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Hugh Kleinpeter's Beach T-11 amid the glamour of the Montgomery Industrial Terminal in 1968.  Copyright David Seibert 2012.  Used with permission.

South East Division SCCA Formula B 1968

Hugh Kleinpeter and Johnny Tremblay were the main contenders in Southeast, Kleinpeter's Beach finally emerging the winner. Kleinpeter won at Palm Beach at the start of the year and after Montgomery fell to a NEDiv raider, Robert Mercer won Fernandina Beach in another Beach. Kleinpeter won his second National at Savannah with 1967 champion John Hood well back in second place. Tremblay, from Orlando, had made a name for himself racing Mini Coopers and had now moved up to Formula B for 1968, winning the Courtland National in May in a Cooper. This was quickly replaced with a 1967 Brabham BT21A and he won again at Huntsville Airfield in June and won his class at Savannah International Raceway in July. Kleinpeter came back and levelled the scores at three wins each by taking the class at Daytona Beach in August. The final VIR National fell to drivers from the stronger Northest Division but Kleinpeter was amongst the leaders for much of the race and scored enough points to secure the SEDiv title.

The presence of Beach Racing Cars at Clearwater, Florida, had a big impact on local FB with four of the seven point-scoring drivers in the local product. Bob Mercer had one of the first Beach T-11 Formula B cars, believed to be chassis 101, while Kleinpeter's car was chassis 103 and Jim Hebberd's was 105. The Type 11 was developed into a Formula Ford car for 1969. The only other points scorer in 1968 was Chattanooga Region's Noel McGlothlin who had taken delivery of a brand new Brabham BT21C.

Final standings

1. Hugh Kleinpeter Beach [T-11] Florida 36 pts
2. John Tremblay [Cooper and] Brabham [BT21A] Florida 27 pts
3. Robert Mercer Beach [T-11] Charleston 9 pts
4. Al Strasbourg Beach C Car 6 pts
5. John Hood Brabham [BT18?] C Fla 3 pts
6. Noel McClothin Brabham [BT21C] Chatt 2 pts
7. Jim Hebbard Beach [T-11] C Fla 1 pt

1968 Schedule

25 Feb 1968Palm Beach International RacewayFlorida Region
31 Mar 1968MontgomeryCentral Alabama Region
21 Apr 1968Fernandina BeachGator Region
04 May 1968Savannah International RacewaySavannah Region
26 May 1968CourtlandAlabama Region
09 Jun 1968Huntsville AirfieldTennessee Valley Region
14 Jul 1968Savannah International RacewayCharleston Region
04 Aug 1968DaytonaCentral Florida Region
29 Sep 1968Virginia International RacewayCentral Carolinas Region

Southeast Division sources

What we know of Southeast Division racing in this period comes from Competition Press & Autoweek's reports on SCCA Nationals and the SCCA's own Sports Car magazine. We are keen to learn more and are therefore very keen to acquire or borrow 1960s, 1970s and 1980s copies of SCCA regional publications from this Division. The known ones are:

  • The Checker (Central Florida Region)
  • CARolina Newsletter (Central Carolina Region)
  • The Racket (Tennessee Valley Region)
  • Regional Notes (Florida Region)
  • Rich Mixture (Southern West Virginia Region)
  • Sowega Newsletter (Sowega Region - became Chavaga Region in 1968)
  • Sports Racing News (Alabama Region)
  • Steering Wheel (Atlanta Region)

We are also keen to get scans of entry lists from SCCA Nationals in this Division.