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Where did you race as a kid?


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#151 penske

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 10:26 AM

that's the picture. thanks Don for posting it. The person driving is the writer for the Magazine.
The other person is Al Pappas who was the owner of the track
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#152 Arne Saknussem

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 03:45 PM

Rochester, New York... 1960s/70s

Model Raceways (2 locations) had an orange and a black at each store, then installed a t-slotted king at the suburban location in Brighton. Community Hobby Center had an orange, Mt. Hope Speedway had three Ascot (I think) tracks. There was a seasonal set-up with an engelman-like track on Lyell Avenue in the winter, the tracks went to an amusement park for the summer, Airport Lanes had a slot raceway in half of their billiard hall. A small track near the canal in Fairport, NY had a Windsor... or something like one. I ran at all of these and heard that there were one or two others but never found them.

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#153 NJ Racer

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 07:09 PM

I won a Ticket to the movies for a win in my first race at this place in Yonkers, NY. My car, a brand new red Gar Vic Firebird

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#154 slotcarone

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 10:28 PM

:) Ray--who was the "professional" that did the teaching?

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#155 NJ Racer

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 11:38 PM

Someone else who remembers the Yonkers and Scarsdale locations may have to fill in those blanks :) I was hooked ever since. Check out this newpaper article from Aug 1965
http://i221.photobuc...5-08-16slot.jpg
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"Ya gotta be in it to win it"

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#156 sub006

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 03:10 PM

My first exposure was at the already-mentioned Knapper's Hobby Shop on Tustin Avenue in Orange, California.  My first car was a 1/32 Revell Sting Ray.  The guy who had it before Knapper actually built the wonderful track, wish someone could post photos, it had quite an elevation change to squeeze four wide, multiple-(6?)slotted lanes next to each other against the wall in a narrow space.  Later, another shop opened just around the corner in a strip mall on Mayfair.

 

Can't remember the constructor's name, think it may also have started with a "K".  I believe he must have started International Raceways, a builder of commercial tracks, because he showed up one day with a flashy new car and told everyone he'd been hired by Revell to build tracks for them.  Searching Revell Raceways, it was mentioned that they bought International, and the Revell factory was in Orange, so it all seems to fit.

 

Knapper sold the shop to a Mexican-American guy who drove a sweet second-generation Riviera.  AIR the track was still there, but darkened and never in use.  Eventually it disappeared, replaced by merchandise.  Wonder if it was scrapped or saved, a real piece of California history.  That owner kept selling trains, planes, etc. for what seems like 20 years.  I would buy stuff occasionally for old time's sake, you know how it is to stand in a building that carries good memories!  I think one more set of owners ran it into the 21st century.  Now a dress shop or somesuch occupies the space.  

 

The Miniature Grand Prix franchise was omnipresent in North Orange County in the mid-sixties, I remember at least two of them in Orange, one on East Chapman in El Modena and the other on West Chapman, corner of Feldner.   A subsequent owner of the West Chapman franchise moved the tracks to the already-mentioned older storefront on the Chapman/Glassell traffic circle downtown.  A nice family operation, Dad, Mom and the little kids always there and helping.

 

There was a very cool place called the Orbit Shop in a little mall on Orange-Olive Road that was the first place I saw the full Dynamic parts line.  Nearby was a very nice small shop in a strip mall on Lincoln Avenue in Olive.  And yet another on Lincoln and East Street in Anaheim.  Hope someone can remember the names!

 

The one pro race I got to see a bit of was in a shop on South Main Street, corner of McFadden in Santa Ana around 1966 or '67.  It was in the middle of the night when we dropped by, so I think it was a 12 or 24-hour event.  AIR Doug Henline was one of the competitors.  We  both attended Villa Park High School at the same time but had had no contact.  He DID have a reputation as a wizard in shop classes!  Most never knew about his involvement with slot cars until decades later, I suspect he was quiet about it because most considered it "kid stuff".  Today he heads his own company, building aluminum wheels for off-road racing of small ATVs.

