In Our Community
2018 News Stories
(Most Recent Appearing First)

60's/70's Racer Don Hendershot Passes

Don Hendershot left photo) in the #80 at Flemington Speedway. (Doris Lemasters photo)  That's Don next to the orange #80 coupe (right photo) in the pits at Nazareth in 1973 (Rich Young photo)

Don Hendershot (center) with sons Bob (left) and Mike (right) at New Egypt Speedway 2004 (3Wide photo.)

Dec 1, 2018:  Sad news has reached us of the passing of 60's/70's racer Don Hendershot.  Don raced at Flemington, Nazareth and other area speedways, often behind the wheel of machines carrying the #80.  Don's sons Mike and Bob also used the #80 on the their racecars as seen in the 2004 image from New Egypt Speedway.

I always enjoyed stopping by the Hendershot trailer at New Egypt, and will remember the Hendershot family, with Don, Mike and Bob all working together, getting their #80 machines race ready for the next event.

My condolences to Mike, Bob and the entire Hendershot family on Don's passing.

Remembering Russ Dodge

Russ with a racecar he built in 1971.

Russ with Elton Hildreth (right photo.)  Russ at a one of the many South Jersey Racing Reunion events that he held over the years.  The above event (Oct 2012) was put together by Russ, and fellow racing historian Ralph Richards (left photos.)

John Seyler, Russ, George Koyt and I visit the former site of Alcyon Speedway

Russ and Will Cagle at Pumpkin Run (left photo.)  Will and Barbara Cagle with Russ (right photo.)

Russ and Sal Moschella (left photo.)  Gil Hearne and Russ share a laugh (right photo.)

Racing photographer Jack Kromer and Russ (left photo).  Wayne Weaver, Larry Voss and Russ Dodge at Pumpkin Run (right photo).

Lee Mulligan, Russ and Harry.

11/24/18:  We received the very sad news over the weekend that our friend Russ Dodge has passed away. Russ had been battling some very series health issues the past few years, but if you knew the kind of guy that Russ was, you felt pretty confident about betting on him, and always felt there were many more phone calls to have... many more visits... maybe even a few more breakfast trips with him to one of his favorite local diners down near Berlin NJ.

Russ was one of my favorite people. It took a while for him to warm up to me when I met him a billion years ago at one of the Fillimon Movie parties. I think I liked that about him. He had a way of sizing folks up, and when he liked you, you knew he liked you.... you really knew it..., and there was no BS about it.

He did it all.... Built a racecar, drove a racecar, promoted at Bridgeport in the very early days, organized events for decades...
and became the foremost Racing Historian for all of South Jersey racing, and beyond. His knowledge of Vineland, Alcyon, Atco, Pleasantville, East Windsor, Flemington, Langhorne, etc., was incredible.

A fraction of that knowledge can be experienced by looking through the "Senior Moments" section, and the "Black & White Gold" section within the pages of the main site that Russ used to anchor when his health was better. He had a lot of respect for the drivers and race teams that he grew up watching. You can feel that when you read Russ' comments under each of the images in his sections of The Vault.

He introduced me to his friend and Indy 500 driver, "Iron Mike Magill" from nearby Haddonfield. He introduced me to Walt Chernokal.... We walked together around the old Atco Speedway... and Vineland Speedway, and walked the grounds of where Alcyon Speedway had been located decades before. Russ brought them back to life for me. Russ welcomed me into his what I considered to be his world. A world made up of a history that could only be found in two places.... Either by reading 100's of books (some yet to be written...), or by listening to Russ Dodge.

In recent years, Russ headed up the South Jersey Racing Museum at Harry Fleming's. I wouldn't even try to call Russ on Wednesdays as that was his day to go down to Harry's and have an "executive meeting" with the guys (aka BS session!) I know that being a part of that gang meant a lot to Russ, as did stocking up the museum building with all kinds of interesting things to be enjoyed by folks who visited the display each year during the Pumpkin Run.

