Peek Brothers Racing
Peek Brothers Race Cars
Told by Greg Peek
The Peek Brothers, Jerry, Michael and Greg grew up in Littleton, Colorado during a great time. To establish a time line I will throw in some dates and ages because some of what we accomplished for our ages is a bit amazing. Jerry was born in February 1944, Michael in June 1946 and Greg (me the baby of the family) in September 1947. I was 12 or 13 when this all started.
The interest in racing probably started in about 1960 but I cannot really pinpoint an exact date or event. Colorado had lots of racing, circle track, drag and sports cars. Denver had two circle tracks, Lakeside and Englewood Speedways. They both had races for "stock cars" and midgets. The stock cars were typically early '30's coupes or tudors striped down to bare body and frame with either a Ford flathead V-8 or GMC 6. The stock cars were all home built, usually not real nice and frequently crashed. The midgets were typically nicer cars, often professionally built and used 110 Offies, Ford V-8 60's and even one car with a Johnson outboard boat engine.
We went to Lakeside a few times with our father and Englewood more often but for some reason circle track racing just didn't excite me. I only recall having attended the sports cars at Continental Divide Raceways once or twice. The only thing I remember about the cars is the Bocar, an early production "kit" car produced locally complete with fiberglass body and small block Chevy. The one thing that I do remember was that CDR had a really long front straightaway, AKA "Drag Strip"!
By 1960 Jerry had turned 16 and had a 1947 Ford Coupe, so we had wheels to go places, and we did. One of those places was CDR for the drag races. Probably an appealing thing about that was access to the pits, just like today. Being able to be up close and personal with the people and cars had a lasting impression on me. There were a variety of cars ranging from altereds, little gas dragsters, modified roadsters and top fuel cars. There were lots of top fuel cars including Alan Bockla with his small block Chevy,, Heath & Thompson, Fraizer & Rice, Ernie Spickler all with Chrysler powered cars, Curt Wooten with a Pontiac, Jere Wilson with an Oldsmobile and Kenz & Leslie with a 390 Ford. ( I undoubtedly have omitted some ). We became regulars, kids hanging out at CDR and somehow migrated to the Kenz & Leslie pit. Before long our mother became a regular site as well, with her green 1959 Plymouth parked on the hill at the finish line beside the return road.
Somewhere in the 1961 - 1962 time frame we went with some friends to Cheyenne to the drags and saw what was probably my first Bonneville Roadster, Vic Colvin's blue '29 with a blown Chrysler. As I recall he was in the Air Force, stationed in Cheyenne. I think I saw him one other time when he came down to CDR.
Two events happened at CDR which shaped the future. The first was hanging around the Kenz & Leslie pit which started out just standing there watching and ultimately led to perhaps the most important lesson I ever learned, taught by Roy Leslie. Roy was a gentleman, a successful businessman, a mentor and a perfectionist. To Roy there was only one way to do things, no matter what it was, it had to be done the absolute best possible, professional in every way and simply put, it had to be done right! Our relationship with Roy lasted for about twenty years when Roy passed away, way to soon.
The second event was meeting Jack Richards. Jack was pretty much on the opposite end of the scale from Roy, but Jack was a genuine hot rodder, greasy jeans, T-shirt and a blown 354 Chrysler powered orange '29 roadster that he ran at both the drags and Bonneville, shown below at CDR in drag race form. Somehow in the summer of 1964 we started hanging out at Jacks' garage, helping get ready for Bonneville. Jack also had a second roadster, a Pontiac powered street roadster which his son Bobby would drive at Bonneville...if they could get it there. As I recall they needed the use of a second tow truck to get the red roadster there. We had a pile of parts which someday probably became a nice '32 Ford street roadster, but we sold the pile for $250, added a little to it and bought a 1956 Ford F-100 long wheelbase for $362.10 including tax. Now we had a way to get to Bonneville and tow the red roadster. The story of that first trip to the Salt can easily consume a rather large page on this site, so that will happen another day. Thank you Jack!