ARCA's Andy Hampton, a Kentuckiana Legend
(LOUISVILLE, Ky. - June 26, 2010) - On this day, June 26, in the year 1966, Louisville, Kentucky's Andy Hampton drove to victory lane in the 100-lap ARCA race at Baer Field Raceway in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Over a victory road stretch that spanned eight seasons, Hampton racked up 20 career ARCA Racing Series victories, including two 300-milers at Daytona Int'l Speedway in 1968 and 1972.

But it wasn't just the big tracks that Hampton excelled on; in fact, it didn't matter if they were big or small, dirt or pavement.

"Andy could flat drive a racecar," remembered Bill Kimmel, brother and crew chief of nine-time ARCA champion Frank Kimmel.

"He was the type of racer who could take a car not up to par and make it work. He was always one of my favorites. I remember somewhere in the late 60s Dad was promoting a couple of races so he had Andy drive his car. I remember working hard on the car in the pits all day. Whatever I did didn't seem to make a difference - I was only 16, 17 at the time. I finally told him I just didn't know what to do with it. Andy said, ‘Don't worry about it. We just need to be good in the race that pays.' So he took the car out in the feature and made a bad situation good.

"Andy was extremely good with the public too. He always had a lot of fans around him all the time. He had the personality for it. People wanted to be around him all the time. hamptonvl.jpgGuess that's why he always had sponsors. He was extremely good with kids too, good with people in general. He still works with his son, and that says a lot about him.

"And, he was a dang good racer. Man, he was good."

In addition to the shorter 100-lap runs, Hampton could also hang onto an ill-handling stock car for long distance grinds, as evidenced by hard-fought wins at Fairgrounds Speedway in Nashville (TN) in August of 1967 where he triumphed in a grueling 500-lapper. He also prevailed as victor in a 500-lap short-track war on the tight, high-banked Anderson Speedway quarter mile oval in 1968.

Hampton, ironically, earned his career-first ARCA win at his hometown track on April 11, 1965 at Fairgrounds Speedway in Louisville, Kentucky. He was the local kid and certainly understood his track, a track he raced on regularly. And when the ARCA boys came to town, Hampton whooped ‘em and brought the hometown crowd to its feet. 

His final ARCA win also came close to home at Salem Speedway on July 30th, 1972, wrapping up a relatively short, but brilliant ARCA career. hamptonshorttrack.jpg

Hampton's best ARCA championship points finish was third, a feat he accomplished twice in his career in 1968 and 1970. He also finished fifth in ARCA points in '69.

Hampton also made four career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts earning career-best finishes of ninth and 10th in the Daytona 500 in 1968 and '69. Hampton's ninth place finish at Daytona netted him $2,525, a far reach from today's purse standards.

Hampton was born in Crestwood, Kentucky in 1928. He and his wife Ramona (deceased) lived in Louisville, KY, and raised their seven children Andy Jr., Lynn, Jack, Robin, Ronnie, Rose Ann, and Mary Ann. He has 15 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

Always having a love for cars, he began racing on the streets as a teen with his friends. Taking his racing to the next level, in his 20s he raced at the Kentuckiana "Sportsdrome Speedway" in the 1940s and 50s. hamptonspeedwayshot.jpg

He won the "International 500" in 1961 co-driving with Jack Purcell and again in 1967 co-driving with Bill Kimmel, Sr. In 1961, he was the first Figure Eight Division Champion at the "Fairgrounds Motor Speedway" in Louisville, which he repeated in 1962 & '63.

Hampton also teamed up with NASCAR legend Harry Hyde in the early-to-mid 60s, earning Late Model division championships in five consecutive seasons.

Officially retiring from racing in 1975, he can now be found on his boat or at one of the Kentuckiana used car dealerships he owns and operates with his four sons and grandsons.

One of Kentuckiana's true racing legends, Hampton will be inducted into the Kentucky Motorsports Hall of Fame when the 2010 class is inducted in August of this year.

Andy Hampton Career ARCA Wins  
     
DATE TRACK LAPS
4/11/1965 Fairgrounds Speedway (Louisville KY)  100
5/20/1966 Baer Field Raceway (Fort Wayne IN) 100
8/21/1966 Salem Speedway (Salem IN) 100
5/20/1967 Fairgrounds Speedway (Nashville TN) 500
8/5/1967 Fairgrounds Speedway (Nashville TN) 100
9/4/1967 Toledo Speedway 100
9/24/1967 Kentucky Int'l Speedway (Florence) 99
2/18/1968 Daytona Int'l Speedway 300 Miles
5/18/1968 Fairgrounds Speedway (Nashville TN) 200
5/29/1968 Berlin Raceway (Marne MI) 100
7/28/1968 Baer Field Raceway (Fort Wayne IN) 100
8/18/1968 Moorehead Speedway (Moorehead KY) 100
8/24/1968 Anderson Speedway (Anderson IN) 500
5/10/1969 Fairgrounds Speedway (Nashville TN) 200
6/8/1969 Salem Speedway (Salem IN) 100
5/30/1970 Lorain County Speedway (Lorain OH) 100
7/4/1970 Lorain County Speedway (Lorain OH) 100
8/29/1970 Flat Rock Speedway (Flat Rock MI) 100
2/13/1972 Daytona Int'l Speedway 300 Miles
7/30/1972 Salem Speedway (Salem IN) 100
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