posted on Jun, 10 2004 @ 04:06 PM
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (AP) - Ralph Moody, a racing pioneer and Hall of Famer who won 93 races as a car owner on NASCAR's top circuit, died at age 86. He
died Wednesday at his home after a long illness.
Between 1958 and 1972, Moody was a partner with John Holman in the Holman-Moody Racing shop that consistently put drivers in the winner's circle and
helped make Charlotte a motorsports center. Moody also won five races as a driver in 1956-57.
"His place in life was making a car go fast around a race track,"
said Lee Holman, son of John Holman and president of Holman-Moody. "If you
were a racer, you and Ralph Moody could get along."
One the many racers who benefited greatly from Moody's expertise in building fast cars was David Pearson. Thirty of Pearson's 105 Cup victories were
in Holman-Moody Fords. He won 16 times in 1968 and 11 times in 1969 on his way to the championship in each year.
"Ralph had a lot of good ideas,"
Pearson said. "He more or less told the people there at the shop what to do to the cars. He was a pretty
"Whenever I was in one of his cars, I felt pretty good. You felt like you had a chance to win."
Moody was born Sept. 10, 1917, in Taunton, Mass. As a teenager he built a Model T Ford race car. He drove a tank in the Army during World War II and
resumed racing after the war.
After the 1971 season, Moody sold his shares in Holman-Moody and opened Ralph Moody Inc. in Charlotte. He built race cars and race engines and did
research and development of high-mileage automobiles for several years.
Moody was inducted last year into the N.C. Auto Racing Hall of Fame. He was inducted into the National Motorsports Press Association Stock Car Racing
Hall of Fame in 1990 and into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in 1994.