Category Archives: blog

A Trip to the Wood Brothers Racing Museum

If you are coming to Martinsville for the races this weekend, I highly recommend stopping by the Wood Brothers Museum in Stuart, Va. Over the past few years, Len and Eddie have added hundreds of new artifacts and pictures to the museum.  The original museum was a 50 by 50 room in the front of the race shop. Once the team moved their racing operations to North Carolina, the museum was expanded to the back part of the race shop, where the team used to conduct their racing business. Now, the race shop walls are lined with pictures that date back to 1950 and the floors have numerous different historical exhibits, including toolboxes, workbenches and equipment from the 1960s. Eddie and Len have worked very hard to gather as many of the original artifacts as possible and some additional tribute cars. They have everything, from a limb from the original Beech Tree where Wood Brothers Racing originated to the David Pearson 71 Purolator Mercury. Inside the original museum there are many different pictures, artifacts and displays, including a new display of 1:18 and 1:24 scale model cars. Last but not least, you never know who you may run into at the museum. On most days, you will be greeted by Glen’s wife, Bernece, and some days Eddie, Len and Kim are roaming around the building.  I could go on for hours about the different artifacts that are at the museum but I will let you visit and find out for yourself :) All I can say, is it is very impressive and definitely worth a visit!

 

Martinsville Race Weekend Hours:

Monday – Friday: 8:30 am to 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm (closed for lunch hour)

Saturday: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

Normal Business Hours:

Monday – Friday: 8:30 am to 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm (closed for lunch hour)

~ Jordan

 

 

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The Talladega Curse

This week when I was talking to Eddie and Len about old stories that happened at Talladega, the “Talladega Curse” was brought to my attention. I, being a youngster, had no idea about the curse so I decided to dig up some information.

Based on my research, the theory behind the curse has yet to be determined. Is it haunted because a Native American Chief was thrown off his horse and killed during a local horse race on the grounds or that the track was built on an Indian burial ground?

Whatever it is, many many strange things have happened at Talladega. Most of us know all too well of the unfortunate wrecks, deaths and injuries that have occurred at the Superspeedway, which are all believed to be part of the “Talladega Curse”, but I learned some other mysterious events that unfolded.

A fan actually stole the pace car and drove it around the race track before the start of a race!!?? What about the time in 1974 that someone broke into the garage and sabotaged several of the race cars the night before the race. The teams showed up to race and found their cars had been tampered with, including the Wood Brothers. The “sabotagers” had cut the teams’ oil pump and changed the toe-in on the front end. No one ever figured out the guilty party who committed this act but it didn’t stop the Wood Brothers and David Pearson from bringing home a 2nd place finish that day.

I thought this act of sabotage was pretty brilliant, probably not as fun that day but to me it was a classic story, so I asked Leonard if he remembered anything about what happened (see video below).

Let’s hope the curse leaves us alone this weekend!!

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Lessons with Leonard Wood – Memories at Talladega

The Wood Brothers will be attempting to make their 400th Superspeedway start this weekend at Talladega and the team couldn’t be more excited to get back to the race track. This past break was the team’s longest stretch of the year without racing and it was painfully LONG. Trust me when I say, that we are working our bums off to find additional funding to break this type of gap up and hopefully add additional races. With that said, can you believe the Wood Brothers could be making their 400th Superspeedway start this weekend? That is an impressive number and a lot of their success came at Talladega, with 6 poles and 5 wins. Three of these wins came with David Pearson behind the wheel, the other 2 with Donnie Allison and Neil Bonnett. Check out the video below to see what Leonard Wood had to say about his memories from Talladega!

~ Jordan

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Memories at Talladega Superspeedway – Eddie Wood

Do you remember the first time you watched or went to a Talladega race? I stopped in with Eddie Wood today and asked him about his first Talladega experience. It involves a story about skipping school and Cale Yarborough racing without a windshield, you don’t want to miss this video!

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Lessons with Leonard Wood – Success at Charlotte

It is Charlotte race week! The Wood Brothers success at Charlotte is remarkable, with 7 wins and 20 poles. The most astonishing statistic is that 13 of these poles were back to back, 11 with David Pearson and 2 with Neil Bonnett. It was no question that the Wood boys had figured out qualifying at Charlotte, holding the pole spot from October 1973-October 1979. The poles were not the only success the team had at Charlotte, they had 7 wins, dating back to the first Fall race ever held at Charlotte. We wanted to learn more about what that race like in 1960, so Jon stopped in for a quick chat with Leonard this week.

