HORST KWECH – 1937-2019
Horst Kwech, an RRDC member since 1976, passed away Dec. 30 at age 82 according to the following edited notice in Vintage Motorsport.
Shortly after his birth in Vienna, Austria, in ‘37 Kwech’s mother emigrated to Australia where he grew up. In the fifties, he began sports car racing with an Austin-Healey 100/4 for Leaton Motors. Kwech showed his mechanical engineering talent early building a custom sports car, the RM Spyder, with a Holden engine, which he later sold to finance his ’61 journey to the U.S. at age 24.
A mechanic’s job at Knauz Continental Motors in Lake Forest, IL, soon led to racing opportunities, first driving another tube frame sports racer of his own design. Later in an Alfa Romeo Giulia, he won the ‘65 SCCA Central Division B Sedan championship.
The following year, Knauz Motors acquired a factory-prepared Alfa Romeo GTA with which Kwech and teammate Gaston Andrey claimed the Trans-Am Under 2.5 Liter Manufacturers Championship and Kwech used to win the SCCA BS championship at the Riverside Runoffs.
Over the next decade, Kwech would become one of America’s most celebrated GT racers, forming (with Ron Neal and Bill Knauz) and racing for the Alfa Romeo performance parts company Ausca; testing and racing for Carroll Shelby and winning the ’68 Riverside Trans-Am in a Shelby-prepared Mustang; winning the ’70 U2.5L Trans-Am Championship driving Herb Wetanson’s Alfa GTA; racing a Lola T-300 in the ’72 L&M Continental Formula 5000 Championship; and, in ’74, co-founding DeKon Engineering with Lee Dykstra (which built the highly regarded Chevy Monza, successful in both IMSA Camel GT and Australian Supercar racing over the next several years).
Kwech is the only driver to have won a Trans-Am race in both the Over and Under 2-liter divisions. He also held 17 patents as a design engineer.
The RRDC sends heartfelt condolences to Kwech’s family and many friends in the Chicago area and around the world.
INVITATION AND REMINDER – DAYTONA ANNUAL RRDC MEMBERS’ DINNER
Thanks to the organizational skills of RRDC member Lisa Noble, the RRDC will hold its annual members’ dinner Wednesday, Jan. 22nd at the Daytona 500 Club in advance of the 58th Rolex 24 At Daytona. This dinner has grown tremendously in the last few years, attracting nearly 300 members and guests.
It’s become the perfect venue for members and their guests to bench race, meet and greet the latest crop of members, and enjoy an evening filled with camaraderie, nostalgia and awards presentations.
The featured award of the evening will be the 27th Phil Hill Award (for rendering outstanding service to road racing), which will be presented to Jack Roush.
Also, the 19th Bob Akin Award and the 49th RRDC Mark Donohue Award will be presented.
The program is scheduled to end before 10 p.m., so that those participating in the Rolex 24 will be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed for morning practice.
Please click here for the dinner reservation form. Please make your reservations and send in your check by January 17, 2020, as seats will be filling quickly.
Please also note that seating will be open this year.
Event details are below. If you have any other questions, please contact Lisa Noble at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to seeing you there!
ANNUAL DINNER DETAILS:
RRDC annual members’ dinner (click here for reservation form)
Daytona 500 Club (infield) – NOTE CHANGE OF VENUE
Daytona International Speedway
1801 W. International Speedway Blvd.
Daytona Beach, Fla. 32114
Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020 – in advance of the Rolex 24 At Daytona
5:00 p.m. cocktails
6:15 p.m. RRDC member photo
6:30 p.m. dinner
All RRDC members in good standing and personal guests ONLY.
Please make sure you’ve paid your 2019 dues!
Here’s the link to the 2020 dues invoice, if you’d like to include a dues payment with your dinner reservation:
$100 per person, payable by check in advance; or
$120 at the door – cash or check only; no credit cards please
Tables of 10 are available for $1000 each
PARKING and TRACK ENTRY:
* Please enter at Gate 40 off Williamson Blvd. Security/guest services will have a list with your name on it.
* Let them know that you are attending the ANNUAL RRDC DINNER IN DAYTONA 500 CLUB.
* There will be directional signage to lot 2A and parking staff to assist you.
The 500 Club is in the infield tower building located at Victory Circle.
As in the past, Chip Wile of Daytona International Speedway has kindly offered weekend passes to RRDC members for the Rolex 24. These are available to members who have paid their dues and are attending the dinner. Please respond to this email with your request for passes or contact Judy Stropus at email@example.com.