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Rick Davis, ?-2022


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#26 Greg VanPeenen

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Posted 13 January 2022 - 01:23 PM

Sad, sad news. 

 

I raced several times at 3D Bike and Hobby and Rick came and raced at my home track which was on the third story of an old farm house in Eagle, MI. Rick was one smart man when it came to anything mechanical. I will always remember him coming to the party we had the night before I left for the Army and a trip to Vietnam. He was my hero when it came to chassis building. When I built the first wishbone Retro chassis Rick took one look at and and named it the Tuning Fork a name that stuck and the Tuning Fork chassis was born. 

 

We have lost a good friend and a credit to slot car and R/C racing. 

 

He will be missed by all who knew him. Michigan has lost two great racers in a short time with the passing of two Ricks, Davis and Sloan.

 

RIP, Rick.

 

Gregory VanPeenen. 






#27 muskie^man19

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Posted 13 January 2022 - 03:15 PM

RD HO 2.jpg


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#28 muskie^man19

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Posted 13 January 2022 - 03:16 PM

RD HO 3.jpg


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#29 muskie^man19

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Posted 13 January 2022 - 03:55 PM

RD A.jpg


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#30 A. J. Hoyt

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Posted 13 January 2022 - 06:52 PM

I get wistful recalling racing Gp27 with Rick, Mark Paris (sp?), Nelson, and Raisin at Tom McGarry's basement five-lane track (Mark was very instrumental at getting Retro racing started in MI and drawing Rick into it, as Nelson recalls), then going out for beer and pizza at the 500 club afterwards.

 

Also, many fond memories of racing HO at 3D Bike and Hobby with Nelson and Raisin, again, sometimes getting pizza and beer afterwards. We were racing foo, ooh ooh, ooh ooh, ooh ools (fans of Frank Zappa will get the reference).

 

Then, indoor electric R/C mall racing on carpet inside linked 2 X 4 walls with DAMCARS in the winter (off-season).

 

I traded a new R-Geo Retro Can-Am kit door prize (won at the R4 - Mike created a track-owner's discretionary award for "Best T-shirt" for wearing my White Castle racing shirt to the WC World Headquarters city of Columbus) to Bob Appelle for one of Rick's F1 chassis (he had a box of them - as stated earlier in the thread, every one different); it is a prized possession to have a piece of Rick's building history. I qualified second at the Ron Hershman race at HMS on the blue King between Ron and Willy Custer with that car - it was faster than any of my Retro Can-Am cars on that day!

 

All great memories! Rick will always be the man.


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Sorry about the nerf. "Sorry? Sorry? There's no apologizing in slot car racing!" 

Besides, where would I even begin?   I should probably start with my wife ...

 

"I don't often get very many "fast laps" but I very often get many laps quickly." 

 

The only thing I know about slot cars is if I had a good time when I leave the building! I can count the times I didn't on one two three hands!

Former Home Track - Slot Car Speedway and Hobbies, Longmont, CO (now at Duffy's Raceway), Noteworthy for the 155' Hillclimb track featuring the THUNDER-DONUT - "Two men enter; one man leaves!"


#31 Steve Deiters

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Posted 15 January 2022 - 01:45 PM

Sorry to hear of the passing of Rick Davis.

 
One of the best racers to come out of the Midwest. Period. His races with Jan Limpach on the Parma King as well as other players from the Cleveland area in the early '70s like Dan Bloodworth were epic. It was like watching gladiators with pistol grip controllers as weapons.

 

Rick's roots go all the way back to the early days of slot racing in the 1960s with 1/32 club racing scene in the Detroit area. It was a major hotbed of activity in the early days.

 

I would talk to him on the phone when he ran 3-D Hobbies and I worked at REH Distributing but didn't meet him until I started going to big races at Parma. These big races were an era in and of themselves. Massive entries from both coasts, the Midwest, and Canada. I got to know Rick then. He had much success at them. At these races sometimes I would join Rick and his buddies for lunch or dinner at Baron's which was an eating establishment across the street on Pearl Rd. Great times with people who enjoyed the same hobby.

 

I was out of slot racing for like 30+ years, but sometimes if I was in a bookstore, I'd pick up an R/C racing magazine and I'd read of his 1/8 racing exploits at that level. "Hey, I know that guy..." It was fun. Until some of the posts here I was unaware that he was such a force in HO racing for a time. I'm not surprised.

 

I had the pleasure of crossing paths with Rick again when we both started racing Retro. It was like no time had passed, but it had.  When he heard, Rick was coming to race Retro, Ron Hershman called me to see what I knew about him. I told him, "He was one of the best and probably still is." I think that sums it all up. 

 

Thanks for all you brought to the hobby Rick and to those of us who shared the track with you.  


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#32 Bob Appelle

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Posted 17 January 2022 - 08:30 PM

Steve,

 

Give me a call when you have some time to talk about Rick.

 

I'm handling Rick's estate and have access to some amazing slot car history. Rick took a bunch of his chassis from his 1/24 heyday, tumbled them, fixed any damage, and sprayed them with WD40. They look brand new. Amazing builds.

 

I also have the 1/32 car that Rick built special for a big race at Parma. He only ran it once and it's in as-raced condition.

 

I'd love to hear from you.

 

Bob  

 

(586) 932-8200


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#33 Tom Thumb Hobbies

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Posted 17 January 2022 - 08:43 PM

Amazing is right, Bob!! Those four or five I bought off of you at an R4 I was going to polish and sell but, after looking closely, I decided there was no way I was letting these go. Way too special and innovative to sell. He had incredible talent.


