Lakeside Speedway....a 1940's-era 3/4 mile race track near Denver, NC. Not much info on this one, other than it was near Lake Norman and is now covered by a housing development.............duh.
updated by @bobby-williamson: 12/05/16 04:08:38PM
This is proving difficult to find....
HOWEVER, the search led me to one of the best documents on Southern Auto Racing that I've seen and I HIGHLY RECOMMEND it.
Published in the July 2007 edition of the North Carolina Historical Review, the piece is titled THE AUTO RACING BUSINESS IN THE EMERGING SOUTH by Dr. Randall Hall, Editor of the Journal of Southern History.
The article has outstanding info on southern auto racing in the very early days and continuing through the 50s.
There are some astounding photos, such as Bobby Myers holding a very young Chocolate Myers beside a Confederate flag draped concession stand at Peace Haven Speedway in the 1940s and a photo of the start of a 1948 NASCAR event at Greensboro. There's a 1930s era photo even of Big Bill France in his open wheel car at Lakewood in Atlanta and a mid 1930s photo of the big cars at Raleigh.
Did you know that the legendary Sam Nunis who taught Chris Economaki the art of race promotion began booking races after he was severely injured driving a car at a 1925 Concord, NC race?
You have got to read this piece if you have any interest at all in southern auto racing history. Excellent, excellent reading.
Here is the link to the pdf file, which may take several moments to load:
Great find, Bobby. If you find any dates for races there post them and I'll see if I can find anything at the library.
There was another track near there named Iredell Speedway outside of Statesville, NCin 1948 that the big name drivers raced at. Curtis Turner won the first race. I have a couple of articles and an ad, but I still can't figure out exactly where is was. I believe it was a half-mile or more. I'll post what I've got if you're interested.
Robert, don't know if this is one of the articles, but it appeared last year in the Statesville paper:
A look back at the short-lived Iredell Speedway
By: Joel Reese
Statesville Record & Landmark
Published: June 03, 2011
Have you ever wondered why Iredell County doesnt have a stock car track? Would you believe it has something to do with Sunday morning preachers and some milk cows?
Iredell County could probably claim to have more connections to NASCAR than any county in the country, but we lack just one thing a race track. But you know what? We used to have one.
Local history researcher Rodney Kennedy found a full-page ad in The Statesville Record on March 27, 1948, Announcing the Official Opening of the New Iredell Speedway, Inc. Sunday, April 4th, with 100 laps of Fast Stock Car Racing. The ad stated that the new Iredell Speedway would cater to the Racing of the Stock Car Type and Possibly Some with Real Racing Cars. The new track sat eight miles north of downtown, off the Turnersburg Highway.
Ed Lowe and J.H. Church, incorporators of the speedway, announced plans to run a series of stock car, race car and motorcycle events at the new half-mile dirt track. The track had taken a year to construct and featured a grandstand for spectators with free and ample parking along with refreshments.
The tracks first race, held April 3, 1948, featured 29 drivers competing in two 10-lap heat events, a 20-lap consolation and a final 60-lap main event. The track was watered and sprayed with calcium chloride to keep the dust down. The entry list included: Bill Snowden, 15; Curtis Turner, 41; Otis Martin, 92; Johnny Grubb, 28J; Jim Cook, 3; Pap White, 4; Bill Blair, 2, Buck Baker, 3; Pee Wee Martin, 19; Leon Sales, 30; Bernie Sales, 60; Bruce Thompson, 0; Alfred Thompson, 1; Charles Allison, 22; and Shorty York, 39. NASCAR Hall of Famer Curtis Turner won the first main event at the Iredell Speedway before a crowd of several thousand.
Other racers to compete at the track over the next few months included Ed Samples, the 1946 national champion; Marshal Teague, Billy Carden, Buddy Shuman and Jimmy and Speedy Thompson. Turner returned to victory lane, winning $500 on June 13, 1948, beating Glenn Dunaway before a crowd of 5,000 in the 22-mile main event. Three cars hurled over the bank at the north turn, but no drivers were injured. The Iredell-Star Motorcycle Club sponsored an AMA (American Motorcycle Association) race at the speedway on June 27, 1948. Alex Sing beat little Joe Weatherly by a nose. General admission to the event was $1.50 and grandstand seating was .75 cents.
On Oct. 24, 1948, the Statesville Record featured an ad from the Iredell Speedway proclaiming, For the First Time in North Carolina: Hot Rod Auto Races. The ad featured a photo of Hot Rod racer Glenn Weaver of Bristol, Tenn., and explained, A souped-up, stripped down stock car is the definition of a Hot Rod. These little cars which are claimed to be much faster than a stock car have been clocked in California, where Hot Rod racing began, at speeds up to 150 miles per hour. On April 18, 1949, a 100-lap stock car event sanctioned by the Interstates Racing Association was held at the track. The race featured brothers Al and Jimmy Thompson, sons of former racer Bruce Thompson of Monroe.
