Monday, July 18, 2011

AMA Flat Track: Hank Scott, Former National #14, Interviewed Over at Flat Track

'74 AMA Flat Track Rookie of the Year Hank Scott #14, rolls the throttle on while doing a burn-out to scrub in his tire at the Louisville Downs Half-Mile ABC-TV 'Race of Champions' event in October of 1976.  Scott had qualified for the winners-only TV race by virtue of having won the Oklahoma City Half-Mile earlier in the season on his Shell Thuet-tuned and Shell Racing Specialties/Mulholland-sponsored Yamaha XS-650-based parallel twin mount.

Also seen in this photo just behind Scott are former National #34 Daryl Hurst (blue & black leathers with glasses) and former National #29, and AMA Road Racing Champion, the late Randy Cleek (white leather upper, leaning against pole.)  Hurst and Cleek were on-hand to race the Expert support race as part of the AMA Flat Track/Camel Pro Series and ABC event that day. 

Some of the other riders that qualified for the TV 'Race of Champions' event that year also included the late Rick Hocking, Corky Keener, 3-Time AMA Grand National Champion Jay Springsteen, and the late Ted Boody, among a host of others.  Kenny Roberts didn't make the trip for the second year in a row from California, supposedly at the time because the event didn't pay the standard 'start money' that the regular season schedule did. 

One of the all-time greats in the series, Hank Scott was inducted into Dave Despain's Dirt Track Flat Track Hall of Fame at Springfield, IL. over the Memorial Day Weekend in 1999, along with a class that also included Jim Rice and Alex Jorgenson.  Despain's Hall of Fame races over the Memorial Day Weekend at Springfield from '98-'00 were started as a way to honor the riders of The Rolling Thunder Show, and raised extra purse money for those that made the show.

Scott came within one point of winning the 1980 AMA Grand National Championship, only to lose it to future 2-Time AMA Grand National Champion, Randy Goss at the season's ending round at the Ascot Park Half-Mile.  Although Scott was a big help in the development of the Honda Flat Track team's NS/RS-750s in the early '80s, and raced a wide variety of equipment during his years of competition on the AMA Grand National Championship trail, he is probably best remembered by the older fans of the sport for riding Shell's Yamahas for several years.  In their first year together, Hank won the Hinsdale Short Track in August of '75 riding one of Thuet's potent Yamaha 360 two-stroke machines, holding off the charges of Kenny Roberts and short track specialist Mike Gerald throughout the night.

A BIG thanks goes out to Mike Veach and Jim Grant from for this great up-to-date interview with one of the icons of AMA Flat Track Series racing.  Hank Scott was (and still is!) one of my all-time favorite riders on the Grand National Championship Series trail, a man who captivated me as a young fan, that hit the track as a hard charger and sheer champion of the sport.

Great interview with Hank here that will get you up-to-date with former National #14:

AMA Hall of Fame bio on former National #14, Hank Scott:

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