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The Edgemont Tribune

The Edgemont Tribune

Wed. page 1 Feb. 6, 1969

Sports Car Club Racetrack Plans

Ted Bonde, who attended at Saturday morning meeting at City Hall a couple of weeks ago, gave a resume of some of the needs in helping the Sports Car Club of America arrange for activities at a track on the depot. He told that Capt. and Mrs. Woody Adams of Rapid City had met with a few people to discuss the proposal and Adams is expected to be present at the next Chamber meeting for further planning.

Bonde presented a list of numerous small things needed to aid the SCCA in activating a track which they have selected at the depot as being ideal for both "driver training" and competitive sports car racing. He said Adams predicted at least 30 racing cars would travel here for such an event and each car brings an average of 7 persons for a 2-day activity. Needs include overnight housing of the more than 200 persons as well as meals, lunches and many other connected services.

These racing enthusiasts are reportably most willing to pay for all needs and only ask a willing community to host them.

The Edgemont Tribune

Wed. page 1 May 8, 1969

Black Hills Region of Sports Car Club Sets Dates at Igloo Raceways

The Black Hills Region, Sports Car Club of America, Inc., announces today that the signing of a contract for a road racing circuit located at the former Army Munitions Depot just south of here. Race chairman, Richard (Woody) Adams, states that the inaugural event will be a driver's, course workers, and officials school to be held 24, 25 May. Experienced Colorado Region members will serve as officials and instructors. Plans are already being made for a full scale Regional class race weekend to be held this fall.

Prominent National SCCA officials who have inspected this ready made course consider it a real "find". It is one of the most interesting and challenging tracks in the Midwest Division as well as being very safe for spectator and driver alike. Almost limitless possibilities for expansion and improvement are already being explored.

The present basic course is in the igloo area proper and is just two miles long. It features eight varied turns and some up and down hill sections. The road lies half-way up the sides of a shallow bowl and will make for ideal viewing at later events when spectators will be invited. Further information will soon be provided for persons interested in attending the course workers and officials school.

Several different types of cars compete in a number of classes in addition to the standard sports cars one sees on the streets. Sedan classes include not only imported cars but familiar Camaros, Mustangs and Javelins, to mention but a few. Open wheeled, "Indy" type formula cars compete in five different classes according to engine displacement. Then there are the sports "racing" cars, also all out machines. These are cars like the Chapparals and Lolas that run in the Can-Am Series races at places like Sebring and Riverside.

Only specially licensed SCCA drivers compete in these road races. Already there are three National class competition drivers in the Black Hills Region. One student, T/Sgt. Gayle Fenner of Ellsworth AFB has recently successfully completed the first of two required schools. At least five more local men will be attending the Igloo school, among them; Francis Murphy, Hermosa, Verlyn Schultz, Rapid City, A/2c Ralph Ridge III, EAFB, Lt. Robert Terry, EAFB, and Robert Mayer, Rapid City and Lincoln, Nebr.

The bulk of the drivers at Igloo will be from out of state, members of adjacent regions until a large group of local drivers can be trained. Racing speeds in excess of 100 mph will be attained by most cars on this twisty, complicated course. This is the reason for the extensive training required for this type of racing. Many world famous drivers compete on just such courses as this one which will be used strictly for amateur drivers. Our drivers will be fully capable of driving on the pro tracks, though most will not be driving such exotic machinery!!

Proficiency training for advanced licensed drivers will be held at this Igloo school also. This enables experienced drivers to sharpen their skills after the winter, sort out their new cars for the coming season, and have the opportunity to drive this fine new course on which they will be competing later, and which has caused so much interest among competitors all over the Midwest.

The Edgemont Tribune

Wed. page 3 May 15, 1969

SCCA Black Hills Igloo Raceways site "Unique"

You say, "Igloos are for Eskimos, and that's just what they need in South Dakota, which is surely the end of the world or at least on the Canadian border." Not so! Our igloos are different, and 300 easy miles east and north of Denver isn't really the North Pole. Would you believe Igloo is over 100 miles due south of the geographical center of our nation? True! In fact, Igloo racers can put one foot in South Dakota, the other in Wyoming, and hold hands cozily with a girl standing on the Nebraska panhandle.