Whenever you mentioned Bob Rossell, with a grin Russ would say, " mean my idol?" (He appreciated Bob's driving and building ability, but I really know that the "idol" part was because of Bob being such a straight shooter... no nonsense... right to the point kind of guy, and that's what Russ respected most.

Thinking about that... that's exactly how I would describe my friend Russ Dodge.

My condolences to Doris, the Dodge Family, the many friends of Russ.... and to Mr. Buttons, (Russ's little dog that was his best buddy.)

Thank you for the education Russ.

Frankie Schneider Passes

Photo By Ace Lane Sr -  Provided By Stan Zemenak
11/11/18 - The racing community is saddened by the news of the passing of all time racing great Frankie Schneider.
There are 1000's and 1000's who try their hand at short track racing.... but only one worthy of the title, "The Old Master."
Frankie's skill behind the wheel, and ingenuity in the garage earned him win after win throughout the 40's, 50's, 60's & 70's....  Wherever Frankie raced, whether on dirt or asphalt... small track or big track.... it didn't matter.  All would learn why he was truly "The Old Master."

Charles Zulla photo left - Paul Irving photo right

Photographer unknown - Kevin Budden provided.

Our condolences go out to Darlene, Diane, Frankie III and to the many friends, and fans of Frankie Schneider.

Service Information:  Calling hours will be held on Friday, November 16, 2018 from 5:30-9PM and on Saturday, November 17, 2018 from Noon-5PM in the Holcombe-Fisher Funeral Home, 147 Main Street, Flemington, NJ. Cremation and interment in Rosemont Cemetery, Rosemont, NJ will be private. In addition, friends, family, and fans are invited to the Flemington Moose Lodge, 81 Barley Sheaf Road, immediately following the visitation Saturday.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Arc of Hunterdon County, 1465 Route 31 South, Annandale, NJ 08801.

More information:

Racer Freddy Sabatino Passes

Freddy Sabatino in his #3 Modified at Nazareth in 1974

Freddy Sabatino behind the wheel of the #3 sprint car at Flemington.

4/25/18:  We are saddened by the unexpected passing of Modified and Sprint car racer Freddy Sabatino. 

Freddy was well known in the racing community and here on our site, from the many images and comments that he provided. to be added to The Vault for others to enjoy.  Few have the passion for racing, and for life itself as Fred Sabatino.  We'll miss his positive spirit and his excitement that he brought to everything he touched.

Our condolences to the many, many friends of Freddy, and to the Sabatino Family.

Additional Information:

"Uncle Frank" Passes

"Uncle Frank" (left) and John Fillimon at New Egypt Swap Meet - 2015

2/5/18: Sad news has reached us on the passing of Frank Bootz.  Always with a smile, "Uncle Frank" as he was known to the racing community, was the right hand man for nephew John Fillimon at the area Swap Meets.  Uncle Frank could also be counted on to help out whenever brothers John and Gerry Fillimon would have their off season racing movie events.

Will miss saying hello to Uncle Frank, and the smile he always had for us.

Our sincere condolences to John and Gerry Fillimon on the passing of Uncle Frank.

Cliff Krause Passes

Cliff Krause and son Andrew look over the RF tire wear after Dirt Modified time trials at Wall Stadium, 2011.

01/27/18:  The racing community is saddened by the loss of one of short track racing's strongest supporters, Cliff Krause.  We had learned earlier in the week that Cliff had suffered a heart attack, and we have now received the very sad news that he has passed away.

A devoted family man, a successful business man,.... and a man who stepped up when the sport needed him the most.  Cliff, his wife Diane, daughter Emily and son Andrew, all came to the rescue of Wall Stadium at a time when its future was uncertain.  It was Cliff's love of the sport, and his vision for what Wall could be, ...once again..., that began the process.

Having been a fan of short track racing, Cliff, with his very successful Supreme Manufacturing Company, became a sponsor for dirt track racer Rick Laubach.  Although Cliff considered himself a dirt track fan, when it looked like the last lap had been turned at Wall Stadium, it was Cliff and his family that signed a lease on the track, and immediately began taking on the challenge of bringing the Jersey Shore's asphalt surfaced speedway back to its former glory. 