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A Weekend with the Wood Family – Civil War Reenactment

Happy Monday!! Unfortunately, I am stuck at home with a vicious cold and a sneezing 3 month old. Therefore, I was not able to make it to the race shop today and gather the videos and stories that I planned on posting. I promise to have more racing post this week but for now you are stuck with a story about a fun weekend in Stuart, VA.

Our current race shop is in Harrisburg, NC but as most of you know, our hearts and homes are still in Stuart, VA. I live in North Carolina but as I have gotten older, you can’t seem to keep me from my hometown. What is not to love about the friendly and peaceful feel that Stuart has to offer? Breakfast at Nannie and Pa’s (Bernece & Glen Wood), The Stuart Family Restaurant or The Coffee Break, lunch at Tony’s and dinner at the Stuart Family Restaurant or El Rancho, all with the whole family present. This is our usual routine when we are in Stuart and I wouldn’t have it any other way. If you are ever in the area, I highly recommend the Stuart Family Restaurant, their buffalo chicken wrap is basically the BEST thing ever!

On our off weekends or when we are not working, we travel to Stuart and visit with the family and enjoy all the perks that a small town in the mountains has to offer. This weekend we packed up and went to the Civil War Reenactment at Laurel Hill, VA, the birthplace of Major General J.E.B. Stuart C.S.A. I had never been to a reenactment and didn’t really know what to expect, especially lugging a 3 month old and 2 year old around but it was a blast! It was so fascinating to see all the people dressed up and playing the roles, just as they did during the Civil War. We walked by the tents that people had set up for the weekend, bought some fun merchandise, listened to the Generals discuss strategy (my dad referred to this as the drivers meeting), had a mini picnic with hotdogs and BBQ and watched the reenactment of the war. If you have never been to a reenactment, it is worth a visit!

Here is the website for Laurel Hill

 

http://www.jebstuart.org/index.cfm

 

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~ Jordan

Eddie Wood’s All-Time Top Race Memories

When you have been in racing as long as Eddie Wood, you have seen the best of the best, the worst of the worst and everything that comes in the middle. Eddie may be a co-owner of one of NASCAR’s most historical race teams but first and foremost he is a NASCAR fan. Like all other NASCAR fans, he has his all-time favorite race memories and he shares a few of them below! Do these match up with any of your favorite memories?

 

1.  1976 Daytona 500 – Won with David Pearson. I was the only person on the radio with David during the race. On the last lap he and Richard crashed coming to the checker.

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2.  2011 Daytona 500 – Trevor’s first win and we hadn’t won a race for a long time. Watched as Richard Petty took my Dad to Victory Lane.

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3.  1972 Daytona 500- Won the race with AJ Foyt. He dominated the race from start to finish.

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4.  1986 Richmond 400 – Won race with Kyle Petty.  Kyle’s first win. It was unexpected. He went out of sight running fifth and came off turn four to the line as the winner.

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5.  1991 Michigan 400 – Won with Dale Jarrett. Was Dale’s first win and was a very exciting finish with Davey Allison and Dale. Dale won by 18 inches.

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Riley’s Clubhouse Birthday Party

Riley bday 1This past weekend was full of birthday celebrations for Riley Wood. Amanda, his mom, organized a Mickey Mouse birthday party that was held at the shop in Stuart. The party was a blast and perfect for a 2 year olds’ birthday celebration, not overkill but just the right type of party for everyone to spend time with Riley and each other. I am sure many of our readers have toddlers, grandchildren, nieces or nephews that they may plan a party for one day, so I thought it would be interesting to get some pointers on how Amanda planned this perfect celebration. I realize this is not related to racing but I thought it would be fun see how this little monkey boy celebrated his 2nd birthday and give a little advice on how to have a great toddler birthday party!

 

1. Theme – “Go with what they are into, Riley is a huge Mickey Mouse Clubhouse fan so I knew it was something he would enjoy.”

