With his lightning fast #0 sprinter, he won his first feature event at Fremont Speedway in the late 1960's. Always on the cutting edge, he is often credited with being one of the first drivers to use a "humper" on the right rear, a practice continued today in all sprint cars. He grooved the right rear tires by hand out of Firestone D500 drag tires, which used inner tubes, giving him about 19 inches of stagger in the race car! In a day when a lot of guys made their own frames, he once formed a roll cage out of an old swing set frame.
One of his most dominating races took place in Findlay, Ohio. After racing the day before in Pennsylvania, he arrived at Findlay too late for time trials, so he was placed at the tail of the fast heat, starting 11th. By the time he exited turn 2 of the first lap he had pass all 10 cars in front of him, as an astounded crowd went wild. He won the heat, and the feature by huge margins that night.
He was an original member of the World of Outlaws, and he scored 18 career victories with them. He was also an original member of the All Star Circuit of Champions, with whom he scored 12 career victories. He would surely have won many more races with those orginazations, were it not for the fact that he hated to be told where and when he could race. Instead he preferred to scan the national racing publications for any races, coast to coast, that paid good money. This is how he became known far and wide as "The Ohio Traveler".
No one knows just how many races Rick Ferkel won in
his career, but it is certainly a staggering number. His last sprint car
is now in the possesion of a vintage race car collector, and it still bears
Rick Ferkel's name & design. Today Rick Ferkel Directs the World of
Outlaws Gumout Series from his rural Tiffin, Ohio home, and he works with
his son Ricky Ferkel, who is now driving the
new #0 car.