1981 ISCRA Camel Cup Series

stevenmerzlak

Test Rank
Staff member
Admin
Joined
Jun 4, 2022
Posts
43
Reaction score
65
Points
18
The 1981 season brings a major change to the ISCRA Camel Cup Series. Due to the global energy crisis, car manufacturers have downsized their cars, forcing ISCRA to adapt by mandating vehicles to have a 110-inch wheelbase. Testing and rumors over the winter have suggested that Pontiac's sleek Le Mans may have the best aerodynamics of all the new cars, but only time will tell if that's the case...

#9 - Eddie McCarthy - AMC Factory Racing
1980 Points Finish: 1st
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 8
Top 10s: 13

The Georgia native finally wins his first championship in convincing fashion. While he only won a single race, he made sure it was the biggest one of all, securing his first Daytona 500 with a dominating performance. His consistency set him apart from the rest of the field, and being just one of two drivers to make each race in 1980 certainly helped him in the standings. He returns to AMC Factory Racing in 1981 driving their all-new Javelin. He's the championship favorite for '81, and if this past season is anything to go by, it won't be particularly close.

9 Coke AMC.png

#76 - Clint Kelly - Marshall Whitley
1980 Points Finish: 3rd
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 8
Top 10s: 13

With an identical statline to the champion, you'd think Clint Kelly would have been battling Eddie McCarthy all season long, but that's not the case. Failing to qualify for three races dashed his championship hopes before they could even begin. Even then, a top-three in points is something to be proud of for this historically part-time team, so maybe with some luck you'll see them on the sharp end of the standings again this season. Unocal 76 returns once again to sponsor Kelly and Marshall Whitley's team.

76 76.png

#91 - Frank Olsen - AMC Factory Racing
1980 Points Finish: 4th
Wins: 5
Top 5s: 10
Top 10s: 12

For a brief moment, Frank Olsen looked like he was going to steal the championship away from Eddie McCarthy, but even with five wins, you still have to show up if you want to have a shot. Frank returns to the No. 91 in 1981, but rumor in the garage is that he's unhappy with AMC's focus on the other two drivers, and he may be looking for a new ride by the end of the year.

91 Coke AMC.png

#29 - Ken Morales - Morales Motorsports
1980 Points Finish: 6th
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 4
Top 10s: 11

Despite a great 1980 season, Ken Morales spent the offseason wondering if he was going to be coming back at all after Armor All left the team. Luckily, he was able to score a lucrative deal with Gatorade for '81 and '82, which is reportedly one of the highest paid sponsorships in the series at the moment. He's looking forward to competing for the championship in his all-new Javelin.

29 Gatorade.png

#88 - Billy Koehler - Koehler Enterprises
1980 Points Finish: 10th
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 7
Top 10s: 11

1980 was a strange down year for Koehler, one of the most popular drivers in the sport. He only won a single race, the penultimate event at Atlanta, and his season was marred by hard crashes and tough luck. It's certainly not helped by the departure of his previous sponsor Caterpillar, but Budweiser has moved over to the No. 88 team with the confidence that the kid from Dunlap, Tennessee can return to form in 1981.

88 Budweiser.png

#55 - Darryl Forrester - Norm Snyder
1980 Points Finish: 8th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 2
Top 10s: 9

You'd think after winning 3 of the last 4 championships that Darryl Forrester would continue his reign as the most dominant driver in ISCRA. Somehow, he went winless, with two top fives and a pole at Dover being the highlights of his season. To make matters worse, Busch left the team at season's end. Some are attributing it to a championship hangover, while others think his small team has been usurped by the big factory efforts by AMC and Chevrolet. Regardless, he's back in 1981 with new sponsorship from Kendall Motor Oil, and we'll see if he can get back to dominating the series as we've seen in the past.

55 Kendall.png

#19 - Steve Stewart - AMC Factory Racing
1980 Points Finish: 7th
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 3
Top 10s: 13

How well do you think a road ringer with barely any oval experience did in his first full-time season in a stock car? That's right, he finished top ten in points and won the Southern 500! Steve Stewart's sudden and dramatic rise to stardom in ISCRA has been very well documented over the past year and a half, and it's safe to say he's going to keep climbing in 1981.

19 Coke AMC.png

#7 - Jerry Walker - Donahue Racing
1980 Points Finish: 11th
Wins: 2
Top 5s: 6
Top 10s: 11

After spending the first eight seasons driving the No. 31 car for the eccentric J.T. Green, Jerry Walker has chosen to move on with a new team for 1981. He joins Paul Donahue's revamped Chevrolet outfit with an impressive sponsorship deal from Best Products. A change of scenery may be what he needs to become a championship threat again.

7 Best.png

#31 - Chuck Magnum - J.T. Green Racing
1980 Points Finish: n/a

Rookie Chuck Magnum has big shoes to fill as he steps into the No. 31 Ford for 1981. He's already made a name for himself by winning basically every big dirt race in the country, and he's confident his skill will transfer over to stock cars.

