A Racing History Minute - April 12th, 1958, 1963, 1970 - Very Special

Tim Leeming
@tim-leeming
04/11/13 10:50:13PM
3,109 posts

"I can't say I was at any of these events but April 12th is of special significance to me and juding from the names listed in the finishing order of those events, they must have been great races as were many races back "in-the-day".

Those remarks are in quotation because I, The Legend, did not write them. Nor did I write what follows until you reach the stars (****) at the bottom of this post. This was submitted to me tonight by Randy Myers, someone I am very honored to call my friend. So, without further ado, verbatim, here is Randy's History Minute for April 12th:

Since the beginning of NASCAR, there were only four "Cup" events on April 12th before the "modern era."

In 1970 Pete Hamilton scored the win at Talladega Superspeedway in the Petty Enterprises Superbird edging Bobby Isaac for the top spot. David Pearson, Benny Parson and Cale Yarborough rounded out the top five.

In 1963, Orange Speedway in Hillsborough, NC hosted the Grand Nationals and Pearson bested Dick Hutcherson by three laps for the win with Larry Thomas, Ralph Earnhardt and Bobby Keck completing the top five.

In 1958, Speedy Thompson and Jack Smith were the only cars on the lead lap of the 200 lapper at Piedmont Interstate Fairgrounds in Spartanburg, SC. Junior Johnson, Eddie Pagan and Possum Jones completed the top five.

Also on April 12, 1958, Bill Myers passed George Dunn for the lead on the 7th lap of a 35 lap feature (Late Model Sportsman Division) at Bowman Gray Stadium (the track featured in Tim's April 11th Minute) in Winston-Salem, NC. With only 5 laps to go in the race, Myers pulled off the track into the hedge off turn 4 and passed away. Dunn went on to win the race and the following day Perk Brown drove the Myers car to a win at the Greensboro, NC Fairgrounds track.

In 1952, Buck Baker scored his first GN win at The Columbia Speedway over Dick Rathman, Frankie Schneider and Joe Eubanks.

******* The above words are verbatim from Randy Myers. The Bill Myers that passed away in 1958 on this date was the father of Randy. Bill left a great legacy in racing, but more than that, he left a son who cares as much about the sport as his father did. Randy Myers in not just my "social network friend", he has become a very special friend to me. It was Randy who removed my distain for the NASCAR Hall of Fame by inviting me to visit there with him. Turned out to be one of the most memorable days I've had in a long time.

When I started this History Minute series here in the Forum, I was hoping I would get comments from others with memories of events and that has happened. To have received the call tonight from Randy and the subsequent submission of his History Minute is more than I imagined.

Thank you, Randy, for giving us this very personal look back into the hertitage of this sport we all love so much. I know your father is very proud of you and all you have done and continue to do in and for the sport.

Honor the past, embrace the present, and dream for the future


updated by @tim-leeming: 12/05/16 04:00:58PM
TMC Chase
@tmc-chase
04/11/13 11:43:54PM
3,775 posts

Very interesting. Thanks Tim for the post and Randy for your sharing the info about your dad. I knew about Billy's passing in '58. I did NOT know the circumstances.

And by the way, I might have a little perspective on that 1970 Talladega win to post tomorrow.




--
Schaefer: It's not just for racing anymore.
Devin
@devin
04/12/13 12:31:12AM
606 posts

Wonderful history minute, Tim and Randy. Thank you.

And, if I may I'd like to add a history minute from 2 years ago on this date. Anyone recognize these two gentlemen? Taken at the Sporting News Grill during a live show on April 12, 2011.

Wally Bell
@wally-bell
04/12/13 07:32:07AM
83 posts

Thanks Tim, Randy..... And Devin....

Tim Leeming
@tim-leeming
04/12/13 09:49:45AM
3,109 posts

It was this picture of me which resulted in my termination of Devin as the "official Legend Photographer" as she had been previously instructed "NO SIDEVIEW PIC". I filed suit against her for liable for this unflattering picture but LOST as the Judge ruled that "truth is a defense to liable" and that the truth of that unflattering belly was all Devin needed to defeat me in court. Even these days, if Devin is around, I have my security detail take possession of her camera.

Tim Leeming
@tim-leeming
04/12/13 09:52:44AM
3,109 posts

Waiting ont he perspective Chase. I know it will be a good one and I can almost bet on the subject matter. I can't recall this morning, but was it the spring race of the fall race at 'Dega when Chief kept holding up the blackboard telling Pete to "EZ" as he had such a lead and Pete kept increasing the lead? I remember that well, just can't remember the specific race. I asked Chief later what would have happened if Pete had blown the win. Chief cocked his head, as he was very good at doing, and just looked at me as if I had just asked the dumbest question of the year! Lol. What a wonderful time.