One definition of the word "leader" is "One who inspires confidence in other people and moves them to action."  Cliff was a great leader.  He ignited the spirit of what "could be."   Those around him responded.  Cliff's unassuming personality instantly made all want to roll up their sleeves and support whatever the stadium needed. 

Whether seeing Cliff walking through the pits in a Wall Stadium sweatshirt, or sitting in the stands taking in a heat race next to fans, seeing Cliff's smile on a summer Saturday night at Wall was all you needed to see to know that he was where he wanted to be.  That smile, combined with a sincere thank you that Cliff always extended to his dedicated track staff and volunteers, was just part of Cliff's natural leadership abilities. 

He inspired confidence in those around him, and they rewarded Cliff by grabbing a hold of a racetrack that needed some help.... And with his leadership, they pushed... and pulled... and made sure that Wall Stadium found its way back to victory lane.

I'll miss being able to give a quick wave, or head nod to Cliff when seeing him at Wall.  I'll miss the smile that was always provided in return. 

My sincere condolences go out to the Krause Family, to the Wall Stadium Family, on the passing of Cliff Krause.

A Memorial service for Cliff Krause will be held on Thursday Feb 1st, at 5 pm at the Holmdel Community United Church of Christ at 40 Main Street in Holmdel, N.J. A buffet dinner of Cliff’s favorite foods to follow. All are invited. Donations can be made to an animal rescue.  or mailed to Home Free Animals 64 White Street Red Bank N.J. 07701.

East Windsor Speedway Racer Mike Johnston Passes

Mike Johnston pictured above with his father Garry Johnston at East Windsor Speedway in the 1990's - Dave Pratt photo.

We have received word that Mike Johnston, driver of the #47 Country Club Sunoco modified, has passed away.

Mike was a strong runner in the very competitive small block modified class at East Windsor in the 1990's.  The car (as pictured above) had "Country Club Sunoco", high atop the sail panels.  Mike's father Garry, and fellow East Windsor Speedway racer Fred Dmuchowski owned and operated the Sunoco station, which was located not far from the Somerville Circle.

Our condolences go out to the friends and family of Mike Johnston.

Friends and Family of Mike Johnston [47] will meet to Celebrate his life:

Saturday February 3rd, 2018 1:00 pm
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church
103 Delaware Crest Drive
Dingmans, PA 18328

Racer, Fabricator, Car Builder, Walt Breeding Passes

Walt Breeding in victory lane at Volusia County FL (1978)  Photo by Jack Kromer - Provided by Jack Kromer

Photographer Unknown - Provided by Bruce Thomas Collection

1/2/18:  Sad news has reached us on the passing of Walt Breeding.  Racing out of Delaware, Walt will always be recognized by racing fans throughout the entire Northeast and beyond as a winning driver, and as a threat to take the victory wherever he ran. 

In addition to his accomplishments as a driver, Walt will be remembered for his fabrication and car building skills.

Author and historian Chad Culver provided the following on hearing of Walt's passing:

"RIP Walt Breeding. I am sad to learn that Walt Breeding passed away today after a long battle with cancer. Walt's offset Weld car was the first race car I remember from my youth!  When I wrote my first book and got a chance to know Walt, I met a childhood hero and true gentleman that took time to answer all my questions. Over the next couple of years I enjoyed many conversations with Walt about many things. Walt was a true racer. He was an inventor, master fabricator, builder, top notch driver, mentor to many, friend to many, businessman, promoter and just an all around cool guy. Walt will be missed by all who were blessed enough to meet him! Godspeed my friend."

I remember seeing Walt race at Volusia County in the early 70's (then called "Barberville") during speedweeks in Florida.  I instantly took a liking to the Taylor and Messick #1, and to Walt's driving style.  I would continue to follow Walt's winning ways in the pages of AARN for many, many years. 

We remember Walt as a both a great racer and fabricator here in The Vault, and we send our sincere condolences to the friends and family of Walt Breeding.

Joe Macfarlan & Family/3Wide's Picture Vault


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