31 Holley.png

#20 - George McCoy - George McCoy Motorsports
1980 Points Finish: 14th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 7
Top 10s: 10

ISCRA's first champion and de facto ambassador George McCoy will return to doing what he does best for 1981: winning. He didn't pick up a checkered flag this past season, but dominant runs at Darlington and Rockingham last season show that he's still got what it takes to compete against the big guns. He's entering year 3 of factory Oldsmobile support, and with the debut of the all-new Cutlass, it's not a question of if he'll win in 1981, it's how much he'll win.

20 Monro.png
 
#30 - Rick Norton - Rick Norton Racing
1980 Points Finish: 15th
Wins: 2
Top 5s: 7
Top 10s: 12

Despite winning two races, it was another down season for Rick Norton, who is presumably still getting back to 100% after his vicious crash at Dover in 1979. He's scored big sponsorship from Wrangler for 1981, and it's been suggested that the new Mercury Cougar may be faster than initially led on, so it's going to be interesting to see if the series' bridesmaid can finally pull through and secure his first championship.

30 Wrangler.png

#41 - Marvin King - King Racing
1980 Points Finish: 17th
Wins: 2
Top 5s: 7
Top 10s: 10

Marvin King saw the highest of highs and the lowest of lows in 1980. He navigated through chaos to win a grueling race at Dover in May and dominated at Milwaukee in September, but several big crashes left him battered, bruised, and recovering through the offseason. If he can stay healthy for 1981, there's no reason he can't compete for the championship, but it may be a tall order for the 33-year old.

41 STP.png

#14 - Bill O'Neil - Earl Barrett
1980 Points Finish: 16th
Wins: 2
Top 5s: 8
Top 10s: 11

It was business as usual for Bill O'Neil in 1980, even though his points finish doesn't look great on the surface. With two wins at Nashville and Riverside in 1980, as well as new sponsors in Skoal and Valvoline, it shouldn't be a surprise to see Bill competing for wins again in 1981.

14 Skoal.png

#24 - Paul Allen - Paul Allen Motorsports
1980 Points Finish: 12th
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 7
Top 10s: 10

Paul Allen managed to avoid the dreaded sophomore slump for the most part, with a win at Trenton and impressive runs at a variety of tracks. Him and Burger King have already been linked to some very high-profile seats for 1982, so while we may not see the No. 24 out there anymore, it's already looking certain that we'll be talking about Paul for years to come.

24 Burger King.png

#21 - Bob Shelton - George McCoy Motorsports
1980 Points Finish: 13th
Wins: 3
Top 5s: 10
Top 10s: 14

Bob Shelton, where in the world did you come from?! After years of consistent, unassuming performance, Bob popped off for Paul Donahue in 1980, winning at Darlington, Mosport, and Rockingham. Unfortunately, the racing world can be cruel, and despite his great performance, he was not retained and replaced by Jerry Walker. He's joined George McCoy in the No. 21 Oldsmobile for 1981, and given how this team is expected to perform, he may be a championship threat if he's as strong as he was last season.

21 Mello Yello.png

#45 - Kurt Sullivan - Lester McKnight
1980 Points Finish: 29th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 1
Top 10s: 3

It was truly a season to forget for Kurt Sullivan. He was unceremoniously released from Bob Sweeney's No. 18 at season's end, but in a twist, his sponsor Spectra left with him! The combination found a new home at Lester McKnight's No. 45 team, vacated by Chuck Carroll and Gatorade after 1980, so what looked to be a nightmare scenario at first became a lateral move for both Sullivan and McKnight. Oh, yeah, and their radical new Pontiac Le Mans may be the best car of all the new offers for 1981...

45 Spectra Tuf-Lon.png

#15 - Clayton Hoffman - McCarthy Enterprises
1980 Points Finish: 20th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 3
Top 10s: 6

15 Coke.png

#47 - Johnny Jefferson - Jefferson Motorsports
1980 Points Finish: 50th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 0

47 Norton.png

#98 - Ronnie Dawson - Charles Stark
1980 Points Finish: 23rd
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 2
Top 10s: 4

98 Sunoco.png
 
#3 - Tom Lawson - Lawson Performance Racing
1980 Points Finish: 30th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 1
Top 10s: 4

3 Amsoil.png

#4 - Dion Humphrey - Dion Humphrey
1980 Points Finish: 43rd
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 2
Top 10s: 3

4 Schlitz.png

#13 - Hank Schneider - Junior Spencer
1980 Points Finish: 65th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 0

13 Bedford.png

#22 - Julian Allison - AlMar Racing
1980 Points Finish: 60th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 1

22 Hasbach.png

#38 - Brian Long - Brian Long
1980 Points Finish: 63rd
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 1

38 unsponsored.png
 
#2 - John Navarro - Ron Davis Engineering
1980 Points Finish: 9th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 4
Top 10s: 10

It's been business as usual for John Navarro as he approaches his second full-time season with Ron Davis Engineering. While he's on a three-year winless skid, it's safe to assume he'll break it in 1981 with the brand new Chevrolet Monte Carlo.

