FRESNO, Calif. – Hall of Fame midget racer Don Meacham died on Feb. 22. He was 85 years old.
Meacham started his career driving stock cars at California’s Kearney Bowl Speedway in 1958 at age 22.
He soon switched to midgets and raced frequently with the Bay Cities Racing Ass’n, before moving to the Midwest where he began picking up rides in USAC midgets.
Meacham earned his first USAC triumph at Springfield (Ill.) Speedway and finished 10th in points in 1964.
Meacham raced only sparingly the following season but landed with car owner Myron Caves for the 1966 USAC campaign. Meacham drove the Caves entry to a USAC-best nine victories that season while finishing third in the standings behind Mike McGreevy and Mel Kenyon.
Meacham was fifth in the standings in 1967.
Following that campaign, he was invited to race in Australia and New Zealand, where he won 14 times in 17 races and topped the Australian/New Zealand World Championship Race.
After the successful tour Down Under, Meacham quit running full time and raced locally with BCRA. His 13th and final USAC midget victory came in 1968 at Kokomo (Ind.) Speedway.
After retiring, Meacham actively worked to develop orthopedic devices, including the V-Force Seated Traction device, often called “back sticks.”
Meacham was inducted into the National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 2004 and is also a member of the Central California Racing Hall of Fame and the Bay Cities Racing Ass’n Hall of Fame.