Our first general fall meeting for 2015 at Papio’s Food & Spirits is now it the books as one of the best we have had in a while. Both the Hilliker brothers told us of how they got started in racing and that Steven has amassed 18 championships through the years while David is at 12 total championships. They have the next generation of Hillikers on the way but neither has the thought of retiring anytime soon. Both Leo “The Chef” Pego & “Shut Up” Roger Williams informed us of how they got started in racing. Roger was raised in racing and credited Leo for helping in his start of announcing. Leo stated that he had no plans on becoming a track announcer he started with driving but lettering the race cars was his first passion and announcing was just pushed on him and he has done a great job throughout the years He and Roger are a great tag team. (Top Left: Steven Hilliker Top Center: David Hilliker Top Right: Roger Williams Bottom: Leo Pego)
On October 22, 2015 the Michigan Speedways Promoters Association held its annual fall meeting at the Michigan International Speedways media center. The purpose of these meetings is to discuss various topics like: How to get more fans to attend, to overall costs in running their facilities, what kinds of advertising is the most beneficial to their tracks, how to give the fans the best bang for their buck. They even had a promoter from a national series who was there to say they are trying to form an association like the MSPA down south to help benefit their state also. They talked about the younger kids coming into the sport and the cost of making sure everyone is safe by installing more safety equipment for the racers and the track crews. How to use social media better to get more people involved in our sport! Also the rising costs of insurance for all who race and attend races. Many discussions take place on what venders they have at the different tracks and how to keep prices down and still make it financially. All the associate members each get the opportunity to talk about their organizations. There are many different ones on hand, racing series, tire distributors, insurance companies, safety venders, fan clubs and racing fuel companies. We here talk all the time about how the promoters are making big money off the fans and racers! I personally would say to anyone who would like to try to trade places with a promoter for a week or two to see if they could get the job done I’d say go try it sometime. They battle with Mother Nature, local stick & ball sports, bad economy in some areas, the rising fuel cost for racers, fans & track vehicles, and the cost of running a special show and bringing in a large racing series these are just a few things we as racers and fans don’t realize what the promoters have to go through to put on a weekly show for about 16 to 18 weeks a year and still have taxes, utilities, and maintain their facilities for the rest of the year. So with many race tracks loosing fans and racers because of the economy we are slowly seeing them fold and shut down and never to reopen again. I say take the time to say thank you to the promoters for giving us fans and racers a place for us to come and enjoy the sport we all know and love.
ATTENTION ALL MARFC MEMBERS! Don’t forget that on Sunday October 25, 2015 is our first fall general meeting and our cheer raffle drawing will be held at Papio’s Food & Spirits, 2280 S. Reese Rd., Reese, and Mi. 48757. This will be a Sunday afternoon meeting and will be getting started at 2:00 pm. We will be drawing our MARFC Raffle winners at this meeting. Our speakers will be Leo “The Chef” Pego & “Shut Up” Roger Williams along with both the Hilliker brothers Dave & Steve. So come and join us for a great meeting. Directions are take I-75 from the north or south to exit 151 (M-81 E). Take M-81 east 9.3 miles to S. Reese Rd. and turn right (South) to 2280 Reese Rd.
As I sit here thinking about how the fan club got its start 50 years ago I have to recall the stories that I have been told by our club founders. On September 25, 1965 six people who enjoyed our sport of auto racing sat down and put to paper the guide lines of what we now call our bylaws and formed the Michigan Automobile Racing Fan Club. They never believed that the club would go on for more than a few years not only to see it get to fifty. Those six people were Vito & Barbara LoPiccolo, Willis & Marian Floskstra and Bob & Norma Lewis. With their leadership they built the club up and had some great people volunteer to help keep it going all these years. I for one am glad to have the chance to see it become what it is today and give thanks to those six individuals for their foresight in creating our club and enjoy helping to keep it moving forward and into the future. So HAPPY 50th ANNIVERSARY MARFC and here’s to the next fifty years! To see more about our clubs history go to the links page and click on history.