The TRUTH About the Death of the Sportsman Class Racers Association
For YEARS, I wondered why some racers who had called me 'friend' for
many years just stopped speaking to me and gave me glances like they
really disliked me! I just did not understand. I went through it once
again recently at the 6th Annual MJ Printing & Graphics Chicken Stew
at Mark Joyce's printing shop in Kernersville, NC on December 8, 2012!
How can someone 'be' your friend for many years, then just stop? How
can they just act as if they don't even know you? Well, well…something
happened at the 1st Annual Farmington Dragway Legends Race in October,
2010…which I was VERY proud to be asked to attend as one of their
I was always told I was a legend in my own mind, now I know I'm a
legend to others as well! HA! Anyway, at that race, I FINALLY got a
clue about this thing which had happened I had not been able figure
out! A racer I met (think '57 and red), probably at the first race I
ever worked at Farmington Dragway in 1979, came into the game
room…where Mark had set me up with tables and chairs. They looked at
the stuff I had and didn't even speak to me! I took all my Farmington
Dragway scrapbooks with all the articles I had written which were
printed in the Davie County Enterprise and I took lots more things for
people to look at and reminisce about.
I always tried to re-arrange those articles to send to the winners and
runners up's local papers… highlighting their accomplishments. I also
had the last set of photos I had taken at the track in 2003 before my
wreck. There were so many people who came in to look at all this stuff
and talk to me…I had been out of 'physical' drag racing at that time
for seven whole years! The game room was literally packed at times! It
was a great weekend and I hope to be able to do this again many times.
On Saturday, one particular long time Super Stock racer came in and
was looking at the books…at all his photos I'd had published along
with articles about his wins.
This is someone who has been racing almost all his life, is VERY well
liked and WELL respected, not only in IHRA circles, but he is well
known in NHRA as well. If I were to give you one little hint, you
would know who he is he…he, along with his wheelstanding wagon…are
ALWAYS a crowd favorite (there's the hint!)! I'm not sure, but I
'think' he won more IHRA Super Stock championships than anyone else
ever has. He and I were just talking and he mentioned he wished he
still had all his scrapbooks but a 'so-called' friend of his had
borrowed them many years ago and never returned them.
This racer also mentioned he wished the S.C.R.A. could have continued
because that first year, everyone had such a great time. Just in the
very first year, the races were SO successful, the S.C.R.A. was SO
WELL accepted and was praised as being THE best thing to happen to
class racing in MANY years! He said he was sorry Dick Moroso had
decided to quit sponsoring the association. We continued to talk, then
he went on his way and the game room kind of filled with people and
everyone was talking and laughing and having a great time. But this
racer's comments stayed with me…they just wouldn't go away. When I got
to my room that night, I could hardly sleep for thinking about what he
It finally dawned on me…"This racer does NOT know what happened with
the S.C.R.A. and he doesn't know WHY Mr. Moroso pulled out his
support. And I bet the others do not know either!" Then I realized why
many of those class racers had quit speaking to me! All day Sunday, I
kept watching this person and as soon as he lost and was loading his
car, I hobbled over to his rig and I said, "You don't know WHY Mr.
Moroso pulled his money out of S.C.R.A., do you?" He said that was all
he had heard. I stood there and TOLD him what happened and he was
amazed. He said he had never heard the reasons WHY Mr. Moroso had
pulled out his money and his support!
Now I am telling all of you the REAL truth about why Dick Moroso did
not sponsor the Sportsman Class Racers Association for the third year
and why it went belly up…this is the fault of approximately three
individuals. Oh yes, they had lots of help, but they were the 'big
three' who caused ALL this to happen…they literally murdered the
S.C.R.A. and all the hard work all those people…including Dick
Moroso…did for that group of racers. As I tell you what happened, you
will realize EGO is a person's worst enemy and the EGOs of these three
racers caused them to be the murderers.
As EVERYONE who was involved in S.C.R.A. KNOWS…I was instrumental in
bringing about this association…if you want to get right down to the
nitty gritty, had it not been for me, they would never have had the
meetings with Dick Moroso! I was the person who, at the first meeting,
suggested contacting Dick and asking him to be our major sponsor! None
of them knew him, but I did and I told them I would call him and see
what he had to say. He listened to everything I said, told me he would
be in Charlotte several more days and asked me when I could bring the
group down to have a meeting with him! Yes, that is right! I was the
person who set up the meeting with Mr. Moroso.