 

Today I live in Palos Verdes.  There was about a six-month "blip" of slot car revival in the South Bay back around 1990, centered around a shop on Hawthorne Blvd.  Most of the interest and excitement revolved around their 55 foot drag strip.  My oldest son built and ran a car there.  The shop moved into a gorgeous new building on Sepulveda (still in Torrance) and poof! was gone in 60 days.  Later we made a few journeys to a nice older track on Bellflower Blvd. where he got to experience road course driving.

 

Last summer I was making some calls in Modesto, and noticed little signs stuck in the ground saying "slot racing".  I followed them and found TNT Raceway at 1064 Woodland.  Two or three road courses and a drag strip, and mostly adult participants.  Phone was/is, I hope (209) 544-2550.


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#157 Mike Jr

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 03:37 PM

Slot trak raceway located on Olden Ave, Trenton NJ....Was upstairs in what used to be a bowling alley.  Sure got hot there in the summer,  no AC 


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#158 bwolfsohn

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 07:13 PM

The first track I ever ran on was Polk's in Manhattan. The first car I owned was a 1/32 Revell Jaguar XKE. Red plastic if my memory
Is correct. The year I'm embarrassed to say was, maybe 1964.

when a track opened in Astoria on Stiemway st which was in walking distance of home. It became my home track.

There used to be sooo many tracks between NYC and Long Island. the hard part was getting a ride out to the " Island "

Another track that I spent hours & hours at was Emmra. the home of the 475 ft monster track. It truly was a one of a kind. It's a
Shame that it was put out with the garbage when the track closed. It deserved to be put into a museum for future generations of slot racers to experience.

Roger Ruggieri

 


Roger,

 

Polks was also my first track.. same exact timespan

i'm sure we raced against each other many times...

 

has anyone seen my memory ?? i left it laying around somewhere ...

 

Brian Wolfsohn

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#159 Uncle Fred

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 12:03 PM

I had an 1/32 Revell XKE too that I raced at Polk's too.


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#160 Uncle Fred

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 12:48 PM

Someone else who remembers the Yonkers and Scarsdale locations may have to fill in those blanks :) I was hooked ever since. Check out this newpaper article from Aug 1965
http://i221.photobuc...5-08-16slot.jpg

Howie, George Blaha and me used to go up to Scarsdale for the races. 


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#161 Weedracer

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 04:49 PM

 Hey folks...(Freddie!),

 

 First post here...love it.

 

 I raced (or fooled around) at what I think was called Mid Island Speedway in Hicksville, on Long Island. It was downstairs from an Agway store and was huge.

 

 A friend's father raced avidly and I remember seeing his cars and being totally enthralled by them. My dad had no interest, but we used to take the bus to the Mid Island Plaza shopping mall...the bus stop was right in front of Agway. I can still smell the stairwell that went down into that place. Upstairs - fertilizer...downstairs - wintergreen and oil.

 

 At that point we as kids had miles of HO track, but it wasn't the same.

 

 20 years later I stumbled upon a raceway, got that same vibe and was re-hooked and deep. I couldn't believe there was still a track on earth, much less so close to home.

 

 I bought a Dick Peletier built GTO Madman 27 car with a Phantom motor in it and went to town. I still have that chassis. It handled like it was on rails with a Camen Corvette body.

 

 I just skimmed this thread, so sorry if someone else mentioned this place.

 

 Great forum, loads of nostalgic and infomative stuff here. Kudos!


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#162 Uncle Fred

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Posted 28 February 2013 - 05:30 PM

Charlie!  I raced at Mid ISland too.  Nice to see you surface here on Slotblog.  Hope all is well.


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#163 sub006

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 09:24 PM

A couple of added specifics to my Feb 26 post:

 

IN THE SUMMER OF 1964, there was a very cool place called the Orbit Shop in a little mall on Orange-Olive Road, CORNER OF GROVE, that was the first place I saw the full Dynamic parts line.  THESE MADE IT RATHER EASY TO GO FAST WITH JUST A SCREWDRIVER, NO SOLDERING OF BRASS TO MAKE A LIGHT, LOW C.G. CHASSIS. 

