by BLAIR BODLEY
General Manager, Red River Co-op Speedway
On August 16, 2015, I received an email from Janet Rheault of the Manitoba Museum looking for sponsorship support for an exhibit they were renovating. While we talked, the wheels began turning and I told her that even though monetary support wasn’t available, I thought there were other ways that Red River Co-op Speedway might be able to help. At that moment, the “ museum car “ project was hatched.
In November, Rick Delaine called and told me he had an old modifed chassis that he would donate to the project. I got directions from Rick, drove into a field, plucked the car out the weeds and began 26 months of work.
We designed the car to be a photo booth, but one with an active steering wheel and seat belts. As much steel and tubing as possible was cut from the car, about 400 pounds. We stripped and painted it, cut one side of the car open so kids can climb in and out, completely rebuilt the cockpit and put a new body on it. Because the wheels were locked in place for public safety, we had to carry it in to it’s new home in the Science and Technology display. This is such an important project for both Red River Co-op Speedway and the Manitoba Museum, as it’s estimated that more than 100,000 people will view the display over the course of a year.
We are extremely grateful to be able to contribute to this incredible renovation, knowing that people of all ages will be able to enjoy it for years to come. I encourage everyone to get their “race fix” during the cold winter by visiting the Manitoba Museum’s “Engineered for Speed” exhibit in the Science Gallery!
All of us at Red River Co-op Speedway look forward to seeing you at the track this season!
I would like to thank Scott Young, Janet Rheault, Jaya Beange and all other Manitoba Museum staff for their support and guidance.
I’d also like to thank Glenda Manning, Carolyne Braid, Teresa Shepit, Rick Delaine, Ken Greer, Paul Veert, Steve Boulanger, Ryan Kereluk, and Jeff Rempel for their advice, support and hard work.
This could have never happened without you.