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Jerry Lee 01-04-2010 05:22 PM

LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview
I can't even count the times I've watched Lucky Beickman lead a race and then self-destruct at the last second just inches from the finish line.

A colorful character at Englewood Speedway in the '70's and then Colorado National Speedway through the '90's, these 1992 clips tell more of the one they called Lucky.


JL: "Your Dad Clarence ran a Stocker for years, didn't he?"

LB: "The first car of Dad's that I remember was a '40 Ford coupe. He raced at Englewood in '59, '60, clear up to '64."

JL: "And you worked at the track?"

LB: "I started doing the same thing you did, I started selling programs out there when they were a nickel apiece."

JL: "When did you first get to race a car?"

LB: "I was 14 and sneaking in. I drove a Late Model of C.K. Jacks a couple of weeks. That was in '67. The Figure 8's didn't cost much and I had the balls for it, so I went out and had fun! But I didn't become a serious competitor until '76."

JL: "Then you had that light blue '55 Chevy."

LB: "Yeah, it was the car that taught me how to drive, how to build a race car."

JL: "Whenever you came out on the track that year, people were either booing or cheering you wildly."

LB: "Yeah, but that was okay. I had a screaming '55 Chevy. I called it "Defiance"."

JL: "Didn't your Dad and Lee Stogsdill once team up for the World Figure 8 Championships?"

LB: "Well, in '64 or '65, Lee Stogsdill borrowed Dad's car to take back to Islip to run the national with. It was a '53 Ford, six cylinder. Back then New York was running 6's and we were running V8's here. Larry Dechant with his 283 Chevys. Lee Stogsdill with his big Plymouths. They wouldn't let Lee run his own, so he took Dad's 6."

JL: "Any memorable races stand out to you?"

LB: "Out at Englewood I was running a different type of system for a radiator than anyone else, and I came in off a hot lap session with the engine hot. It popped the hood up and just drowned me with hot water and black pepper."

JL: "Black pepper?"

LB: "One of Chuck Jarman's girlfriends gave me the idea of running black pepper for stop leak, so I did! And it embedded my chest with black pepper. At the hospital they had to use Scotch tape to peel the pepper out of my chest. I made it back to the track just in time to make it into the main event and take second that night."

JL: "I've heard you guys used to pull some crazy stunts in the pits after a few refreshing beverages."

LB: "Yeah, just good ol' drunken fun. Cliff Hudson once offered me $100 to jump from the top of the old water tower down into his glass top Ford. (sighs) And I almost jumped."


Jerry Lee 01-04-2010 05:29 PM

Re: LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview
(Photo by Unique) Lucky Beickman hauled in a bunch of Figure 8 trophies at Englewood in
1976 wheeling this black and baby blue ’55 Chevy he called “Defiance”.

lakeside #29 01-11-2010 06:30 PM

Re: LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview
Jerry Lee,
Lucky's '55 was a well prepared, great looking car. The pale blue paint had pearl in it. It was built like a late model and man was it fast. Lucky was a hard drivinng guy and a great competitor. If i remember right, in order to get the proper gear ratio, it was rumored that he ran it in low gear. The car ran 180 degree headers and it make a real unique sound. The lettering was by Lou Paiz.

Thanks for posting these photos JL, Lucky and this car deserve to be remembered.

thpracing 01-11-2010 11:51 PM

Re: LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview
I actually worked for Lucky back in the late 70's--real early 80's--as a 2nd and sometimes 3rd job I had at one time back thenn---I worked for him at his shop on west Colfax--by the old Supershop store--also worked for him and his dad at the service station at 10th and Sheridan---here is 1 of MANY Lucky stories I could tell----one nite after work at the shop---Lucky decided he needed to fix the exhaust system on his mobile shop truckk--we ended up with the whole system on the floor and Lucky had built a NASCAR style exhaust setup, with mufflers---exiting (2 pipes) out the crowd side--loud and nasty and at ankle height---Lucky was just that way----kt---ps---I saw Lucky at the 2008 racers reunion---still going strong--just a little older--like the rest of us-----

Jerry Lee 01-12-2010 10:31 AM

Re: LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview
Right you are Professor, Lucky's '55 was a beauty and really did have a sound all it's own. I'm hoping a color pic or two of that car will surface someday on the ARM. Lucky was another one who was full of great stories that I could never print here. Maybe I'll write another book someday.

Jerry Lee 08-02-2010 09:35 AM

Re: LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview
I heard the word that Lucky had passed away Saturday, 7/31/10. R.I.P. Lucky, and thanks for all the great memories! You were a kick to talk to and a lot of fun to watch on the track!

TPF 08-02-2010 12:48 PM

Re: LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview
I was working in the pits at englewood, I really wasnt working on any one car. But aftre the races were over I heard there was big fight outside the pit gate. I walked out of the gate to see what was going on and Lucky was walking back in, and I swear that it looked like he had beatin in the head with a rock or somthing. I know he was tough guy. RIP Lucky. TPF

Jerry Lee 12-12-2011 07:44 PM

Re: LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview
(Kent Moore collection) Lucky Beickman #160 sends Greg Higgins #29 sideways during
1971 Figure 8 action at Englewood.
(J.L. McGuire collection) A still from Lucky's 1992 TV documentary interview.
I could have put together a whole two hour special on just Lucky's funny stories alone!

ALVIS 12-13-2011 08:45 AM

Re: LUCKY BEICKMAN - The Two Minute Interview

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