Memories Re-Visited Again

My racing hero of all time is Hooker Hood. Not only because of all the thrills, the speed and the victories. It is because of one selfless moment that my dad and I, along with the rest of the R.I.S. faithful, witnessed one Saturday night back in 1968 (if my memory serves me).

 Hooker Hood was well on his way to winning another feature when an accident occurred in turn 1 involving Zane Ray Walls and another driver. The incident rendered Walls unconscious and unable to kill the ignition. His car had lost it's left front wheel and the remaining hub had dug itself into the gumbo track surface and was spinning in circles mercilessly. As Hooker passed Zane Ray's car in this state he made a seemingly instant decision that has stuck with me all my life. Instead of going on for another half of a lap and capture the race victory, he purposely spun-out his Tennessee Tornado #99 and leaped from the cockpit and ran to Walls car, still spinning between turns one and two. I was riveted! Upon arriving he waited until just the right moment and entered the circumference of the spinning #88 and jumped onto the bar just below the cockpit and in front of the rear tire and killed the ignition! Zane Ray Walls perpetually spinning car was stopped. The crowd went into a frenzy! In just a few moments I and the rest of the crowd witnessed a heroic action, an example of personal sacrifice and integrity. He could have easily won that race, but instead chose to save his colleague and friend.

That amazing feat will stay with me forever. Hooker Hood will always be remembered as a racing legend. His actions outside of his race car are what have elevated him to hero status. Especially those that night back in 1968 at Riverside International Speedway.


Michael Owen
Michael []

THRILLS, CHILLS AND SPILLS......................


Back To Memories Index Page

Back To Home Page

This website is best viewed at a minimum resolution of at least 800 X 600 with Firefox, Explorer 6 + or Netscape 6
Questions? Comments? email:

Copyright 2006 [Riverside International Speedway]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 07/28/09