2 Miller Lite.png

#04 - Larry Massey - Massey Auto Racing
1980 Points Finish: 2nd
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 6
Top 10s: 11

The Californian came so, so close to winning his second ISCRA Camel Cup Series championship, but he just didn't have enough time to catch Eddie McCarthy. Still, winning the season finale and bringing home a second-place points finish is a great result for the owner-driver. He'll enter 1981 with a blue and white Pontiac Le Mans, a stark departure from the black and gold schemes he's become famous for.

04 NAPA.png

#5 - Chuck Carroll - Gary Walton
1980 Points Finish: 27th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 3

Another middling season for Chuck Carroll led to his amicable departure from Lester McKnight's team. He quickly found a home in Gary Walton's No. 5 entry, where he'll be expected to contend for wins in this new Red Roof Inn Chevrolet.

5 Red Roof Inn.png

#6 - Tom Coffey - Davey Williamson
1980 Points Finish: 48th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 1

6 Norris.png

#10 - Alec Carpenter - Ricky Martin
1980 Points Finish: 34th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 1
Top 10s: 3

10 Gould.png
 
#26 - Travis Schafer - Ron Davis Engineering
1980 Points Finish: 5th
Wins: 1
Top 5s: 5
Top 10s: 12

A win at Talladega was the high point of another solid season for Travis Schafer. They're gonna run it back for 1981 with the expectations of being a championship threat again.

26 CRC.png

#27 - Troy Houston - Frank Houston
1980 Points Finish: 21st
Wins: 3
Top 5s: 6
Top 10s: 9

The biggest surprise of the season in 1980 was the sudden appearance and domination by Troy Houston and his family team. Troy made a handful of starts in the spring before scoring a miracle win at the World 600. The team soon got sponsorship from Wynn's Car Care and immediately became frontrunners, with Troy sweeping the summer races at Michigan and nearly scoring a top 20 points finish despite missing nearly a third of the season. 1981 is full of questions for Troy and his team, but if they can replicate what they did last year, he might be making these big teams sweat a little bit!

27 Wynn's.png

#33 - Edwin MacPherson - Edwin MacPherson
1980 Points Finish: 46th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 2

33 Hawaiian Tropic.png

#35 - David Orr - Halko Brothers Racing
1980 Points Finish: 22nd
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 1

35 Mountain Dew.png

#36 - Ron Hayes - Halko Brothers Racing
1980 Points Finish: 45th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 1
Top 10s: 2

36 Pepsi Challenger.png
 
#1 - Lee Davison - Carl Humphrey
1980 Points Finish: 25th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 2
Top 10s: 3

1 UNO.png

#11 - Ted Moore - Moore Enterprises Inc.
1980 Points Finish: 31st
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 1
Top 10s: 4

11 Pennzoil.png

#12 - Wayne Foster - Jonah Booker
1980 Points Finish: 47th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 1

12 Sauers.png

#16 Jack MacLean - Bob Davenport
1980 Points Finish: 52nd
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 1
Top 10s: 2

16 Sunny King Ford Honda.png

#18 - Jeff Love - Bob Sweeney
1980 Points Finish: 64th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 1

18 Kraco.png
 
#54 - Terry Sherman - Terry Sherman
1980 Points Finish: 28th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 1
Top 10s: 2

54 NA Van Lines.png

#59 - Bob Randolph - Bob Randolph
1980 Points Finish: 18th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 5
Top 10s: 8

59 Madison Hardware.png

#68 - Russell Ortiz - Clarence Sheppard
1980 Points Finish: n/a

68 PET Dairy.png

#71 - B.J. Hatcher - B.J. Hatcher
1980 Points Finish: 59th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 0
Top 10s: 0

71 unsponsored.png

#80 - Dominic Horton - Dominic Horton
1980 Points Finish: 19th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 4
Top 10s: 10

80 RC Cola.png

#81 - Christopher Kirkwood - Dale Baltimore
1980 Points Finish: n/a

81 Baltimore Contracting.png

#92 - Joe Cunningham - Joe Cunningham
1980 Points Finish: 36th
Wins: 0
Top 5s: 1
Top 10s: 2

92 Montgomery Ward.png
 
Here's where we stand after 7 races:

1693873881511.png

Some notable moments so far in 1981:
- After a timely caution, Jeff Love found himself in the lead in the opener at Riverside with 20 to go. He pulled away on the restart and looked to be heading to his first ISCRA win; unfortunately, while managing lap traffic, Darryl Forrester threw his Dodge into the last corner, running Love up the hill and out of the way. Love would finish 6th, while Larry Massey would pass Forrester for the win.
- Frank Olsen scores his second win in the Great American Race after slingshotting past Paul Allen on the final lap.
- Paul Allen dominates at North Wilkesboro, scoring the pole, leading the most laps, and winning the race for the first Grand Slam in ISCRA competition since Billy Koehler in 1979.
- Steve Stewart punts teammate Frank Olsen in the closing stages of the Pepsi Rebel 500 en route to his 5th Cup Series win.

Paul Allen currently leads the standings by a slim margin over Larry Massey, with Travis Schafer, Steve Stewart, and Billy Koehler rounding out the top five.

1693873885670.png
 
Back
Top