Checkered Past: Bands of Brothers
8.4.01 Rossburg, OH (Eldora) Jeff and Sammy Swindell (Roger Grevenkamp photo)

Professional sports have seen its share of brothers. Football had Peyton and Eli Manning under center. Baseball had Pedro and Ramon Martinez on the mound. Basketball has Seth and Steph Curry well behind the arc. Auto racing runs on deeper bloodlines. Why else do proud fathers spend insane amounts of money just to learn if Junior has talent? Del Curry needed only to furnish a basketball to gauge desire.

Racing repeats a basic song: driver becomes accomplished, progresses to faster machines, shoves obsolete equipment behind the barn, marries a rival’s daughter, procreates, offspring cleans car, is held in victory lane by mother, begs to drive until dad says, “Pull my old car out of the weeds and prove it.” Not an uncommon tale. Less common are parents possessing the mental or financial fortitude to place a second son in harm’s way. Such families are extremely special.

In the 42-year existence of the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series, five bands of brothers have graced victory lane: Bobby and Joey Allen from Pennsylvania by way of Miami, Dave and Dale Blaney of Ohio, Dean and Kenny Jacobs also of Ohio, Ian and Kerry Madsen from Australia and its most successful set, Jeff and Sammy Swindell of suburban Memphis, Tennessee.

10.9.81 Syracuse, NY: Jeff Swindell, Sammy Swindell, Steve Kinser, Doug Wolfgang, Steve Smith and Danny Smith

“Slammin’ Sammy” and “Jammin’ Jeff” were the only brothers to compete in the very first Outlaw gathering in the Devil’s Bowl of Texas in 1978. Sammy finished fourth in the J&J chassis of M.A Brown; Jeff’s ride belonged to Daryl Saucier, who later designed DSR fuel pumps. Jeff’s technological contribution is electronic bleeder valves. Sammy’s innovations are innumerable: tires, shocks, brakes, wings, etc. All totaled, big brother won 412 times with the World of Outlaws counting finals, split field preliminaries, and Big Money invites like Busch Bash at Eldora or Fram Dash in Memphis and North Texas. Jeff added 56 more. Swindells remain one of six bands of brothers to appear in the 2020 series along with Danny and Billy Dietrich (PA), Carson and Cole Macedo (CA), Sawyer and Tasker Phillips (IA), Dominic and Giovanni Scelzi (CA) and Brandon and Freddie Rahmer of PA.

Ohio’s hallowed cathedral hosted history’s second World of Outlaws event at Eldora Speedway. It was a Sunday afternoon affair that accounted for a rare victory on the high banks by Bobby Allen, who would win 30 more main events scheduled by Ted Johnson. It took 14 years for Joey Allen to achieve his only Outlaw success at Attica Raceway Park. His winning mount was designed, constructed, owned and wrenched by big bro. Allen Enterprises evolved into the Drydene-driven Shark Racing team that produced its 21st Outlaw win for Logan Schuchart last month on the Terre Haute (IN) Action Track.

2.21.98 New Oxford, PA (Lincoln) Joey Allen (Steve Koletar photo)

Eldora’s third visit of 1978 marked the first of 720 total series victories by Steve Kinser of Bloomington, IN. Cora and Bob’s boy was joined on the elite list by cousins Mark (206 club conquests) and Kelly (he substituted for Mark in 1997 to win at West Plains, MO) and son Kraig (17 wins) yet Steve’s kid brother Randy Kinser never quite got there. Randy reached tenth at Kokomo in 1978, ninth at Bloomington, sixth at Eldora then second to Tim Gee in 1983 at Paragon, IN. He cracked Top Seven in five more features topped by fourth in 1996 at Pevely, MO. Before tire rules, Randy was often the guy at Haubstadt with an unmarked Goodyear until Steve Kinser Racing resources shifted toward Randy’s nephew. After finishing fifth at Terre Haute in the 2000 Outlaw Support Series final, Randy retired to assist Scott Gerkin in assembling engines that netted Knoxville Nationals for Kraig in 2005 and 15 features for Tim Kaeding a season later.

5.28.76 Williams Grove, PA: Van and Dub May

El Paso, Texas was home to Bill May’s boys. Walter “Dub” May migrated to Hanover, PA and soon summoned Leland Vance “Van” May. Dub scored the first of four wins with the World of Outlaws at Eldora over Memorial Day 1979 as first driver of the Kenny Rogers special owned by concert promoter C.K Spurlock. That was a Bob Trostle chassis because the first Kenny Rogers Gambler of Danny Smith was still a dream. It was the 1982 Western when Dub May mirrored his 1971 Western with an extended hospital stay. Dub was dealt major head trauma at Manzanita. Van very nearly topped The Outlaws. His first series start in ‘78 earned eighth at Mercer, PA. Later in that campaign, he finished fourth at Lincoln and seventh at Syracuse before famously scattering his roll cage all over turn one. Van May met the ‘79 Outlaw trail at Tampa, Champaign, Lima and Eldora where eyeglasses shattered to end his season. A year later, he finished fourth against Outlaws at Williams Grove and Grandview. Ben Cook’s yellow bird was light and powered by Gaerte Engines. It finished fourth with The Outlaws at nearby Selinsgrove and qualified fastest at Williams Grove and Knoxville Nationals. Cook’s car recorded Van May’s series-high of second-place at Lincoln and Lebanon Valley, NY.

