not forgotten . . .

Russ Gray

Brantford, ON, Canada - 21.May.1979

 Russell Gray lived in Brantford, ON, CA. He was a bachelor and operated Gray's Music Center in Bradford. A veteran campaigner on the supermodified circuit, he was called "the Music Man" from his occupation.

Tragedy struck the Oswego Speedway on May 19th of the '79 season when Russ suffered injuries that would prove fatal when the throttle stuck on his 27, during a preliminary event, and he hit the first turn wall extremely hard. Russ did manage to get the car sideways delivering the most of the impact to the right side tires, but the safety crew theorized Russ must have hit his head on one of the roll bars. Russ was removed from the accident scene, taken to Oswego Hospital and later transferred to Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse NY, where he died several days later of head injuries.

When we first learned that Russ had purchased the new Scott Wilson / Dates chassis supermodified No. 27, we wondered if that would be too much car for him. He certainly removed any of our doubts when he became a very consistent runner with the new car, and with very little trouble. Russ finished 14th in the '77 points and 12th in the '78 points. His best ever feature finish was a respectable 4th place in the '78 Port City event.

After coming so far in his racing career, then to lose his life in a freak accident was such a shame. Russ "lived" to race at Oswego. Every week he would travel by himself, from Brantford, Ontario Canada, where he and his brother Jerry ran a piano sales and service store. He looked and talked more like a music professor than a race driver. The Becker brothers, Steve and Mark, of Oswego took a special liking to him and invited him into their home every weekend. They also served as Russ' pit crew. The Beckers were particularly devastated by the tragic accident. We all missed Russ and his friendly nature. It was a real hard one to take. This racing business can be very cruel at times.

  . . . from George Caruso Jr's book, "Oswego Speedway, The first 50 Years"




also 1978 I believe

  Russ Gray links
  • please links, stories or images so we can all remember Russ Gray.

return to tribute index page

[JakesSite Home] [Supers1] [Supers2] [Mods-other] [Tomsuper] [Links] [Super Stats]