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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Stock Car Racing Topics:  James Swan, Fight for the Cure Fall 40


Matt Panure
Mid American Stock Car Series
October 27, 2007

(Elkhart Lake, WI) October, 27 -- With chilly weather more fitting for a fall special, James Swan capped off his 2007 Mid-American Stock Car Series championship season in style Saturday afternoon by winning the inaugural "Fight For the Cure" Fall 40 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, WI. Swan took the lead half way through the ten lap non-points event, passing an ailing machine piloted by Kenny Smart.

Behind several ARCA and Busch style Classic Cars, Tony Habeck led the field of Mid-American competitors to the start alongside Troy Shear, Jr. The field was thrown quickly into a scramble as Mike Mulcahy spun going into turn one. Bill Prietzel, who started right behind Mulcahy, spun to avoid causing further damage.

The bobble allowed Shear to take an early lead from Habeck as fast qualifier Kenny Smart and Swan charged to the front from the fourth row. Smart made quick work of Shear as Swan followed him into second a few corners later.

Photos of this event have been posted

It was another tough day for Bobby Gutknecht as he could only navigate his machine to the 12th corner before the transmission gave out. His good friend and fellow top Mid-American veteran Lyle Nowak was unable to start the race as he discovered a miss in his engine prior to staging.

Three laps into the event, Swan closed in on Smart but could not pass him. “I knew I had to keep Smart close enough to see him,” said Swan. “I caught him but I could only stay with him.” Smart began to widen the gap between himself and Swan on lap four.

However, during the fifth circuit, Smart lost fourth gear and was forced to keep from fully accelerating his machine on the long straight-aways. Swan had issues of his own as the windshield began to buckle and the dashboard bowed up. “Everything was just a big blur and I was messing up corners and losing ground, so I just settled myself down,” explained Swan.

Smart’s problems proved to be far greater than Swan’s as he lost ground in a hurry and Swan made the pass without looking back on the rest of the field. Smart barely held onto second as Prietzel rebounded nicely from his early spin only to miss out on the second spot by a matter of inches.

The win was an excellent way for Swan to end his roller coaster season. “I’m happy that we at least got two wins this season, I was afraid we’d only have one. This was pretty cool (to win at Road America), especially to benefit the American Cancer Society. I can’t be happier,” Swan stated.

The event proved to be a very special fall classic indeed. Several drivers, crew members and officials participated in the American Cancer Society Run/Walk, raising over $1,500 for cancer research.

Everyone who brought a car to Road America received plenty of track time as well. An early morning session allowed both Mid-American and Classic Car drivers two hours to test the 4-mile course. All cars were also allowed to race in the 40 mile feature event and a 30 minute final session allowed crew members to jump into the cars on which they normally turn wrenches.

The Mid-American Stock Car Series banquet is scheduled for Saturday, January 19th at the Wintergreen Resort in Wisconsin Dells, WI. For more information on the Mid-American banquet, 2007 race results, the final 2007 season standings or driver information please visit www.midamericanracing.com.

“Fight For the Cure” Fall 40
1. James Swan, Genoa City, WI; 2. Kenny Smart, Oconomowoc, WI; 3. Bill Prietzel, Richfield, WI; 4. Hank Tews, Batavia, IL; 5. Troy Shear Jr., Roscoe, IL; 6. Kyle Shear, Roscoe, IL; 7. Mike Mulcahy, Warrenville, IL; 8. Tony Habeck, Black Creek, WI; 9. Bobby Gutknecht, Oak Creek, WI;

DNS: Lyle Nowak, Wausau, WI; Tim Warner, Malone, WI; Jason Mertes, Sheboygan, WI;

Fast Time: Smart - 2 minutes, 29 seconds.

Participating Classic and Vintage Cars
6 - Chuck King, West Chicago, IL -- Tommy Houston Cup Car
7 - John Scott, Okauchee, WI -- Factory Porsche
11- Bill Paul, Brookfield, WI -- Brett Bodine Cup Car
21- Rick Tackman, Waukesha, WI -- ARCA car
22 - Lon Meagher, Racine, WI -- ‘65 Chevy Impala
32 - Jan Prietzel, Richfield, WI -- SCCA (ASA Touring)
32 - Randy Rupp, Eden, WI -- ‘68 Mustang
33 - Adam Rupp, Eden, WI -- ‘68 Mustang
42 - Tom Blank, Carbondale, CO -- Dick Trickle ‘68 Torino
44 - Mike Korneli, West Bend, WI -- Jaguar Convertible
48 - Craig Olsen, Manitowoc, WI -- James Hylton ‘85 Monte Carlo
68 - Steve Markey, Villa Park, IL -- Tony Raines Truck
71 - John Vaash, Franksville, WI -- ‘71 Dodge Charger
83 - Juan Huerta, Racine, WI -- ‘56 Chevy
90 - Dick Karth, Grafton, WI -- Dick Trickle Cup Car

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