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BF's B.S. 04/08/01

Hello once again from sunny?, cold?, and sometimes warm Mtn. View, California. I have allot to cover from the past few weeks so here we go..... I have to give serious praise to my mother for the job she did over the past 6-8 months planning my dad's (Burt Foland) surprise 70th birthday party. She started with inviting family, then moved on to our 2nd family...racing people. That included driver's that my dad raced with, car owner's that my dad ran for, photographers, friends and race fans in general. I have to thank each and every one of you that contributed your time and effort to pull this thing off and did we ever pull it off.

The day started on February 24th like any other Saturday. I went over to see my dad in the morning and to see what he wanted to do on the race car. He made plans to go on a couple of errands and I used that time to go over to the hall where the party was being set up and planning where I was going to bring him in at. I told my dad that we had to be over at my brother's house by 5:00 p.m. knowing that we both usually run late and I didn't need to have him there until 5:45. When I returned to pick him up he was ready to go (a miracle in itself) and now I started to get nervous because it was too early. I then told my dad that we were going to make a stop over at the hall to visit a racing collectibles show and he could pick out his new present. I know that telling a fib isn't good but it was for good reason. We were getting ready to leave and now my dad tells me that we need to stop at a store and pick up a birthday card for my brother (also his birthday). Now I was supposed to call my brother who was waiting at the party to tell him that we were on our way. While my dad was in the store I called my brother and told him that we were running late. After my dad got back in the car I made like we had planned and called my brother and told him that we were going to make a stop and then we would be over. That was the cue that we were 5 minutes away and to get everybody inside.

When we showed up at the hall I also had a plan to have my neighbor park up front and when he saw us pull in he would then pull out, it worked to perfection as my dad spotted the opening and we parked and went inside. We were greeted with our "fake" racing memorabilia signs and we proceeded towards the door. As I reached for the door my dad informed me that he had to go to the restroom. Now I am thinking he will see someone in there or someone will walk in as he is coming out. That didn't happen as he came out and we stepped into the room to the chorus of SURRRRRRPPPPRRRIIISSSSSEEEEEEEE. I wish I could have seen the look on his face, but I am sure that it was priceless as he had to go back outside and collect himself for a couple of minutes. When he came back in he was joined by the people that car about him the most, his family, friends, and racers. To say that he was surprised would be an understatement. To say that he was happy would be an even bigger one. As the fully catered event was being made for dinner, the old San Jose Speedway announcer Kenny Takeuchi started off by announcing the proceeding with anybody that wanted to get up and talk. It was a great collection of racers and I estimated that there was over 2500 feature wins in the room with driver's in no particular order: Blackie Gejeian (also the old Clovis Speedway Promoter), Tommy Morrow, Johnny Anderson, Tim Joyce, Jack Walker, Chris Walker, Jamie Cavagnaro, John McCann, George Benson, LeRoy Van Connett, Nick Rescino, Howard Kaeding, Brent Kaeding, Burt Foland Jr. Lee Bandettini, Norm Rapp, Jimmy Santos, Mark Chaves,Walt James, Art Bigiogni, Floyd Alvis, Stan Sinn, Jonathan Foster, Jeff Elrod, Mike Andreetta, Ed Andreetta, Mike Cyrus, Lindsey Casto and myself. What an All-Star group and that was just the driver's.

Some of my dad's former car owner's that were in attendance included Jim Bohner from Fresno, or course the always fun to talk to "outlaw" Bob Miller, Arnold Chaves, Virg Bertuccio and the late Lenny Gonseld's son Jimmy. I also have to thank Dennis Mattish and Steve LaFond for some great pictures and clippings. Also thanks to some of the guys that have helped my dad through the years including Larry Clark, Shinichi Hirano, Bruce Traverna, Rich Leitner and his wife Stacy along with Darren Powers and Jonathan Foster. Besides those that I just mentioned a huge thank you go out to my many relatives that were in attendance and also helped not only that day but for the past few month keeping a secret from my dad (not an easy thing to do). First of all my grandmother Alice Costa who I love with all of my heart, my uncles Eddie and Larry Costa, my aunt Sandy and her husband Dan Barnard, aunt Patty Costa, Vera Coehlo and Betty Lyon, my cousins Leanne Pappas and family, Debbie Foland, Janet McCann and family, Stacy and Tim Taylor and family, Grant and Christy Costa and family as well as our long-tow awards winner Elsie Stedman and her daughter Beverly Burris. I wish I could name everybody that was there but there was over 200 people in the building so I want to thank each and every one that attended the party and I appreciate the love and respect that was shown towards my dad and our family.

