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Wentworth and Irwin wheelstander
Wentworth and Irwin wheelstander (They did have at least one
original Hurst SS/AMX, but this wheelstander wasn't a real one. A
number of people claim they were both real Hurst cars).
This car was destroyed in an accident in 1972 near Seattle.
Here is an ad to publicize the car:
If you look in the wheelwells below you will see undercoating. This
would indicate it was not a Hurst SS/AMX. If there were no
undercoating the wheelwells would be white and the bumper bracket
would be black. They are all the same color in this pic.
(Photo courtesy of son Chris Schroeder)
In this pic it is now owned by Richard Schroeder "Dare to Be Great"
Just after the accident that destroyed the car
"Between racing gigs, Richard Schroeder was one of the great
announcers too. At some places, he'd jump out of his racecar and
head directly for the tower, sometimes describing the remaining
pairs in a round he just won.
At Puyallup one night Rich was announcing when Art Morrison
hopped in Schroeder's "Dare to be Great" AMX wheelstander. He
remained professional as he watched in certain horror as the little
car went off the track at speed, flipped and tumbled into a rather
small ball. It was Art's last (wheel)stand, and he headed for the
world of superb suspensionpieces. Richard has gone on to a number
of publishing gigs and continues to keep a wheelstander close."
Richard died August 2007.
The car was last seen in a Seattle junkyard. Here is the story from
Art Morrison, the man who was driving the car when it wrecked:
Here is another AMC wheelstander-anybody know anything about it?
The only information I have on the Wentworth and Irving
wheelstander is that Richard Schroeder was the owner and I became
the driver. This was early in 1971, the previous year I drove a
wheelstanding Volkswagen PU for Chuck Poole. I got out of the Army
in Jan of 1968 and met Poole sometime that summer and by the next
year I was traveling and working on the rig out of the garage at my
house. Early spring of 1970 I started driving for Chuck and traveled
with the car around the country until late fall. There was a parting of
the ways and I was contacted by Richard late in 1970. He wanted
me to drive the AMX and build him a new car at the same time.
I got married in Feb of 1971 and started driving the car that spring.
It was sometime in early June that I was at the track in Puyallup,
WA and as the saying goes my life changed that night. The car
started out straight but wandered to the right side so I started
correcting but the AMX was different than all other wheelstanders in
the way it steered. They all have a separate brake handle and two
extra sets of calipers on the rear wheels, the normal deal is you pull
on the handle to make the car go right and push to make the car go
left just like a bulldozer. Richards car was different because you
looked out the side window to see where you were going. There
was no belly pan and you couldn't see over the hood. In the AMX
you would steer by gauging how far away you were from the guard
rail. So he had his steering set up so you either pulled the guard
rail closer or you pushed it away just the opposite from the rest of
the world. When the car started to wander I started pushing on the
handle to get the car back but it was having nothing to do with it
and it kept going to the right. By the time I realized my mistake it
was off the track. I still thought I could get it back if all the wheels
were on the ground but they were so heavy in the rear that the
second I turned the front wheels it switched ends and started flipping. The best part of this story and why I decided to change
careers is what happened when the car was going through the air.
Richard was 6' 7" or so and weighed well over 300# I was 5'8" and
at that time about 160#. We sat in the same seat and looked out
the same window at the same guardrail. The only way I could do it
was by leaving the harness loose enough the stretch up and see
what he did. Richard always told me that if something happened to
let go of everything and tighten up the harness. Sounds easy enough. When the car was done flipping and came to rest on four
wheels I was unconscious. The rescue guys got there and thought
I may have had a broken neck because my helmet was ground most
of the way through on the outside near the top. What we found out
later by looking at an 8MM movie of the deal was my upper body
was hanging out the window as the car was going over and my head
was scraping on the ground. My poor young bride of only a few
months told Richards wife Danny that she was too young to be a
widow, she was in the tower and watched the whole deal. No
broken bones just beat up and unable to do anything for about a
month but the I made the decision that there had to be a better
way to make a living. That was thirty eight years ago this past
June and I have never regretted changing jobs.
This is probably not what you were looking for but it's the only
thing I know about Richards AMX and thought I should tell the
story. He was dear friend that I learned a lot from.
If you really are looking for something else let me know, A
Well, Check out this email I received:
Did not know any one ever took a picture of my car years ago.
You said that the picture was from Spokane.
Never made it to Spokane. Seattle International Race Ways or Bremerton.
The Acender was the car Richard Schroeter was building from the parts of the AMX.
He sold it before it was done and went on to build his Green Chevy Nova, crashed it. Then build a red one. I ran the Javelin enough to get a limited exabition lic. and sold it to Stan Smith That parted the car out and
built a Camaro funny car body wheel stander that was had to drive
because the body would catch too much air. he slammed it down one time
broke the frame and his legs and cause the nhra safety guys to make new
safety rules on cadges for exabition cars or at least bars past your body
parts. That car was called Stand up Smith I believe. Richard used it in Cal.
for a short time. Don't Know what happened after that.
Thanks for asking. Wow brings back memories. Mykal Templeman in
Have a Short 55 chev wagon ,and a 31 Ford coupe. drag race at Woodburn OR for fun a few times each summer.