 

The one pro race I got to see a bit of was in a shop on South Main Street, corner of McFadden in Santa Ana around 1966 or '67.  It was in the middle of the night when we dropped by, so I think it was a 12 or 24-hour event.  AIR Doug Henline was one of the competitors. THE DRIVERS HAD ASSISTANTS ON "PIT CREWS".  THE CARS WERE OPEN-WHEEL, MOST LIKELY FORMULA 1.   I REMEMBER  A VERY FAST WHITE HONDA.


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#164 S.O. Watt

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 11:00 PM

A couple of added specifics to my Feb 26 post:

 

IN THE SUMMER OF 1964, there was a very cool place called the Orbit Shop in a little mall on Orange-Olive Road, CORNER OF GROVE, that was the first place I saw the full Dynamic parts line.  THESE MADE IT RATHER EASY TO GO FAST WITH JUST A SCREWDRIVER, NO SOLDERING OF BRASS TO MAKE A LIGHT, LOW C.G. CHASSIS. 

 

The one pro race I got to see a bit of was in a shop on South Main Street, corner of McFadden in Santa Ana around 1966 or '67.  It was in the middle of the night when we dropped by, so I think it was a 12 or 24-hour event.  AIR Doug Henline was one of the competitors. THE DRIVERS HAD ASSISTANTS ON "PIT CREWS".  THE CARS WERE OPEN-WHEEL, MOST LIKELY FORMULA 1.   I REMEMBER  A VERY FAST WHITE HONDA.

 

The shop on Main and McFadden was Santa Ana Raceways, John Hale propriator. The race was his annual 24 hour enduro. And If I remember this right, the '67 race was a 28 hour round robin affair on two tracks 'cuz that's how many teams showed up. Also it was the race where Pete Zimmerman stepped through the track, yup broke a hole through the racing surface. And then almost immediately Terry Schimdt yelling "Where's My Car!". And now the punch line- Terry was racing on Pete's team...... lol

 

I raced hard plastic stockers at the Chapman MGP behind the Foster Freeze.  I raced F1s and sports cars at Frank's, aka Knappers, a lot. I loved that track, Doug Henline worked there for quite awhile and talked me into entering my 1st ever slot race..

 

There was also a modified figure 8 in the basement of the Orange Bicycle Shop right off the circle in Orange. And I believe the same family still owns it, sans Slot Car Track.


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#165 Tom Eatherly

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 11:49 PM

Tom, you remember the going ons upstairs at "Speed and Sport" watching the other races? Whew! :shok:


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#166 Old pink can guy

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 01:52 PM

Tom that was not upstairs it was in the back room.


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#167 Jaz

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 02:31 PM

 Hey folks...(Freddie!),

 

 First post here...love it.

 

 I raced (or fooled around) at what I think was called Mid Island Speedway in Hicksville, on Long Island. It was downstairs from an Agway store and was huge.

 

 A friend's father raced avidly and I remember seeing his cars and being totally enthralled by them. My dad had no interest, but we used to take the bus to the Mid Island Plaza shopping mall...the bus stop was right in front of Agway. I can still smell the stairwell that went down into that place. Upstairs - fertilizer...downstairs - wintergreen and oil.

 

 At that point we as kids had miles of HO track, but it wasn't the same.

 

 20 years later I stumbled upon a raceway, got that same vibe and was re-hooked and deep. I couldn't believe there was still a track on earth, much less so close to home.

 

 I bought a Dick Peletier built GTO Madman 27 car with a Phantom motor in it and went to town. I still have that chassis. It handled like it was on rails with a Camen Corvette body.

 

 I just skimmed this thread, so sorry if someone else mentioned this place.

 

 Great forum, loads of nostalgic and infomative stuff here. Kudos!

