Two Blanco County residents were honored Saturday Nov. 17th in Corsicana, Texas, by the Lone Star Mower Racing Association(LSMRA). Chase Martinez, a Blanco High School Junior, and Stephen Wertheim, Chase’s grandfather, both raced in the 2007 mower-racing season, where Chase took second place in the IMOW class. This was quite an accomplishment, as Chase started racing midway through the season, and 2007 was Chase’s rookie year. Stephen took fourth place in the IMOW class point standings.
Earlier on Saturday both raced at the Dogwood Raceway in Palestine, Texas. Stephen was in second place for most of the race but finished fourth behind David Hill of Fort Worth, Chase his grandson, and Bonnie Driggers of Corsicana. The points awarded for the Saturday race will count for the 2008 LSMRA season. Current 2008 point standing put Stephen in second place in the IMOW Class. After the race in Palestine, both Chase and Stephen attended the LSMRA Awards Banquet in Corsicana. The LSMRA is the Texas affiliate chapter of the US Lawn Mower Racing Association. The LSMRA also includes members from Arkansas, Oklahoma and Louisiana and sponsors races in which members from these states vie for points in six different racing classes.
Stephen began building racing mowers in 2006. In his first race in 2006 Stephen finished in last place. However, he persevered and now finishes in the top of the class regularly. Stephen continues to work on mowers and race regularly despite his battle with Parkinson’s Disease which he has had since 1995.
Stephen hopes to establish a local chapter of mower racers. He is planning a Build Clinic on December 1st to help aspiring local racers. The clinic is free to anyone interested in racing mowers. The clinic will offer advice and important information regarding racing mower safety and performance. Stephen is also sponsoring what is perhaps Blanco’s first mower racing event on December 8th.
Other upcoming events include:
December 1st.- Racing Mower Build Clinic. On December 1st lawn mower racing enthusiasts are invited to a “Racing Mower Build Clinic”. Stephen Wertheim will offer valuable information regarding safety and performance of racing mowers. Stephen has built several racing mowers to the US Lawn Mower Association guidelines and is presently second in point standings in The Lone Star Mower Racing Association in the IMOW class. Jim Barbe will assist. The Clinic will start at 10am on Saturday in Headwaters Ranch. Attendance is free. For information contact Stephen at (830)336-2172 or Jim at (830)336-3611.
December 8th - Blanco Mower Race Day. On December 8th Stephen Wertheim and Jim Barbe will sponsor a day of lawn mower racing. Racing will include several classes from beginner to advanced racers. Track is located in SW Blanco County in Headwaters Ranch. Driver registration begins at 10am. Racing starts at 2pm. Attendance is free for racers and spectators. Bring a lawn chair. For information contact Stephen at (830)336-2172 or Jim at (830)336-3611.