1947 - 1951


The History of Motor Sports in Hibbing and Northern Minnesota - A Timeline


                                                                   1947       The St. Louis County Fair this year marked the first appearance of Deb Snyder
                                                                                                 now in the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame. A capacity crowd of 7,000 watched
                                                                                                 Snyder and fellow Hall of Fame driver, Emory Collins, battle for top honors. 
                                                                                                 Both drivers break the track record but Collins is the fastest with a single lap
                                                                                                 time of 25.29 Seconds. Collins also won most of the events.

                                                                   1948       The first race of the year was an IMCA “Big Car” event held on June 20th.
                                                                                                 Even with the large number of entries, Emory Collins once again won most
                                                                                                 of the events. The county fair races on August 14th and 15th had the IMCA
                                                                                                 big cars here and the “Hollywood Hot Rods” as well. Another driver that is
                                                                                                 now in the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame, Bayliss Levrett, made his first
                                                                                                 appearance here. However, the lion’s share of the prize money went to North
                                                                                                 Dakota driver, Ernie Johnson.

The years 1949, 1950, and 1951

                                                                                          The races during these years were all IMCA events held at the county fair and
                                                                                          generally had a strong contingent of competitors. Typical grandstand attendance
                                                                                          was 4,000 to 4,500 people. But everything would change in 1952.

.                                                                                                               In addition to the sprint car races in 1950 and 1951, the first
IMCA National Stock Car Championship races were also held.


© David L. Aho 2012

Dave is a member of the Hibbing Historical Society and the Minnesota State Historical Society and is a City of Hibbing Heritage Preservation Commission board member.