My godmother Diane Melvin her daughter Dana (who helped a great deal with the decorations) and Steve Turnross along with my neighbors, Kurt and K.C Sampson and my mom's friend Terri who were instrumental in making this whole "dream" party a reality. Thanks again to everybody involved as I can't say it enough how much this 70th birthday party meant to my dad. The words that were spoken by the over 21 speakers were just great and a fun time was had by all.

I had hopes of running the USAC Western States Sprint Car opener in Irwindale but we had a problem when my dad was involved in an accident on the way home from the Copper World Classic in his motorhome. He is OK but the motorhome ( our tow rig) is totaled. We will now be on the lookout for a new tow vehicle and reevaluate our plans for the rest of the season as only time will tell. I just got back my paint work from Terry's Auto Detail in Fresno. I am biased but Terry Poznoff did a wonderful job as it looks great with a red and blue design that will surely catch your eye as I can''t wait to get it back out on the track. If you want to get some great paint work done feel free to call Terry at (559)268-8858.

A huge thank also go out to the guys at YAK Vinyl Graphics, Tony Iacobitti, Brad Scadden and Eric. The lettering looks great also, I really appreciate the hard work and anybody interested in some awesome lettering can call Tony at (408)920-0801.

I have been very busy as of late working the new parts trailer at the Golden State races for Kaeding Performance and we have come up with a very good contingency package to hand out at all the Golden State races. With 21 certificates to give away each night and nearly $40,000 worth of awards to give out for the year it looks like a successful season ahead.

BF's notes: Tim Kaeding started the season off right with a win at the Mini Gold Cup prelim night as well as sweeping the weekend at Chico and Placerville... Brent Kaeding took to the high scary side to take the 40-lap finale for his 4th Mini Gold Cup title, lapping up to 5th at the finish...Andy Hillenburg has been fast winning the opener at Hanford and has been strong so far this year... Jason Meyers started out in his car, then moved to Jr. Holbrook's car for a weekend before joining the Craig Cormack #20 team as he already has a 2nd place at Pevely to show for it...Cory Kruseman has been on fire so far in SCRA competition winning 3 out of 5 races...Fred Rahmer picked off his 100th feature win at Lincoln recently and also tied Steve Smith for all-time wins in central PA with 258...Jim Hettinger won his 3rd Thunder in The Dome race at the Indianapolis RCA Dome...16 year old Bobby East was impressive running up front all day...Craig Dollansky has been on a mission as of late winning his 3rd race of the season...Danny Lasoski has been consistant and leads the WoO points through March... Mark Kinser made the change from Goodyears to Hoosiers and parlayed that into a weekend sweep in Texas...Danny Ebberts took the season opener for the USAC Western States midgets and Bakersfield...Thomas Meseraul won the Stockton Western States race last weekend..

Was every open wheel fan as disappointed as I was when Dave Blaney's wheel fell of at Atlanta? He had a great shot at winning that race...John Scott tasted victory in SCRA competition at Perris...Davey Hamilton, Michael Lewis and Paul White scored victories at the Copper World Classic in the Super Modifieds, Midgets and Silver Bullets...Steve Kinser has been cold so far this year but a win at Oklahoma City might get him going in the right direction...Tony Jones has picked off a pair of SCRA races so far this year...The patriarch of the Hoffman Racing family, Gus Hoffman passed away at the age of 90...Former hard top and midget racer Rick Henderson also passed away from a heart attack...Rick Williams won the sprint car opener at Petaluma from 15th starting...Lance DeWease has stayed strong after a very good Florida swing...

Congrats go out to first time WoO winners Paul McMahan at Sedalia, Mo. and Randy Hannagan at Peveley, Mo the following night, a great weekend for the former California racers...Russ Gamester took the Silver Bullet race at Irwindale coming from 20th starting spot...Tracy Hines took the Western States Sprint Car race after Tony Hunt ran out of fuel with less than 5 laps to go...Danny Wood had a stirring drive from 17th to win at Las Vegas and more recently at 18th to 2nd place effort in Texas...Jac Haudenschild has been struggling so far this year but look for him to snap out soon...Look for Brad Furr to taste victory very soon on the WoO tour...Alan Cole won his first race in 3 years last weekend at Port Royal...Cris Eash looks to be back to 100% with a win at Williams Grove last weekend...Well talk about putting 10 pounds of crap in a 5 pound bag, that is all I have for a while, See ya at the races.


HammerDownUSA columnist, Bill Foland tested recently at Altamont (Photo by Steve-O)

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