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Roy Salt: The Voice of Racing History

Roy Salt was born in Columbus Ohio but calls Chillicothe home. As a young boy Roy could tell you the make and model of any car upon site and his passion for cars and racing is still strong today. While still in High School he and a group of friends started going to different race tracks, such as Indianapolis and Daytona Beach. In 1958 he started working the pit gate at the Atomic Speedway (Alma, Oh) and quickly advanced to announcing. Eldon Shoemaker, Manager of Atomic Speedway in the 1950’s, aware of his announcing experience asked if he would be interested in the job of announcer at the Speedway permanently. He took announcing to a different level, arriving early to interview drivers and crews in order to pass along interesting facts to race fans. His career spanned over 37 years of traveling with different series and to different tracks on the east coast including: Dixie Speedway (Woodstock, GA); Rome Speedway (Rome, GA); Jaxs Speedway (Jacksonville, FL); Volusia County Speedway (Daytona Beach, FL); East Bay Raceway (Tampa, FL); Lawrenceburg Speedway (Lawrenceburg, IN); Volunteer Speedway (Bulls Gap, TN); Southern Ohio Speedway (Wheelersburg, OH); Skyline Speedway (Stewart, OH); Ohio Valley Speedway (Parkersburg, WV); West Virginia Motor Speedway (Mineral Mills, WV); and K-C Raceway (formerly Atomic Speedway; Alma, OH).

 

When asked what his favorite class of car is, he replied, “Every class I have ever announced for, including sprints, late models, modifieds, go carts, hovercraft, etc.” When asked if he had a favorite track to announce at, he replied, “I liked and enjoyed announcing at all tracks because each track has their own unique identity.” He has also announced for a few traveling sanctioning bodies, including: The Renegade Stars Late Model Series, AMA, World of Outlaws (Sprints), All Star Circuit of Champions, USAC, and other late model sanctions. When asked what his favorite memory from announcing is, he replied, “Interviewing the different race car drivers that have gone on to fame and feeling that I had a part in helping out.” And he did, he had interviewed and interacted with a lot of different drivers who have made the step up to NASCAR and other major racing labels. NASCAR drivers including: Steve Kinser, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kasey Kahne, Sheldon Kinser, Jeff Gordon, Rodney Combs, Dave Blaney, Junior Spencer; NASCAR/Indy drivers including: Larry Rice, Larry “Boom Boom” Cannon, Roger Rager, Tony Stewart; Indy drivers including: Larry Dixon, Sarah Fisher, and Jack Hewitt (anything with wheels). Other drivers he has interviewed include Butch Schroeder, Steve Smith, Billy Pauch, Doug Wolfgang, Sammy Swindell, Jac Haudenshield, Earl Gaerte, Rich Vogler, Steve Shaver, Dale Blaney, Kenny Jacobs, Joey Saldana, Danny Lasoski, Lance Dewease, Bobby Allen, Bob Weikert, Gary Wright, Joe Gaerte, Fred Rahmer, Randy Kinser, Scott Bloomquist, Donnie Moran, Don O’Neal, Rick Eckert, Bert Emrich, Audie Swartz, Dean Knittle, Fred Linder, Keith Kauffman, Danny Smith, Bobby Davis Jr., Leonard McCarl, Billy Moyer, Jackie Boggs, Shane Carson, Lynn Paxton, Tick Ungar, Frankie Kerr, Craig Dollansky, Chad Kemenah, Herman Wise (Sprint Car Hall of Fame, Knoxville, IA), Mike Swims (Hav-A-Tampa, Dixie/Rome Speedways), Jimmy Mosteella (Hav-A-Tampa), Rodney Duncan, Mark Keegan, Erin Crocker, Kelley Kinser, Steve Francis, Steve Casebolt, Chris Eash, Delmas Conley, Bubby Jones, Charlie Swartz, Rick Ferkel, Bob Morgan, Paul Pitzer, Kenny Jacobs, Rocky Hodges, Chub Frank, Dean Jacobs, Shannon Babb, Bart Hartman, Jimmy Sills, Brad Doty, Rick Hood, Steve Ungar, Steve Butler, Terry Shepherd, Earl Baltes (Eldora Speedway), Charlie Fisher, Greg Hodnett, Paul Coyan, and Sam Erwin, JUST TO NAME A FEW!

 

Roy says he had no one favorite interview, that he enjoyed interviewing them all. But, with all the good there is going to be some bad. When asked what his least favorite memory is from the many years of announcing, he replied, “That has to be when Sam Erwin was fatally injured at Atomic Speedway (Alma, Oh) on July 28, 1973.” Roy is known for having his own famous lines, including “You did a beautiful job of driving”, “leave the speed to the speedway”, at the start and during the races it was always “hammer down” and when signing off the radio he’d say “I’ll see you there” (at the races). He always played the song “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” at the beginning of the All Star Circuit of Champions races.

 

After retiring from announcing, Roy continues to build street rods, and still drives his favorite 1934 Ford. He enjoys announcing Auto Shows and Cruise-In’s and working part time at the Nourse Family of Dealerships in Chillicothe, OH. He says his favorite racing website is LUVRACIN.com.

 

Following are some of Roy’s favorite pictures with different drivers, some have gone on to NASCAR or Indy, and some have chosen to stick to slingin’ dirt!

 Click here for Photos

 

 

 

 

 

 

       

 

       

 

       

 

       
 

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Revised: June 10, 2013