Picture a gently rolling and verdant prairie at the very edge of the beautiful Black Hills in the extreme southwest corner of the state. The town to look for on your map is Edgemont, naturally. Our little piece of prairie is unique - it has lumps. Thousands of huge, bread-loaf shaped igloos dressed in dense native buffalo grass. Twenty to thirty feet high with flat tops and gently sloping sides, they were once filled with army munitions but now await our pleasure to serve as grandstands. The 150 miles of fine paved, interconnecting roads that snake around and about the igloos proved to be an embarrassment of riches.

Our tiny, newest region had a tiger by the tail and didn't dare or want, to be let go. With encouragement from the parent region of our only previous members, Colorado Region, we began the task. How to choose? Where to begin, with so much. Shall it be two miles, or four, or how about forty five? Egad, we're lost! Get out the map, we've got to find that special down hill sweeper we saw two hours ago, the one with the bumps and wiggle that ends up in that sneaky corner. Forget worrying about pits - they're everywhere with huge paved areas every quarter mile. Say, lets have a "Mille Miglia" while we're at it! Delusions of grandeur . . . .

We did choose, finally, as you see. Just two miles, nice elevation changes, fine convenient pits, escape roads and the whole ball of wax. Room for expanding it to three, or even six interesting miles - - there go those wide dreams again!

Black Hills Region has truly bitten off a huge chunk to chew. We have been an independent, incorporated club for well over ten years, but are just over a year old as a SCCA Region. Geographically we are quite sizable - but our livestock population far out number the humans.

We are a band of approximately forty active and enthusiastic members. Unfortunately, all are new to SCCA, save three National Competition license holders, one licensed flag man and one willing and over worked spouse. So, we must try harder, and also holler for help to our experienced sister regions. We need training and help in every facet of racing until we can learn the many skills necessary. We even live in the fear that the Air Force may suddenly whisk away some or all of our experienced members. What Uncle Sam brings us he is just as likely to take away. We are fortunate indeed to have a large stable group, with roots firmly set here, and must just be happy to keep our fly-boys for awhile before passing them on to some other lucky region.

Our first project for Igloo is not only a driver's school but a school for all types of race workers and officials. Colorado Region will provide us with the very best and most experienced crew they can muster. Our adjacent regions are rallying to our aid too, but we need more help yet. We solicit your help, not only now, but for our projected regional race in the fall. Almost the single most important thing we need is drivers. We must not let this fine venue slip through our hands when so many courses are closing and new ones are so hard to find!

We have the future to look to, also. Funding for improvements, widening, and some interesting changes are already in the works for 1970. We plan, by then, to be able to hold three races per year, hopefully one of them a national. We will need the support and participation of many to accomplish this. Everyone's gain will be a fine course, with any profits being used to make it even better. We're sure that those that come to Igloo once will come again - and spread the word.

Our terrain at Igloo is a huge bowl, with the track laying half way up the sides. There are no igloos in the center to hide the view, but lots are ideally placed just outside, on the high ground for perfect watching. If you suffer from fear of high places - don't bother climbing an igloo, you can see everything from ground level too. We have given much thought to the driver and the insurance man and can guarantee that there is not one tree to be seen and the only poles are those that hold the lights for the pit area.

Now that we have whetted you appetite, shall we tour the course? - We'll buckle up and start engines on the strategically placed pre-grid. Be ready for the flag to fall first time past the start. No fooling around with several slow laps with such a straight and long shot at it.

We're off - easy and careful at turn one with all this traffic, it's not very wide coming out, sharper than you thought too, huh? Now a short straight shot at two, down hill, gaining speedy turn three. Long level look at four, with plenty of time to get sorted out and plan strategy. Thank goodness for all that room in the turn - it does close up on you! Now, a slight down hill shot at five, again lots of room which we can use, cause it's pretty fast. Down the hill for six; now you see it, now you don't. Those shut off markers better be right! That's got to be the fastest one, now easy, and brake for seven. Another wide intersection to find a line through. Level and straight for eight, brake, pick a line, any line, (don't they have anything but acres of pavement to choose from at every corner?) Ooopps, were did that cute little dip on the straight come from? Didn't notice it coming up to the start.

