November 22, 2013
On Saturday September 28th, during the Knoxville Late Model Nationals weekend, the National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame and the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame joined forces to present its annual Late Model 101 history seminar. The afternoon’s presentation, held upstairs at the Sprint Car Hall of Fame museum, was well received by a nice crowd of history minded fans. Special guest participants were Iowa stock car legends Verlin Eaker, Curt Hansen, Tom Hearst, Fred Horn, Ed Sanger, Ken Walton and Gary Webb. These fine gentlemen spoke on a number of events from days past and their great careers. A special thanks to National Sprint Car Hall of Fame director Bob Baker and curator Tom Schmeh for their efforts and hospitality.
While in Knoxville, a number of contributions were collected for our future expansion building fund. A very successful memorabilia auction was held, MC’ed by Kathy Krafka Harkema and auctioneered by Lynn Richards, in which a portion of the proceeds were presented to the Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame. We would like to also truly thank the personal contributions given generously to our Hall from supporters Michael Gibson, Denny and Brad Osborn of Waterloo Auto Parts, Gary Crawford of Crawford Farms, Doug Cue of Superior Cleaning Services and retired racers Ed Sanger, Ken Walton, Curt Hansen and Karl Sanger. Again, thank you all so very much for your kindness in helping preserve the history of our sport.
All contributions to the Hall are non-taxable 501-c.3 charitable contributions. Proceeds for our expansion building fund can be sent to:
National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame
3811 Berryleaf Court
Riverside, OH 45424
November 22, 2013
During Fall Classic weekend at Florence Speedway, Indianapolis businessman Fred King dropped by the Hall of Fame for a visit. He enjoyed the K-1 Russ Petro wedge car assembled and donated by Mike Bechelli. Fred was a long time sponsor and partner with Hall of Famer Petro during his heyday.
The Hall of Fame would like to make special mention and give thanks to our two newest weekly volunteers, Michael and John Klein. These two will be in the Hall assisting our curator Jim Klette. Thanks for your help, fellas.
November 21, 2013
The Hall of Fame has recently received the F-97 Racer campaigned a number of years by 2002 inductee Red Farmer. The car was delivered to our Hall of Fame facility by Red himself and long time Pennsylvania dirt late model campaigner Luke Hoffner. Luke, known as the “Turbotville Tornado” on the ovals, has raced for over 33 seasons and befriended the “Redman” a number of years ago calling him his childhood racing hero. The car was purchased from Red by Luke back in 2012. Together they brought the car to us for permanent display. A special thanks from all of us to both Red and Luke, two fine racers and great contributors to the sport.
October 8, 2013
Following its annual selection process the 2014 Class of the National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame was announced recently to the public. The upcoming class features five driving greats: Denny Bonebrake, Steve Francis, Bob Kosiski, Kenny Walton and the late Ed Gibbons.
Denny Bonebrake recently retired from competition following an illustrious career which spanned 45 years. A Maryland native, Bonebrake is one of Hagerstown, Maryland Speedway’s all-time winningest racers. Steve Francis, known as the “Kentucky Colonel”, remains active today and is a former World 100 and Dirt Track World Champion, along with countless major victories on America’s national circuits. Bob Kosiski, the patriarch of the famous dirt racing family from Nebraska, was a top contender on the tough IMCA stock car circuit and a short track winning icon for many years across the upper Midwest. Kenny Walton, a 1978 World 100 champion, has also a NASCAR Weekly Regional championship and multiple NSCA circuit titles on his long and successful resume. Ed Gibbons, a second generation South Carolina dirt star, drove to over 400 victories and was a top southeastern runner for a number of years until his untimely passing following an automobile accident in 2009.
This classes’ Contributing Category includes: Allan Brown, journalist, historian and founder of the National Speedway Directory; Renegade STARS and World of Outlaws late model group technical inspector Walter Burson; and long time prominent Iowa car owners Larry and Penny Eckrich.
The Hall’s Circle Track Magazine sponsored Sportsman’s Award will be presented to veteran Alabama racing great Red Farmer for his years of dedication as an ambassador to the sport.
The 2014 induction class ceremony will be presented at the North-South 100 weekend next August at the Florence Speedway in Union, Kentucky.
September 17, 2013
Recently we visited the Dirt Motorsports Hall of Fame located in Weedsport, New York. The site contains many classic dirt modifieds from over the years, one of which was driven by our own inductee Kenny Brightbell. Curator Jack Speno and Office Manager Pam Forney made us feel quite at home, and we look forward to continuing our relationship with them.
You can learn more about the Dirt Motorsports Hall of Fame at their website here:
The museum is located on the grounds of Cayuga County Speedway in Weedsport, New York.
July 9, 2013
The 2013 Induction Ceremony for the National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame is coming up Saturday evening August 10th, prior to the running of the North South 100 at Florence Speedway in Kentucky. This year’s class includes drivers Eddie Carrier, Darrell Dake, Bill Frye, John Gill and Willy Kraft, as well as contributors Bret Emrick, Joe Garrison and Jack Starrette. The Sportsman Award will go to Indiana’s Don O’Neal. Come and see these greats receive this high honor as we welcome them into the Hall.
Earlier in the afternoon a meet and greet will be held at the Hall of Fame building located in turn 4 at the speedway. Come join us and meet these greats of the game. An auction is also planned to raise money for the Hall at 1 PM, including a wide array of items such as many of today’s top racer’s panels, t-shirts and other memorabilia.
The 2013 Hall of Fame collectible program will be available that weekend with proceeds to help the Hall.
July 9, 2013
The National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame wishes to thank Performance Bodies out of Cedar Falls Iowa for becoming a support sponsor of the Hall of Fame. PB have been in business since 1980 and is a great place to go for all your performance needs.
On behalf of all of our inductees and board members, thank you for your kind support and for coming on board. Your generosity will help with our future and continued growth.
Get to know Performance Bodies here:
January 9, 2013
Late last year we received the unfortunate news that 2011 class inductee Rance Phillips of Jacksonville Florida passed away. He was 78.
Phillips will be best remembered for conquering and dominating the Southeast region of dirt track racing for more than 40 years. Over that time he racked up 10 track championships, and 700 career wins.
In 1981 and 82 Phillips brought home 77 main event trophies. He gained national attention when a bounty was issued to any driver who could beat him at Speedway Park in Jacksonville. Phillips continued to go undefeated and collected the bounty himself. He was later inducted into the Jacksonville Stock Car Racing Hall of Fame in 2008.
We here at the Hall are very sad to hear of the passing of the “Fugitive” and send our condolences to his family and friends.
December 28, 2012
During the North South 100 weekend at Florence Speedway last August we ushered our newest class of inductees into the National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame. Between the ceremonies and activities of the weekend, we were able to sit down and talk with our inductees a bit and get their reactions, as well as a bit about their careers.