Remembering Col. Joe

Discussion about Datsun 1500, 1600, and 2000 race cars.

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Bill Wessel
Roadster Fanatic
Posts: 471
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2003 9:45 am
Location: Madison, WI

Remembering Col. Joe

Postby Bill Wessel » Sat May 24, 2014 10:57 am

As a Datsun roadster guy, I looked up to Col. Joe. I had my own roadster that I raced, but was looking for a National car and who better to turn to than Joe. I tracked down his number (pre-internet days) called him and asked if he knew of any cars for sale. “Well…mine”, he said. And that is how I came to run Joe’s car and meet Joe and Lois.

Joe sold me the car “with NO repeat NO warranty of any kind. You race it, you break it, it’s yours.” But verbal advice he gave freely, and we would talk and he’d answer all my questions. “I wish I’d kept better notes”, he’d say. But he did give me great notes, parts, and tips and tools for me to learn to build my own engines and run the car just as hard as he had.

I remember fondly that weekend with Joe and Lois, picking up the car and him showing me some of his memorabilia and trophies from his race wins, his new hobby of shooting and packing his own shot, and sharing a simple hot dog dinner at their table.

They were like proud parents in the paddock after my first Runoffs race at Mid Ohio in 2001. And Joe was there to share the champagne with me at the podium when I placed third in 2004. He followed my races over the internet, with his email being geepea47. Funny, when I asked him if I could use the number 47 (which I didn’t for the first few seasons), his reply was “I don’t know why you ever changed it?!” It meant a lot to me to keep the car as Joe had, same Wimbleton white, with blue numbers. And almost every race someone would come by and ask “is that Joe Hauser’s car?” and then share their story of seeing Joe race or having raced with him.

I last spoke with Joe a few months ago. We talked about the car, of course. He enjoyed the card from the 50th Runoffs. He also talked of his birthday; he would be 95 this year.

He was a mentor, a friend and one of my heroes. I salute you, Col. Joe. You will be missed by many….

Posts: 72
Joined: Fri Mar 21, 2003 11:47 am
Location: Southern Indiana

Re: Remembering Col. Joe

Postby Ponder » Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:36 am

Very Nice, Bill
I drank what? - Socrates

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