 28 with the Wilmot Raceway hosting the IRA on
Saturday night May 12. Wilmot has five IRA shows and Beaver Dam is
on board for four IRA events and Plymouth has signed on for three
IRA races. “With the way the economy is and now the insane gas
prices I’m glad we cut the traveling down”, said Steve Sinclair.
Sprint Car teams should be able to do quite a bit of racing without
a ton of traveling. One of the five IRA races will be a challenge
race against the All Star Circuit of Champions. Those of you with a
little grey hair will remember the All Star shows that Wilmot
Raceway used to have during the 1980’s and 1990’s. These were always
excellent races when Bert Emick would bring his boys to Wilmot. This
race is set for July 21 and promises to bring in cars and stars that
haven’t been to Wilmot in some time if ever. This always equals up
the playing field for the locals. If you have been yearning for a
big show at Wilmot your wait is over. Now it’s up to the race fans
to show up and show track management that Southeastern Wisconsin is
still a great place to see a sprint show. Mark your calendars for
July 21. Another biggie on the Wilmot Schedule is a non wing USAC
Sprint Car race June 23rd. That’s right non-wing USAC sprint cars
are also making a return to the Wilmot Raceway. I am hoping many of
the local racers will shed the top side aluminum and come race with
the USAC boys. Once again race fans mark your calendar for this USAC
race come watch these guys back em in to the Wilmot Raceway. For
those of you who have never witnessed traditional sprint car racing
you’re in for quite a treat. The following night June 24 the USAC
boys will tow up to Angell Park in Sun Prairie for the second night
of racing in the land of cheese. Once known as the “Thunder and
Lightning” division of USAC the USAC sprint cars were once a
driver’s ticket to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Another treat for the open wheel lovers is a POWRI/Badger midget
doubleheader. On July 14th the POWRI/Badger boys will invade the
Wilmot Raceway. The following night July 15th Angell Park will host
the POWRI/Badger co-sanctioned show. That’s all for now as you can
see there is plenty of quality open wheel racing in Southeast
Wisconsin. Let’s all make sure we support these shows so there will
be more of these big shows for our entertainment.
Six points, six measly points, it could be the difference between
winning a heat race or setting quick time one night. Four drivers,
twenty five laps on neutral ground for the Must See Xtreme Sprint
Series Championship. This battle started at Salem Speedway in April
and will end October 1st at the Worlds Fastest Half Mile, the
Bristol Motor Speedway.
Four pilots still have a chance to win the 12 race series which
included asphalts most prestigious race, The Little 500 at Anderson
Indiana and now the Xtreme Speed Classic at the Bristol Motor
Speedway. Nineteen year old speed demon Jason Cox sits 34 points out
of first place. He will need a perfect night and some help in order
to capture the title aboard Dick Fielers sprinter. Jason has had a
tremendous season considering his age. A top five finisher on most
night Jason has opened many eyes. Sitting in third place is Santa
Rosa California’s JoJo Helberg. Helberg has come on strong in the
later part of the year winning at Salem, and Anderson JoJo drives
the number 7 Helberg Motorsports entry back by ADTS Alcohol and Drug
Testing Services, Pit Stop USA.com and All Star Performance
Sprinter. JoJo finds himself six points out of the lead. Sitting
second is Canadian Ryan Litt. Litt is two points back driving the
BS&B Radiator, OTC, Leaf Racewear number 07L racer. A consistant top
finisher Litt has himself in the right spot to win the Must See
title. Just like last year defending Must See champion Troy DeCaire
finds himself in a strange car going into the final race of the
year. Troy will be piloting the number 6 Davey Hamilton owned
Trufuel, Trusouth, Crystal Clean, Hoosier Tire, Royal Oak Charcoal
racer normally piloted by Mike Larrison. Larrison was injured in an
Indy Lights crash in Kentucky. DeCaire was quickly called up to
drive the potent Davey Hamilton racer at Bristol. “This is an
excellent car if I can do my job and stay of trouble I really like
our chances to win both the race and championship. It’s going to be
tough with Ryan and JoJo right there”, Decaire said.