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460 Wilson Rd
Columbus, OH 43204
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Home of the ORIGINAL American blue King


#34 Pappy

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Posted 18 January 2022 - 11:03 AM

I still remember the first time I ever saw Rick Davis. It was at T/R's Motorplex in South Dayton, OH, for an IRRA race. When he first came in I thought he was a local who just came in to check out the place. About 15 minutes later he was screaming around the track at Hershman speed. I was impressed.

 

RIP, Rick.


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#35 Bob Appelle

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 06:56 AM

I stopped by Rick's condo yesterday to get mail, clean out the fridge, and took a few photos of his workshop in his garage. This is where it's been happening at this location 24 years.

 

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#36 Bob Appelle

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 06:57 AM

More photos.

 

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#37 Bob Appelle

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 06:59 AM

Rick could made just about anything as long as it didn't need to be welded.


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#38 Bob Appelle

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 07:01 AM

More photos.

 

thumbnail.jpeg

 

thumbnail.jpeg


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#39 Bob Appelle

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 07:05 AM

Rick bought the 1969 AMX in 1970 from a fellow slot racer but can't remember his name. I think it was $2,000 and a new Rick Davis ready-to-run slot car. 

 

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#40 Bob Appelle

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 07:17 AM

I found his drawings for his next build. He managed to make the dies for some of the pieces three weeks ago, but was not well enough to finish it. Over his last two weeks he told me how sorry he was that he didn't push himself to finish it. It was his next generation F1 chassis.

 

At the last BRS race, Rick did something he has never done before: he let me run two of his race-ready Can-Am and -1 cars. It was by far the best I have ever run in the last 12 years of racing. After the race I let Bob Foster run the F1 car and in five laps he beat the TQ times for that day every lap, the last by almost 2 tenths.

 

I'm heading to the BRS race in Fort Wayne this weekend with Rich Attee to relax.


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#41 Steve Deiters

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 09:17 AM

Thanks for sharing the photos and would love to see the drawings of the 'next-gen' car.

 

We will talk soon...



#42 MSwiss

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 11:13 AM

Thanks for posting, Bob.

That's exactly what I expected Rick's shop to look like.

I find it gratifying he was building slot car chassis right up to the end.

Cool AMX, especially with the spoiler.

Any idea when was the last time he drove it?


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#43 Jay Guard

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 11:21 AM

I got one of Rick's chassis from Bob Appelle a few years ago and was amazed at the fine machine work and attention to detail throughout.  I figured Rick had a good bit of machine shop equipment in his garage and he obviously knew how to use it.


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#44 muskie^man19

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 04:24 PM

When I visited with Rick last fall, he showed off his body of work in slot car racing. This included his home track, all the chassis from his time actively racing in the late 1960s and early 1070s, assorted memorabilia, and more.

 

There was a special place in his heart for his beloved AMX. I think the racer he acquired it from was Jack Bassar. I seem to recall Rick saying Jack's family had a dealership? I posted a photo in this thread above of Rick with Jack (on the track) at the Louisiana Grand Prix during the 1970 NCC series. Rick gave me this photo about a year ago as part of my long-term history efforts.

 

I asked Rick when the last time he had the AMX out on the street was, and my best memory of his reply was perhaps last spring or, at the longest, sometime in 2020.

 

Forgive me if I am remembering any of this wrong. Just my best recollection. I'm getting old too (!)

 

I am posting a photo below of Rick when he was walking us through his workshop. In plain view are all his storied chassis he had recently refurbished. He was definitely proud of them all!!


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#45 muskie^man19

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 04:25 PM

RD Chassis.jpg


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#46 Greg VanPeenen

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 04:36 PM

Rick bought the 1969 AMX in 1970 from a fellow slot racer but can't remember his name. I think it was $2,000 and a new Rick Davis ready-to-run slot car.

 
Bob,
 
You're correct. Rick got the AMX from the guy who had the slot car track in his old farm house in Eagle, MI. He sold it to Rick when he decided to run away to Canada to avoid the draft. Left his wife and two sons and took off to Canada with his girlfriend. His name was Jack Basser; his girlfriend's name was Elizabeth.
 
Brings back lots of memories,
 
Regards,
 
Greg.



#47 MSwiss

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Posted 20 January 2022 - 05:30 PM

There was a special place in his heart for his beloved AMX. I think the racer he acquired it from was Jack Bassar. I seem to recall Rick saying Jack's family had a dealership? I posted a photo in this thread above of Rick with Jack (on the track) at the Louisiana Grand Prix during the 1970 NCC series. Rick gave me this photo about a year ago as part of my long-term history efforts.

 

I asked Rick when the last time he had the AMX out on the street was, and my best memory of his reply was perhaps last spring or, at the longest, sometime in 2020.

 

Mark,

 

Thanks for replying on the AMX, and posting all the awesome info on Rick.

 

If a genie ever grants me 2,000 wishes, #1,999 will be that you pass after me. LOL.
 


Mike Swiss
 
Inventor of the Low CG guide flag 4/20/18
IRRA® Components Committee Chairman
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Two-time G7 World Champion (1988, 1990), eight G7 main appearances
Eight-time G7 King track single lap world record holder

17B West Ogden Ave., Westmont, IL 60559, (708) 203-8003, mikeswiss86@hotmail.com (also my PayPal address)

Note: Send all USPS packages and mail to: 5858 Chase Ave., Downers Grove, IL 60516






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