INDIANAPOLIS – Ending a 37-year hiatus from USAC Silver Crown Series racing, Dave Peperak has purchased a champ car to compete on the dirt with the tour this year.
Peperak’s most recent Silver Crown start came in March of 1983 at the Nazareth (Pa.) Speedway dirt track, aboard Don Robertson’s No. 79. He started 29th before bowing out with a clutch issue and finishing 24th in the 30-car field.
The Clinton, Ind., native owns one career USAC National Sprint Car Series victory, which came at Eldora Speedway in 1981.
He remains active on the local Indiana sprint circuit to this day, and plans to compete with a Beast chassis formerly owned and driven by Tom Capie, as well as more recently by Tyler Courtney.
The 66-year-old Peperak has long desired to compete in the Silver Crown Series, but made the decision over the offseason to not put off the moment any longer.
“In a normal year, I couldn’t imagine not going to the race track in the spring, and I can only do this so much longer,” Peperak said. “That’s why we decided to do the Silver Crown car deal now. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, but just put it off, never had the money and time just went by.”
“A friend of mine, (former sprint car racer) Kenny Lacey and I talked, and I told him if I don’t do this pretty quickly, I’m never going to do it,” Peperak continued. “So I said we better do it, and we decided to go forward with this car here and see what happens.”
Peperak has preliminary plans to compete with the Silver Crown Champ Car Series at Terre Haute (Ind.) Action Track, the two Illinois dirt miles and Eldora Speedway.
He may also make the Pennsylvania races at Williams Grove Speedway and Selinsgrove Speedway, if the money or another deal comes together.
Peperak’s greatest triumph, the 1981 Don Branson-Jud Larson Memorial at Eldora Speedway for the USAC National Sprint Car Series, saw him collect a “look what I’ve found” victory by passing for the win on the 30th and final lap.
The win remains Peperak’s lone career USAC Sprint Car Series triumph among his 146 career starts with the series, which ranks 62nd all-time in terms of appearances.