If you’re fortunate enough to be able to go to Bristol this
weekend we envy you. This should be one heck of a speedfest as the
fastest short track cars in the world take on the world’s fastest
mile in Bristol Tennessee. Have fun and be safe. This race will put
a cap on a fabulous season. We need to thank Jim Hanks and his staff
for believing in something and going forward with it. There is more
good things on the horizon for the Must See Xtreme Sprint Series,
stay tuned for more information.
Kyle Flint who sits tenth in Must See points was awarded the
ultra prestigious Rich Vogler Memorial Scholarship. It’s off track
awards that show the quality of pilots on the Must See circuit. For
sprint car fans that have never taken in a Must See Extreme Sprint
Series race you have no idea what you are missing. Those that know
me know I have mainly a dirt background. Well I’m here to tell you
that the pilots of the asphalt missiles are the pavement equivalent
of dirt’s World of Outlaws. For out and out speed you can’t beat Jim
Hanks’ Must See Show the Xtreme part comes in when these brave
pilots buckle up and smash track records wherever they run. Side by
side action at 150 miles per hour is not uncommon.
Must See Extreme Sprint Series is on television. Cable network
Com-Cast brings tape delayed shows into millions of homes throughout
the nation. Keeping things on a tape delay is the only way to have
Sprint Cars on television. Hanks and crew have done a wonderful job
having Rick Benjamin and Tom Bigelow calling the races with award
winning author Dave Argabright calling the shots from the pit area
it’s a pleasure to watch on television.
Dana and I have checked these speed demons out at quarter miles,
third miles and huge high banked joints. We have yet to see a bad
show and like dirt we have made some wonderful friends. To all we
have met though the Must See Xtreme Sprint Series We are glad to
call you friends. Thanks to Kyle Flints Mom for showing us the Moon
Billy Balog had things his way this year with the IRA winning
twelve races. With an incredible five victories in a row over the
course of the year Balog also put together back to back victories
three times. Big track or small track it didn’t matter Balog simply
made the IRA circuit his personal playground in 2011. While I figure
the 17B team simply had their act together there are those that have
been complaining he may be fudging the rules. The IRA bunch went
over Balog’s racer with a fine tooth comb and called it legal, face
it guys they just have everything figured out. My congratulations to
the entire 17B crew.
Years ago Joe Roe was winning races and championships no one
accused him of cheating he was simply better than the rest. For
those making the accusations get over it guys Balog had you covered.
What will probably go down as one of the best Frank Filskov
Memorial race that I have seen Brian Kristan came home the winner.
Brian and second place finisher Tommy Sexton put on a heck of show.
For what ever reason these two seem to hook up and look out because
you know the slide jobs are coming. Kristan showed his strength
after being put behind Sexton on a restart. Brian kept his composure
and drove around Sexton back to the front. Sexton kept the pressure
on waiting for a mistake that never came. Kristan needed an IRA win
away from Wilmot just as Sexton did just a few weeks earlier at
Plymouth. Other IRA notables include three time winner Mike
Kertscher, Scotty Nietzel, Scott Biertzer and Mike Reinke each
scored IRA main wins. Outsiders Chad Blonde and Dusty Zomer also
occupied the IRA victory lane.
That’s all for now wish I we were going to Tennessee this
weekend. See everyone soon God Bless. You can reach us at email@example.com.
If someone had told us earlier this week that we would have had
the chance too go to Michigan to check out Jim Hanks’ Must See
Racing Extreme Sprint Series I would have needed to question their
sanity. Like most American’s we are struggling just to stay only one
lap down on the monthly bills let alone being on the same lap. I
need the Aaron’s lucky dog times ten to make my profit and loss
sheet right side up. I need to thank Tim and Jason Cox for letting
us “stow away” in their immaculate Ford Dually to Michigan as we saw
an absolute fabulous race from the time hot laps started until the
final checkered flag flew.
A huge crowd braved the heat and humidity as High Groove Media
Service unloaded for their initial trip to the Wolverine State.
