R.I.P. Richard “Dick” Trickle…10/27/41 ~ 5/16/2013

Dick

For starters, yes, the man I’m writing about.. his name is Dick Trickle… You non NASCAR fans will, of course, chuckle because of his name. And you know what? FUCK YOU! He was a racing legend… Anyway…

I haven’t had much desire to write lately, but when this news broke I felt a need to say something… for a couple reasons…

First of all, it’s about suicide, which I’m all too familiar with… From this article:

Retired stock-car driver Dick Trickle, known for his colorful name and short-track prowess, died on Thursday from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was 71.

According to the Lincoln County, N.C., sheriff’s department, the incident occurred at 12:02 p.m. ET at Forest Lawn Cemetery off Highway 150 in Boger City.

The Lincoln County Communications Center received a call, apparently from Trickle, that “there would be a dead body and it would be his.” Center workers tried to place a return call to the number but did not get an answer.

Emergency units found Trickle’s body lying near his pickup truck when they arrived.

Just sad that someone would take the easy way out like that… Is life that bad? You were a legend, Dick…

Secondly, this is about racing, which I am a fan of

Dick Trickle was never a superstar in NASCAR’s top level series… he never won a Sprint Cup series race, though he had 15 top 5’s and 36 top 10’s in 303 races spanning 1970 through 2002…

In the lower Nationwide series, he had 2 wins, 24 top 5’s and 42 top 10’s in 158 races from 1984 to 2001..

Better than Danica Patrick will ever be, no?

In 31 years of NASCAR racing, Dick Trickle collected $7,134,311 in race earnings…

7 MILLION… and he puts a bullet in his brain… I guess money ain’t all that important…

Outside of NASCAR proper, Dick Trickle was one hell of a badass on the short tracks in the Wisconsin area… He won around 1,000 races which makes him like the best short track racer ever!

He’s been an inspiration to today’s NASCAR superstars….

Reigning Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski said Dick Trickle was “the guy” when it came to Midwest short-track racing. Brad said…

He meant a lot to the local short-track racers. Kind of more the Midwest style of racing, which was track by track when NASCAR was more of a regional Southern sport before it had developed to the national platform it is now. He was the superstar of that style.

It is very sad to see him go, and obviously difficult with the way it went.

What really made me tear up were 1989 NASCAR Cup champion Rusty Wallace’s comments:

I’m in 100 percent shock. Dick Trickle was my mentor. When I was short track racing, I would call him every Monday morning and he would always help me with race setups and stuff. He and I had such a good time telling little stories, but he was the guy that taught me almost everything in the American Speed Association. And he was the guy that I battled right to the end for my 1983 ASA championship.

I barely beat the guy that taught me everything. I’d not seen Dick as much as I’d like to of late. He was a legend. A man that’d won over a thousand short track races, was one of the most winning short trackers in America, was a role model to many short track racers coming up. Could just do magic with the race car and he taught me so much about racing. My success in the ASA and what Trickle taught me is what got me into NASCAR. That’s what got me hired by Cliff Stewart back in ’84. Between Larry Phillips and Dick Trickle, they taught me everything.

Rusty has won 55 Cup races… a lot of ’em short track wins, because of Dick Trickle…

Just… sad… This is all I have to offer as a tribute to Mr. Trickle… because this is how he lived his racing life…

 

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