Jimmy Sills inducted into National Sprint Car Hall of Fame – By Tom Schmeh Knoxville, IA. (June 4, 2006)  -  Drivers Lee Kunzman of Indianapolis, Jimmy Sills of Elverta, California, and Granville “Buster” Warke of Center Valley, Pennsylvania, promoter Lanny Edwards of Lawton, Oklahoma, and media member Newton “Buzz” Rose of Glendale, Arizona, took center stage Saturday afternoon, June 3, as they were officially inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in Knoxville.  Co-emcees Dave Argabright and Pat Sullivan and a near-record 349 guests enjoyed the three-hour ceremony, which honored the exceptional careers of thirteen inductees.


Also present to accept awards on behalf of their deceased relatives were father Clarence “Hooker” Hood for driver Rickey Hood, son Wally Pankratz for builder/mechanic Bob Pankratz, and son Greg Weld for builder/mechanic Taylor “Pappy” Weld.  Friend Roger Johnson accepted on behalf of driver Sammy Swindell, who was at a World of Outlaws (WoO) sprint car race at Eldora Speedway in Ohio.  Additionally, historian Larry Ball, Jr., past inductee Chris Economaki, media member Jim Chini, and past inductee Jim McElreath accepted on behalf of the families of deceased inductees Francis Quinn (driver), Johnny Hannon (driver), Ted Wilson (media member), and Jud Phillips (mechanic), respectively.


National Sprint Car Hall of Famers who were present were Clarence “Mutt” Anderson, Rollie Beale, Jerry Blundy, Ralph Capitani, Chris Economaki, Ray Lee Goodwin, Bill Hill, “Hooker” Hood, Jim McElreath, Jack Miller, Lynn Paxton, "Speedy" Bill Smith, Ray Tilley, Bob Trostle, and Greg Weld. 


John Gerber's son Jim Gerber, Bud Carson’s son Shane, Bruce Craig’s widow Jeanne Craig, Tommy Hinnershitz’s daughter Carol Bruckart, Jerry Richert’s son Jerry Richert, Jr., Kenny Weld’s widow Mary Etta Weld, and Eddie Leavitt's daughter Vickie Agan were also in attendance at the banquet, which was held in the Dyer-Hudson Building on the Marion County Fairgrounds. 


Current National Sprint Car Museum board president Steve Agan of Knoxville presented the 2006 President's Award to hard-working museum customer service representative Phyllis Weldon.  Next year's eighteenth induction weekend is tentatively scheduled for June 1-2-3, 2007.