Impressed is only the first words out of my mouth as Dana and I took
an immediate liking to Gary and Donna Howe’s immaculate 3/8 mile “D”
shaped high banks. Just looking at this speed palace from high above
the grandstand I just knew we were going to be in for a treat. There
were paved paths and entry ways all over the Kalamazoo grounds for
those needing to use a scooter, walker or any aid while trying to
motivate around a race track. This place, Kalamazoo, MI Speedway has
it all. On our visit the Must See Racing Extreme Sprint Series were
the headliner, they were phenomenal! Their late model class was top
notch also. If you in or near Kalamazoo Michigan during the summer
look up Gary and Donna Howe’s Kalamazoo Speedway, you will see some
racing you’re most likely not to forget. Dana and I look forward to
getting to getting back to Kalamazoo for another sprint car race.
Brian Gerster must like Kalamazoo as much as Dana and I do.
Gerster blazed around the 3/8 mile D shaped track with his sprint
car in 10.985 seconds. Now Gerster’s fate lie in his owns hands.
Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series roll an oversized pair of dice
to determine the invert for the A-main. Gerster rolled a ten putting
him outside row five for the big money race. “Great this puts Jimmy
McCune on the poll. Going into tonight McCune has won the last three
Must See races,” Gerster said. Jimmy McCune started the 50 lap
feature on the pole and was out front with a comfortable lead
cruising to what may be win number 4. Gerster was slowly closing on
McCune when disaster struck the McCune 88. A broken driveline
quieted The McCune Family Sprinter on lap twenty as Jimmy McCune
slowly and dejectedly parked his race car in turn four. This left
Gerster and his Dick and Debra Meyers owned race car on the point
for the last 30 laps of A-main racing. The MOPAR power under
Gerster’s hood was no match for anyone tonight. Greater led the
final 30 laps, after setting the evening’s quickest time.
A red flag on lap 17 for a nasty crash by Jason Blonde who
touched wheels with Jason Cox. Blonde ended up airborne slamming the
left rear of the car into the turn two concrete. Blonde was
uninjured but also done for the evening. Cox’s crew made some
repairs and returned to the fight. Canada’s Ryan Litt and defending
series champion Troy DeCaire put on a heck of a show over the last
25 laps battling for second and third. Litt bested DeCaire in the
Ron Kohler owned number 1 machine. Jason Cox put on a spectacular
show coming from the back after a lap 17 caution in Dick Fieler’s
number 40x for the fourth position. Geoff Kaiser rounded out the top
Without a doubt these Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series race
cars are the fastest short track cars on the face of planet.
Drivers Troy DeCaire, Jason Cox and recent Rich Vogler Memorial
Scholarship winner Kyle Flint all were flying the High Groove Media
Service colors for the first time in 2011. Drivers if you are
looking to get your team all the media coverage you deserve call us
at High Groove Media Service at 262-496-9446 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Where did you go over the forth of July this year? We went to the
Rockford Speedway to see the worlds fastest sprint cars the Must See
Xtreme Sprint Series. These rocket ships on the quarter mile high
banks of the Rockford Speedway were something that I knew was going
to be something to see. I wasn’t wrong. Right off the bat with time
trials the evening was in a word a “blast”.
In qualifying Indiana’s Jacob Wilson obliterated the track record
by over three tenths of a second! This has been a long standing
Rockford record and won’t likely be rbroken.
If you have never seen twenty winged 410 sprint cars line up on a
quarter mile, you don’t now what you’re missing. At the drop of the
green these cats took off like they were being chased by a pack of
Mike Larrison was out front setting a blistering pace until
disaster struck and he spun on lap 38. This gave the lead to Jimmy
McCune as he held off a hungry Troy DeCaire for the victory. Jo Jo
Helberg, Jason Cox and Canadian Ryan Litt were the top five.
These guys blistered fifty laps off Gregg McKarns speedway in no
time flat, I only wish it was longer. When the Must See Xtreme
Sprint Series comes back to Rockford plan on being here you will be
happy you did. Dana and I were. Great racing, good food, and
fireworks what else can a race fan ask for?
I had a chance to talk with several of Must See pilots here are
some of things going on in there lives.
