The 105 winningest drivers MY EYES have seen - By Bobby Gerould - Last updated July 20, 2006. Rocklin, CA. …Here is a fun project that anyone can do. Try to re-trace all the races that you have been to in your lifetime, and list the winners of each feature your eyes have seen. It takes time; I've been working on my list literally for about six years. About once a month I take a few hours and dig through old programs, do Google searches, read journals, and use Kevin Eckert's website to try to find the race winners I saw. For the sake of clarity - I am including any race where I was on the grounds - even the ones I may have slept through as a three year old. My Dad was an announcer of super-modified, and sprint car events on the West Coast. From birth I went to West Capital Raceway (W. Sacramento, CA.) on Saturdays. Later, as Dad did more writing, and announcing we included Friday nights at Chico CA. and special events at Dixon CA. into the mix. As a teenager and college student I worked for NARC and hit all the major Northern California dirt tracks. Adult work for USAC, the World of Outlaws, and others has blessed us with the opportunity to see many tracks across the USA, and into Canada. The results of all this logging and work will be a historical log that I can always go back to for reflection. My list will obviously reflect my environment. It will not be a list of who I consider to be the greatest drivers ever. That would be subjective, and impossible. But I can scientifically list the best drivers I have seen. This list is a fun project for me and I hope you will enjoy the journey to naming number one. ...#105 Perry James Jr. - Elverta, CA. - 2 wins. #104 - Peter Murphy - Sydney, New South Wales, Australia / Oakhurst, CA. 2 wins. #103 Johnny Tiner - Rio Linda, California. 2 wins. # 102 Ed Organ, Napa CA. - 2 wins. #101 Lee Brewer Jr. - Memphis, TN. - 2 wins. #100 Johnny Pearson, Stockton, CA. two wins. #99 Dave Bradway SR - Fair Oaks, CA. - Two wins. #98 Mike Kirby. Torrance, CA. - two wins. #97 Blake Robertson - Visalia, CA. - two wins. #96 Andy Forsberg - Auburn, CA. - two wins. #95 Brian Crockett - Sacramento, CA. - two wins. #94 Rick Horton - Concord, CA. Two wins. #93 Jason Statler - Los Gatos, CA. two wins. #92 Larry Burton - Roseville, CA. two wins. #91 Rip Williams - Yorba Linda, CA. two wins. #90 Tyler Walker - Santa Clarita, CA. two wins. #89 Danny Smith - Danville, IN. two wins.#83 Mitch Sue - Live Oak, CA. - 3 wins. #80 Joe Hill - Sacramento, CA. - Three wins.
#88 Jason Leffler - Long Beach, CA. two wins.
e drivers I've seen win twice that haven't reached their racing prime yet is Jason Leffler. The 30-year old from Southern California is presently splitting time between the NASCAR Busch Series and selected open-wheel events. Both times I've witnessed a Leffler win, it was on the blacktop. I saw him grab Copper World glory at Phoenix International Raceway in 2000, and late last year - I watched with delight as he man-handled his Midget to a Turkey Night win at Irwindale. …Leffler owns three USAC National Midget driving championships. He won them in succession from 1997-99. He also was the USAC Silver Crown Champ in 1998. …In 2004 he won a NASCAR Busch Series event at Nashville Super Speedway. In `02 - Leffler won both the Hoosier Hundred (Silver Crown on dirt) and the Night Before the 500 (midgets at IRP). In 2003 a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series win at Dover, DE came to the 5'4" 140 lb. pilot. …Leffler won a record $20,000 for his 1999 midget win at the 16th Street Speedway's, "Summer Sizzle" in Indianapolis. …In my dealings with Jason - he has always been a cool cat. It became quickly and obviously apparent to me that Leffler loves racing and he has a sense for the history of the sport. I like that.
Leffler survives to win his second Turkey Night Grand Prix - By Robert Mayson Irwindale, CA. 11/24/05 ...Jason Leffler, of Long Beach, CA, won the 65th running of the Turkey Night Grand Prix for USAC Midgets Thursday night at Irwindale (CA) Speedway. Leffler, who won the first Turkey Night race held at Irwindale back in 1999, started on the pole for the 100-lap event and took the lead from Dave Steele, of Tampa, FL, on lap 53. "I called around looking for a ride and everyone told me that I wasnt good enough to drive their midget, so I had to build my own," Leffler joked. "It's great for me to be able to come here tonight and win after putting a last-minute deal like this together. Being from Long Beach, I used to go to Ascot Park (Gardena, CA) when I was a kid and this was the biggest race that I went to every year. With the Agajanian name here, it's real special to have my name put on this trophy." In addition to Leffler's victory in Todd Braun's Team ASE #32L K-K, two champions were also crowned. Josh Wise of Riverside, CA, won the 2005 USAC National Midget Championship, while Jerome Rodela of El Monte, CA, took home the Western Midget title. Rodela entered the evening seven points behind Robby Flock, of Murietta, CA. Despite having to scratch his primary ride after motor problems in time trials, Rodela was able to drive his VanDyne Engineering #25X Beast from the 23rd starting position to a fifth place finish, earning him the Western States crown by 18 points over Flock, who finished 15th. "It's a good thing that I brought my other car. I had it, so I figured I might as well bring it and it really paid off," Rodela said after winning his first Western States Midget Championship. "This is just awesome, and I'm at a loss for words." (Read it all)
Cushion Abusing Leffler Back in Midget Glory on Night Two of Chili Bowl - HD Staff - Tulsa, OK. 01/08/04 - Jason Leffler returned to his roots with a rim-riding Chili Bowl Midget Nationals preliminary victory Thursday night at the Tulsa Expo. Leffler, who now makes a living in NASCAR, held off 1988 Chili Bowl champ, Scott Hatton to earn the right to stand next to the Hooters girls. Hatton was runner-up, while the final automatic berths into Saturday's finale were taken by Tony Stewart, and Tracy Hines. Said the winner, “You try to go where everyone else isn’t at, so I went to the top and it worked out.” Leffler went on to say, “Tracy (Hines) said it coming up to the press conference, that the prelim nights are almost more intense than the finale on Saturday. You feel like you’ve got to get yourself locked into the feature. It’s intense, and it’s good to have it over.” (more)
Leffler's Weekend: HammerDown! - By Dick Jordan, 05/25/02 ...Jason Leffler of Long Beach, Calif. capped a great week of USAC racing with his victory in Saturday night's 57th "Night Before the 500" USAC National Midget Car race at Indianapolis (Ind.) Raceway Park. Leffler, who won the previous night's Golden "Hoosier Hundred" USAC Silver Crown race at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, fought off the determined bid of young Bobby East to win the 50-lap race on the .686-mile paved oval in his Mopar Parts/Finish Line Towing Mopar/Beast. Defending two-time race winner Kasey Kahne finished second ahead of James Chesson, Dave Darland and East. (more)
Leffler wins 50th Annual Hoosier Hundred - By Dick Jordan 05/24/02 - Indianapolis, IN. ...Jason Leffler of Long Beach, Calif. captured Friday night's Coors Light "Golden Hoosier Hundred" at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis, leading the final 10 miles around the 1-mile dirt oval in his Mopar/Team ASE Special. Leffler won the pole for the race with a speed of 111.300 mph but trailed outside-front row starter Tracy Hines for the first 90 laps. Hines began running out of fuel on a restart, allowing Leffler to take the lead he never relinquished. (read story & summary)