8.17.85 Knoxville, IA: Van May (Ben Cook 33) Max Dolder photo

The first World of Outlaws win by Indiana’s Danny Smith at Houston in 1980 was first for the Kenny Rogers Gambler. He added 12 more that culminated at Lawrenceburg in 2004. Danny’s brother Fred Smith took a brief fling behind the wheel and stunned The Outlaws with sixth-place at Kokomo in 1982.

Since his was but a slice of the 1982 Eldora Nationals, Jac Haudenschild’s first win with the World of Outlaws was not fully recognized. Jac joined the lofty list at Kokomo in a car built and wrenched by Jim McQueen in 1985. Haud has 74 wins with The Outlaws. Jac’s older brother Ed entered an early handful of Outlaw dates worth 12th at Eldora and 13th at Champaign, IL. Ed Haudenschild’s nephew Sheldon secured his eighth series victory last week but fell just short of a second straight Iron Man 55.

As with “The Wild Child” he has known most of his life, Kenny Jacobs waited a while between preliminary victories at 1986 Eldora Nationals, 1987 Western World and 1991 Knoxville Nationals and 1992 when he officially tallied Topeka Raceway Park. Five more followed. It was not until 2006 that Dean Jacobs joined the fraternity by filling in for Terry McCarl all the way to Lernerville’s victory lane and solitary series trophy.

8.12.98 Knoxville, IA: Dean and Kenny Jacobs

Northeast of Haudenschild and Jacobs was Blaney Lumber outside turn three of the Sharon Speedway. World of Outlaws launched a little too late for Lou Blaney, fourth in the 1974 Knoxville Nationals and second at Mercer in the Western PA Championship of 1978. That was Lou’s rookie season with an ex-Dick Tobias Mustang II and modified races soon took precedence as proven by 200 wins. Lewis Blaney is the only driver inducted into modified and sprint car halls of fame. He died in 2009 but not before Lou and Kate created remarkable sons. Dave Blaney’s first World of Outlaws win came in 1985 at Granite City, IL. He won 98 more and its 1995 title. Fifteen years and countless basketball games later, Lou’s tallest son Dale beat The Outlaws at Farmer City, IL. Eleven more fell, most recently the 2015 Don Martin Memorial. Sharon’s 2020 Lou Blaney Memorial was won by Cale Conley, husband to Dave’s daughter Emma and father to Lou’s great grandchild.

7.15.00 Rossburg, OH (Eldora) Dave and Dale Blaney (Doug Johnson photo)

Silver Dollar Speedway’s first Mini Gold Cup opened with the only Outlaw victory ever by Dave Bradway Jr. Three months later, Dave was dead at the Dirt Cup at Skagit with no idea that his Chico win would gain full status by 2018. Heartbroken brother Alan Bradway had his best Outlaw outings at San Jose (tenth in 1983) and 13th at the Gold Cup of 1989.

Bradways of Roseville resided 100 miles northeast of San Leandro’s Darrell Hanestad, who opened the 1987 World of Outlaws campaign aboard Daryl Saucier’s Shaver Nance. Hanestad lasted two months. DSR dialed Shane Carson’s number before hiring unheralded Lee Brewer Jr. Their first stop was Lernerville; Lee won. In their seventh week together, Brewer stunned The Outlaws at Oklahoma City. That season of 1987 saw the birth of Memphis Motorsports Park, where Lee’s brother Mike Brewer finished 14th with the premier series. Lee added a second Outlaw win at Eldora for Utah’s Red Powell in 1989.

4.28.89 Knoxville, IA: Lee Brewer (Powell 32u) Max Dolder photo

Maryland’s Cris Eash was deep into his second summer with the World of Outlaws in 1988 when he used familiar Williams Grove for his first series success. Big brother Darren Eash first won at Jennertown in 1985 then stacked checkereds from Williams Grove to Selinsgrove, Port Royal, Lincoln and Hagerstown but Outlaw accolades escaped him. Darren reached 13th at Hagerstown and The Grove in 1986 and 12th at Lincoln Speedway in 1988. Lincoln was where The Outlaws were surprised by Bill Brian Jr. in 1993. Billy’s little brother Cliff Brian brought 16th when the 1995 tour touched Bridgeport, NJ.

Brent Kaeding, son of “The Campbell Comet” who rocked San Jose asphalt for 16 straight supermodified victories, beat The Outlaws on eleven evenings while raising formidable sons. Tim Kaeding’s first two wins with the World of Outlaws were preliminaries to Gold Cups of 1999 and 2002. When the 2003 tour opened in Kings County, he captured his first final. Tim tallied 23 more. Brandon “Bud” Kaeding took a different route. Bud began tenth with Outlaws at San Jose and Santa Maria in 1997 and again at Perris in 1999 before he relocated to Indianapolis for USAC that made him 2006 champ of champ cars. Upon his NorCal return, Bud was eighth at Gold Cup 2010, fifth at Stockton and Antioch then raised his finest Outlaw finish to third at Chico in 2018.

