- Lee Smith, who lives in Hudson, Mass., is a
clockmaker by trade, and has spent most of his time over the past
few years building a new business, Classic Clocks, in Wayland,
When Smith first burst onto the NEMA scene, he made such an
impression that, even though he was running home built equipment,
he was named Rookie of the Year, and later, the Most Improved
Driver. He continued to run an upright chassis in the late 70s,
when NEMA was dominated by laydown roadsters. In 1977, he beat
them all, winning his first championship.
Three years later, he did it again, and two years after that, won
his third. In the years following, he was almost always in the
top ten, finishing second in the standings twice, adding to his
total of 21 feature wins, which ties him for 6th in the all-time
NEMA feature winners list. But as he realized his long term goal
to own his own business, racing had to take a back seat.
Now, he thinks the business is well enough established that he
can race again. "I finally decided that the customers would have
to buy their clocks in six days, because I'm going to take a day
off for some fun," he said. "I called Ed Czyzewski, who owns the
car I last ran, and told him I'd get it ready if I could run it
again. He agreed, and we're ready to go."
Gene Angelillo, NEMA President, said, "Not only are we looking
forward to running against Lee again, it will be great to see
Eddie Czyzewski back in the pits. This guy, who fielded winning
midgets for so many years, in spite of the fact that he was
"handicapped" by the loss of an eye and both legs on Pork Chop
Hill in Korea, is an inspiration to us all."
The addition of the Smith/Czyzewski team to the field that has
staged fantastic racing in its two previous shows this season
means that Saturday night's show at Star is almost guaranteed to
be a barn burner.