This will all take some study, the fast line and the passing line for all those big corners. Wouldn't think the corners were so different from looking at the map. Just having a lot of power and a good set of brakes isn't going to be the answer for this course.

Now that we have had the grand tour, lets head back to the barn at Edgemont for a cool one and some talk and chow. There's a saloon (pardon, pub) that has a crazy sign at the door that says something about checking your guns. Guns? Who do you suppose they are kidding? Doesn't look a bit like Dodge City.

Well, maybe it isn't Dodge, but it's the closest thing you are likely to find today. The characters here aren't just characters, they're for real! They actually wear jeans, boots and Stetsons, all the time. We have a member who bought his last pair of shoes, (not boots, silly) when he was married some twenty five years ago.

There are sheepmen in the saloon too, and, you know, they don't look, or act, or talk any different from the cattlemen. Both bunches get along fine and don't even glare at each other. Shucks! They like us racers too, and enjoy our stories as much as we do theirs. They never meet a stranger and they appreciate the same virtues we do, no matter how different the fields in which we test our mettle.

That pore feller we mentioned that didn't have no shoes is who you see in the picture. That's Francis Murphy, and he's an honest-to-goshh cowboy and sheepman, no drug store version, he! We caught him and one of his several sports cars in everyday working trim, ready to head up for the summer range high up in the hills. The saddle goes too since you can't ride a fence line or round up a stray in a mere car.

Murph's grandfather first came to these Black Hills when they were still Indian Territory, trying to get to the gold country to stake a claim. Got run out by the U. S. Calvary several times before he made it, and when he did all the good claims were staked. He then decided rather than go home empty handed he'd feed and supply all those busy miners - they didn't have the time to bother with that. So he raised sheep, ran a freight line, and a sawmill and just ended up staying. That's how the Murphy clan ended up here and how the Flying V ranch was founded.

You'll see Murph at our first school, in a TR-3, of course. As a long time member and past president, he is but one of the many, out of the ordinary, folks you will want to meet and know.

We know we will enjoy showing you our country and people, and we know you will envy us our climate and scenery. At a minimum of 3000' altitude we have low humidity and clear skies. Our warm (not hot) days and cool nights hold from early May clear through our long, golden Indian Summer. No wonder tourists are our biggest business lately. We are the real West though, and cattle, sheep and fine horses form our backbone.

Hot Springs is just a short scenic 35 minute drive away and is a true, turn of the century, spa. It is presently undergoing a restoration and renaissance. Hot springs feed the enormous Evans Plunge which is just the hot smoking thing for a tired hero driver. Turn of century hotels or modern motels, the choice is yours.

Custer is another, and very different, town also just a short piece up the road into the hills. It's super-wide main street isn't just an old runway. It got that way because it takes at least an acre to turn around a 10-span team of oxen and freight wagon. Gold was first found at Custer and Murph's grandpa watched in hiding while the Gordon party was escorted from their stockade and ejected from Indian territory by the Calvary. Crazy Horse monument is being carved from a solid stone mountain just north of town and should rival Mt. Rushmore.

This whole area is a dream country for sports cars. Some of the most beautiful and unusual scenery in the world can be seen from your choice of modern highways, windy paved roads or fine graveled byways. Fishing, hunting and camping are rivaled only by attractions such as Rushmore, Custer Park with it's buffalo herd, Homestake Gold Mine, Wind Cave, Lead and Deadwood (Wild Bill Hickock's stamping grounds) and the awesome and unique Badlands.

But do come to Edgemont and Igloo Raceways first, and we'll steer you from there. Bring the whole family and spend a few extra days really getting to know our special place. It's well worth the trip!

