Corvette GT-1 Racer William "Snoopy" Wessel Passes

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Bosco
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Corvette GT-1 Racer William "Snoopy" Wessel Passes

Post by Bosco » Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:15 am

Long time SCCA BP and GT-1 Corvette racer William "Snoopy" Wessel passed away yesterday at age 71 in Orlando. For the past two years Snoop had been battling lung cancer. In 2015 Doctors had given him 6 months to live. Snoop fought hard !

In the late 70's until the mid 90's Snoopy was a fixture at SE Division races often at Sebring, Daytona, Moroso and Roebling. He won something like 98 races over the years and SE Division and CFR championships in "Sluggie" his venerable 1969 Corvette. Through the years Snoop upgraded the car with Greenwood body work, 18 degree motor, big brakes and Jerico tranny.

In the early to mid 80's Snoopy competed in the 24 hours of Daytona several times including in the Karl Keck Greenwood type Corvette.

Snoopy was one of kind for sure, and he had no filter. Whatever he was thinking came right out his mouth. He was a pitcher in the minor leagues in his youth and also served in the US Army during the Viet Nam era.

For more than forty years he operated Snoop's Auto Body & Paint in Orlando.

With his health declining in the last few years, he put Cyle Williamson, son of former Corvette Racer Mike Williamson in his tube frame SPO 1978 Camaro for CFR races.

Snoopy Wessel is survived by two sisters, a brother and daughter Elizabeth.

Butch Kummer
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Re: Corvette GT-1 Racer William "Snoopy" Wessel Passes

Post by Butch Kummer » Fri Sep 08, 2017 3:34 pm

I remember Snoopy and Jim Painter battling for the SARRC GT-1 Championship at Roebling Road back in (I think) the early-to-mid 80's. That was the first time I heard the term "South Florida 310". :D
Butch Kummer
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Bosco
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Re: Corvette GT-1 Racer William "Snoopy" Wessel Passes

Post by Bosco » Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:22 pm

I remember seeing video of that race from Snoop's car. He had it fitted with one of those early giant 40 lb cam corders

Snoopy's motors back then was a 355 by Nascar Busch Series engine builder Dennis Boyd.
It made a lot of power for early 80's. Boyd built the motors for Joe Nemechek when he won the Busch Championship in the early 90's. later Snoop used motors built by his buddy who worked at Bo Laws. They were all very stout 23 degree motors for the era.

Bosco
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Re: Corvette GT-1 Racer William "Snoopy" Wessel Passes

Post by Bosco » Mon Nov 13, 2017 10:16 am

We had a little celebration of life meeting for Snoopy at Wing House in Daytona this past weekend. A bunch of Snoop's friends were in town for the HSR Classic 24 Hours of Daytona and the Trans Am race In attendance were Snoop's former 24 hour Co Driver's and friends Kerry Hitt & Squeak Kennedy. Also, Harry Dinwiddie (owner of the old John Carusson/ Lyn St James Rolex Corvette, Lee Arnold from the V8 StockCar series, in all there was about two dozen there swapping stories about a life well lived.

If any one ever lived out Hunter Thompson's famous quote it was one William "Snoopy" Wessel

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!”

Godspeed Snoop !

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