Let's go back in time to 1993 and a Wolverine State hook to start the season at Imlay City, MI. This film is a little different in that the first 20+ minutes are spent on a pit walk checking out some of the iron that showed up to run. Please enjoy responsibly!
I grew up idolizing the Daytona 500. Growing up through the 80s, I found so much to love in the (let's admit it) factory silhouette cars and the men that piloted them. There was so much history there and all of it richly told. In this year of insanity, it is a happy accident that I am reading a book detailing the chassis histories of another, some say more, famous 500. We are in the midst of our out of phase Indy 500 preparations and the Speedway has a history of its own to be told I am only now awakening to. From the 60s right through the 90s, so much hot-rodding went on there and there truly has to be more to the story. From the bird-chirping radial supercharger whine of the Novis, to the turbo Offys and Fords, the turbines, psychotic turbo Chevys, turbo Buicks, The Beast "Mercedes"... gasoline, methanol, NITROMETHANE. Offset chassis, tire stagger, tire wars. The Brickyard has a lot to tell and I find myself craving more of it. One place, as an announcer, I aim to replicate is the cold opens of the ABC Broadcasts of my youth. Surely pulling has a story worthy of being told in the manner Paul Page still gets me with today when introducing the 1991 version... of Indy! I aspire to starting more shows with intros on this level.
1999 Ft. Recover, OH Lawrence Kline Green Gate Savage JD Alcohol Super Stock. This began life as an evolution of the Barnyard Beast (it would be the last under that name). Kline would run it for just a couple of seasons, before handing it off to Dave Sonnentag and then Heat Weilnau. It was an aggressive runner that had it's share of wild rides to go with the power it was making.
1999 Allegan, MI Arnie Kwiatkowski Wild Thing CaseIH MX270 Alky SS. There was lot going on in 1999. Rollcages were a new thing and everyone was struggling with adjusted chassis setups, trying to back up to the sled while looking through the monkey bars, and just the aesthetics of the thing. The Kwiatkowski's first alky Wild Thing was sold to Ken Measel after the '98 season after quickly establishing dominance. The team regrouped with a new design that still wasn't full component. There was ag parts in the rearend, but we were getting real close. The first version of Wild Thing would house an OHC 504ci Brent Long mill with 2 HUGE turbos on it in an attempt to make something happen in the Light Super, too. To my knowledge, they never actually tried to run it as an LSS, but it did prove to be a force against the 598s of the day. Within 2 years, a 650 would find it's way in and a more conventional 3 charger setup as well.