UP CLOSE WITH USAC/SCRA SPRINT CAR DRIVER BOBBY CODY! (MARCH 29, 2006, PERRIS, CA) This is the first in a series of interviews that will be presented on the weeks when Temecula Valley Pipe & Supply presents the USAC/CRA Sprint Cars at...
UP CLOSE WITH USAC/SCRA SPRINT CAR DRIVER BOBBY CODY!
(MARCH 29, 2006, PERRIS, CA) This is the first in a series of interviews that will be presented on the weeks when Temecula Valley Pipe & Supply presents the USAC/CRA Sprint Cars at Perris Auto Speedway. This week the focus is on rising star Bobby Cody, the driver of the Moose Racing #92. Cody heads into this Saturday's race at The PAS after a strong outing last Saturday when he qualified second, finished third in his heat and posted a season best sixth in the main event.
THE PAS: How did you first become involved in racing?
CODY: I started racing speedway motorcycles when I was 8 years old. The reason I got into that was because my Dad is 'Wild Bill'y Cody. He rode speedway in the late 1960s and the 1970s. I just kinda' followed step. Then I got out of bikes and into cars.
THE PAS: Why did you get out of bikes and into cars?
CODY: Tired of living under the shadow of my Dad and I wanted to make a name for myself. And, I was kind of tired of breaking bones. I figured a car was a little safer.
THE PAS: You did break quite a few bones starting when you were a little kid. Give us a rundown.
CODY: I have busted just about everything. Leg, arms, collarbones. You name it and I have probably broken it.
THE PAS: I saw you break a few of those bones, but the one I remember the most was when you were a little kid riding Junior Speedway at Costa Mesa and you sailed over the wall. You were in a body cast for how long?
CODY: I was 13 years old and it happened to be on my brother's birthday! It was opening night at Costa Mesa and I hit the wall and flipped over it. I broke my femur. I had a pin in my knee and I was in traction for three and a half weeks. Then I was in a full body cast for three and a half months!
THE PAS: For a little kid that had to be tough. Was it hard when you came back to racing?
CODY: No, it wasn't really hard. It is all I know and all I have done. You know, with the love of the sport, it was pretty easy to get back. I wasn't really nervous or anything. It was pretty tough being 13 and being active in soccer and baseball. It was a year of my life pretty much gone. I could not do any of that. The physical therapy was the worst part. It was six or eight months of that.
THE PAS: After you got out of speedway, you did not jump straight into 410 sprint cars. You raced some other things first. What were they?
CODY: My father and I took a speedway (motorcycle) motor and put it into a little modified midget trying to open up a market for my Dad (Bobby's Dad owns Cody Racing Products). We ran that for a couple of years and it went pretty well. Then my Dad had a customer who wanted to get into speedway and he had a lightning sprint. We did a little bit of horse-trading and got that and ran it. Then I kinda' got the guts enough to tell my Dad I was going to run a sprint car and I went out and bought one.
THE PAS: You went pretty good from the start in a sprint car and won Rookie of the Year with SCRA in 2002. Are you happy with your progress as a sprint car driver?
CODY: I was happy with my first year. Quite a bit of personal things took place my second year and that made it pretty much a disastrous season. My third year was kind of starting all over again and regrouping. Last year was OK. A little hit and miss. Now being into it a few years and having a ride with Tom and Laurie Sertich -- the Moose Team -- everything is coming together well. I am really happy.
THE PAS: Speaking of the Moose Team, is it a little easier being a hired gun rather than running your own equipment?
CODY: It is in the sense that I am not at the shop doing everything day to day to keep the car out here every week. It takes a lot of pressure off. It makes it a lot easier to show up out here a little later in the afternoon, put your driving suit on and just go race. You have a different mind set where it is focused on racing instead of getting here early and focusing on making sure everything is ready for the car and then trying to get your game face on. It is definitely a really good deal for me. I am really happy that Tom and Laurie have given me the opportunity to run their car.
THE PAS: Last week at Manzanita you had to start at the back after you stopped on the work area before the start of the main. You proceeded to go from 22nd to 12th. That had to pump you up.
CODY: Yeah! It was actually really frustrating that we came into the 'X'y before the main. It was a simple little problem. No bid deal. Started dead last. It was really positive for us. Especially over at Phoenix. Being such a momentum track, to work your way through the field and finish where we did was definitely a big plus for us. We were a little frustrated on the flip side wanting to start in our original starting spot of 12th and seen what we could have done, but there is another race there in a month.
THE PAS: What are you up to when you are not at the racetrack?
CODY: Work on the car a couple nights a week. After that it is work as usual. Everybody has their day job and most of us have kids we have to play with. Like, we are racing here tonight and tomorrow the day is set for the kids. I am going go carting with my four-year-old son and five year old daughter. Let them carry on the name when I am done.
THE PAS: What is your day job?
CODY: I am a construction superintendent. We run big commercial work. A lot of tilt-up buildings. I get to lounge around a little bit in the afternoon, but mornings are pretty hectic getting everything ironed out.
THE PAS: What do you expect to get out of sprint car racing? Do you want to go to any higher levels of racing?
CODY: I don't expect to get anything out of it except fun. I am at a point in my life with racing that I am not prepared to go back to the Midwest anywhere and try to run and be a fulltime racer, because my obligation is with my children out here. I just come to the track to have fun and I go to the shop to have fun. I try to make it a nice easy atmosphere and to teach my kids that racing is not necessarily always about winning. It is about the camaraderie and having a good time and enjoying what you do.
THE PAS: Are you going to be out here racing a long time?
CODY: I am gonna' be out here quite a while. At least until my boy is 13.
The Moose Racing #92 Bobby Cody drives in USAC/CRA competition is sponsored by Phil & Eileen King, Jim's Mad Money, Jan's Health Bar, Sundial Window Tinting, Intercoastal Funding, All Spec Fasteners, Red Line Oil, MOC, Sander Engineering and RC Performance.
The spectator gates for Saturday's USAC/CRA Sprint Car race at Perris Auto Speedway will open at 5:00 PM and the first race will be at 7:00 PM. Advance tickets are available by calling 1-800-595-4849. They are also available on the Internet at tix.com or perrisautospeedway.com.
Perris Auto Speedway is located on the freeway close Lake Perris Fairgrounds approximately one hour east of Los Angeles and one hour North of San Diego. To get to the track, take the 215 freeway, exit on the Ramona Expressway and go two miles east to the fairgrounds.
Saturday's race on the only half-mile clay oval in Riverside County will be preceded by Friday's drag racing action on the Diamond Valley Honda Street Legal Drag Strip. The drag strip is also located on the Lake Perris Fairgrounds. Anyone with a valid driver's license, registration and helmet is eligible to race at the drag strip. Gates at the drag strip open at 5:00 PM with racing at 6:00 PM.
Anyone wishing more information can contact Perris Auto Speedway at (951) 940-0134.