Tim Erpelding – Driver

In 1986 cousins Tim and Dave Erpelding along with Ron Forberger built a car together and started racing when the Algona track reopened. Tim remembers that “It looked new and exciting. We looked it as being more fun than competitive.” Forberger ran the car one night but Tim and Dave split duties the rest of the year.

The following year, Tim and Dave each had their own race car, with Tim campaigning a Street Stock. “I remember my first car, but I don’t remember my first win,” said Tim. “We bought a car for $500 from Elbert Chevrolet in Whittemore. My dad picked it out, said we needed a car with a short wheelbase. My brothers Mark and Craig helped get a [roll] cage in it.”

Even though he doesn’t remember it, Tim didn’t have to wait long for his first win, earning that on the second night of the 1987 season. Tim won a total of five times that year in Algona, along with earning the season point title too. He won twice more at Algona in 1988 and was crowned the season champion that year again.

In 1989 Tim made the jump to the IMCA Modified division. “I bought one of the show cars from Bob Harris, had to wait awhile to get it because he was taking to a lot of shows,” he remembers. “It was chassis #747 and I just had to have one. I watched Mark Noble and others race at Mason City and I really wanted to try one.”

Tim found success in the modified in early June 1989 at Algona. “I remember that we were in a crash early that night. We fixed it up and went 24th to 1st that night.”

The biggest win of his career occurred at Algona in 1992, winning the IMCA National Modified event held here. “That was the year that Wayne Larson had won like 28 times going into August. There was racers at Algona that were from seven states that night. It was a big deal to win that 35-lap feature.”

Other highlights during his modified career at Algona include winning the mid-season championship race in 1995 plus a feature in August that year before being crowned the track point champion.

His last year of racing was 1996, earning one win at Algona that year. “I had just gotten married and wanted to start a family. I also was a lot busier on the farm, so it was time to step away. I watch a lot of dirt racing on TV but I haven’t gone back to the track a lot. I knew if I went back, I’d get started racing again.”

All told, Tim has 15 total wins at Algona and holds the 1988, 1987 and 1995 point titles here. In addition to scoring a win at Fairmont Raceway, he is the 1987 Kossuth County Fair Race champion. Today, Erpelding continues to farm east of Algona.