2. Food – “Less is best, just keep it simple and fun, doesn’t need to be fancy. After all, as long as there was “coo” (ketchup), “Chep” (Chips) and “Coooookieee” (Cake, cookies and everything sweet), Riley was completely satisfied. I chose to have “Hot Diggity Dogs”, “Mickey Burgers”, “Donald’s Quackslaw”, “Plu-Ta-To Chips”, “Gooey Goofy Dip” and “Minnie’s Bowtastic Pasta”.”

3. Decorations – “Unless you enjoy crafts, keep it simple because they are basically just for picture purposes.”

4. Guest – “Know your guest, I only invited 3 other children so I didn’t do a lot of games and things, I just kept it simple with lunch, cake and gifts.”

5. Pinterest, Pinterest, Pinterest! – “Fun, creative, simple, less expensive ideas!”

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Riley also had a mini birthday celebration at El Rancho in Stuart, here is a video clip of the celebrations! He prefers dinner with his shirt off and wasn’t to sure about the sombrero :).

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Happy 2nd Birthday Riley Wood

Iphone 031Two years ago my brother, Jon, and his wife, Amanda, welcomed a beautiful baby boy, Riley, into this world. Riley celebrated his 2 year birthday this past weekend, so it is only appropriate to dedicate a couple post about him this week. This is easy because after all, Riley is Jon Wood’s child and he has lived up to that reputation. There is never a dull or quiet moment when Riley is around.

When Amanda was pregnant with Riley, everyone kept telling me that our family would be changed forever. How would it change my family’s world? We wouldn’t be the ones changing dirty diapers or getting up in the middle of the night. I never understood this comment until September 28, 2012, the day our family was blessed with this little miracle.

The pregnancy had been quite the surprise for my family; we just weren’t expecting it quite yet but none the less very excited once we heard the news. Okay, okay, it took a little while to sink in because my family had not had a baby around since me, so we really didn’t know what to expect and were all slightly nervous, I mean this is Jon Wood’s child we are talking about. We are a very open family with very, very, very few, if any, secrets, so of course Jon spilled the news the minute they saw the two lines on the pregnancy test. He sent me a text and told me I was going to be an Aunt, so in true Jordan Wood fashion, my response was, “Oh my gosh, you got another dog”. His is response was, “seriously Jordan, NO, NO, NO A BABY”. Once I found the news out, it spread like wildfire and we all began to prepare for this little nugget.

Iphone 022Fast forward 9 months, I woke up on September 28th, to several phone calls and text messages, IT WAS TIME! My mom, aunt and I had actually planned a NYC trip and of course we were scheduled to leave that night. As stated before, we had not had a baby in the family in a while so us being the go getters we are just thought, she would have the baby, we would kiss him and hold him and then happily peace out of the hospital and go to NYC for the weekend. HA joke was on us, that weekend was the longest weekend ever and for once we could not wait to get home and love on Riley.

The minute Riley was born, my life and my family’s life was changed forever. I will never forget walking into the room and seeing my brother hold his son, this perfect little blessing from God. The look on my dad’s eyes when he held him for the first time and continued to hold him until…well he still won’t share and put him down. Everything I thought I knew about my life changed that day and it wasn’t even my baby.

We are so thankful for this little monkey and thankful that his parents allow us to be so involved in his life. Happy Birthday Riley, we love you and look forward to the many, many more adventures, smiles and laughs with you.

Moral of the story…Be thankful for the time you have with your family, embrace every moment and never question God’s plan.

~ Jordan

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Lessons with Leonard Wood – Dover Days

It’s race day at the Monster Mile! The Wood Brothers are not racing today but their history at Dover tracks back to the 1970’s, way before the nickname the “Monster Mile” was ever created. Leonard, Glen and the Wood Brothers team visited victory lane at Dover 8 times, 5 times with David Pearson and 2 times with Neil Bonnett. With Leonard Wood’s smarts and Neil Bonnett and David Pearsons’ top gun driving skills, the team dominated at Dover between the years of 1972 & 1981, taking the checkered flag 3 times in a row in 1972 and 1973.

Leonard Wood’s memories at Dover are countless. In the video below, he shared a couple with me.

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Dover Victory1975 Mason Dixon 500 (Dover)