Baer Field Speedway officially turns 50 this weekend, and its inviting a few friends along for the ride.
Foremost among them will be four names that echo all the way back to the start of things in the summer of 1964.
Louise Stovall, Bob Coe, Joe Wormcastle and Al Cook Jr. will become Baer Fields 21st Hall of Fame class when theyre formally inducted Saturday evening.
Stovall – winner of the first-ever fan vote – becomes the fourth member of her family to enter the Hall, following her husband Jim Sr. and sons Jim Jr. and Scott. The elder Stovalls were the car owners for Conan Moose Myers and Scott Stovall Jr., who both drove the iconic Louise Special: a maroon No. 0.
The Stovall/Myers pairing won the first of 14 area track championships at Baer Field in 1966 and later won both American Speed Association and ARCA titles – the only team ever to do so.
Coe, meanwhile, raced at Baer Field from the day it opened and is patriarch of a racing family that produced four other drivers – his sons Mike, Roger, Ron and Scott.
Ditto Wormcastle and Cook. The former made his name as a driver who started in the late 1960s and still occasionally climbs behind the wheel to this day, winning the Modified track championship as recently as 2005. This season, hes served as crew chief for his son Pete, who won the 2013 Gold Cup in the Fantastic Sams Modifieds.
Cook, meanwhile, joins his father Al Sr. (a 2005 inductee) to make the Cooks only the second multi-generational Hall of Fame family. hes currently battling John Gatton Jr. for the 2013 Late Model championship while also battling stage four stomach cancer.
All four will be inducted Saturday as part of a special 50th anniversary night of racing that will include throwback trophy dashes for the fastest four qualifiers, Australian Pursuit races replacing traditional heats and four 50-lap features in with the late models and Fantastic Sams Modifieds racing for a $1,000 first-place prize, the street stocks racing for $500 and the front-wheel drives for $300.
In addition to the racing will be the aforementioned Hall of Fame induction ceremonies; a Kids Nickel Pitch; a boys and girls bicycle giveaway; and 2,000 pieces of anniversary cake. Admission will be yet another throwback, with adults getting in for the 1964 admission price of $5 and kids 12 and under free.
Practice for Saturday nights festivities begins at 3 p.m. with spectator gates open at 4, qualifying at 5:30 and racing at 7:30.