Take the "Checkers" on Hoosier Tires!Hoosier Racing TireTake the "Checkers" on Hoosier Tires!




13-year-old Tyler Nuckles was a "testing machine" clocking lap times that varied no more than 3/100th's of a second over a 40-lap run.LAKEVILLE, IN -- History was made recently when Hoosier completed its first-ever quarter midget tire test in mid October with astounding results. For years, Hoosier has been fielding calls from racers asking when the largest race tire manufacturer in the world was going to enter the highly popular quarter midget market. Well, we are pleased to say, the time has now come. Over 600 test laps were run on a crisp Autumn day at the 20th-of-a-mile quarter midget track on the grounds of Columbus Speedway in Ohio. While the Hoosier engineers who were on hand to witness the history making event had simply hoped to just "be in the ballpark" on their first attempt testing the freshly produced Hoosier tires outfitted on six inch diameter rims. But they did better than that clocking times that were consistently faster than those of the various brands currently available to the quarter midget drivers. 

The tire test had two test cars and two test drivers. The driver of the "Heavy" class car was Tyler Nuckles--the 13-year-old son of former racer Jeff Nuckles. Jeff is the son of Columbus Speedway owner Jim Nuckles. Like many Speedway's across the country, Columbus Speedway is run by many members of the Nuckles family. Jeff Nuckles commented that he thought Columbus was the oldest Hoosier tire-rule track in the country originating back in the early 70's when his father signed up as a Hoosier-only track. 

The second driver was 11-year-old Cole Duncan--son of former sprint car driver Rodney Duncan who drove the "Light" car. Quarter midget racing has among its many classes the the "Heavy" cars and the "Light" cars. The "Heavy" car (and driver) must weigh at least a minimum of 320 lbs and the "Light" cars (and driver) must weigh at least 260 lbs.

Hoosier's Irish Saunders commented after the day of testing, "If these kids represent the future of racing, then I'd say our sport was in great hands." Saunders added, "Both of these kids were phenomenal. They gave very detailed feedback about what the car was doing entering the corners, through the corners, and exiting the corners as good as any test driver I have tested with over the years. It is their feedback that will improve the future development of this line of tires."

Saunders continued, "At one point, Tyler made a 40-lap run in which his times did not fluctuate by more than 3/100th's of a second. I don't know many racers that can be that consistent. And Cole, his feedback was just as detailed and informative as any 30-year veteran."

Special thanks goes out to the Nuckles family--Tyler, Jeff and wife Cindy and Jeff's right hand man Larry. Also, special thanks goes out to Cole Duncan and his father Rodney and his grandpa for their help in completing the required testing. Hoosier would also like to extend its thanks to Eric Bunn of USAC for attending the historic testing session.  

While work will continue in the coming weeks and months on developing the six-inch product to the point it can go into mass production, it was clear the test was a homerun as far as those in attendance were concerned. Hoosier anticipates availability of its first quarter midget tires to be in the Summer of 2004. 

Pictures taken during quarter midget tire testing.
(Click on any image to view full size)

Tyler Nuckles turning one of the 100's of laps during the day of testing Hoosier's new quarter midget tires.

Tyler making a tight turn on the new Hoosiers

Hoosier engineers gather tire temperatures after one of the test runs.

Tyler Nuckles making one of his machine-like laps in his quarter midget.



More data is gathered by the Hoosier engineers after one of the test runs by Tyler (Tyler's father Jeff is on the right).

Cole Duncan turns another lap on his "light" car on the new Hoosiers.

More information is gathered by the Hoosier engineers after one of Cole's runs. (Cole's father Rodney is on the left.)

Hoosier Engineers listen & record every comment made by Cole after one of the test runs.



Cole Duncan takes a break while Irish Saunders records more of Cole's valuable comments.

Hoosier Engineers listen intently to the comments made by 13-year-old test driver Tyler Nuckles in the "Heavy" quarter midget car.

One of the lighter moments of the day was when Jeff Nuckles attempted to push start his son's racer with his wheelchair.

Irish Saunders also helped (once) performing push truck duties.




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