Wayne Meyer – Driver/Builder/Owner

Wayne MeyerThere wasn’t much Wayne Meyer did not do in racing around Kossuth County and in the state of Iowa. A first for the Kossuth County Racing Hall of Fame, one individual will be inducted for excelling at nearly every role possible in local racing.

Meyer is remembered as possibly one the best race car fabricators and tuners in the area. Cars either built or worked on by Meyer were more times than not found in victory lane and certainly on the cutting edge of innovation during that era. Meyer was also a car owner who achieved tremendous success in racing. Legendary drivers Jim Edgington and Butch Householder amassed many feature wins and track championships in Meyer’s cars. Meyer was also a winning race car driver. Along the way, he helped many local racers make their cars faster, sponsored drivers with their fledgling careers and above all was remembered by most as a great man.

Growing up as a tough Algona farm kid, Meyer’s competiveness shown early as he earned a starting role on the Algona High School football team as a freshman. During those high school years, he formed a friendship that lasted a life time with Gene Schattschneider.

Wayne Meyer

Wayne Meyer checks in with his driver Butch Householder.

It was in the early 1960’s when both Meyer and Schattschneider left go carts and began their careers in car racing. With Schattschneider behind the wheel of Dutch Honsbruch’s car, Meyer began by lending a hand with fabrication and engine work. Over time, this proved to be a match made in heaven as Meyer provided the mechanical ingenuity and personality that helped make the team almost unbeatable.

Honsbruch provided the race team with the resources needed to compete, including a shop that housed the Honsbruch #56 in the rear and Meyer’s Algona Auto Repair in the front. Meyer and Schattschneider were almost inseparable for several years as they built race cars and for a time operated Algona Auto Repair together.

It is hard to imagine just how ingrained Meyer’s life was with racing. While being a key component in Schattschneider’s career, the Algona Auto Repair shop was a central figure in Kossuth County racing. Meyer is credited with helping drivers on their cars, including Don ‘Shiney’ Hilbert and many others. After the races, the Meyer shop also served as a place to congregate as drivers and crews would stop by.

Wayne MeyerDuring the mid 1960’s, in addition to helping Schattschneider, he also began building and owning race cars with Jim Edginginton as the driver. Edgington had plenty of success in the car, winning races at the Algona track. When local hot shoe Butch Householder wrecked his car at mid-season, Meyer came to the rescue offering his car for Householder to drive. Householder went on to win the track championship that year in Algona with Meyer’s car.

This owner-driver combination reached near legendary status over the next few years. At the time, track promoter Lamont Wellendorf operated racing facilities in Algona, Cresco, Mason City and Denison and Householder and Meyer won many races and point championships. With Householder as the driver, they are remembered for their domination of the Denison track as they won countless weekly races, and multiple special events and point titles.

Wayne MeyerMeyer had also had a knack for securing sponsorship to keep his race cars on the track. The team’s success in Denison and his outgoing personality landed the #65 the Jo-Mart Motel & Steakhouse sponsorship and later when Meyer was driving his own cars, sponsorship from Speed & Sport plus Levien Chevrolet in Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Meyer also took his turn behind the wheel of his race cars, proving that he could get the job done as a driver as well. In 1972, he earned the ‘Most Improved Driver’ award at Boone Speedway. He was also a winner of races in Webster City, Harlan, Denison, Alta and Mason City during the North Iowa Fair.

As Meyer’s own career was winding down, he stayed involved in the sport by continuing to help others with their race cars and providing sponsorships to drivers starting their racing careers.