Class of 2019


Wayne Huntley

DRIVER / MENTOR

Wayne Huntley was raised in Hastings and began his racing career as a go-kart driver in Blue Hill as a teenager in 1964. A couple of years later, in 1966, he and a group of high school classmates purchased a 1937 Chevrolet Stock Car, selected the number 62, because they all had graduated from high school in 1962, and set out to go dirt track racing.

After successful seasons in 1966 and 1967, the team assembled the popular burgundy 1955 Chevrolet Huntley became known for, and secured their first track championship at Kearney Raceway in 1969. Huntley quickly established himself as the dominant driver in Central Nebraska winning Stock Division championships at both Kearney and Hastings in 1970 and 1971.

When Mid-Continent Raceway in Doniphan opened in 1972, Huntley became the driver to beat there, as well, racing to the point championship during the facility’s inaugural season, winning numerous feature races along the way.

With the Late Models being ushered in at Central Nebraska race tracks, the team built a sleek Chevrolet Camaro prior to the 1973 season and Huntley picked up where he left off, winning the championship at The Speed Bowl in Red Cloud that summer. A year later, Huntley was involved in a serious racing accident, resulting in a concussion, and at the conclusion of the 1974 season, he decided to hang up his racing helmet.

During his driving career, he raced at Hastings, Kearney, Broken Bow, Red Cloud and Doniphan, Nebraska and Smith Center, Kansas, winning over 100 feature races and seven track championships in a nine year span. He also raced the Nebraska State Fair IMCA (International Motor Contest Association) New Model Stock Car event in Lincoln in 1971, 1972 and 1973.

Huntley, who was an automotive instructor at Central Community College in Hastings from 1974 through his retirement in 2010, may be equally remembered as the founder and sponsor of the College Drag Race Team in 1994. As the team’s sponsor and coach, Huntley oversaw the student construction of a series of drag cars that were raced at Kearney Raceway Park by members of the team. Over the next 17 years, Huntley mentored and coached nearly 200 Central Community College students, with the team participating weekly at drag race meets held at the ¼ mile drag strip located at the Kearney airport.
Huntley’s career in motorsports spanned a period of over five decades.

Ray Lipsey

DRIVER / CAR OWNER

Ray Lipsey developed an interest in auto racing during his high school years attending races at Midwest Speedway in his hometown of Lincoln. A driver who had tremendous influence on Lipsey’s growing love of the sport was legendary driver, Jan Opperman, who Lipsey recalls racing up along the wall and “humiliating the field” on a hot summer night at the popular, now-closed Lincoln speed plant.

In 1974, Lipsey began racing a Late Model Sportsman at Beatrice Speedway and over the next eight seasons, raced both Late Models and Late Model Sportsmen at race tracks in Beatrice, David City, Lincoln, Omaha, and Seward. With Nebraska Auto Hall of Fame inductee Wayne Lewis providing the horsepower, Lipsey began achieving success in a Late Model in the late 1970s and secured his first track championship, at Beatrice Speedway, in 1978. In his only appearance in the Nebraska Late Model Nationals in Doniphan in 1979, Lipsey finished 20th in the Championship A-feature, competing against the best Late Model drivers from across the country.

At the conclusion of the 1981 season, Lipsey turned his attention to Sprint Cars, and a few years later, in 1985, scored his first two Sprint Car track championships, winning titles at both Midwest Speedway and Eagle Raceway. He secured his second consecutive track title at Midwest in 1986 and picked up additional titles at Eagle in 1987 and 1992. Lipsey is tied with Hall of Famer Jim Riggins for the most Sprint Car feature race wins at Midwest with 18. He also has 14 feature wins at Eagle Raceway.

Lipsey is a two-time winner of the Lawrence Ideus Memorial at Eagle Raceway, and is also a two-time Nebraska Cup winner at Eagle. In addition, he is a former Sprint Car track champion at Moberly Speedway in Missouri.

Lipsey competed at the Knoxville (Iowa) Nationals on numerous occasions and qualified for his only Nationals Championship A-Feature in 1989, when he finished 22nd.

