Track introduced kids to thrills of racing

Vikki Ortiz What ever happened to... May 29, 2009 When Rick Allen was growing up in Chicago, his family would eat pizza together on Fridays before the girls and the guys split up for the evening. Full Story
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Anthony C

Chicago, IL

#21 May 29, 2009
fishheadkev wrote:
<quoted text>
Remember the old US 30 radio ads "SUNDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY @ U.S. 30 Dragstrip" part of my youth :-)
"...where the great ones run! run! run!"

Since: Feb 09

United States

#22 May 29, 2009
Never went to Santa Fe speedway but I went to Raceway Park on the border if Blue Island/Calumet Park. Quarter mile track.
Ex-Aircraft Mechanic

Lake Bluff, IL

#23 May 29, 2009
The Tournament of Destruction was the best. The Crazy 8's, Mean Green Machine, Orange Crush, Sting, etc. I remember the sound of old Detroit Iron smashing, the smell of burning wreckage, the tasty nachos, and knowing that the line for the hand sinks in the Men's room was not for washing your hands. Ahhh, the good ole days.

Since: May 09

United States

#24 May 29, 2009
santa fe
US 30 drag strip
is illinia speedway still around?
momcool23

Raleigh, NC

#25 May 29, 2009
Ex-Aircraft Mechanic wrote:
The Tournament of Destruction was the best. The Crazy 8's, Mean Green Machine, Orange Crush, Sting, etc. I remember the sound of old Detroit Iron smashing, the smell of burning wreckage, the tasty nachos, and knowing that the line for the hand sinks in the Men's room was not for washing your hands. Ahhh, the good ole days.
Oh man-- you said it! Wasn't there the Yellow Slurpies? Have never been to another demolition derby like that. Most places put cars in a log lined square and let them back into each other. And after watching a speed race you would go home and pick dirt and clay out of your hair.
DC from Willow Springs

Crown Point, IN

#26 May 29, 2009
Some of the teams from Santa Fe's "Tournement off Destruction" live on at Joliet's Chicago Motor Speedway. They have the team tournements 4 times per year.
Juan Valdez

Bridgeview, IL

#27 May 29, 2009
I never went but I loved the commercials on the radio growing up....

"US30 SPEEDWAAAAY......."

no doubt if I lived closer I woulda gone but I grew up a half mile from the world's busiest cancer causing factory in Chicago: O'hare...and got into flying. go figure.

“Stimulate THIS!”

Since: Aug 08

West Frankfort, IL

#28 May 29, 2009
I was never there actually, but remember hearing the cars all the way to Hickory Hills. I liked racing too. I should have went in retrospect. Been to the Indy 500 though.
Sweet Home Chicago

Fox Lake, IL

#29 May 29, 2009
Vikki, thanks for writing this article...and Rick...thanks for being persistent. I emailed it to my brothers and we had some fun remembering. My brothers and dad went alot...I went with them every once in a while. It was usually the "Boys Night Out"...plus, I probably didn't like to go as much as they did. I remember pictures of them down on the field with the winners, back when you could do that. I tried to take my son there when he was little (in the mid 80's), but he hated the noise! One of my brothers sent me these two links on Sante Fe....enjoy!
http://www.4m.net/showthread.php...
http://www.kalracing.com/Autoracing/Santa_Fe_...
Anne Sulskis

United States

#30 May 29, 2009
The speedway brings lots of great memories back, many of those memories I have been recently relating to my 16 year old son. We live in NE Wisconsin now and actually have a racetrack in town! One of my former boyfriends used to race out there in the demo derbies, with my name painted on the side of his car. Somewhere I have lots of pictures of races at Santa Fe. Thanks for the memories!
janet wolf

Chicago, IL

#31 May 29, 2009
we raced there 78-83 then 91-the end its was blast racing bring our own kids and make great friends we still have today

“actual mugshot ”

Since: Aug 08

Dixmoor, Illinois

#32 Jun 2, 2009
Tut-tut wrote:
Sure hope there was some serious environmental remediation done at the site before residences were built there. Can't imagine the amount of gasoline and oil spilled in and around the track over the decades.
ha ha..... don't ask, don't tell.... wink, wink..... maybe it all just washed down that canal a little north of the old speedway site.....maybe its just my imagination but the housing on that site seems "raised" up. Like there was an intentional soil elevation buffer.
CiceroKid

Cicero, IL

#33 Jul 22, 2011
GIC wrote:
Minor correction: Santa Fe Speedway (named for the Santa Fe RR tracks that ran next to the track - I remember the sound of a passing train was the only thing that could drown out the cars) closed after the 1995 season, not 1993. I have programs and such to prove it.
The Demo Derby format run at Santa Fe was amazing, and totally unlike anything else in the country as I sadly came to discover. Santa Fe used a "team demo" format with 8 teams of 4 cars running bracket-elimination rounds towards a season championship. The first team to get a single car to complete five laps won the round. It called for a lot of strategy and the rounds were almost as much pure racing as wild demo-derby. This format was rekindled at Route 66 in Joliet but the programs are much shorter, and today's cars not as stout.
How I miss that track. It closed just as I was able to consider beginning my own hobby-career there.
I was very young went my dad would take me to the demo derby at santa fe and i have very fond memories and it was so close to home ... which route 66 raceway is not ... i will however say i have been going to route 66 demos since 02 03 and have missed only a couple since jan gabriel (R.I.P) restarted it down there .. A lot of the same families are down there that used to race at santa fe and i will tell you it's just as fun as santa fe if not funner because .. i think the sport has evolved and now each car goes into the race with a strong purpose like as a runner or a smasher or protector ... or to put into football terms a running back a full back and your offensive lineman ... and some teams are running all runners (4 guys running laps instead of only 2)... tommorow speed tv will be there and it will be broadcast on speed tv at a later date ... you can also buy dvds at teamdemos.com ... check them out!!!

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