Kyle Flint, who is the youngest of the Must See lead foots. He
drives the Flint Truck Service/ Dowker Chassis/ Scott Bailey Racing
Engines Sprinter and is a college student at Saginaw State Valley
University Kyle does a super job of balancing both school and
racing. Notice I said school first. Kyle is studding to be a
mechanical engineer and works on the race team there. Flint just
received the prestigious Rich Vogler Memorial Scholarship. This was
extremely important to Kyle’s twelve year racing career. Flint has
high hopes of taking that elusive checkered flag. Watching this team
it’s clear to see it’s a family affair. Both Mom and Dad Flint are
busy helping Kyle prepare the car at the track. Good people, I’m
happy to have met them at Slinger. Thanks for the Flint Racing hats
I also had a chance to talk to Jason Cox this the first time
since the Little 500. “The Little 500 was cool starting 32nd and
finishing 9th. I was voted Rookie of the Race and Most Improved
Driver of the race. I wasn’t real tired after the race it was when I
got out my butt hurt from sitting for two and a half hours.”Cox
said. Jason won an Auto Value Super Sprint Series race at the M40
Raceway. Cox has been a top five car at most races. Jason has a busy
schedule for the rest of the year as he plans to run a late model
and a non-wing sprint car at the 4 Crown Nationals at the Eldora
Speedway in addition to his pavement sprint car commitments. Nice
Jacob Wilson, the new track record holder at Rockford, is from
Crawfordsville, IN. He has been racing since he was six years old he
now has fifteen years of racing behind him. He started in karts.
Jacob has six years of sprint car experience four without a wing and
two with a wing on the pavement. “We’re finishing races which is an
improvement from last year. All our finishes have been in the top
five so far this year. Our only DNF is when we popped an engine at
the Little 500. I plan on running all the Must See Xtreme races,
some USAC and Silver Crown races the rest of the year,” Jacob said.
Darryl Guiducci and Team 6 R are responsible for the power on the
Defending Must See Champion, Troy Decaire was also at Rockford in
his Ron Kohler owned machine. He is the point’s leader right now
finishing in the top three in the previous nights while winning a
couple nights ago at Berlin Speedway. Everything has been going a
long pretty good. At the beginning of this year DeCaire didn’t have
a ride; Kohler picked him up and put him in a Beast with Ron Kercher
power. “We seem pretty strong right now a threat to win you knows
and that’s important. Ron is a super guy to drive for and truth be
known I don’t know what I’d be driving without him,”DeCaire said.
Last time High Groove saw Troy was at the Little 500 where he was
cruising in the top five until a water hose broke. Even while
talking about his disappointment at the years biggest pavement party
Decaire summed it up by saying “ these are man built machines parts
are going to fail once in a while”. Who knows what might have happed
he was running with the leaders Chet Fillip, Eric Gordon and winner
Chris Windom and for the Kohler team was a positive. This Must See
Xtreme Sprint Series titlist plans on hitting the rest of Jim Hanks
shows as well some other winged sprint car races, along with a
midget ride or two.
Next on the schedule for the Daddy and Daughter team of High
Groove Media Service is Kalamazoo, Michigan Speedway (hopefully) for
another Must See Xtreme Sprint Series show and then off to Wilmot
Raceway on July 23rd the Roger Iiles IRA Show.
A big thanks to Gregg McKarns and his staff for the hospitality
at Rockford Speedway. I’ll give the Howe’s at Kalamazoo Speedway a
pre-race thanks for their media hospitality next week. Apologies to
racer John Musser for missing breakfast.
That’s all for know God Bless, we miss you Sassy. See ya’ at the
After much planning, wheeling and dealing Dana and I headed out on
our first racing road trip. Leaving at midnight we made Indianapolis
by sun up, the Racing Capital of the World, this city breathes
racing. We wanted to see the Museum at the Speedway and we achieved
goal one checking out all the winning cars from days past. From
there it was out to Brownsburg. Sadly there are a lot of shops
empty. The Nine Shop of Steve Lewis was open so of course we stopped
and got the grand tour.
Anderson was next on the list. We checked in to the Holiday Inn
Express in Anderson, a perfect hotel to rest following a day at the
races. If you go to the Little 500 this is the place to stay.
Finally we arrived at the Anderson Speedway for bump
day. There are some tracks that could care less that the press is
there. Not the folks at Anderson we both were welcomed with opened
arms and the Cheeseheads were made right at home in Hoosier country.