So what happened to the Iredell Speedway and its fans? Jimmy Alley of Troutman remembers getting grounded by his mom and dad for running the family car on the speedway and dragging the sideboards in the dirt. He also remembers the local dairy farmers in the area near the track complaining that the noise and traffic from the races was bothering the local herds.
Apparently a lot of the trouble came from the fact that the races were held on Sundays. State Sen. C.H. Dearman purposed Senate Bill 193 prohibiting racing in Iredell County on Sundays. In 1949, Chapter 374 (S.B. 193), An Act to make it Unlawful to Operate or Conduct Motor Vehicle Races in Iredell County on Sundays was passed. Section 1 of the law read, That it shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation, on the Sabbath Day, generally known as the Lords Day, to operate or be in any manner interested in or participate in the operation of any race track or other places at which the racing of motor vehicles, including racing cars, stock cars, motorcycles, or other types of motor vehicles, is carried on in Iredell County.
The new law shut down the Iredell Speedway for good. The Dec. 19, 1949, issue of the Landmark noted that the Iredell Speedways Certificate of Incorporation had been suspended by the state due to failure to file certain reports and payment of franchise taxes. J.H. Church, who had operated the speedway, turned the track into a fishing lake covering more than three acres. A photo in the Statesville Daily Record on Jan. 12, 1950, showed Church and Clarence Estes with a 13-pound carp at Churchs Lake. The location today would be on Church Lake Road between Highway 21 and Old Mocksville Road.
Could the Iredell Speedway have one day become a NASCAR track? Consider this. The North Wilkesboro Speedway opened May 18, 1947, less than a year before the Iredell track opened. The Hickory Speedway opened in 1951. The Charlotte Motor Speedway was not built until 1959.
Can racing ever be brought back to Iredell County? Perhaps. I hear Kyle Busch already made the inaugural first lap on Perth Road outside Mooresville and put down a speed of 128 mph. Not on a Sunday, of course.
Joel Reese is the local history librarian at the Iredell County Public Library.
Well, you and Newt can just stay down there in Georgia, then!
Remember what happened in South Carolina at Darlington regarding Sunday racing?
"The inaugural Rebel 300 was held as a Convertible race on May 11, 1957, only to be delayed by rain and raced on the ensuing Sunday (May 12), drawing a fine for promoter Bob Colvin for violating South Carolina blue law."
PattyKay, never having met you in person, I didn't realize you were short like my wife (her nickname even today getting ready to turn 65 in May is SHORTY). I haven't seen any prohibition in Jeff's ROE about short writers or tall writers contributing, so feel free to keep commenting from your "low" perch!
By the way, here are a few current Georgia laws.... I think I'll stay in NC and let you and Cody and Johnny deal with these:
* If an organization non registered as non-profit fails to register their raffle with the local sheriff, that group risks paying up to $10,000 in fines and spending five years in jail.
* While Georgia operates its own lottery, it protects its citizens by making it illegal to promote a private lottery.
* The term sadomasochistic abuse is defined so broadly, that it could possibly be applied to a person handcuffing another in a clown suit.
* All sex toys are banned.
* It is illegal to use profanity in front of a dead body which lies in a funeral home or in a coroners office.
* Members of the state assembly cannot be ticketed for speeding while the state assembly is in session.
* Donkeys may not be kept in bathtubs.
* No one may carry an ice cream cone in their back pocket if it is Sunday.
City Laws in Georgia
* All citizens must own a rake.
* If you want to read your favorite book in public to your friends, do it before 2:45 AM.
* It is illegal to sell two beers are once for a single price. For example, a bar cant run a 2 Bud Lights for $5 special.
Though being forced to close your business is bad enough, Athens-Clarke County forces one to obtain a license before holding a Going-Out-Of-Business sale.
* Goldfish may not be given away to entice someone to enter a game of bingo.
* Owners of mules may not allow their animal to roam around Athens unsupervised.
* Persons under the age of 16 may not play pinball after 11:00 PM.
* It is illegal for one to make a disturbing sound at a fair.
* On Mondays, it is illegal for one to whistle very loud after 11:00 PM.
And on and on and on by Georgia city and county.... now don't be the pot calling the kettle black!
According to Dave's post.........."The location today would be on Church Lake Road between Highway 21 and Old Mocksville Road."
Searching Google Earth there is a small lake off of "Church Lake Road", and the faint tell-tale traces of arcing paths can be "seen" at each end of the lake. Could this be the site of the short lived, 1/2 mile Iredell Speedway?
Bobby, check out the separate thread I made last week about Iredell Speedway including articles and aerials of what I think is the old track.
Here is Lake Wood
DIrtshooter, here is a thread we did about Lakewood Speedway a few years ago. Lets us know if you have anymore info.