As he was winding down his driving career, Lipsey continued on as a car owner, with legendary drivers Doug Wolfgang and Danny Lasoski turning the wheel of his number-45 Sprinter. Wolfgang drove a Lipsey-owned machine to a win in the National Cheater’s Day event in Sioux Falls, South Dakota in 1993, with Lasoski winning the Knoxville 360 Nationals for Lipsey in 1995.

Lipsey hung up his racing suit and driver’s helmet for the final time in 1996.

Bob Mays

DRIVER / AUTHOR / HISTORIAN

Bob Mays’ interest in auto racing began at the age of three, when his father took him to his first car race at Capitol Beach Speedway in his hometown of Lincoln.

In 1974, Mays joined the pit crew of Micro-Midget racer Dick Maul, and at the end of the season, he and Jim Adams purchased the car. The pair raced the car through the 1975 season, when Mays bought out Adams, becoming the sole owner of the car.

Mays started collecting racing photos in the mid 1970s, but as good shots seemed hard to find, he sold his race car, purchased a camera and began traveling around the Sprint Car circuit, taking his own photographs of his racing heroes. In 1980, he was named Track Photographer at Lincoln’s Midwest Speedway and a short time later, he and Jim Jones established Fastrack Enterprises. Their first publication, “Fastrack Pictorial”, was published in 1982.

Mays wheeled Micro-Midgets, Mini-Sprints and Sprint Cars off and on through the mid 1990s. His major accomplishments include capturing the 1988 Mini-Sprint Nationals in Charleston, Illinois and winning the 1989 Midwest Indoor Championship Series title.

After climbing out of a race car for the final time in 1995, Mays turned his full attention to racing history and journalism. He has since authored or co-authored seven hard cover titles including “High Plains Thunder, Supermodified Racing In The Midlands,” which resulted in four printings, and “Valley County Thunder, The History Of Racing In Ord, Nebraska,” which was selected by National Speed Sport News as the ‘best racing book of the year’ in 2004. In 2005, “Big Car Thunder, Volume I” was born, and “Volume II” was published in 2009. Mays’ fifth book, “Competition Portraits, The Dirt Championship Cars,” was released in 2015 and his sixth book, “The High Banks! Belleville’s Amazing Track And The Men Who Tried To Tame Her” was released in 2017. His most recent work, “Nebraska Dirt, a Century of Racing in the Cornhusker State” was published in 2020.

Mays has either written for or shot photographs for a number of racing publications including National Hawkeye Racing News, Western Racing News, National Speed Sport News, and Open Wheel magazine. His collection of racing photographs now totals over 20,000 images.

Mays is currently a Research Technician at the Speedway Motors Museum of American Speed in Lincoln. He was inducted into the National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 2006 and the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 2018.

Kenny McCarty

DRIVER

Kenny McCarty developed a passion for dirt track racing at a young age and following a brief, but successful, career racing motorcycles, began his auto racing career in 1968, when he hopped behind the wheel of a Stock Car and won the championship race at the local fairgrounds race track in North Platte.

Over the next few years, McCarty found himself behind the wheel of Stock Cars, Open-Wheeled Modifieds and Sprint Cars at Broken Bow, Doniphan, Hastings, Kearney, McCook, and North Platte. In 1971, he won Stock Division point titles at North Platte, McCook and Broken Bow.

By the early 1970s, McCarty had firmly established himself as a top competitor in the Open-Wheeled Modified Division at both Hastings Raceway and Kearney Raceway, winning Modified Rookie-of-the-Year honors at Kearney in 1972. In 1975, he captured the Sprint Car track championship at Mid-Continent Raceway in Doniphan.

McCarty raced weekly at Knoxville Raceway in Iowa during portions of the 1970s and qualified for the A-Main at the prestigious Knoxville Nationals in 1974, eventually finishing 18th. He finished seventh in the Championship B-Main at the Nationals in 1977.

