We are pleased to announce that the tentative date for the 4th cartalumni reunion will be October 17, 2020 in Indianapolis, Indiana. We will finalize the date and venues by the end of March. Looking forward to seeing you at the cartalumni reunion!
Wally Dallenbach Sr. enters the MotorSports Hall of Fame of American
By: Raymond Dock| January 30, 2020
One of the most popular of the early 1960s Modified drivers, Wally Dallenbach went from the Northeast Short tracks to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to the Hall of Fame. And along the way, Dallenbach changed motorsports forever. To get the whole story of Wally Dallenbach and his amazing career we should start at the beginning. Wally Dallenbach was born December 12, 1936 in East Brunswick New Jersey. Dallenbach’s interest in racing began at an early age. When he was 15 years old, a young Dallenbach modified a 1938 Ford Coupe into a stock car. Dallenbach was too young to drive at the time so he built and campaigned the car for two years as owner and mechanic. When Dallenbach turned 17, he began drag racing. In 1959 he built and raced Buick-powered cars including a blown rear-engine Dragster. He earned eighty wins over the next five years. When he turned 21 he began oval racing at tracks up and down the east coast, earning several wins during this four year period. Wally Dallenbach was fast gaining a reputation for success on which ever track he raced on. In 1965 opportunity came knocking. Dallenbach got the opportunity to drive an open cockpit racer at the Champ Car event at Langhorn in Pennsylvania. You didn’t have to ask Wally twice. By the way he finished 9th in his rookie outing. Langhorn was the beginning of a career that lasted until 1979. During Wally Dallenbach’s professional driving career, he enjoyed success and definite high peaks in his driving career. Along with many top 10 finishes he won five times and three of those victories came in succession during the 1973 season at the Milwaukee 200, the Ontario 100 and the Ontario 500. Dallenbach had 13 Indianapolis starts with a best of fourth in 1976. We should note here that in 1975, Wally had the race won but burned a piston while dueling with A.J. Foyt for the lead. He had been leading when he retired on lap 167. Sad thing is, the race was called a handful of laps later when the race was stopped. In 1980, after retiring from driving the year prior, Dallenbach was named the Competition Director for Championship Auto Racing Teams and then in 1981 he became CART’s Chief Steward a position he held until he retired in 2004. During his tenure as Chief Steward, Dallenbach improved the on track safety programs and established nondenominational church services at the race track for Drivers, teams and their families.
While Wally Dallenbach has seen great success in many types of race cars from modified, sprint, stock and open wheel cars, his greatest contributions to his legacy have been his charities that benefit from the Colorado 500 dirt bike ride that he started with friend Sherm Cooper in 1976. Since 1981 more than 2 million dollars has been raised for scholarship funds, medical centers, teen services, scouting and U.S. Forest services and many others. As stated in the motorcycle museum, The Colorado 500 has also had a great impact on preserving trail riding areas. In 1995, the Colorado 500 applied for Great Outdoors Colorado Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) grants. These grants were used to enhance trails and roads used by the event. More than $400,000 has been applied to the U.S.F.S trails used by the ride. In 1996, the Colorado 500 established a legal defense fund to preserve trail riding in Colorado. In 2001, noise limits were adopted for the ride, which now holds tech inspections for noise-level compliance. Wally Dallenbach should be very proud of what he has created for the environment. Since his retirement Wally Dallenbach, along with his wife, Peppy, spend most of their time on their ranch tending to their fairgrounds, cabins and private restoration garage near Frying Pan River in upper Basalt. But Wally is not a newcomer to being inducted into halls of fame. He was inducted into the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame and the New Jersey Sports Hall of Fame for his exploits at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. Dallenbach was also voted into the American Motorcyclist Association Motorcycle Hall of Fame for his work as founder and president of the Colorado 500 invitational charity motorcycle rides as well as voted into the Colorado Motorsports Hall of Fame. After all the accolades that Wally Dallenbach as achieved in his life, thus far, it comes as no surprise that he should be inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America. Those of us that know you, worked with you and are fans of yours we say to you a big congratulations on your induction into the MOTORSPORTS HALL OF FAME OF AMERICA. Bravo UNIT ONE, Bravo.
