Note! It is best to use a laptop or desk top computer to view this website! When I used my Iphone, the menu on the left is hidden that has all the pages on it! In order to see the menu of all the pages with an iphone you have to click on the
That is on the left side above the word Home. Hope that helps! Since Google has reformated their websites, this website is harder to view. If you are viewing the website from a desktop or laptop computer, and you want to see photos larger, try this....hold your mouse cursor over the photo you want to see larger and right click and choose view image in new tab.
Below the ad in the paper from 1970.
The Mississippi Valley Speed Club (MVSC) was a group of Stock car racers that met to race at dirt tracks in multiple places in south east Iowa, over the early 1960s thru 1973 or 1974, tracks were Columbus Junction, West Liberty, Mt Pleasant, Burlington and Eldon. I have collected many photos from lots of sources. Gail Reed, Mark Kleindolf, Karen Fenn, Randy Foor and many others. On the left are weblinks to other pages with lots of info. If you have information to add or correct, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Scroll down this page for more info and videos also!
And this from Kyle Ealy shared on facebook from the 1969 Hawkeye Racing news-
Starting Hawkeye Racing News for 1969...
"Dale Gegner, president of the Mississippi Valley Speed Club would take over promotional duties at Oskaloosa as well. "
Half Mile Dirt Track Racing in the good old days!
Above is a photo sent to me by Joe Tonkinson. (We thank you Joe!) This great photo was taken at Columbus Junction after a big win by John Mickey in the early 1960s. John is celebrating with his team owners early in his driving career. Joe Tonkinson and his Dad Paul Tonkinson from Yarmoth Iowa are in the photo. Joe and Paul are standing right next to the car under the Coleman decal . Joe is looking up at the camera and has a big smile on his face. Joe says back in the day the photographer would take the photo then ask who would like to order one. Joe tells a great story of John Mickey early in his career. John Mickey dominated the race circuit (that was before Mark Mosier and Mel Morris became so popular) and because he won so many races people began to not like him so much. One Saturday night at Columbus Junction in one of the heat races John Mickey came out of turn 2, there was a car in front of John on John's left side with it's rear bumper real close to John's front bumper. There was another race car behind John with is front bumper real close to John's rear bumper. Well the correct time the race car on the right side located at the rear of John's car took the rear end of the car one way and the driver in the front on the left took the front the other way and forced the car "crossway" and John's car made a gentle slow roll. People in the stands were cheering! John Mickey of course did not like the situation at all! Joe adds, John Mickey was one of the Great Drivers of the history of MVSC who went on to race in the IMCA Late Models. Thanks for the good story Joe!
A couple of videos from Mark Kleindolf. The movies are both silent.
This one has later MVSC cars on it.
2nd silent movie-
This movie starts with the 1957 year cars, then shows the old Jalopies and then at the end the 1957 cars again. Thanks Mark for sharing! This will bring back memories for many. Here is the video -
Thanks to Mark Kleindolph for sharing this great silent video above of MVSC Jalopies in the early 1960's. Most of the video is racing at West Liberty.
If you are on facebook, every once in a while you will see MVSC stock cars from this webpage on
...join the group... there on facebook!
Let's Go The The Races!
Let us go back to a nice July Saturday night in South East Iowa. They just got the track all packed. It's time for the time trials. They just set off the "BIG BOOMER" firework to wake us up and tell us it is time! We are seated in a crowded grandstand, on a wooden seat, all lit up by the bright yellow light bulbs. The aroma of cigarette/cigar smoke and engine exhaust SMELL is in the air! There are young and old people seated all around you with kids running everywhere. That girl sure looks pretty who just walked by! There is excitement in the crowd. Who will win tonight? Who will have the hot car in time trials? Who is not here because they wrecked their car last Saturday night or midweek at Oskaloosa? And I haven't had supper yet, the beer/pop, hotdogs and hamburgers under the grandstand would really taste good!
