Elmo Guy


Elmo Guy
Photo courtesy of Wayne Guy


Floyd Wright, Elmo Guy & Ernie Wright
Photo courtesy of Wayne Guy

Elmo was born on December 29, 1924, in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Like his younger brother, Wayne, Elmo was riding and racing motorcycles from an early age. The transition to stock car racing in 1951 was easy for him. He stood 5 feet 6 inches tall and weighed in at 135 lbs.

Ernie Wright, owner of Wright’s Machine Shop with his brother, wanted to build a stock car but wanted a driver. He approached Raymond McClard, owner of the local Harley-Davidson motorcycle dealership, for a list of young motorcycle riders who might be interested in racing. Wright assumed that motorcycle riders might be the type of young men who would adapt to stock car racing. Elmo Guy was one of several men who were invited to test drive Wright’s 1932 Chevrolet, which was powered by a 239 cubic inch Ford flathead V8, bored and stroked, with a roller cam, and fired by alcohol. Elmo didn’t even know how to drive a car, he was strictly a motorcycle man, but he was intrigued by Wright’s invitation. They met at the Beech Bend track along with several other men, and Wright put each of them through a few test laps. Elmo’s first reaction to the car was the feeling of stability of having four wheels under him. It felt good! It felt safe! So he opened it up! Wright had a driver for his No. 7-11 modified stock car.

Elmo’s attraction to stock car racing was his addiction to speed, and the opportunity to win money. He earned about $50 a week at his job, but he could race on Sunday and win up to $100.

Elmo drove stock cars until about 1960, then switched to drag racing. As one of the most dominant drivers in the early days of Beech Bend Park, Elmo was regularly in the winner’s circle. Today, his garage contains innumerable trophies. According to his brother, Wayne, Elmo would not participate in any sporting event if he couldn’t win. Although Elmo discounts the importance of victory, Wayne states that he could always see the pain in Elmo’s eyes when he didn’t win.

At this writing, Elmo is 79 years old, lives in Bowling Green, and says, “I still like to go fast!” 


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