Sad to report that safety pioneer and friend of all the racing community Bill Simpson has passed away. Lets keep his family in our thoughts. ___________________________________________________________________
INDIANAPOLIS SPEEDWAY AND INDYCAR SOLD TO PENSKE CORP.
Wally Dallenbach and Others elected to Hall of Fame By: Robin Miller | July 5, 2019 3:03 PM Wally Dallenbach, an Indy 500 veteran turned race official who brought safety to the forefront of open-wheel racing and two of the biggest men in motorsports, literally and figuratively, Tiny Lund and Ivan “Ironman” Stewart, head the 2020 Motorsports Hall of Fame of America. In one of the largest classes in recent history, motorcycle maven Chris Carr, stock car champ Red Byron, car owner RickHendrick, publisher Floyd Clymer, drag racer George Montgomery and the versatile Jacky Ickx join that trio above and will be inducted March 16-17 at Daytona Beach, Fla. Dallenbach, a 13-time starter at Indianapolis before becoming the respected chief steward of Championship Auto Racing Teams in 1979, became appalled at the lax conditions of safety at many tracks, so he organized a special safety team of firemen and paramedics that began traveling to all CART races in the early ’80s. It set the standard for motorsports worldwide, and that model and the professional responders helped save the lives of Alex Zanardi, Mikhail Aleshin and James Hinchcliffe. At 6-5 and 270 pounds, DeWayne Louis Lund captured the 1963 Daytona 500 under heroic circumstances. He pulled fellow driver Marvin Panch from his burning car during practice for the ’63 Daytona Continental and replaced Panch for NASCAR’s biggest race. Tiny also captured 41 Grand American races and three titles of that short-lived series before losing his life at Talladega in 1975. Another big man, the rugged 6’3″ Stewart became the king of off-road racing in his 20-year career, and grew his legend by driving Baja by himself instead of having a teammate. He won 84 desert races – including three Baja 1000s, 17 Baja 500s, eight Mint 400s and four SCORE championships. He also dominated Mickey Thompson’s off-road series. In the world of flat-track motorcycle racing, Carr was king in the early 2000s, earning five of his seven AMA grand national crowns from 2001-2005 while piling up 78 wins (second of all-time). He also competed in the Super Bike series and set a motorcycle land speed record of 350.8 mph in 2006, only to best it three years later at 367.3 mph. After being wounded in air combat during WWII, tail gunner Robert Byron spent two years in the hospital recovering before returning to racing. He drove midgets and sprints prior to the war, but came back to stock cars and had to bolt his leg brace to the clutch pedal. But that didn’t prevent him from winning NASCAR’s first-ever championship in 1949 and the inaugural race on the beach. He retired in 1951, and became a chief mechanic for Briggs Cunningham before dying of a heart attack in 1960. A car dealer who dabbled in driving, Hendrick has forged his reputation as the most successful team owner in NASCAR history with 12 Cup championships and a staggering 254 victories. His breakthrough came when he hired USAC star Jeff Gordon in the early ’90s and followed that up by putting desert racer Jimmie Johnson in one of his stock cars. One of America’s top motorcycle racers in the 1910s and 1920s, Clymer then became an AMA promoter. But his legacy was built on his publishing business, where his annual Indianapolis 500 Yearbooks and Motorcycle Topics and Cycle magazines cornered the market. Today they are considered valuable reference books and his Indy history remains one of the most popular purchases at memorabilia shows. A native of Dayton, Ohio, Montgomery became known as the “King of the Gassers” in capturing eight NHRA titles from 1959-1968 – most of them in his Chevy-powered Willys – and also won four U.S. Nationals. His George’s Speed Shop in Dayton may be the oldest such enterprise in continuous operation in the United States. Ickx, son of a Belgian motorsports journalist, was a prominent F1 and sports car driver from the late ‘60s into the mid-1980s – including a then-record six victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. But his North American sports car record is what put him in the MSHOF. He won the 1979 SCCA Can-Am championship and multiple World Sports car Championship (WSC) wins, including the 12 Hours of Sebring twice, Daytona 24 Hours, Mosport 1000k and Watkins Glen 6 Hour on three occasions.
