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Racing Commentary

Email Lew at lewboyd@coastal181.com

 Iowa’s second shrine. (Coastal 181 Photo)



Fact is there are two shrines for sprint car racing in Iowa. First, there’s Knoxville Raceway with its Museum and Hall of Fame, now fully appointed with Toby Kruse as promoter.

The other is a tattered, plain-Jane commercial building, farthest one south on Rt. 169 In Algona. It’s a separate reality.

Walk in the front door and pass tables and crates jammed with antiques, ’50s trinkets and memorabilia, a dusty reminder of some business from decades past. The entire back section is packed as tight as a pit area in Spring, this time with racing kit. There are chassis everywhere – straight, bent, on wheels, standing on their clips, some with bodies, some bare. Parts boxes are stacked high, many bearing labels of companies long since disbanded. There’s the occasional trophy and photograph – a racing collector’s paradise.

Over towards the wall sits 70-something Daryl Arend, alone, lean and alert, even through a thick, smoky haze, his desk piled with soda cans and ash trays. The guy’s heart pumps liquid clay, and the spirit of the sport dwells in this solitary place. I met him last summer and can’t get his image out of my mind.

Daryl Arend: “I’m kind of a lone stone, as you would say. Had my first race car at 15 – a flathead. Even put injection on ‘er. Soon it was off to sprint cars. That’s always been real racin’. Just sprint cars. I’ve had 55 drivers. And this is my sanctuary.”

Jim Edgington (former Daryl driver): “What a character. He had enough Pepsi to kill 16 men and enough cigarettes to kill 20. But what a passion for racing. A stubborn passion. How we’d argue! I’d say to fix it and he would say to push it harder. He wanted to do everything himself, but I’ll tell you there aren’t too many drivers who’d mind jumpin’ in one of his cars.”

 Daryl prepares the B&D Automotive Sprinter for Jim Edgington.
(Photo courtesy of Chad Meyers)

“I woke up on old farm equipment, washing parts with gasoline in a dish pan, with my hands turning white. Every kid should spend at least a year on a farm. All these years with my cars I’ve had just two hands helping me, left and right. But I am a planner. I do things carefully. This is a dangerous business, but we’ve never had anyone hurt due to mechanical failure.”

Buzz Rose (former Daryl driver): “You know, he would get mad if I even went around to check if the knock-offs were tight. But he sure is clever. Back at Oklahoma City when Bud Carson was promoting, they’d run a sheep’s foot over the tack and then run the water truck filling those little holes with water. It got real slick, but Daryl devised a way to shield the water from the tires. We set fast time. And, when we’d win, he get so excited he would literally dance on the straightaway. He was my favorite owner, no contest.”

Daryl and Buzz in 1973 at Spencer, Iowa. From SHOW BIZ AUTO RACING:
 IMCA Big Cars 1915-1977
, by Buzz Rose, Ruby Hill and Johnny Rutherford.

“I never really made a bad choice with a driver. I had my way of picking them. First, no wreckers. Second, a calm head on the shoulders. Buzz Rose outclassed everyone as an intellectual driver. If we could get second, that’s what he would bring home. And, right before the race, he was likely to go up to someone and say, “You’re gonna run THAT right rear tire?!,” just to psych ‘em out. Randy Smith was good, too. At that time he was real arrogant, and that had its benefits. And Terry McCarl. I liked him because he was aggressive, and I watched how people responded to his positive manner. But, third, you need to be able to talk a good story about hogs and how they gobble up slop. Then I’ll know you’ve been there. I always admired A.J. Foyt. There’s a guy who has packed his own wheel bearings. He knows what grease is, what grease does. He would know that whine will last six more laps before the wheel flies off.”

Jim Edgington: “Daryl is the defiance of every rule. He’s a smart ass philosopher in a way. Listen to him talk about aliens! He has had great cars and drivers, but sadness, too. He lost both his wife Gloria and his son Chris to cancer. And he is as hard on himself as he is on anyone else. Once when we were in Florida, we went over to Lakeland to run the pavement. We were so fast that even Jerry Blundy came up before the main and said we would win for sure. Daryl made a bad choice of wheel offset, and we popped a tire going for the lead. He was crushed.”

Daryl: “I surf the highs and lows of life. Catch the current. It’s been enjoyable, but definitely not all roses. But I am what I am and I will be doing this until the day they lay me down. I’ve got the ambition, the talent, and the hours. Right now I’m working on getting something going by way of financial support to run Jackson Speedway in Minnesota in 2012.”

Terry McCarl (former Daryl driver): “No one could ever forget Daryl Arend. I won’t. I don’t know just what he saw in me when I was 19, but he gave me my first shot. Now I have 260 wins. I guess it worked out for both of us.”