It was Bump Day at the Payless Little 500 and a
couple drivers were waiting with sweaty palms waiting for to see who
will race at the 63rd running of America’s most unique traditional
pavement sprint car race. Ageless Jeff Bloom used Jacob Wilson’s
backup car to get in to the Little 500 putting Kyle Wiegand and his
Mike Blake owned racer on the trailer, at least for 24 hours.
Wiegand would later get in the race after Mike Ling’s car owner
scratched from the race because of the day delay.
With race day upon us I remembered a certain
restaurant that we visited on our last trip to Anderson. There is
one place to refuel that is Bob Evan’s. We were not alone in our
pick, race team after race team all piled into Bob Evan’s for some
excellent food and even better service. Just in case you missed it
the place to stay is the Holiday Inn Express and if you want good
food check out the Bob Evan’s. Both places are excellent and located
right in Anderson.
Back to the track on Saturday. Crews were busy
setting up their pit area in the infield’s figure 8 track. Veteran
Tim Cox pointed out that figuring out where to enter and where to
exit can be a little tricky especially after running 250 10 second
laps on Anderson’s high banked quarter mile. Dana met up with some
of the drivers she has profiled in her column Cravin’ Racin’. One
was Troy DeCaire now residing in Indy, Troy showed us his Ron
Koehler owned racer, invited us for a Jimmy John’s lunch and gave
Dana a t-shirt. Seeing her light up when one of her guys gave her a
shirt was priceless, thanks Troy.
With threatening weather popping up track owner Rick
Dawson and his highly motivated staff skipped some of the pre-race
pageantry trying to get the race going. Following hot laps, during
the autograph session it began to rain. Standing under the big top
Dana accumulated enough autographs to fill her checkered flag.
Someone recognized me and try as I may I couldn’t do
the same. It was former IRA sprint car racer Jeff Wilke. Jeff jumped
over the state line into Illinois and is now racing a MSA sprint car
with some success. Jeff turned into a front runner as soon as he
bought the former Bill Kojis Tognotti. We laughed about the good old
days as the rain seemed to stop.
Rain began falling harder as it approached race
time. The skies cleared and the Anderson track crew began to dry the
high banks. Within an hour so they began calling the drivers to
report to their cars. Finding a comfy seat lightning could be seen
just over the back stretch. What comes with lightning is rain and
before one car could get pushed off the clouds opened up.
We were scooped up by one of Anderson Speedways
track workers and brought back to the car in his golf cart while
others ran through the rain. It was after ten and with another hour
or two to dry the track it was announced the race would be held the
following night. This was NOT in the High Groove plans. We headed
back to the hotel to get some sleep.
Sunday morning and I watch all the loonies trying to
get into the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It was time to head home
despite the fact Little 500 was rained out. Or was it? Those of you
proud enough to have teenagers, especially those of the female
persuasion will understand what comes next.
I planned to return home on Sunday of the Memorial
Day weekend to avoid traffic. With the Little 500 rain date today
Dana turned on all her teenage power letting me know there had to be
a way to see the race. Even my wife Nancy got into the act to talk
me into staying. My problem was Chicago’s traffic and our
accommodations were up today, Sunday. “We can just drive home after
the race tonight”, Dana suggested. Home was about four and half
hours away, normally I can’t make it home an hour before falling
asleep ask the folks that I ride with. I gave in and was glad I did.
We were going to see the Payless Little 500.
Back to the speedway on Sunday and as usual we met
with open arms. I am so very impressed with Dawson’s staff and their
friendliness. Dawson’s crew explained they liked to make their
guests happy. That is the key word guest, not customers. Walt Disney
used the word guest in his mission statement, why do you think
visitors are so happy in Walt Disney World. Dawson made sure he
tracked us down to let us know we would not return to Wisconsin
without seeing the 63rd running of Payless Supermarkets Little 500.
He was right.
It was hot and we were soon summoned to the hauler
of Tim and Jason Cox. A nice breeze coming through and we were very
happy. Dana spent a lot of time talking with Tim’s dad Roger. He is
one cool dude that kept area racers in line using his flags to
perfection. Roger was one of the most respected race starters in the
Midwest and now has another granddaughter, Dana.