Motorsports Hall of Fame of America Class of 2020 Nominees: Wally Dallenbach
Nominees for 2020 Induction into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America (MSHFA) represent 48 motorsports legends, champions and innovators in eight different categories. The Class of 2020 finalists that will make up the 32nd Induction Class will be announced in early July in Daytona Beach. Here’s a look at one of these Heroes of Horsepower on the ballot that could be voted into the MSHFA in 2020. : Wally Dallenbach, Sr. (1936-) (Driver, Official, Safety Pioneer) — New Jersey-born Dallenbach had substantial success as a driver and then went on to become one of IndyCar racing’s most effective administrators. After competing in the inaugural Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART) season in 1979, Dallenbach became its first Director of Competition and remained as Chief Steward until retiring in 2004. It was Dallenbach’s idea to establish the CART/Champ Car Safety Team, which set new standards for at-track safety services and saved many lives. After racing homebuilt stock cars and drag machines as a teenager, Dallenbach moved up to major league racing at 26, placing sixth in the second of two 40-lap qualifiers at the 1962 Daytona 500. He began his IndyCar career three years later, starting 180 races in 15 seasons, driving mostly for Tassi Vatis, Lindsey Hopkins and U.E. “Pat” Patrick (MSHFA Class of 2018). He scored five IndyCar wins, the first three in succession in 1973, including the Ontario 500. Patrick was his car owner for all five. Dallenbach’s best Indianapolis 500 finishes were fourths in 1976 and 1977.
We now have a new page on our website, The Members Only page. You must have completed a membership form on the website: https://www.cartreunions.org/join-cart-alumni.html to be considered a ‘member/alumni’ in order to access this page. The Members Page will give you information regarding future reunions, other events, merchandise availability and other ‘items of interest’. It will be the ‘first to know’ page for members so keep coming back and checking in.
ATTN: All CART Alumni Members and Participants. The CART Newsletter will now be the primary outlet for news and information about the reunion. You must be a member of CART ALUMNI to receive the newsletter. If you have not signed up to be a member, you can go to our website, cartreunions.org, and sign up. We will be having some exciting news in the next few months about our next reunion. So, register as a CART ALUMNI member, and be the first to hear about it.
A Thank You from the President: As we close out on the third CART Alumni Reunion, it is time to put into print my sincere thanks to all the people and organizations that made this year’s event such a remarkable one. Please do me the favor of reading all the way through this as the comments are sincere and deserved by all. I usually say, “On Behalf of the Organizing Committee”, but this is just one from me. I’m sure they all share in my thoughts. I would like to thank, in no particular order, Our host, Chip Ganassi Racing, for both offering and allowing us to take over their tremendous facility for our event. Thanks of course to Chip, who has supported us from the very first day we had announced this - saying personally to me - “Whatever you need Paul.” Thanks to Managing Director Mike Hull, who, in a conversation at Road America with Brett a few years back, offered up the idea of the use of the shop for the event. It became a reality. The Ganassi staff including Shop Manager Grant Weaver, Special Events Coordinator Kris Keech, Gary Rovazzini, and the team members that were on-hand to explain sub-shop functions. A special shout out to Linda Rosenberg of Commotion Promotions for all of her great help with all of the additional takeaways and awards for the event. Thanks Linda!! All deserve a huge thanks for all the help, support, and concern that our event at their facility would be one to remember. For all of us and especially those whom had never been in a shop before, it is sure to be just that. Thank you to the Catering Staff and Bar Management Staff from Dawson’s who served a wonderful meal and did it without asking a single question. They came in, did their work, and then disappeared without our attendees noticing anything. It was not only delicious but the process was seamless. Well Done! The 1911 Grill acted as our headquarters on Friday night, and the staff welcomed us with open arms and made us comfortable in every way. You can always tell when a vendor is happy with the event when they inquire as to when we are going to do the “next one”. We appreciate the 1911 and all of the other locations in the downtown area that offered us discounts to make the event a little easier on the pocketbook. Our thanks to Owen Snyder and Dallara for offering an inside look at the manufacturing process of today’s Indy car. Not many people have had the opportunity to see what we saw. We thank Dallara for hosting the tour on Saturday morning. Thanks to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for offering us discounted tickets for the Red Bull Air Races that were held on Saturday & Sunday at the track. And, thanks to the Speedway Museum management for allowing us a 50% discount on all admissions by participants of the reunion. Both are rarely approved and it is greatly appreciated that they offered this to us. A special thanks goes out to Beth Rovazzini, a member of the Speedway Chamber of Commerce and liaison to so many of the vendors and contacts that we needed to communicate with. It made it so easy to have some “feet” on the ground to work with the locals. If we asked about it, she knew where to get it or how to get it handled. Our hotels this year, The Hampton and The Residence Inn, offered us some outstanding discounts on accommodations right in the vicinity of the main reunion event. I also wish to thank Gatsby’s Bar & Grill for accommodating our participants with discounts on food and beverage.