In the early 1980s, McCarty took his racing program westward, securing four consecutive Sprint Car titles at Rock Springs, Wyoming while winning the Wyoming State Sprint Car Championship in both 1983 and 1984. He established track records at Casper, Gillette, Lander, and Rock Springs, Wyoming and during a three year period, from 1983 to 1985, scored over 50 Sprint Car feature race victories.

In the late 1980s, McCarty turned his attention to racing in the IMCA (International Motor Contest Association) Modified division, eventually winning several track championships, while finishing in the top five in IMCA National Points. He qualified for the A-Main at the IMCA Super Nationals in Boone, Iowa on five different occasions setting on the pole three times.

During a brief stint behind the wheel of an IMCA Late Model in 2004, McCarty scored four feature wins and won the track championship at Lincoln County Speedway in North Platte.

During his more than six decade career, McCarty won over 200 feature races, while racing at more than 100 race tracks in over 20 states and Canada. He has successfully wheeled Stock Cars, Open-Wheeled Modifieds, Sprint Cars, both asphalt and dirt Modifieds, and Late Models.

McCarty is a well-respected ambassador for the sport of auto racing, as well as a mentor for young drivers.

Terry Richards Sr.

DRIVER / TRACK OWNER

Terry Richards, Sr. began his racing career in 1963, driving in the Jalopy Class at Skylark Raceway in Columbus. He picked up the first of his many career feature race wins during that first season at Skylark. Richards piloted a Studebaker during the 1964 and 1965 seasons, before sitting out a couple of years following a serious motorcycle accident.

The David City native returned to dirt track racing for the 1968 season behind the wheel of a home-built Ford Starliner, which he raced at numerous Nebraska race tracks. He won the track championship at David City that season.

In 1970, Richards forged a relationship with Chuck and Darrell Swanson of Ceresco, wheeling the number-18 Swanson Body Shop 1957 Ford to feature race wins at Midwest Speedway in Lincoln, as well as Albion and Norfolk, Nebraska, and Audubon and Harlan, Iowa.

Richards is most notably remembered for the yellow 1970 Ford Mustang he campaigned during the 1972, 1973 and 1974 seasons. He scored numerous feature race wins in the popular Mustang at Midwest Speedway, Eagle Raceway, and Beatrice Speedway, and won back-to-back Late Model track titles at Midwest in 1973 and 1974. He picked up one of the biggest wins of his career in the yellow Mustang at the North Central Kansas Free Fair on the Belleville High Banks in 1972.

Richards stepped away from the sport in the mid 1970s and turned his attention to truck pulling. He also helped his son, Terry, Jr. get his start in racing and was involved in the building and promotion of Ymada Speedway, a successful go-kart track located in David City.

In 1985, when the IMCA (International Motor Contest Association) Modified Division emerged in Nebraska, Richards built one of the first Modifieds in the state. That year, he pulled the car to Florida helping the sanctioning body promote the concept of the low-cost IMCA Modified.

Richards co-owned, built, and promoted Thunder Lake Speedway in Rising City in the early 1990s and later raced in Nostalgia shows throughout the Midwest. His final race was the Hillbilly Nationals Nostalgia event in Fayetteville, Arkansas in 2004.

During his racing career, Richards piloted Jalopies, Hobby Stocks, Street Stocks, Drag Cars, Modifieds, Late Models and Nostalgia Cars at 61 race tracks in nine different states, including Alabama and Florida. He scored numerous feature race and Championship Race wins, as well as many special event victories.

Terry passed away in March 2023.

Ed Smith

CAR OWNER

A native of Lincoln, Ed Smith’s involvement in racing began in 1965, when he sponsored a race car driven by Mark Greer at Lincoln Speedway. A year later, he purchased his first racer, a used Les Vaughn Sprint Car and placed Nebraska Auto Racing Hall of Fame inductee, Keith Hightshoe, behind the wheel. Hightshoe captured two feature race wins that season, setting the stage for nearly two decades of accomplishments for Smith.

In 1967, Lonnie Jensen and Larry Upton shared the driving duties, securing the track championship for Smith at Midwest Speedway. A year later, Smith received national exposure when his machine was featured on the cover of Hot Rod magazine.

