Thursday, August 9, 2012

Motorsports ‘N Music

NIKKI SIXX & VINCE NEIL-THEATRE OF PAIN Tour 85-86. - Motley Crue Fotolog. (Source:
So, this esoteric thought bubble - like a fine wine... Or is that some stout Micro Brew or some good ‘Ol Mash? Has been sittin’ in the No Fenders Hopper for awhile now fermenting... As it originally sprung to mind last Fourth ‘O July weekend when I’d (purposely) missed Thee ‘Kuhnadiun Power Trio’s concert at the Gorge when within an hours-plus reach...

Then later on whilst listening to a very young sounding Vince Neil croonin’ Home Sweet Home - which I’m ARSE-suming that my Golden Oldies Top 40 Radio Station is playin’ duh 1991 remixed single... Which I’ve just learned way more ‘bout the song then I ever wanted to know! As I’ve actually got the vinyl record album it was originally issued on; (remember what records were?) Theatre of Pain, 1985; thus, I had the following thought. How many people know that the Crue’s lead singer once tried his hand at professional Open Wheel Racing? And what other musical ‘Celebs have tried their hand in Motorsports? As this story seems perfectly timed as your humble No Fenders scribe “Takes Off!” For the Great White once again for another first time concert with Dead Can Dance, which is a slightly different musical genre compared to the following list below, eh?

Vince Neil
Lead Singer – Motley Crew
Series: Indy Lights
Team: P.I.G. Racing
Year: 1992

It’s funny to Mwah to think I actually saw Vincent Neil Wharton run in his very last professional race at you guessed I-T! Portland International Raceway two decades ago... And although I wasn’t aware that Eddie “Under-A-Cheever” ‘Cheevah was a team co-owner...

Yet, what I do find funny - is why I not only recall that Tommy Byrne was on the team but that there were three drivers raceing at Portland... Although Byrne was definitely the team leader, with a totally unheard of George Sutcliffe as wingman - with Neil as the trio’s third leg, arguably the soon to be fired Motley Crue’s lead singer overshadowed both of these drivers.

And I’m certain that Vince purposely chose the No. 69 for its sexual connotation, eh? As the Crue Boyz had a wild ‘N vivid reputation to live up too... Whilst further irony can be found in the tidbit that Neil’s number-69 racecar was sponsored by Just Say NO to Drugs; Hooah!

Yet Neil’s racing career was very short-lived, running just four Indy Lights races with his best finish being tenth place in his second outing at Milwaukee, with only a 50% finishing rate - having DNF’ed at his first and last ever Lights races.

Thus I found the following article fairly interesting - about whether or not his racing career was the catalyst that broke up the band? As the MTV video clip in the article is most amusing and even features ‘Ol Hollywood, aka Danny Sullivan giving his two-bits on the aspiring racer; check it out...

Slim Borgudd
Musician: Drummer
Series: Formula 1
Teams: ATS, Tyrrell
Years: 1981-82

Tommy “Slim” Borgudd actually began as a Rock/Jazz Drummer before his moment ‘O Fame ‘N fortune came as a session drummer for Sweden’s ‘Mega Pop Rock group ABBA - who actually let Slim run their branding on the sidepods of his Formula 1 racecar in hopes of garnering more sponsorship, albeit the band didn’t actually provide any money for this. As I’ve recapped Slim’s and other Swedish Open Wheel racers in the two-part Swedish Speed Merchants - with both Borgudd and Kenny Brack being in part two...

Kenny Brack
Musician: Lead & Rhythm Guitar
Series: Indy Racing League; CART; IndyCar
Teams: Galles Racing; A.J. Foyt Enterprises; Team Rahal; Target Chip Ganassi Racing; Rahal Letterman Racing
Years: 1997-2003, 2005

I’m certain Y’all know that thee ‘Brackster is the 1999 Indy 500 champion, along with having won the IRL title in 1998 - both for AJ Foyt... But how many of Yuhs know that he also dabbled mightily in Rock ‘N roll. As although I’ve never heard Kenny play, nor any of his bands; although I seem to recall that he did some sorta tribute song to ‘Ol SuperTex several years ago as I found the name of two bands fronted by the IndyCar star: RPM and Kenny Brack and The Subwoofers - with a band member lineup from apparently the year 2002; as I’m more familiar with his driving achievements (which I recapped in the above Swedish Speed Merchants post...) then his musical work, albeit Kenny alludes to the fact that if the racing thingy hadn’t worked out he’d probably have gravitated towards a musical career...

Eddie Jordan
F1 Team Owner, TV Pundit and Drummer
Series: Formula 1
Team: Jordan Grand Prix
Years: 1991-2005

The plucky Irishman ‘EJ is probably best known for being the man who gave DER TERMINATOR, nee Michael Schumacher his debut in Formula 1 in 1991 at Spa Francorchamps where the German qualified an electrifying seventh in the beautiful green Jordan 191 before breaking its gearbox...

And I only know vaguely of EJ’s music prowess due to hanging out with some dude named George Harrison! As Eddie played drums for his band named V10 before it became a svelte four-piece group called Eddie and The Robbers; as I’ve also profiled EJ in the following two-part story titled;

Jesse James
TV Personality; Motorcycle & cool car Builder
Series: Ferrari Challenge (360)
Year: 2003

Otay, I’ll admit I’m showin’ my age here... As I useda watch some show called Monster Garage way back when.  And although Jesse doesn’t fit the mold, i.e.; musician – his name came to me in a flash when thinking of Vince Neil; as Jesse has always tried bein’ a BAD ASS! Hence, his inclusion upon this very eclectic list is based solely upon the fact that most people probably don’t know he dabbled in the Ferrari Challenge series... As apparently Monster Garage paid him handsomely enough to purchase his own Scuderia racecar - as all I can find upon this is that it was a nice flat black 360 Modena Challenge car...