Devin
@devin
04/12/13 10:04:05AM
606 posts

Ut oh, I think I may be in trouble....I forgot about your wishes when posting....but, history prevails! :)

William Horrell
@william-horrell
04/12/13 10:36:33AM
175 posts
Great info guys,learned something again. And yes Tim truth is a defense toLiability and I am having that same problem,lol!
Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
04/12/13 12:51:08PM
8,969 posts

Thanks, Randy for submitting this piece to Tim, especially for sharing the personal significance of this April 12th date.

And, Tim... I think Devin should be forgiven since she obviously had a mental lapse not seeing you wearing official Legend regalia at the moment of the photo in question!

I was in the room on numerous occasions when the Award named to honor Randy Myers' father and uncle was presented by the National Motorsports Press Association, but I was never more proud than the morning in New York City at the Waldorf-Astoria when it was presented to my mentor's race track, a track where I saw my first race, later sponsored races and a place I'd work for ten years. That year was 1988 and the recipient of the Myers Brothers Award was Richmond International Raceway, spearheaded and led by my dear departed friend, Paul Sawyer.

Below is a link to a very nice story in the Spartanburg Herald-Journal regarding the selection of the 1988 Myers Brothers Award winner by the National Motorsports Press Association:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=YOoeAAAAIBAJ&sjid=lc4EAAAA...




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
Randy Myers2
@randy-myers2
04/12/13 07:43:10PM
219 posts

Dave, your comments reminded me of these photos. If you can't grab them from the site, just e-mail me ans I'll send you copies if you dont have them. The Sawyer family is a special group.

Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
04/12/13 09:24:37PM
8,969 posts

Randy, thank you very much. In the bottom photo, Paul Sawyer is flanked by his older son, Wayne (L) and younger son, Bill (R), who today is the owner and operator of the 1/2-mile dirt Virginia Motor Speedway.




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
Randy Myers2
@randy-myers2
04/12/13 10:41:02PM
219 posts

Wayne has a great facility and is a Modified lover. He often sponsored the late Tom Baldwin, Sr's #7ny.

Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
04/13/13 10:14:41AM
8,969 posts

One small correction... it's Bill who has the VMS track and you are right, the late "Tiger" Tom Baldwin's black #7NY Modified could often be seen sporting RIR sponsorship courtesy of Bill Sawyer.

Richmond at one time staged the Tom Baldwin 100 Modified race also.




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
04/13/13 10:33:14AM
8,969 posts

Randy, here's a link to an excellent column written regarding the night of Tom's fatal crash. It gets into the relationship between Bill Sawyer and Tom Baldwin:

http://www.modseriesscene.com/archives/04/wn082304.html




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
04/13/13 12:44:30PM
8,969 posts




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
Randy Myers2
@randy-myers2
04/13/13 05:01:16PM
219 posts

Thanks for the info and the video.

Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
04/14/13 03:31:14PM
8,969 posts

Randy,

I forwarded those two photos Saturday morning to Bill Sawyer at Virginia Motor Speedway. Got an immediate "Thanks" back, with a note that they brought back a lot of memories.




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
TMC Chase
@tmc-chase
04/12/16 12:49:00PM
3,775 posts

Race preview and VERY brief race report for Buck Baker's win at Columbia on April 12, 1952.




--
Schaefer: It's not just for racing anymore.
TMC Chase
@tmc-chase
04/12/16 12:50:45PM
3,775 posts

Fonty Flock won the convertible division race at the Peach Bowl in Atlanta on April 12, 1956.




--
Schaefer: It's not just for racing anymore.
TMC Chase
@tmc-chase
04/12/16 12:57:45PM
3,775 posts

Ad for April 12, 1964 GN race in Hillsboro

Love the confident banter between Junior Johnson and Dick Hutcherson in this preview. Considering Hutch finished 2nd and Junior 9th, I'd say Dick got the upper hand that day.

Race report




--
Schaefer: It's not just for racing anymore.

updated by @tmc-chase: 04/12/17 10:06:38AM
TMC Chase
@tmc-chase
04/12/16 01:06:03PM
3,775 posts

One driver NOT in the field at Hillsboro was Jim Paschal in Cotton Owens' second Dodge.

Click article to open larger version in separate tab.




--
Schaefer: It's not just for racing anymore.
TMC Chase
@tmc-chase
04/12/16 01:11:09PM
3,775 posts

And as easy as it is to take potshots at NASCAR - then and now - the officials have always had a tough time working through scheduling logistics. ESPECIALLY when rain is involved AND when multiple races are affected. Check out the logjam BIll France's folks had to work through in early 1964.




--
Schaefer: It's not just for racing anymore.
TMC Chase
@tmc-chase
04/12/16 06:17:45PM
3,775 posts

April 12, 1958 - Spartanburg




--
Schaefer: It's not just for racing anymore.
TMC Chase
@tmc-chase
04/12/17 10:08:19AM
3,775 posts

Pic from April 12, 1964 Hillsboro race.

http://racersreunion.com/ed-sanseverino/gallery/17953/april-12-1964-hillsboro-nc-3-junior-johnson-6-david-pearson




--
Schaefer: It's not just for racing anymore.

updated by @tmc-chase: 04/12/17 10:08:33AM