In 1971, veteran Al Murie put Smith’s machine in the A Feature at the Knoxville (Iowa) Nationals and for four consecutive years, a Smith-owned race car qualified for the Main at the prestigious event. Smith’s best finishes at the Nationals were turned in by Missouri driver Eddie Leavitt, who finished fourth in 1972 and ninth in 1974.

Smith-owned race cars raced successfully on the BCRA (Big Car Racing Association) circuit in the early 1970s, securing top ten finishes in series points three consecutive seasons, from 1971 through 1973. Smith’s highest BCRA points finish was in 1972, when Larry Upton wheeled the number-44 Sprinter to a fourth place finish in series points.

In 1973, with Lonnie Jensen turning the wheel, Smith’s car won at the famed Belleville High Banks in Belleville, Kansas and scored three wins at Eagle Raceway securing the championship for the Smith-owned team.

Major victories for the ETS, Inc. number-44 Sprint Car included the Jayhawk Nationals at Topeka, Kansas in 1972 with Eddie Leavitt at the wheel, the Kansas Short Track Championship at Topeka in 1973 with Lonnie Jensen in the cockpit, and the National Cheater’s Day Championship in Sioux Falls, South Dakota in 1974 with Leavitt again handling the driving chores.

During his 17 years of Sprint Car ownership, 28 different drivers piloted Smith-owned Sprinters including not only Hightshoe, Jensen, Leavitt, Murie, and Upton, but also Lloyd Beckman, Ed Bowes, Roy Bryant, Gary Dunkle, Chuck Kidwell, Roger Larson, Don Maxwell, Jay Opperman, Roger Rager, Joe Saldana, Dick Sutcliffe, and Doug Wolfgang. His cars competed at over 30 race tracks throughout the Midwest and as far away as Arizona and California.

Smith passed away in 1995. He was inducted into the BCRA Hall of Fame in 2012.

Don Stephenson

DRAG RACER

Don Stephenson’s first taste of racing came as a 14 year old youngster when he began racing motorcycles at Cavalier Motorcycle Track in his hometown of Omaha. He won his first trophy at Cavalier and later that year, purchased his first drag car, a 1952 Chevrolet. In 1959, using a “fake ID” Stephenson began racing the car at the airfield drag strip in Lincoln and Flightland Dragway in Omaha and quickly became “hooked” on the sport of drag racing.

The following year, Stephenson purchased a 1957 Chevrolet convertible, which he also turned into a drag car, but soon found himself in a 1957 Chevrolet hard top, which he considered his first “real” drag car.

Following a summer in California in 1961, hanging out at Mickey Thompson’s race shop, Stephenson returned to Nebraska and put together the 1957 Chevrolet that eventually became known as the “Tension Car.” Stephenson traveled across the country in the car, winning hundreds of trophies and setting numerous track records prior to enlisting in the Marine Corps in 1966.

Following a two year stint in the military, Stephenson returned to drag racing and eventually scored the biggest win of his career, when he captured the L/Stock Class Championship at the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Winternationals in Pomona, California in 1969.

Stephenson was the runner-up in NHRA Division 5 Stock Class points twice, and qualified for the NHRA World Finals in Tulsa, Oklahoma on five different occasions. His highest finish at the World Finals was a runner-up finish in 1968. In 1969, Stephenson won six “King of the Hill” events in the “Tension Car” at Flightland Dragway in Omaha and Cornhusker Raceway Park near Millard. During his career, he set six national records at drag strips throughout the Midwest and as far away as Pomona, California.

During his career, Stephenson raced at dozens of quarter-mile drag strips in over 25 states. Not only did he drive the car, he also built the engines and did much of the design and construction work on the race car.

Following the 1970 season, Stephenson turned his attention to motorcycle racing, serving on both the Kawasaki and Suzuki factory race teams, with his son Denny as the rider. The two shared a 20 year motocross career together, racing all over the world and winning national and world championships from 1985 to 2005.

Stephenson’s career in motorsports spanned portions of five decades.

Nebraska Auto Racing Hall of Fame

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