Legendary Stock Car driver Wayne Brooks of Bald Knob, Arkansas has had a career that is full of racing victories and stories to go along with them. The Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame member recently talked to the crew of Arkansas Motorsports Magazine about one of his modified adventures down in the Lone Star state of Texas.
"During this particular time I had built a very light weight car to go modified racing with," Books said. "I had studied the different modified type rules that were all based around the I.M.C.A. rules and I discovered that weight was everything. So I had built this car, and if you used a V6 engine you got a large weight break. So I built one and put in it.." Brooks proved to be very successful with the combination. It didn't take long before he was winning races all over the country with the light weight car.
"I went down to Texas to the race by myself. I didn't even have a pit crew with me. They also ran a different type of tire than what we normally ran, so I didn't even have any tires that were legal to race there."
Once Brooks got his car unloaded, he walked around the pits visiting with some of the local drivers, and bought some used tires from them. He only bought four.
When Brooks got back to his pit area, he was greeted by a local racer by the name of Tom Loving's. Brooks described Lovings as a rather large man with the standard deep Texas draw.
"I got back to my car and Tom Lovings was there. He said I see you got four tires, what are you going to do for a spare. I told him, well I don't have a pit crew to change a flat so I'm going to run these four."
Brooks went on to say that Tom Lovings continued to look over his car and offered up some advice. "I see you are running a V6 in that car," Loving's said. "Well, you need two more cylinders and they need to be darn good ones to run here."
As race time came, Brooks had bolted the four used tires to his V6 modified and was ready for the Devils Bowl action. It didn't take long before racers and the fans there to know that Wayne Brooks was in the house.
"As the race began those cars with the big motors could show some horsepower down the straightaways, and it took me a little while to get mine wound up. But once I did, because of how light my car was, I didn't have to let off for the turns and after a few laps I was in the lead. When the race was over I had lapped up to third place."
"So I pull up on the front straightaway after the race where they had victory lane kind of set up and Lanny Edwards met me there with the trophy and $5,000.00 in cash. He was very nice and polite and then he began to talk to me."
Edwards cleared his voice according to Brooks and said, "Son I hope you had a good time here, cause there will never be another V6 in a race that I manage or promote.."
Brooks then said that two weeks later I.M.C.A. came out with a rule that outlawed the use of a V6 in a modified. "That rule kind of messed up my play house."
The use of the V6 engine somewhat signifies the fact that drivers and car builders are constantly trying to find something that will work better on a car than what worked best yesterday. Hence the science of the sport is constantly changing.
As Wayne Brooks said about the mechanics of the sport. "You can't stay the same and be competitive. You have to always be working hard and you have to be changing. You can't as a racer sit still or you will go backwards."