Oscar Koveleski, who got his racing start as a member of the Sports Car Club of America’s Philadelphia Region and went on to race his orange “Car 54” in the SCCA’s Can-Am Series that he helped launch, has died.
Koveleski, inducted into the SCCA Hall of Fame in 2015, scored his first SCCA Regional race win in 1951 at Bone Stadium in Pittston, Pa., at the wheel of a 1948 MG-TC.
In the inaugural SCCA American Road Race of Champions (now the Runoffs) at Road Atlanta in 1970, he won the A Sports Racing class, beating 27-time National Champion Jerry Hansen by just one-tenth of a second.
The following year, he joined teammates Tony Adamowicz and Brad Niemcek — all founders of the infamous Polish Racing Drivers Association — in a second-place finish (behind Dan Gurney and Brock Yates) in the Cannonball Baker Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash.
Koveleski founded Auto World, a model and slot car mail order catalog company, in 1958. Instrumental in the growth of vintage racing at Watkins Glen, he also served on the Board of Directors of the Motor Racing Safety Society, on the SCCA Board, and was a member of the Road Racing Drivers Club. For his numerous contributions to SCCA, he received its highest honor, the Woolf Barnato Award, in 1983.