SPEEDWAY, Ind. – Jack Nowling, whose beautifully prepared and maintained Quickload Aluminum Boat Trailers sponsored cars were a mainstay on USAC’s National Sprint Car and Silver Crown trails during the 1980s and 1990s, passed away on Sunday. He was 81 years old.
Nowling was born in Indianapolis, Ind. where he graduated from Southport High School, but made the state of Florida his residence during adulthood where he was the president of Quickload and a successful team owner and business owner in the state of Florida.
“Captain Jack,” as he was known, fielded most of his entries for native Floridian drivers, taking them on the road with the USAC circuit where success came often.
Nowling recorded five career USAC National Sprint wins as a car owner, winning his first three in 1989 with driver Wayne Hammond at Indiana’s Salem Speedway and Indianapolis Raceway Park, as well as in the Great White North at Mosport’s Ascot North in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada.
The final two came in 1996 when Nowling formed a partnership with young phenom Dave Steele to take on the full USAC tour. Along the way came a pair of wins, including the season opener at Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City, Kan. and once more on the high banks of Indiana’s Winchester Speedway.
During that same 1996 season, Nowling and Steele teamed up to win the Little 500 Sprint Car race at Anderson (Ind.) Speedway. At the conclusion of the 1996 season, Nowling finished a career best fourth in the USAC National Sprint Car entrant standings.
Nowling cars were frequently active in USAC’s Silver Crown division between 1986 and 1998 with Florida wheelmen Hammond, Taylor Andrews, Red Kunstbeck, Jim Childers, Joe Melnick, Keith Butler and future two-time NASCAR Cup Series winner David Reutimann. Nowling also provided Steele with his first of his 111 career Silver Crown starts in 1993 at the Milwaukee Mile.
The Silver Crown ride for Nowling also attracted talent from all over the country with the likes of Rick Hood, Rocky Hodges, Dave Feese, Jim Mahoney, Brent Kaeding, Chip Thomas and Tray House making starts for the team.
Childers gave Nowling his best career Silver Crown finish of second in their home race at the Florida State Fairgrounds in 1988, an event in which Nowling also served as the promoter/race organizer.
Nowling and Childers were also fifth-place Silver Crown finishers at the Du Quoin (Ill.) State Fairgrounds in 1988, while Mahoney was fifth at Indianapolis Raceway Park (IRP) in 1992, and Steele was fifth at both Phoenix International Raceway and IRP in 1996.