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Cloverleaf Speedway 1960-1990  Rating:  Rating
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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:28 pm
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denracer
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Cloverleaf Speedway originally was the idea of Hal Boosinger, a former car owner at Sportsman Park (A 1940 Studebaker Coupe with a Studebaker V-8 driven mostly by Hap Heston) and the owner of Buckeye Sound Systems and a service station.  Hal ran into some financial difficulties and the Lombardo Family, and Joe and Chuck Lomabardo specifically stepped in to keep the ball rolling.  Joe hired John Lemmo, the former announcer/promoter at Sportsman Park and John completely redesigned the place. Lemmo was the best race announcer around and a top notch race promoter.   It opened in1960 featuring Super Modifieds and a collection of old coupes and factory stocks from Sportsman Park, Canfield and other local tracks.  Clevelander Bob Hayduk, driving Mack Clingan's #19 "gray ghost" won the first event (the dash) and the first feature event held at the new track.  To prove it was no fluke, he came back and won the 2nd week.

I've posted a number of photos from my collection of Cloverleaff down through the years.  I assisted Kevin Ruic in running the joint until is closed in 1990.  "The Leaf" is widely remembered by a lot of folks around here for the great drivers, races, and crowds.  During it's best years they ran three nights a week and packed the place.

If you have any pictures or recollection of the place, please post them.

Thanks

Denny

Last edited on Wed Jul 30th, 2008 12:06 pm by denracer

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:31 pm
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denracer
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Bill Goodnight in the #10 (the car sideways) Gabe Leonard in the #9 and Sam DeCapite in the #75 mix it up at the Leaf in some Late Model action at the Leaf in the mid 60s.

Attachment: 10goodnight9gabeleonard75samdecapite.jpg (Downloaded 1558 times)

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:35 pm
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denracer
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Tony Kaczmerek wheels a BIG Mercury in the street stock division at the Leaf in the early 1970s.  The class had a wide array of various makes and models as the cars were usually bought cheap or given to someone to race.  It was a fun division with plenty of banging.  The original name for the class was "Rat Racers" but  management thought Street Stocks sounded a lot better.

Attachment: big mercury street stock tony kaczmarketk jr..jpg (Downloaded 1536 times)

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:37 pm
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denracer
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While many thought this was Roy Gemberling, Bob Ashbrook was the first driver for the Dick Krotz #41.  Later in the 1961 season, Gemberling took over the seat and he and Krotz won a couple of track champtionships and a lot of races. Thanks to Jack Lemmo for setting the record straight.

Attachment: bob ashbrook.jpg (Downloaded 1510 times)

Last edited on Thu Jul 7th, 2011 04:50 pm by denracer

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:44 pm
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denracer
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Bob Terlop in the #29 Ford Flathead Hardtop division car.  The first race car for the Rowe-Terlop-Hudock racing team, with a lot of help from Bob's brothers Tony and Fran.  This car was purchased almost race-ready for $175.00  We flat-towed the car with Bob's father-in-law's Corvair van.  We had to take two different routes to the race track as the little Corvair couldn't pull the car back up the hill we came down.  This was our first win.  A Hot-Dog/Coke race where the driver stopped at the start/finish line and woofed down a hot dog and then raced to the middle of the back straight were he did the same with a Coke.  I can't remember how many laps or hot dogs Bob ate, but at 5'10" and about 135 pounds he had a lot of room to grow!

Attachment: bob terlop 1963 hardtop div.JPG (Downloaded 1505 times)

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:47 pm
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denracer
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Bobby Jones started racing this car at Cloverleaf back in the 1960s with some success, but they weren't really too fast.  They started running dirt at various tracks  This picture was posted earlier and I believe it was taken at Morgantown.  Later, another Checker was built, but it also did live up to expectations.

Attachment: bobbyjones in the checker cab stock car.jpg (Downloaded 1528 times)

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:49 pm
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denracer
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The pit area at Cloverleaf in the early 1970s.  The #25 is the Ford Fairland of Jack Chambers and the #48 is Paul Sibila (brother of Bob)

Attachment: cloverleaf pits 1972.JPG (Downloaded 1509 times)

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:50 pm
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Early Cloverleaf action.  Can't tell who the "flipper" is.  The number 63 Buick convertible is the late Jim Moore of Bedford, OH

Attachment: cloverleafearlylatemodel action.jpg (Downloaded 1500 times)

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:57 pm
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Brook Park, OH's Ed Curtis in one his early rides in the Street Stock Division.  Check out the sponsor on the  front  fender.  Ed ran two years in the Street Stock division before moving up to Late Models and then to the ARCA Bondo/MarHyde new cars.  Running a limited schedule of mostly bigger tracks like MIS, Daytona, Atlanta, Charlotte and Talledega, Ed had a couple of top 10 and 20 finishes in the family owned and backed Monte Carlos.  Ed suffered a career-ending crash at Talledega and now concentrates on his #88 UPS Taurus Street Legal Cup car and Tide #17 street legal Craftsman Truck.  Both are eye-catchers at the local cruise-ins.

Attachment: ed curtis 1st street stock.JPG (Downloaded 1482 times)

Last edited on Sat Jul 12th, 2008 02:58 pm by denracer

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 Posted: Sat Jul 12th, 2008 03:02 pm
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The late Lou Pallotta picks up a feature win in Mike Pirro's #32 Chevelle.  Lou had a great season going until a freak accident at Midvale.  He came back the next season in Jesse Jame's Pony Car at Painesville to test himself and then returned to the Late Models, concentrating mostly on Heidelberg and Sharon, PA.  A track champion at the Leaf and Lorain County Speedway, Lou was inducted into Lorain's Hall of Fame in 2005.

Attachment: loupallotta.jpg (Downloaded 1497 times)

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