In the photo below you can see the large crowd in the background in the West Liberty grandstand, and 1966 was the year of the rule change and newer cars up to 1957 were allowed, so you also see on the track in the background the old Jalopys and the newer cars. Click on image to see larger....
My Interest In the MVSC Stock Cars
I grew up going to the Stock Car Races (with my parents and Grandparents) in the 1960's. As long as I can remember I have liked racing. The two tracks that we went to when I was a lad were the Louisa County Fairgrounds (Columbus Junction, Iowa) and the Muscatine County Fairgrounds (West Liberty, Iowa). Since I lived on a farm near Letts, Iowa, on still Saturday evenings in the summer, if I could not get to the races, I could still hear the rumble of the Mississippi Valley Speedway Club Stock Cars racing around the big 1/2 mile oval just on the edge of Columbus Junction, Iowa. Oh how I wished I was at the races! I was in Letts Go 4H club and every year from when I was 10 until 19 I took Hereford club calves to the Louisa County fair and would pretty much spend the week at the fair. I enjoyed going to the stock car races each year. Many years they had 2 nights of racing; the IMCA late model stock cars (Ernie Derr, Ramo Stott, Dick Hutcherson, John Mickey, Lenny Funk etc would role in with their beautiful cars. On this night there would be a smaller crowd. But then on Saturday night of the fair, was the local MVSC stock cars and they drove older cars. This was a packed crowd night! My Dad had a Ford 2.5 ton truck and we used to back it up to the fence of the stock car track and watch the races sitting on 2x12 wood planks that were stretched across the top of the sideboards of the truck bed. This was a good seat! My Grandpa and Grandma Estle also took my brothers and me to the races. The way it worked back in those days was West Liberty and Columbus Junction alternated Saturday nights for races.
West Liberty MVSC 1961 Mark Kleindolph shared this photos on History of Iowa Dirt Track Racing
A Few More Notes On This Website.
If you have information you would like to share, send it to me. I downloaded photos when ever I could find them of MVSC drivers/cars. None of these photos are original with me. I have looked far and wide for several years for these photos. A fellow by the name of Randy Foor shared some photos with others who posted them and may of these photos were credited from Randy. (Randy I would love to meet you someday!) I found out that Mark Dowis from Washington, Iowa shared some of his photos with Randy Foor and Randy shared both Mark's photos and Randy's photos on the net...Mark was delighted to see them here. Unless the photo has another credit, it probably came from Mark and Randy. Thanks to others who shared photos on line that show up here. Gale Reed sent me a bunch of fine photos. Thanks Gale! Karen Fenn from Washington Iowa has shared many photos and so has Ed Thomas...and many others! Thank you all for helping all our memories along!
Rules for 1967 Season are below... thanks Mark Kleindolph
Here below is another photo from Dan Prymek. Dan says "
Thanks to my parents Ron And Pat Prymek and Linda Morris for the names.
Here are some other new to this site photos, from Mark Kleindolph maybe you can help identify the drivers: click on photos to see them larger...
Some of the trophies one year
This photo was taken later, maybe last yr of MVSC or later. Thanks Mark Kleindolph.
in above photo we think..
Far left top row Dave Dodder, 4th from left top row in blue white strip think is Bill Hopp, or is it Roger Dolan? Then Tom Hurst, Yellow shirt middle top row maybe Ron Perdock, then Ron Weeden then Mike Niffenegger then Big John Moss, then Larry Jenkins. Not sure who is in the red shirt.
Front row sitting is Mel Morris
Middle row from left 1. Do not know, 2. Randy Wetzel, 3. Do not know 4. Dave Birkoffer 5. Ken Walton 6. Ron Hempsted 7th Duane Steffe 8. John Connely and last on right is Steve Kepler we think.
If you see your photo here, and it is not credited to you, please let me know and I will credit it to you. Feel free to share memories in comments on the pages. Many of the photos you can see larger sized if you click on them.
Below are a couple of photos shared by John Lafrenz on facebook
Above is West Liberty