5.21.00 Sumner, IL (Red Hill) Bud Kaeding (Mark Funderburk photo)

A hundred miles northeast of Kaeding Performance are McMahans of suburban Sacramento. Carol’s oldest and tallest son Bob was winning NARC sprint races before youngest and shortest son Paul began at the 1987 Mini Gold Cup. In a most inauspicious debut, Paul made scarcely one hot lap before stuffing his sprint car beneath John Padjen’s water truck. Paul soon exceeded Bob on the depth chart and was positioned for the World of Outlaws and All Star Circuit of Champions by moving his family to Nashville, TN. His first Outlaw win was on the Missouri State Fairground in 2001 then 21 more did follow. Bobby McMahan’s best results were ninth at Gold Cup 1990, eighth at Calistoga, fifth at San Jose and after a USAC pavement stint, third at Chico in 2014.

Oklahoma’s Shane Stewart was a preliminary winner with the World of Outlaws on successive Fridays at Talladega and Devil’s Bowl before his first final night success in Louisiana’s Thunder Valley. Last month, Shane shocked The Grove by beating The Outlaws for the 38th time. Shane’s baby brother Darren Stewart was an ASCS 360 winner who never gave 410 racing or The Outlaws more than a passing glance. Darren did make 18th at OKC in 2001.

New Jersey’s Peter Chesson fielded a winning 1973 Pinto for Stan Ploski and Billy Osmun, purchased Barker Bus from enormous Bucky Barker, used it to fund Billy Pauch in 1989-90, then began foreign car care that launched 358 sprint car dreams of James and Peter Jr. “P.J” shocked the World of Outlaws out of $100,000 at Eldora before officially defeating them at the 2002 Red River Valley Fair in Fargo, ND. Four weeks later, P.J added a homestate Outlaw score at New Egypt, NJ. “Jamie” was eleventh at Las Vegas, second at The Bowl and fourth at Bristol and 2001 National Open. Chessons were shooting stars. P.J aspired to the 2006 Indianapolis 500; James got as far as Indy Lights.

2.9.20 Barberville, FL (Volusia) Kerry and Ian Madsen (Brent Smith photo)

Australia’s Joe Madsen migrated to Ohio from New South Wales to race late models and the stray sprint car. The first three series victories by Joe’s boy Kerry were concurrent “Outlaws Down Under” tours of Parramatta City (2004-05) and Mount Maunganui, New Zealand. Kerry Madsen’s first stateside win with The Outlaws came at Volusia Speedway Park in 2007. Six years later, Ian Madsen joined the scroll at Deer Creek Speedway in Spring Valley, MN. Kerry and Ian combined for 33 series wins and made Joe one of five fathers to two Outlaw winners. Such praise comprises the sunny side of the sport. Getting fired after the 2020 Brad Doty Classic reminded Ian of its dark side.

7.22.87 Knoxville, IA: Terry and Lenard McCarl (Max Dolder photo)

Iowa’s Terry McCarl saw his father Lenard earn 1986 World of Outlaws success as car owner/crew chief to Jimmy Sills. Terry’s best Outlaw outing was his 1996 Nationals prelim until officially beating them in 2004 at Joplin, MO. He won 14 more. Terry’s older brother Kenny earned 18th at Knoxville against Outlaws three cars behind his series-high in 1985 at Odessa, MO.

Tennessee’s Jason Sides had never beaten the World of Outlaws until the tire-eating 2004 Kings Royal. He also added 14 more. Big brother Paul won USCS 360 features and starting wages with The Outlaws from Lebanon Valley to Napa Valley where he was 15th at Calistoga, CA. Jason may answer to “Double Down” but Paul is “World Wide” Sides for Outlaw starts in Sydney and New Zealand. Two Sides Racing embraced at Jason’s most recent club checkered in 2016 at Little Rock, AR.

Jonathan Allard first tasted Outlaw glory with Morrie Williams on opening night to Gold Cup 2007. Seven years later with Clyde Lamar, Jon won the Gold Cup final for his only Outlaw victory. Kid brother Stephen Allard achieved Outlaw finishes of 15th at Hanford in 2002, 12th at Billings, MT and eleventh at Calistoga in 2004. Jon lost Stephen on Christmas 2012.

Opening night to Gold Cup 2014 marked the first sprint win of Carson Macedo’s career. As driver for Kyle Larson and Joe Gaerte, Carson captured five wins in two Outlaw seasons. Cole Macedo joined big brother at Stockton in 2019. Freddie Rahmer stunned The Outlaws at Lincoln in 2018; twin brother Brandon Rahmer reached 13th at Lincoln last month. Gio Scelzi grabbed The Grove in 2018 after Dom Scelzi had been ninth in Vegas, fourth at Chico (2016) and third at Rapid City, SD.

As with all stars of auto racing, these bands of brothers become faster at younger ages. Macedo, Rahmer and Scelzi siblings have prime years ahead of them though fate can be cruel. Strap in tight brothers. Stay healthy. Racing through a pandemic has never made that so difficult.

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