This week on Throwback Thursday, we look at great memories from Riverside (including one featuring a NASCAR Hall of Famer), an indoor race of the past, as well as some Florida racing as we close in on the start of the season.
- Before Speedweeks and the big track in Daytona, there were little stops along the way like the 20-lap NASCAR Modified race at Speedway Park in Jacksonville, Florida. In 1952, Speedy Thompson won this contest over Jack Arnold and Frankie Schneider. Thompson would never win here again, but this track was the site of the famous Wendell Scott win back in 1963.
- January is full of great historical races that were held at Riverside International Raceway (CA). In 1964, racing legend Dan Gurney beat Marvin Panch, Fireball Roberts, Bill Amick and Ned Jarrett in the NASCAR Grand National and Pacific Coast League combo race, the Motor Trend 500. Gurney won four NASCAR Grand National races in a row at the California track.
THE THIRD TURN: 1964 Motor Trend 500 at Riverside International Raceway
- It’s only fitting that we mention Hershel McGriff, who is bound for the NASCAR Hall of Fame this weekend. On this day in 1974, McGriff won the Permatex 200 at Riverside International Raceway. The Late Model Sportsman races would often have NASCAR drivers like second-place finisher Bobby Allison. The next day in the Cup race saw McGriff finish 10th, as Bobby Allison was fifth behind winner Cale Yarborough.
THE THIRD TURN: 1974 Permatex 200 at Riverside International Raceway
- In 1985, Rich Vogler won the first 100-lap Midget race for the Thunder in the Dome at the Hoosier Dome (IN). Vogler led 93 of the 100 laps beating Johnny Parsons and Ken Schrader. Vogler would go on to win again in 1987 and 1989.
THE THIRD TURN: 1985 Hoosier Dome Invitational at the Hoosier Dome
- On this day in 1997, Joe Ruttman won the NASCAR Truck Series race at Walt Disney World Speedway (FL). The California driver always seemed to run well in Florida. He was a World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing winner in 1972 and he was third in the Daytona 500 twice. He also ran the 24 hours of Daytona a handful of times and he won the ARCA 200 as well.
THE THIRD TURN: 1997 Chevy Trucks Challenge at Walt Disney World Speedway
-Photo credit: Steve Dykes/Getty Images for NASCAR