- Wednesday 04 July, 2012
NORWALK, Ohio – This week Summit Motorsports Park transformed into a candy jar of Sportsman racing.
You don’t want to miss one flavor from the 9 a.m. Thursday Sportsman qualifying and 4 p.m. Thursday Comp Eliminator qualifying, to final eliminations.
How sweet is this candy? The three generations on the Ray Skillman Racing Team, Greenwood, Ind., brought a red Chevrolet Cobalt and four Mustang Cobra Jets in red, white, red and white, and blue.
Imagine a patriotic parade of Cobra Jets on the way from the Summit side pits to the staging lanes.
Two of the Cobra Jets race in Stock, and two in Super Stock, said Drew Skillman, 24, who won the Super Stock Championship in May at the B’laster Cavalcade of Stars in a 2012 Mustang Cobra Jet.
Skillman said he races for “fun, more than anything, and because it’s a family activity and time spent together.”
The team owns five Cobra Jets, with a black one which should be ready to race by the end of the season. Their racing began almost accidentally, said Drew Skillman, who is in his third season of racing.
“We’re a Big Four auto dealer out of Indianapolis,” Drew Skillman said. “That’s how we got started. We collect cars.
“We have about 160 classic cars in the Ray Skillman Classic Cars. It’s a museum, and it’s also where our race shop is,” Drew Skillman said. “We got two 2010 Cobra Jets, intending to add them to the collection. We took them out one weekend.
“We thought we were going to drive them one time and park them,” Drew Skillman said. “We didn’t do as good as we thought we would. We went out one more time. Now we’re here. It’s kind of snowballed.”
The museum is available online at Ray Skillman “Collector Car Sales,” at http://www.rayskillmanclassiccars.com/, 1280 U.S. 31 S., Greenwood, Ind. 46143, or by calling 888-521-0723.
Ray Skillman pilots the 2006 Chevy Cobalt, built by B&B Race Cars with a 320 cu. in. engine built by Patterson Racing, and a 2010 Cobra Jet, Drew said.
Bill Skillman, Drew’s father, races a 2012 Cobra Jet, Drew said.
* David Rampy, 57, competes under the Ray Skillman Racing banner in a 1932 Bantam Roadster with a 323 Chevrolet engine in Comp Eliminator, and in a 1987 Camaro with a 327 Chevrolet engine in Super Stock.
Rampy, from Peidmont, Ala., has won 80 National events, including the 2011 Comp Eliminator class at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park.
In a 1966 Chevelle, Rampy first lined up at a tree at age 18.
“It started out just because I had a love for speed and liked playing with cars,” Rampy said. “Tie that all together and that’s racing. Now I do it to make a living. It started out for fun.”
* Kathy and Kevin Fisher, the Lima, Ohio co-stars of “Married With Dragsters.com,” pulled into Summit Motorsports Park ready to lay down the foundations for higher expectations and claim some turf.
At the 2012 B’laster Cavalcade of Stars in May at Summit Motorsports Park, Kathy Fisher introduced her new dragster, Lil’ Vixen, with a huge party for fans. Not only that, but Lil’ Vixen carried home a trophy for “Best Appearing Car.”
At the same race, Kevin Fisher ran his first six-second pass with a 6.58 and qualified 19th in the fastest top dragster qualifying field in the history of drag racing.
Since the highs of B’laster Cavalcade of Stars, the Fishers tweaked the systems and aimed for a higher plateau: event wins.
“What amazes me about this facility is the whole Bader family,” said Kathy Fisher, whose Website is www.performancebyfisher.com.
“They understand who their customers are: the customers in the stands, and those who race.
“People want to race Norwalk,” Kathy Fisher said. “They not only want to race here, they want to say they won Norwalk. There’s a big car count because we all want to win Norwalk.”