Watching fast qualifier Aaron Pierce bring thirty
three traditional sprint cars to start the race three wide is
spectacular. The race was great only one red for a frightening Tom
Patterson flip was the worst. The boys were well behaved with close
exciting racing. For a while it looked like Mr. Little 500 Eric
Gordon was going to bag number ten until Illinois driver Chris
Windom roared by Gordon with five laps to go capturing his first
Payless Little 500. Jason Cox was named rookie of the year just like
his father had done.
Dana was right I could drive from Indy after the
race. I did have some help she stayed up right till we hit Chicago
and our Garmin GPS, which we call the bitch because she is always
yapping. Tired yes, happy yes.
This was one of the best weekends this writer has
ever had. I would like to thank Rick Dawson from the Anderson
Speedway, Holiday Inn Express and of course Dana for making this
trip a reality. Dana and I agreed this trip was going to become a
family racing tradition.
Sadly a week after coming home our loved Golden
Retriever Sassy passed away. She was a loyal pooch who was always
happy to see us. Reminds us of a James Taylor’s song You Got a
Friend. We love you Sassy see ya soon.
Interstate Racing Association Sprint Cars is next on
the High Groove schedule at the beautiful Oshkosh Speedzone on June
17; this is one nice race track. Three time champ Billy Balog has
nailed the last two IRA shows. Mike Kertscher also has a pair of
victories in 2011.
Something from last year. Remember my knee pad
crusade, what color are the knees today Dave. Did the Saprano bunch
get you with the baseball bat?
That’s all, God Bless. You can find us at
Hibernation is what was happening here. Basketball
occupied our time with coaching my daughter’s team and watching the
Milwaukee Bucks on the hardwood courtesy of one of auto racing’s top
announcers Mike Babicz. Babicz held his annual Let’s Go Racing car
show at Lynch Chevrolet in Burlington WI recently with great
success. Mike goes through so much work getting this show together
all in an effort to promote the sport of auto racing. Our sport
needs more people like Babicz, he does more than most will ever
know. Mike is keeping himself busy with the Midwest Enduro Series.
However we miss his Let’s Go Racing Motorsports radio show and fans
at the Wilmot Raceway are being cheated out of Mike’s talent as the
Thanks to some wheeling and dealing Dana and I will
be seeing the Payless Supermarkets Little 500 in Anderson IN. This
writer has experienced the extravaganza in 2006 courtesy of sprint
car superstar turned Algebra educator John Musser and have always
wanted to return. With the 1970’s song “Indiana Wants Me” in my head
we made several deals to make this happen. Sprint car fans, if you
have never seen this event before you owe it to yourself to get to
Anderson Speedway on Saturday night May 28th. Thirty three of the
best pavement sprint car drivers in America and Canada start this
deal three wide on the wicked fast high banked Anderson quarter
There are also mandatory pit stops. Watching a
sprint car crew do a pit stop can be quite exciting. Cars are
required to shut off during refueling. One of the hardest things to
do is catch the push trucks just right so the driver can get back
Our own area superstar Park City IL champion Tim Cox
has a runner up finish to his credit in 2005 as he started
twenty-second and worked his way through the pack to finish second.
Going back to the early eighties Fox Lake’s Jim Moulis had a second
and third place to his credit. Treat yourself this Memorial Day
weekend and go to the 500 in Indiana. It’s the one were you can see
the entire race. It’s the Payless Supermarkets Little 500. Its 500
laps of non-winged Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series action that
you’ll never forget.
Tim and his son Jason Cox will be attempting to
start this year’s Little 500. Tim will be driving Tony and Deb
Swanson’s number seven looking for start number eight. Tim was the
rookie of the year in 2001 joining a list of a long list of
champions. Jason will be trying for his first Little 500 aboard Dick
Fieler’s Landrum backed number 40x machine. Both are Hoosier Outlaw
Sprint Series Champions.
After sorting through some old pictures I came
across an album of pictures and other neat stuff. One good hing
about our memories no matter what happens good or bad no one can
take them away from you. Simply precious.