I took the group to Dick Moroso's shop in Charlotte for that meeting.
I had already explained to him on the phone what we were trying to do.
Dick Moroso was a diehard class racer. He was until the day he passed
away. He loved class racing…especially Modified. He listened to
everything I said on the phone and everything I said at the meeting.
He asked a lot of questions which were answered by either me or the
people who went to the meeting. I don't remember everyone who
went…both Wayne and Brenda Dollyhigh of Mt. Airy went…both these
people were INSTRUMENTAL in forming this association and keeping it
running, especially Brenda.
Kenny Melton was there…he had held the first meeting of racers at his
house where the association was formed (we tried to pick central
locations so more people could attend). Let me stop right here and
tell you how instrumental Brenda and Wayne Dollyhigh were in making
this association a reality. They put in hundreds of hours of work,
calling people and talking to people in person, Brenda was elected
treasurer. She not only did a LOT to recruit new members as well as
doing her secretarial job, she helped mail out over 600 letters at one
time…to every class racer we could find an address for! That is just
ONE of the hundreds of jobs she did.
She and I probably talked on the phone a hundred or more hours just
during the first few months of getting this thing together! She and I
are the people who got the first bunch of racers together even though
the meeting was held at Melton's. Now I will get back to Dick Moroso.
He grilled us for well over an hour and the main thing he wanted to
know was, "WHAT WILL I GET out of my involvement? How do I and my
company benefit? If I become your major sponsor, give you money for a
championship and pay contingencies, what do I get in return?" Dick
Moroso was FIRST…a businessman!
Businessmen do NOT just GIVE AWAY money…they want something in
return…how many times did you read that in Quick Times Racing News? If
a business person in racing is going to hand money over to you, they
want to know they are going to get THEIR money's worth of SOMETHING!
He wanted to know what that 'something' would be. The MAIN thing he
asked me was…was I and Quick Times Racing News going to remain
involved with the association and could he count on me to deliver the
advertising he KNEW I could…in return for his money. Now what kind of
advertising would he be buying for his $15,000-plus? Read that line
Yes…that $15,000-plus would be buying advertising for Moroso
Performance so he could sell more parts to get his $15,000-plus
contingency money back! Then it was MY turn to speak. Moroso
Performance had been advertising with me for several years. Dick would
call me a couple times a year just to ask me how racing was doing in
the south and if there was more he could be doing to get his company
more involved and making more money in the south. He called me because
he trusted me, he KNEW I would answer his questions whether I thought
he would like the answers or not.
He ALWAYS wanted to know how he could reach out to the 'little guy'
racers, especially bracket racers because many were buying cheap parts
which didn't last. I gave him several suggestions and he followed
every one of them…put Moroso Performance items out on the shelves so
racers could pick them up and look at them…don't just have them in the
stock room or on a wall behind the counter or not have them in the
stores at all so racers would have to order them. When a racer WANTS a
part…he wants to go in his local speed shop and pick up that part,
look at it and study it. He wants to be able take it to the counter,
ask questions about it, pay for it, take it home and put it on his
That was when you started seeing Moroso Performance Parts on displays
in small high performance stores where they had had to order them
before. I will say this…Dick Moroso was the smartest man I ever met in
my life! I never met another person in my life who could sit in a
corner of a room where a meeting was going on and be working out
something in his mind, then immediately answer a question about
something completely different! I was always straight up honest with
him and that is why he continued to listen to me and call me for
advice on southern racing.
When I told him Quick Times Racing News would carry his banner on
EVERY ad for every race, on every story on every race AND in as many
other ways as I could, he KNEW he would get the advertising he was
paying for with his $15,000 and contingencies! His banner would also
be on everything the S.C.R.A. printed…from tech cards to letterheads
to envelopes and everything else… especially t-shirts! He NEVER had a
moment's doubt about that. He was sure he would be getting his money's
worth! Any of you who were around in 1988, especially class racers
involved in the S.C.R.A., knew what a helluva year that association
All the class racers put on a bang up show at every track where they
raced. I wrote about the races and everything I printed had MOROSO
S.C.R.A. on it. Dick Moroso was VERY pleased…we didn't even have to
ask for his money the second year…he came to our banquet to OFFER that
money again! In October, 1988, we had our banquet AND a meeting to
elect officers for 1989. I was never an office holder, I just agreed
to be the Public Information Officer for the S.C.R.A. through Quick
Times Racing News. And I did my job VERY WELL!
