As you can imagine, it's about impossible to hang out and see everything on all the forums.
I heard about this today from Cornell over at HPI, and was both bummed out that I didn't know, and that I didn't know for about 4 months.
I'm happy to say that I was a full ride Checkpoint driver for JIM "Back in the day". Won a lot of races, had a lot of fun. He always had time for me, This was when "Stormer Hobbies" was just starting out, about 18-20 years ago. Jim was very gracious and sent me everything needed to win, no questions asked.
Always had something clever to try, and was fun to talk to on the phone. I probably logged 200 hours or more on the phone with him over the years. He was a chronic tinkerer, like the rest of us, and couldn't wait to talk about whatever he was dabbling with.
Anybody remember the chain drive pan car he was working on in the mid 80's? That was pretty slick. He sent me some photos, I should try and find those and post them.
Some of my favorite storys come from those days of the early and mid 80's when everything was new and exciting. When a 16 turn motor was considered a "Drag racing motor only". When packs came in blue shrink wrap with a Parma sticker on them. When you had to call ahead to a track to find out if it was legal to run an electronic speed control in stock. When Novak made servos, all kinds of nostalgia.
I was just looking at some old email from Jim. The last time we talked was about 2 years ago. Looks like we were having a debate on stock motors. Was a fun read. You can just read the enthusiasm in his voice.
I found some pictures of myself from what I think is 1988, excuse the bad hair.... Givin' props to Checkpoint.
The picture with the offroad cars was taken in Spokane 1988ish. It was the summer that MRP was going to release the MRP 410 Shotgun (anybody still got one of those?). MRP brought over Guy Davies, and Jim Welch, Bob Welch to run the car, I finished 2nd in between Guy and Jim and ruined the 1-2 sweep they were hpoing for from an advertising perspective. The 1/12 cars were raced in Minot North Dakota. Was the one and only time my wife tried racing. She was pregnant with our first child and the tire sauce smell did not agree with her and she did not race. To put that into perspective, that child is now 17 and a good racer on his own. He made the "A" at the Novak 2 years ago in the Tamiya class. Time flys, never take it for granted.
Although I never got to meet him in person, I considered him a good friend. Thanks Jim, it was fun.
Proud as ever:
Team Checkpoint Factory Driver,