1989 NASCAR Rookie of the Year Dick Trickle has died at the age of 71 from an apparent suicide. Racing fans in Europe might not have been that familiar with Trickle so to give a taste of his career and personality, here are a few videos.
Trickle never won a Winston Cup race and only won two Busch Series events (nowadays the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series respectively), but he was a popular driver with his peers and fans alike. He remains the oldest driver to win the Cup’s Rookie of the Year award, at the age of 48. He had raced sporadically in the series since 1970 but it was only in 1989 that he mounted a full campaign with Stavola Brothers Racing.
His early career was spent on North America’s short tracks, where he racked up over 1000 victories.
Here’s Dick winning at the Milwaukee Mile in 1983:
Dick continued to race on short tracks throughout and after his NASCAR career, as shown by this win at Slinger Speedway in 1997:
Dick possessed a sharp sense of humour and was never afraid to poke fun at himself:
A world away from Brad Keselowski’s fine last year for tweeting during a caution:
One of Dick’s nine top 10 finishes in 1989, the Pepsi 400 at Daytona: