On October 16 at Northern California’s Thunderhill Raceway, HMSA hosted a celebration of racecar builder Joe Huffaker’s 50 years in racing. One of the most successful car builders in the 1950s and 1960s, Huffaker’s career extended into the 1980s until his retirement in 1991. During the lunch break of the HMSA vintage race, six of Huffaker’s creations were positioned in front of the winner’s podium for a photo session. Included were the Huffaker Healey Special, the first sports car he built in 1954 for client Mick Marston. The car had a tube frame, de Dion rear end, aluminum body and an Austin Healey engine. Also in the lineup were two front – engine Formula Juniors, two V-8–powered Genie sports racers, and one of the 1964 Sebring MGB team cars.
In attendance for the reunion were Joe Huffaker, Sr.; Joe Huffaker, Jr.; and several former drivers who either drove Huffaker’s cars or competed against them in the 1950s and 1960s. Steve Froines, Gordie Glyer, Lou Pavesi, Tony Settember, Bill Janowski and Bill Haener were there to get reacquainted with Huffaker and his cars. Of special interest was the reunion of the Huffaker Healey Special with its first owner, Mick Marston and his former mechanic, Bill Mann. Adding a nice touch, Marston brought along the Cromwell helmet he wore while racing the Special. It certainly was a unique occasion and an event enjoyed by all who trekked to Northern California for the gathering.