Looking Back: Vero Beach Speedway

Ol’ T-Mack was asking me if I had any pics of Vero Beach when it was open. I have ONE lousy picture - ONE…LOL…I HAD a whole bunch of 'em years ago, sent a BUNCH of 'em in to a monthly Florida short-track racing magazine YEARS before we had this thing called the “Internet” - and never got 'em back :confused:

Lo and behold, today, on the Palm Beach Fairgrounds Facebook group, ol’ Earl “Boo” Sims posts a BUNCH of early Vero Beach pictures. The track was only open for seven racing seasons - 1971-1977 - and with Palm Beach, Hialeah, and Ft. Pierce to the south, and Eau Gallie, New Smyrna, and in '74, Speed World opening to the north/northwest - Vero really had a hard time finding a night that they could draw enough cars. I can recall quite a few Sunday-afternoon shows, two big events being the Citrus 100, which drew a lot of Palm Beach/Hialeah cars (the pics I had lost were Jimmy Crowe, Tissot, Paul Conners, and few more “southerners”); and the Firecracker 100, I believe.

Here’s some of the pics (no dates are listed):

Here’s the 6-cylinder “Limited Sportsman” cars. I believe that Tom Waring is in the #98 up against the fence; I also believe that I can recall Wayne Reutimann driving that #11 (it may even be Paul Conners).

Here’s what I believe to be one of the track’s early “big shows”, as it appears to be Billy Gill in the #24 car. That #30 looks familiar; I just can’t recall who it might be (maybe Billy Collins?):

Not sure who these guys are; appears to be Hobby car/Cyclone style class:

…and, the one-and-only picture I own of Vero Beach, Paul Conners, in 1974:

The track was a semi-banked 1/3 mile, about as big as Orlando (Speedworld), but not quite as much banking.

Had a very nice concrete grandstand and I don’t remember a bad seat in the house. I think Bud Jenkins who was connected with Dumont Smith’s rides had a role in the track. Tim Richmond ran a super modified there as well.