Sammy Swindell and the gorgeous red Old Milwaukee
number one must have been the favorite on our first trip to the
Speedway in 1984. Slammin’ Sammy had the coolest tow rig at the time
also; to be cool you needed a crew cab dually with a sleeper and a
Chaparral trailer. Sammy’s deal like always was immaculate. He was
kind enough to pose for several pictures for me. I still have the
promotional card from Old Milwaukee and Motorcraft.
House cars were all the rage and they were all there
on the spring Ohio afternoon. Laverne Nance had the white and red 1n
that carried Sammy to his first two Outlaw championships. On this
day it was Doug Wolfgang behind the wheel. Proudly decked out with
the built by Nance Speed Equipment, Whichita, KS logo’s this was
going to be a car to watch. Wolfie didn’t disappoint he had the
Nance speedwagon against the cushion all day.
A young Brad Doty was aboard Gary Stanton’s
Challenger house car. Stanton’s number 75 had the slickest yet
simple paint job white with yellow, red, and blue stripes with
CHALLEGER boldly proclaiming whose talented hands put the powder
blue number 75 on the track. Doty was as cool then as he is now. I
had the pleasure of spending an evening with him while working for
Marie Winker. He had stories about everything.
Sitting in beautiful yellow, purple, blue and red
number 11 was smiling Steve Kinser. A Gambling man at the time
Kinser/Gambler Chassis Co. / Gaerte Engines and Goodyear Eagles were
the choice of King Kinser and most that were going fast. I do
remember Karl did not have the snazziest hauler, but that yellow
Gambler was as fast.
Jack Hewitt was right at home in the Briscoe number
5. Not real sure how Jack did but I think I remember he was on those
crazy Marsh plastic wheels at the time.
Most will remember the orange 21X OFIXCO Spl. Of
LLOYD K. $TEPHEN$ Challenger driven by the Flyin’ Shoe Ron Shuman.
Shuman was driving a Stanton built Challenger with Carbone power,
Hoosier tires and was proudly wearing the Stroh’s decals on Lloyd’s
missile which was sitting in victory lane when the day was over.
Watching Shuman run Eldora was an unbelievable sight. Mind you this
writer had never experienced the high banks of Earl’s palace.
Witnessing his Eldora run made Shuman one of my favorites. Tried to
get Shuman and the SCRA to Marie Winker’s Wilmot Raceway, came close
until funding ran out. Shuman did send me a box of his shirts which
I still proudly where.
Gil’s Drilling had taken over the Gambler House Car
with a young Bobby Davis Jr. at the wheel. This was a high pressure
much sought after ride. Davis made the most of it. The loud yellow
number 18 Gambler was probably one of the most recognized sprinter
with Kenny Rogers supplying cash for Gambler’s CK Spurlock who was
manager of Rogers music. Many a good driver parked there butt in the
Gambler, but it was Steve and Karl that helped Gambler to the top.
Pennsylvania’s Bobby Allen and his 1a was also in
attendance. Allen’s cars were not much to look at but were sure
fast. As long as he kept fluid it he was fine. Another favorite
because of his underdog status Allen could always be found near the
front on the bottom.
Challenging Sammy for the prettiest car and tow rig
was none other than the Al Hamilton number 77 Challenger driven by
Keith Kauffman. All red and gold, car truck and trailer was a high
dollar deal and plenty fast.
A few others that made the 1984 album included
Canadian Timmy Gee in his dad’s white and blue Yukon Spirit number
88g. Jeff Swindell was there in the number 80 B&L Electric sprinter.
Randy Wolfe showed up with the Keen Transport 5W from the east
Judging by some of the memorabilia I found 1984 was
a heck of a year for attending races. I have my 1984 Eldora pit
pass; Knoxville Nationals pit stubs, a ticket for the Indianapolis
500, ASA Late Models at the Milwaukee Mile and several USAC Midget
Looking forward to Dana’s first Anderson
extravaganza we hope to have great stories from the Payless Super
Markets Little 500 in a couple weeks that’s all for now. God Bless
Runnin’ the High Groove
By Paul Kuyawa
Ok I know it’s been a while, rotator cuff surgery
will do that to a person. I need to give a personal thanks to Kevin
Montgomery from the USA Raceway in Tucson, AZ for the hospitality he
extended while we were in Arizona. Those who know me can attest to
the fact that I am one of the most frugal guys on the planet. Our
motto if it’s free it’s for me!
