Positivity - By Bobby Gerould
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I was saddened to hear of the passing of Tom "The Rabbit" Abreu. Abreu was a popular driver in the NARC series in the seventies, and eighties. The native of Honolulu lived in La Grange, CA. for 23 years. He was an automotive mechanic. Memorial services will be held at Lake Don Pedro Owners Association, in La Grange on December 18, 2005, at 12:00PM. ...I also want to send my condolences to the Jacobs' family who lost Kenneth "Jake" Jacobs. Jake, father of drivers Kenny, Bud, and Dean, and grandfather of drivers Lee and Cody Jacobs, and Trevor Phillips, was a former winning driver himself.
MOPAR is adding a bonus for their teams at the Chili Bowl. If the winner of the A-main feature event utilizes a Mopar powerplant, that driver will receive a $10,000 bonus. The 20th annual O'Reilly Chili Bowl Midget Nationals are set to run January 11-14, 2006.
...Dig if you will a vision of Reno, Nevada. The 'Biggest Little City in the World' hosted the RPM Promoter's Workshop at the El Dorado Hotel and Casino. An impressive gathering of racetrack and sanctioning body executives from the world of short track racing turned out to attend seminars, and hold face-to-face meetings. This was the second year for me to attend. I admit to being naïve about how much work and responsibility falls to the race promoter. Suffice it to say that in three years of getting my feet wet from the business side of the sport I have a much deeper appreciation for those that put on racing events. The meetings in Reno annually set the table for the next season's calendar. The El Dorado Mezzanine seems to hold rank as the top meeting place for anyone, and everyone. You look left and there is Cary Agajanian, one of racing's most highly respected lawyers. You glance to the right and see Carlton Reimers, the longtime World of Outlaws executive. Dave Argabright walks by. Shane Carson says "hey". Representatives from Antioch Speedway, BCRA, DIRT Motorsports, CASA, NSRA, and Placerville Speedway have all chatted in the last hour. …I met up with USAC Western VP Tommy Hunt, and USAC/CRA Series Coordinator Chris Morgan. We talked shortly thereafter with Steve Faria of Thunderbowl Raceway in Tulare. CA. …The USAC/CRA schedule should look similar to last year with a couple of exceptions (Tulare, and Antioch) that may come through if the stars align. Perris Auto Speedway will dominate the 2006 campaign again with the usual stops at Manzanita, Skagit, Tucson - USA, and Ventura. Dates are limited at Calistoga but we are still hoping that somehow someway a USAC/CRA event could happen there. …The Santa Maria Speedway, Kings Speedway, and Watsonville Speedway promoter situations are all up in the air. Tom Tarlton made a proposal to acquire the Hanford (King's) promotional duties but was denied by the Fairgrounds. Tom told us he thought he made a 'fair' offer which included reconstruction of several run down areas at the Hanford three-eighths. I've known Tarlton to be a good man and I wish something could have been worked out. The track in Hanford will now seek a new bidder. …There was talk of a new paved track in the Bakersfield area to replace Mesa Marin which closed earlier this year. …There is ongoing talk of the Riverside MotorSports Park in Atwater, CA. …I met a couple of dudes from Texas that have plans for a paved track just outside of Dallas. …The USAC Western Midgets can expect to visit Ventura, Bakersfield Speedway (Oildale), Stockton 99, Phoenix International Raceway, Irwindale, Tucson (USA Race Park), and maybe Madera and Tulare! ...Travel Guide for Reno December 8-10, 2005. …My room at the El Dorado was clean and therefore fine. I had two double beds on the 10th floor. I drove up to Reno by myself Thursday at noon. I stopped in Truckee for lunch which turned out to be mediocre fried rice from the local Chinese place. Once in Reno I dined with Tommy Hunt at the Brew Brothers Pub at Silver Legacy for Thursday dinner. We were looking for a place where we could eat and watch the Sacramento Kings basketball game. The food was good. A steak sandwich on garlic toast with fries was top-notch! …Day two included a lunch meeting with Hunt and Mike McCluney at the Tivoli Coffee Shop at the El Dorado. I had Wor Won Ton Soup that was bizarre in that the dumplings were fried and then put into the broth. They did have Mountain Dew! Our late lunch led to limited choices for dinner past 10 pm. I ended up eating Chips and Salsa from the pub. …Saturday lunch included another half steak sandwich and fries. To summarize, the Brew Bros. Pub gets high marks from HammerDown!
...I received an e-mail from Jimmy Patterson; Gary's boy. Jimmy wonders if anyone out there knows the story behind his late father's nickname the Dancing Phantom? It goes back to the hardtop days at Stockton. ...I'm sure I'll know more stuff after the Reno Promoters Workshop. I'm headed up there as a representative of USAC's Western Office. ...The National Sprint Car League deal has changed again. The NSL's original agreement with their teams was that an 80-race schedule would be produced. Barring a miracle comeback, an 80-race NSL schedule is not going to happen. We have been told that NSL teams were informed as such. In the meantime, the WoO/DIRT group has signed 14 teams to travel and is talking of 85-95 races. 15 signed teams get tow-money that helps keep the teams on the road. So right now the big question is what becomes of Steve Kinser and the 12 good teams from the NSL if there is no NSL schedule to race? Do they run with WoO? Do they pick and choose? Do they retire? WoO says it will welcome all teams, but again, only the signed teams will get the tow-money. …Jim Morrison notes that Billy Wease will run about "half of the NASCAR Busch Series schedule" in 2006. …Kody Swanson finished eighth in the special event at Orlando Speedworld. The USAC National sprint car race was won by Dave Steele. ...The World of Outlaws have added Jac Haudenschild to their roster. 'Haud' will drive for Rick Wright in the #35 in 2006. WoO also had added Ricky Stenhouse and Dion Hindi to the traveling group. ...The Outlaws will be back at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in 2006 as well as returning to Lowes Motor Speedway Dirt Track in Concord, NC. Both facilities are first class tracks.