At the Reunion itself it was an honor to have the opportunity to introduce the speakers that were willing to help us remember the “days”. I wish to thank Wally Dallenbach, Gordon Kirby, Jim McGee, Andrew Craig, and Hunter Floyd for contributing to the event as they did. It’s never boring. And, we need to recognize our sponsors that help to make the reunion a success from a logistical and financial standpoint.
Chip Ganassi Racing, 2015 – 2016 - 2018 Fritz Enterprises, 2016 - 2018 Performance Tire Service Company, 2015 – 2016 - 2018 Team Penske, 2015 - 2016 - 2018 The Craig Company LLC, 2015 – 2016 – 2018 AR1 (AutoRacing 1), 2016 – 2018
Without their generous and consistent support, we would not be able to put on the event as we do. Our sincere thanks to all of you
I thank four people for their assistance with all the audio-visual-media expertise. Bob Davidson and Scott Randall took this area over at the event and handled it without a hitch. David Miller helped us convert a lot of the old files into useable “rolls”. In addition, in advance of the event, Mel Poole drafted a lot of the announcements and scripts that were distributed via the website or Mail Chimp. My thanks to all.
And then there is the Organizing Committee, who volunteers and sacrifices their time for the sake of the event,
Mary Kite - her quiet wisdom always has input for us all especially when the situation we are working on might be delicate or sensitive. Bill Luchow – one of the “founders” of the event itself, has been there from the true beginning and helps in all ways he can even though he is mostly calling in from on the road. We missed him at the event this year due to work, but he was there, getting some of the feeds live. Billy Kamphausen – for whom without this event would not take place, as he contacts and follows up with all the actual or potential sponsors and makes sure that they are happy with what we do. He does this job like he patrolled pit lane - like an “Energizer Bunny”. Susie Jensen – the Secretary of the Organization and the person who does so many of the “little things” which we all take for granted that there are too many to count. We rely on her to follow up on so much and is our proofreader of everything that gets published. Trust me, no detail gets past her. Brett Crabtree - the Vice President of the Organization and the person who has the thankless job of sending out all the emails, the Mail Chimps, and the design, posting, rearranging, and constant minor adjusting of the website. Without him there would be no website, and we would not have the communication links that we have established. The members of the committee listed above are the people that deserve all the credit for putting on this event. Trust me, without each and every one of them, there would simply not be a reunion event. I believe that they did a fine job, again. Thank you.
But most of all I want to thank all of you who attended this year’s event, as well as the previous ones. You are what this is for and you all are what makes it special. As tough as the work gets sometimes, or gets frustrating, it all simply and rapidly melts away when the family gets together in the same location, and we see faces not seen as often as we did in the past, able to enjoy their warmth and company.
That’s what a family does when it gets together. For that is truly what we are…family.
Thank you – one and all. Paul J. Leyton President, CART Reunions