Daryl is inducted into the Kossuth County Racing Hall of Fame in 2008
by HoF Board Member Rick Klein. (Photo courtesy of Chad Meyers)

© 2011 Lew Boyd, Coastal 181

If you were interested in this Tearoff, you might enjoy the books below:

  Win It or Wear It

by Joyce Standridge
The Rim Riders

by Buzz Rose

Original Price: $59.95
On Special: $29.95
Big Car Thunder - Sprints on America’s Fair Circuits, Vol. 1

By Bob Mays

Stop by our Book Store Directory for a look at our book and DVD selections:

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.: Previous Tearoffs :

10/19/11 - Otto Does the 'Cuse

9/30/11 - Saturday Folk at New Hampshire

9/14/11 - About J.R. Hildebrand - and that Last Lap

8/30/11 - Sideways and the Dzus Queen

8/16/11 - Totally Fast

8/2/11 - Perrotte at Plattsburgh

7/14/11 - So Here's What Jack Says

6/30/11 - Quick to Quickest - Jim “Mr. Magoo” Maguire

6/16/11 - Climb to the Clouds

6/2/11 - Irv and the Hall of Fame

5/18/11 - Makin' MOWA

5/4/11 - The Running of the Racers

4/21/11 - Pruett's Perspective

4/4/11 - Winter of Discontent

3/23/11 - Thinking of Gene Bergin

3/8/11 - Sprint Car World Record?

2/21/11 - Dinner at Daytona

2/10/11 - The Call Him 1/4ley

1/28/11 - Doc's Beard

1/15/11 - Reconsidering Generalizations

12/31/10 - Powerful Passion

12/19/10 - Tearoff at Yuletide

12/6/10 - Indy in December

11/21/10 - Mutt and the Brutal Ballet

10/29/10 - The Johnny Bensons and Their Supers

10/13/10 - Anatomy of an Accident

9/28/10 - Maybe Marty

9/14/10 - Push Refresh for Speedway Illustrated

8/23/10 - An Ode to Senior Supers

8/6/10 - Adrian and the Deep Water

7/20/10 - Holdout in Yuppieville

7/7/10 - The Wins are Gustin

6/16/10 - Racin' Kid, Racin' Dad

5/28/10 - The Monk and Matty D.

5/15/10 - Bluebird

4/27/10 - Catching Up With Steve Arpin

4/11/10 - The Song of the Fifties

3/22/10 - Davey!

3/8/10 - Restart!

2/21/10 - Miracles of the Rock

2/8/10 - Roger The Remarkable

1/21/10 -  Shane's Sensational '78

12/28/09 - The Flying Finn and The All American Boy

12/12/09 - Hello Wall

11/29/09 - Once More for Ernie

11/15/09 - Ernie's Excellent Chase

11/1/09 - In The Zone

10/19/09 - Rough Week in the Midwest

10/1/09 - Common Starts, Uncommon Comebacks

9/4/09 - South Dakota Chris

8/15/09 - Facial Exposure

7/31/09 - Dying in the Pits

7/9/09 - Barn Rat's Last Race

6/18/09 - Catching Up With Brad Doty

5/20/09 - Big Boys in The Attic  - rare photos of legends

5/6/09 - Back Up In The Attic - more rare photos

4/22/09 - The Son of Hard Luck - accessible racing
experience for the handicapped

4/3/09 - Racin' In The Attic - Gordon Ross photo collection

3/18/09 - About That Mike Spaulding

3/3/09 - Dick Berggren's First Win - (you had to be there!)

2/11/09 - Peter at the Park - Peter Fiandaca at Riverside Park

1/30/09 - Steve - Steve Arpin

1/4/09 - Racer Speak -cool quotations

12/16/08 - Wimble Power, Will Power - Bill Wimble

11/24/08 - Remembering Chuck Amati - by Joyce Standridge

11/11/08 - That Rick Ferkel

10/24/08 - Beyond Bionic - Bentley Warren

10/6/08 - Fifty Second Classic - Skip and Lois Matczak

9/20/08 - Joey's Dad - Tom Logano

9/1/08 - One Night at The Park - the death of Les Ley

8/20/08 - Transitional Technology - early supermodifieds

8/6/08 - Wallace on Wednesdays - dirt trackin’ Kenny

7/19/08 - Star(ter) of the Show - importance of good flaggers

7/7/08 - McUnderdog - Eddie MacDonald

6/18/08 - The Night Buzz Was Worried - Buzz Rose

6/5/08 - John Richards - Boomer Role Model

5/20/08 - The Spirit of a Racer - the late Al Powell

5/1/08 - Bobby's Blues - Bobby Santos III

4/15/08 - Thinking About Rene Charland

3/26/08 - Carl and Corey - Carl Edwards and Corey Dripps

3/4/08 - A Cool Track with Cool Racers - West Liberty, Iowa

2/14/08 - Doug Wolfgang

1/25/08 - Frankie Schneider

1/7/08 - When Drivers Can't See - cockpit vision

12/21/07 - When Starters Couldn't See - flagstand vision

12/1/07 - Ride Along with Erica Santos - in-car camera midget win

11/15/07 - Tough Drivers

11/1/07 - Cockpit Safety

10/15/07 - That First Race

10/1/07 - Racing Nicknames

9/15/07 - Too Many Officials

9/1/07 - The Look of a Real Driver

8/15/07 - Being Dale Junior

8/1/07 - Armond Holley

7/15/07  -  Red Farmer

© 2007-11 Lew Boyd, Coastal 181





































































































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