At the meetings before the banquet that year, I was nominated for Vice
President. My exact words were, "I am afraid I have to decline this
nomination! I'm sorry, I don't have a choice." When asked why, I just
explained I was stretched so thin already, there was no way I could
take on anything else! Not only was I publishing Quick Times, I was
working on opening a print shop in Lincolnton, we were doing the
Southeastern Drag Strip Directories," racer calendars, I can't even
begin to tell you all the stuff I was involved in. Not to mention the
fact I STILL had a family! I just could not do it. Everyone seemed to
be okay with that, including Dick Moroso.
He, too, had been stretched thin all his life so he knew exactly where
I was coming from. I will tell you this…if it had not been for Brenda
Dollyhigh, I don't think I could have done what I did with the
S.C.R.A. that year anyway! We had our banquet and I even won an
award!!! The 1988 S.C.R.A. Ace Reporter award! I don't remember if we
had a meeting in early 1989 or if someone just came over to me at the
first race and told me I was no longer needed! The reason being…they
were going to publish their own paper! Well, they already had Moroso's
money so I guess they actually thought they really did not need a
major publication! WRONG!
I do have a copy of the first…and only (I think)…paper they published!
Someone sent it to me so I could see what a crappy job they did! But
as far as I know they never published a second one! After I was told
they didn't need me any longer, I bowed out and stayed away. I did not
go to their races that year and there was nothing in my paper about
them because they never sent me anything. I did call Dick and told him
what they had done and he told me that was okay…for me not to worry
about it. He would see how it went…there was nothing else he could
do…they already had his money! They also did not get to go back to
River Cities Raceway or to the New Atlanta Raceway to race in '89
because of their decision!
So, to put it plainly…Mr. Moroso did NOT get what he paid for that
second year…they cheated him a whole lot more than they cheated me…at
least all I had involved was time and gas, motels and eats. Since he
did not get what he paid for the second year, there WAS NO THIRD YEAR.
And all this was the fault of Kenny Melton, Ben Trammell and Ronnie
Smith! Sometime between the banquet in October, 1988 and the time I
was told I was no longer needed, Ronnie Smith called me at my home one
evening. Ronnie and I had worked together several times before on a
couple projects, etc. and had always (I thought) been friends. But
evidently, his ego got the best of him as well.
He started listening to the wrong people and believed their lies and
innuendos! I could not believe the things he said to me that night!
And everything he said was a lie! He had heard I had said this and
heard I had said that. I said, "Ronnie, where did you get these lies?
I have never even THOUGHT these things, how could I have said them if
I never even THOUGHT them?" He just kept on and on and I finally hung
up on him…there's no need in arguing with someone who 'thinks' they
know it ALL! Somehow he felt sure the things he had been told were
true because the people who told him were 'supposed' to be his
friends! I wonder how long it took Ronnie to realize he HAD no
All they did was use him for a patsy. They stirred up his ego and
instigated him to do the calling so the conversation would be blamed
on him and not on them. This was one of the ugliest conversations I've
ever been witness to on my own phone! That conversation and one which
occurred in early '89 prompted me to put a recorder on my phone! I
wasn't taking any more chances! I wonder how long it took Ronnie to
realize everything he had been told were lies? He kept saying, "Well
Ben told me…" or "Kenny said…" I just could NOT make him understand.
I will tell you this though…most class races NEVER supported QTRN!
They felt a 'bracket racing' publication or a publication for 'little
guys' was beneath them! So why did I go to bat for them? Who the hell
knows! I just knew what Billy Meyer was doing was WRONG and I wanted
to do something to help make it right. During the entire 25 years I
published the print version of Quick Times Racing News, the ONLY time
I EVER got any support from class racers was during 1988…when I was
involved with the S.C.R.A. and reporting all their events. I also went
to most of the S.C.R.A. events and I can tell you this…there are
several tracks which would NEVER have had S.C.R.A. races had it not
been for me.
One of them is River Cities Raceway Park, another was the New Atlanta
Dragway! I got those races for S.C.R.A. along with a couple others.
