Thursday, March 17, 2011

Randy Moss and Ole Brua

Apparently Randy Moss is now part-owner of a NASCAR team. He grew up in rural North Carolina surrounded by dirt tracks, so it was in his blood, so to speak, and being a "a rebel, a redneck or a blackneck" (his words, not mine), getting into racing was a natural thing to do.

It brought to mind some memories of the track at the Worth County Fairgrounds and the Sunday night races that many of you/us attended. The big winner tended to be Ole Brua from Albert Lea, and my recollection is that a lot of people didn't like it when he did. Somehow he was a "dirty driver", and might have been one of those drivers fueled by barley pop.

My own experience on the track was non-existent, and the closest I got to it was vicariously through a cousin, Judean Thompson, who now lives in Albert Lea. He drove a car that was sponsored at one point or another by Galen Harris, who owned the Minneapolis-Moline shop at the north end of town, and I believe probably worked for Holstad Motors at one point.

Galen was a good guy, and he gave his mechanic expertise to this car by putting a dab of something like vaseline on the distributor with a suggestion to Judean that he do so just 15 minutes before every race. It didn't help. The car was still a dog. I don't think Judean really wanted to race anyway, and was simply filling in because they couldn't get anybody else.

The races have come a long ways since those days, in terms of cars, miles, and dollars. Things change.

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