Hiya Charlie!!!

 

Tell everyone who owned that raceway!  The building is now a tai-kwon-do dogo.

 

See my earlier post about Mid-Island. Great place! racing hard body Cox cars.


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#168 Dennis David

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 05:07 PM

Anybody remember a slot car track on Industrial Rd either in San Carlos or Belmont, CA? That would be the SF Bay Area?

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#169 gas

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 06:58 PM

Miniture or monaco grand prix on baldwin, leon's on colorado and arcadia grand prix on live oak, all in arcadia,ca. moved to temple city raceway.worked at arcadia grand prix and temple city. moved to florida for high school years, ran my cars in jacksonville fall of  1970.  stationed in tampa,fl late 70's, raced at Mr. B's hobby shop behind busch gardens.


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#170 S.O. Watt

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 07:43 PM

Tom, you remember the going ons upstairs at "Speed and Sport" watching the other races? Whew! :shok:

Yeah, I remember watching races from the balcony at Speed & Sport, great view of some great racing on their King track. I also took naps up there. Interesting that it was an old Safeway grocery store. I was only in the back room a few times.


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#171 Tom Eatherly

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 07:45 PM

You mean for the poker, uhh,err, I mean Monopoly games? :shok:


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#172 shadow

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 10:02 AM

Parma Model Raceway, 5421 Pearl Road, Parma Ohio! Thats where it all started for me. It was about 1968-69, I was 12 years old. I had to take 2 different buses to get there. Been racing slot cars for 44 years on and off...


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#173 Danny Zona

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 12:00 PM

I started racing at a HobbyBox in Holly Hill(DaytonaBch) FL in '86 or '87. Its been so long its hard to remember the exact year. Then TheRacePlace(HollyHill) opened right down the street from the HobbyBox about '90-'91. I'm very lucky because I'm stilll going there to race. Ill be racing there this Sat for our MySeries state race.
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#174 sub006

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 10:08 AM

Hey, Tom, thanks for your prompt response about the Orange County scene. Santa Ana Raceways was seriously hot.

Also appreciate you contributing Frank's name as Knapper's successor. That was the first commercial track I ever drove on, and remains the best overall layout configuration ever IMO, short straights, long straight, uphill, downhill esses, variety like the Targa Florio. Could have used a BIT of banking on those flat corners, LOL, but that was the learning "curve".

WHAT HAPPENED TO THAT TRACK? The pieces must have gone into storage or somebody's garage. Need pictures to re-create it.
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#175 Mark Proppe

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 12:10 PM

The Cleveland area was Mecca for slots when I was a kid. We lived in North Royalton Ohio and had five tracks within an hour Parma Model Raceway in Parma, Where my brother and I worked building controllers upstairs, The parma dual micro switch triggers were state of the art back then. And we helped Jan Limpach in the 2nd Nats by bringing his car to him between heats,and watcing in awe just trying to be part of what was the coolest thing in the world. Tom Thumb in North Royalton had four beautiful tracks owned by Bruce Breyley. My brother and I walked 5 miles with our slot box that was too big to carry very far so we took turns, We built a Stube replica from Model car magazine and our father boight us a Mura Bubblegum motor and we had tires from Limpach, That car was a rocket, My brother John won the amatuer race and back then if you won the am race you got a seat in the pro main.He was leading in the last heat in the Pro main on their 220' Engelman style track when he came off in the esses and got t-boned and knocked the motor loose. What a day I remember it like yesterday!  Brooklyn Raceway on Ridge and Biddulf had some nice tracks too and our father would drop us off there on Saturday on his way to work and pick us up on his way home. And of course there was the Slot Shop in Elyria with that tough American Orange and the King track in the basement Where Limpach honed his skills I cherish all those memories and am lucky to still have a place to race at the best facility in the area at REM raceway in Mentor Ohio. Ray and Brian Mcpherson are the best hosts you could ask for and the racing is top shelf and going strong. Long lLive Slot Cars!







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