Perfect weather seventy degrees in Arizona while
back home in Wisconsin it was twenty degrees. Seeing a non-winged
and winged show was just what I needed.
Seeing Sammy Swindell. Jason Johnson, Brady Bacon,
Donny Schatz, Levi Jones, Joey Saldana and so many others was to
Starting third Schatz simply had the field covered
he won by a very comfortable margin. Bring on the traditional sprint
cars. After starting in the sixth row, Brady Bacon raced his way to
victory taking the lead on the 18th lap from Levi Jones.
I did enjoy the traditional sprints over the winged
cars this night. Great racing warm temps, never did I think I’d be
seeing racing in November. If you’re near Tucson check out the USA
Raceway you won’t be disappointed. Oh yeh did I mention this was an
ASCS race. This means engines are limited to 360 cubic inches. Watch
the races and don’t worry about engine size. This was a great race.
Some of the High Groove 2010 Highlights,
Watching Dana start to enjoy racing as well as
starting to write about racing.
Thanks to my daughter, Dana I was able to talk to
one of the big three Doug Wolfgang! She did an article Robby
Wolfgang and happened to be looking for Robby; low and behold she
happened to get Wolfie on the phone as she called the shop. Before
she ended the call she asked Mr. Wolfgang if he would talk to me.
When she gave me the phone I couldn’t believe it. When he found out
where we were from he immediately brought up the late Billy Wood as
the best midget driver he ever saw. Way cool.
Our trip to Slinger, WI to enjoy the MustSee
pavement sprint cars and watching Dana meet Troy Decaire one of the
champions she wrote about was great. We also dropped in on the Cox
clan Tim, Jason and Cheryl. I have been friends with Tim going back
to his modified days and this year we got to be friends with Jason.
Dana also did an article on this years HOSS champion Jason. She
knows her champions.
My first trip to Oshkosh Speedzone was great. Get
there for an IRA sprint car race. You’ll enjoy yourself.
Watching Billy Balog race this guy is incredible.
Our trip to Elkhart Lake to see Nationwide practice
to us this was an event. We need to get in the pits next time.
Cousin Carl I’m still waiting for my 20 bucks. Your smile and wave
to my daughter was priceless.
Any conversation with my good friend Kelly Speace,
he has a vivid imagination.
Attending any IRA race it has so many interesting
characters, including all the “interesting” officials. I do need to
find out just what Fast Freddy has on the back of his 4 wheeler.
Drivers on the IRA circuit are great, 99% percent of them I can
proudly call friends.
My trip to the USA Raceway, clean facility and good
Hitching rides to the races with Kim and Phillip
Mock and with Tommy Sexton and his 83D team. Don’t be surprised if
we once again ask for your hospitality.
Getting articles about Brian Kristan and Tommy
Sexton Jr. published in the SprintCar and Midget Magazine.
Another borrowed ride to the races this time with
retired sprint car driver John Musser. I think this guy should be in
somebody’s Hall of Fame as soon as he turns 50. Not only can he
drive a race car, but he is a top notch algebra teacher, growing up
in Iowa Musser can call a pig with the best of them.
Any conversation with my good friend Carmen
Manzardo. Carmen didn’t have any bright shiny cars or huge haulers,
but his cars were fast. I am very proud to have worked on his cars
most importantly we have stayed friends since 1975.
Meeting up with professional race fan Jack Eckert.
This guy complete with huge motorhome and endless adult beverage
selection is an absolute blast.
Watching Dana use all her “resources” to work
herself into the NASCAR world. Her latest work involves a phone call
from Joey Logano. Imagine Joey Logano calling your house. Well it
happened and Dana did an interview with him that will be published
shortly. She is learning very quickly just how the system works. You
have to know somebody in order to break the ice. Dana thanks Mrs.
Deborah Logano for her help in getting the interview with Joey.
Myself I still can’t believe he called the house. I thought Dana may
have passed out. When she answered that call.