One more thing before I close…when I first started Quick Times Racing
News, Kenny Melton had won some IHRA Modified World Championships. I
was told by several people he had actually 'bought' those
championships and I absolutely refused to believe it. Do I believe it
now? What do you think? It was just public knowledge in class racing
circles, draw Melton and make money…get paid to lose! I wouldn't put
anything past him. He was and probably still is a snake in the grass
and he always seemed to have a lot of followers. I never understood
that but as you know, I have never been a 'follower' anyway!
The following letter is from the October, 1988 Issue of Quick Times
Racing News (Volume 8, No.7)
Thank you for attending the inaugural Budweiser Kudzu Nationals held
last month at our facility. Having you present added credibility to
our fine Pro Stock and Sportsman Class Racers Association show.
The S.C.R.A. show was, by far, the finest sportsman presentation we
have held at the New Atlanta Dragway. Never have we seen so many
quality cars that produced such outstanding performances. Every car in
the S.C.R.A. could pass as a show car.
The personnel were great to work with and conducted their events in a
most professional manner. The S.C.R.A. is welcomed to run with us as
often as possible during the 1989 season. I sincerely hope they are
able to maintain the successful program they have administered in
Keep up the good work and visit us soon.
Vice President/General Manager
The New Atlanta Dragway
But the S.C.R.A. was NOT "able to maintain the successful program they
administered in 1988." Why? Because of a few egotistical individuals
who thought they were better than everyone else involved in the
association. This just goes to prove…an overactive ego not only can,
but WILL, destroy everything. And they were NOT included when the 1989
Kudzu Nationals rolled around at the New Atlanta Dragway! They were
replaced by the first ever Heads Up, No Breakout Quick 16 Doorslammer
race at an NHRA track. When you cease to listen to people in the know,
the people who have helped you the most because you think you 'know it
all,' this is what happens.
And it caused the destruction of an organization which worked! The
bulk of the racers were there from the beginning…even those who had
many doubts about whether the whole thing would work or not. It worked
ONLY because of the many individuals who worked so hard…together…for
its success…those who really CARED about the association and not just
about themselves and their egos. The Sportsman Class Racers
Association was an 'anomaly.' An anomaly is an abnormality, something
inconsistent or odd. It was formed so quickly and run so well and was
so successful in only its first year, people had a hard time believing
it. Things like that just don't normally happen! Then it died almost
as quickly as it started… it was an anomaly.
It struggled a little to survive, but not much. An association which
could garner this kind of praise from a facility such as the New
Atlanta Dragway and had such an unheard of successful FIRST year,
should have been destined to do great things. But no, the minority of
the people involved quit working together for the good of the entire
group. They were selfish and only worked for the good of their own
egos, therefore destroying everything everyone had worked so hard to
build. When Billy Meyer sold IHRA in late 1988 to Jim Ruth and Jim
brought back the guys who had so successfully run IHRA for so many
years, class racing was re-instated and racers deserted S.C.R.A. as
quickly as they had joined up.
Why? Because without Quick Times Racing News to give them the
recognition and praise they had had the year before (praise they
deserved), they no longer needed the S.C.R.A. At least, with the Drag
Review, they could get a little write-up and get their photo
printed…once Quick Times Racing News had been run out of S.C.R.A.,
they were getting NO recognition at all! Why pay to join an
association if it isn't going to do you any good? I know NOTHING of
the S.C.R.A. in its second year. I don't know if they even had a
banquet. I don't even know if they ever handed out the money Dick
Moroso had given them. Did they even finish the year? Did they have
What DID happen to that money? I wish I had some way of finding out.
If anyone knows, I would love to get that info! I don't even know who
their treasurer was the second year…or any other officers either! But
since it seems as if everyone involved thought Mr. Moroso and,
therefore, I were the reasons it shut down, they don't seem to want to
talk to me. Mr. Moroso for not giving them more money for nothing and
me for 'deserting' them…which I did not do. Man, drag racers sure can
hold grudges for a LONG time! Even for NO reason! If anyone could give
me that information I would greatly appreciate it! And I am sure there
are lots of others who would appreciate knowing the same things!
Now YOU KNOW everything I know concerning the TRUTH about the MURDER
of the Sportsman Class Racers Association! I don't even know who the
officers were the second year. I'm sure they could tell you what
happened to it. I would have done this story years ago if I had known
people were upset with me and blamed me for the death of the S.C.R.A.