SPEEDWAY, IN. (THECOUNT) — Six-time USAC National feature winning driver, Kevin Huntley, has reportedly died overnight. He was 56.
Huntley, whose career spanned three decades in the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s, passed away in his sleep on January 8, 2022. A cause of death was not provided.
Affectionately known as “Pup,” Huntley began his sprint car racing career on the bullrings near his Bloomington, Ind. home with a sprint car purchased with the help of his father, Rex, and three-time USAC National Sprint Car champion Sheldon Kinser.
In 1985, Huntley made his USAC National Sprint Car debut, finishing 19th at Paragon Speedway. He captured his first career sprint car victory on the local level during the 1986 season at Bloomington Speedway, and ultimately capped off the successful campaign with dual track championships at both Bloomington and at southeastern Indiana’s Lawrenceburg Speedway, according to USARacing.
Branching out the following season, Huntley took on the USAC National Sprint Car series in 1987, winning his first series event for car owner Terry Winterbotham at Oregon, Wisconsin’s Impact Speedway en route to a career-best 4th place finish in the championship standings. He’d follow up in 1988 with a 9th place result in the final points.
Nearly a full decade later, Huntley scored his second career USAC National Sprint Car win, this time for team owner Dennis Stone at Rossburg, Ohio’s Eldora Speedway, the half-mile dirt oval in which we won five of his six career USAC features at. He’d win twice more in USAC competition at Eldora in 1997, both for car owner Rick Daugherty, during a June matinee Sprint show, and for his first and only career Silver Crown score in September’s 4-Crown Nationals.
In 2004, Huntley earned the most lucrative triumph of his USAC Sprint Car career, fending off none other than Sammy Swindell to pocket $50,000 in the Mopar Thunder at Eldora for car owner Dan Roberts. Huntley and Roberts teamed up once again in 2005 to snare his final career USAC Sprint victory, in June of that season at Eldora.
He made 34 starts in his USAC Silver Crown career between 1992 and 2008, while his USAC National Sprint Car career spanned from 1985-2008, before stepping away to devote his main focus on his growing excavation, composting and recycling businesses.
Huntley, however, was not completely absent from the driver’s seat in the following years, and returned to Bloomington in 2015 to win a RaceSaver 305 Sprint Car feature, promptly retiring in victory lane at the venue where he won his first career feature at 30 years prior.
His 44 career All Star Circuit of Champions victories rank 9th all-time. He also notched two championships with the ASCoC in 1992 and 1993, the latter of which resulted in a rare tie in the final standings with rival Frankie Kerr.