The Edgemont Tribune

Wed. page 8 May 15, 1969

Black Hills Region SCCA Racing officials solicit area participation

Black Hills Region, Sports Car Club of America, Inc., announces today details of the race course workers and officials school to be held at Igloo Raceways, 24, 25 May in conjunction with the new race drivers school. A total of over 60 workers and officials are required to man this new road racing course, Colorado Region, SCCA, is providing experienced personnel to operate the track and instruct Black Hills people in the many specialties until the local workers are fully trained.

It is definitely true that workers play a vital part in road racing. Drivers cannot see what is around the next turn or many corners. Workers also have by far the best and most exciting view of the action. Their services are very much in demand at many other tracks. At least half of all SCCA races held in the Midwest are non-spectator, closed events, as is this Igloo Raceways school. The only way to see these races is as an active participant. Much as the local Region would like to hold all spectator events, insurance costs for spectators make this impossible unless a very large crowd can be expected. Even many races at Continental Divide Raceways, just outside Denver, are often closed events - - but if you are a worker, you get to see all this action, and free too!

Black Hills Officials solicit the participation of all interested persons, men and women both. These are even more interesting jobs for young adults under 21 provided they have parental consent. It is not necessary to be a SCCA member to participate fully as a worker, and insurance coverage of comprehensive nature is provided for all.

Students will be requested to attend one of three lectures given by a licensed flag man, to be held within ten days of the race weekend. A written test will be administered on information gathered at class sessions, on-the-job training and study of the General Competition Rules. Instructors will endorse student log books on completion of the weekend exercises, thus qualifying the student to work at other tracks as well as Igloo.

Some of the interesting specialties to be pursued include; Corner Worker, flagging, communications, Safety Man, Timing and Scoring, timing, scoring, taping, results preparation, Scrutineer (technical inspection of race cars, mechanical knowledge required), Pit Marshal, Grid Marshal, Starter, Registrar. These are all specialties that beginners can train for. There are many more Stewarts and Judges at every race meet who are the more experienced and licensed workers. These experienced officials are very much in demand not only in the Midwest but all over the country, racing is a big business! Such top officials are scheduled for races months in advance and are paid mileage and royally housed and entertained in return for their valuable services. It is entirely possible for a Igloo student to quite quickly obtain this rank if he is sharp and interested. The rewards of all worker functions are considerable, if not monetary, right from the start. This is also a good training ground for future drivers who may not be old enough, or have the financial means, to race at present. A number of our Black Hills Region workers will be in the race driver's seat next year.

Any interested persons are invited to write or telephone for further details and entry blanks; ADAMS - Rt. 4, Box 92, Rapid City, S. D. 57701, telephone (605) 348-1555.

The Edgemont Tribune

Wed. page 1 May 22, 1969

Sports Cars to Run at Igloo Raceway, Sat., Sun.

Black Hills Region, Sports Car Club of America, Inc., and local racing program chairman, Jack Nelson, have announced that plans have been finalized for the race drivers school to be held Saturday and Sunday, May 24 and 25, at the Igloo Raceways on the former Black Hills Army Depot area. A race course workers and officials school will be held in conjunction with the drivers school. About 15 entries have been received from drivers as of Wednesday of this week, entrance fee set at $30 per car.

The Edgemont Volunteer Fire Department will provide one unit at the race site, a fully equipped ambulance will be in attendance, plus provisions for medical assistance, policing, etc, all necessary for a activity of this type.

The Edgemont Chamber of Commerce has worked diligently to prepare the track for use and all members of the Chamber will assist the Sports Club officials in conducting the two-day program.

Chamber members and SCCA members will be at the main gate to register the participants and also validate passes. Interested persons may obtain pit passes from Chamber of Commerce chairman Jack Nelson or secure them at the main gate.

No children under 12 years of age will be allowed pit passes and minors over 12 must have parental consent by signature of release, secured at the entrance gate. The drivers school, involving sports type cars, will be in session all day Saturday and Sunday with practice races anticipated on Sunday afternoon. Prominent National SCCA Officials who have inspected the ready-made course consider it "ideal" and consider it one of the most interesting and challenging tracks in the Midwest Division as well as being extremely safe for spectators and drivers alike. Possibilities for expansion and improvement are almost limitless.

