MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Dave Mader III is one of the oldest racers in the sport. He finished second in ARCA racing at Talladega last week, and at age 65, he has no plans of slowing down anytime soon.
“How happy can I be? I mean I’m here!” said Mader. “I’m getting ready to go out here with these people and the kids and them older guys too and be competitive. It’s just right.”
The sport has been in his blood since he was a teenager, and from the moment he hopped behind the wheel, Mader knew it was the right fit.
“When I started, I was 16, and I was one of the first people, or young people, Ok, in the sport,” said Mader. “My dad was a brick mason and he raced cars. And I didn’t want to be a brick mason. I tried that, and I wanted to race cars. And here I am 50 years later still winning and running second at Talladega. That was just off the chart. It was just, what a thrill.”
His racing roots all started in Montgomery at the Motor Speedway. This weekend he returns to race in the Late Model Spring Explosion, bringing his career full circle.
“I wish there was words to tell you. I mean, 50 years when I started and it was here,” said Mader. “And to come back and the race track is still alive and well, it’s very special, very, very special. It is”
But as he closes in on 66, the checkers aren’t quite in sight just yet.
“You know, I know when I need to quit,” he said. “It might be after Saturday night, but I’ll know when that time comes, and I’ve really had a lot of fun with this. You know, being 65 and still running good, real competitive.”
Racing at the Montgomery Motor Speedway will being on Saturday. The grandstands open at 5 p.m., with qualifiers getting underway at 6 p.m.