The present basic course is in the igloo area proper and is just two miles long. It features 8 varied turns and some up and down hill sections. The road lies halfway up the sides of a shallow bowl and will make for ideal viewing.

Several different types of cars compete in a number of classes in addition to standard sports cars. Sedan classes include not only import cars but familiar Camaros, Mustangs and Javelins. Open wheeled, "Indy" type formula cars compete in five different classes according to engine displacement. Included, also, are the "sports racing" cars, also all out racing machines.

(drawing of race course)

The Edgemont Tribune

Wed. page 1 May 29, 1969

Weekend SCCA Igloo Raceway Drivers' School is "Most Successful"

Drivers came from Rock Springs, Wyo., Minneapolis, Minn., Lincoln, Nebr., numerous points in Colorado, Rapid City, Deadwood and Lead to participate in the Black Hills Region, Sports Car Club of America, Inc., racing school and program held this past week end, at Igloo Raceways, on the former Black Hills Army Depot grounds. Cars were towed as far as 530 miles to participate.

Twenty four of the entries were those of student drivers and three registrations were those of licensed drivers.

About 350 persons from the immediate and surrounding area viewed the various phases of race drivers school and also the practice races conducted Sunday afternoon.

The fastest time clocked on the 2 mile long track was 1 minute and 42 seconds set by a Formula C sports car.

Drivers and officials were most enthusiastic about the "ideal" raceway following the initial test Saturday and Sunday. SCC members termed it a "safe" track and a "most challenging" one. A race course workers and officials school was held in conjunction with the drivers school.

Rod Welch, Denver, a nationally licensed starter for SCCA, is training two Black Hills men, Bill Stork, Lead, regional executive, and Bill Jones, Ellsworth Air Force Base, both of whom will be licensed soon as a result of the new school.

Included among area drivers are Al Schmidt, South Dakota Tech student in a AMX, Robert Meyer, in a car owned by Capt. Richard "Woody" Adams and T/Sgt. Gayle Fenner of Ellsworth in a Mustang, Sgt. Ralph Ridge III, Ellsworth, and Verlyn Schultz all of Rapid City and Francis Murphy, of Hermosa. Edgemont Chamber of Commerce members and SCCA members were at the main gate to register participants. Although spectators were not allowed, interested persons could obtain pit passes to observe the activities of the two-day school.

Possibilities for expansion and improvement of the racing grounds are being studied and another drivers school has been tentatively set for early fall, Jack Nelson, local racing chairman reported early this week.

The present course is in the igloo area proper and with its two-mile length features 8 varied turns, and up hill and down hill sections. The road lies halfway up the sides of a shallow bowl and thus is an excellent facility for spectators.

The Edgemont Tribune

Wed. page 2 May 29, 1969

Sideline Shots . . . by McKown

- - -

Didn't attempt to gain admittance to the "Inner Sanctum" at the Sports Car driving school, but reportably it too came along very well and promises to be better in the fall.

This first session came off surprisingly well and definitely is something this area will benefit from again this fall. Much of the credit for the success of the communities' participation and support goes to Jack Nelson and Chamber of Commerce officers who performed in cooperation with the Black Hills Region SCCA officials and enthusiasts in organizing and directing the activities. Surprising to most local skeptics was the twenty four student drivers and three other sports car drivers who registered, paying entry fees which cover most of the expenses.

The fact that the track is satisfactory and with some improvements can be utilized in other capacities as well as invite an increasing number of competitions should be a definite asset, and when a few of the "bugs" get worked out, further participation by local people will also be forthcoming. The nation-wide attention that such an improved facility will focus on our area can positively do no harm. Maybe one of the manufacturers will be attracted to establish a partial assembly plant with "try-out course" at the industrial park, who knows?

Nelson said other interests developed which may assist in making gross improvements at the track possible, and this will definitely be advantageous. When activities develop so the area can be "opened up", people will feel free to get behind such projects and "pitch in". All such participation will bring people - and business, to our community.

SCCA Track

Location of SCCA track in red, pit road in blue.

(under construction)


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