IMCA sport mod driver John Klynsma embraced his wife, Valerie, in victory lane at Clay County Fair Speedway in Spencer, Iowa. Both racing and his family have played a huge part in Klynsma’s life, with his world now coming full circle.
Klynsma began racing in the bomber division in 1990. He won races and then moved up to the modifieds. At the height of his career in 2009, Klynsma abruptly quit the sport.
“I decided I loved my wife more than I loved racing,” Klynsma, of Hospers, Iowa, said. “We had a family to raise and a business to run. I knew what the right decision was, and I made it.”
His father has owned OK One Stop in his hometown since 1963. It started out as a full-service gas station. The family business then grew into a major repair facility and tire shop. It serves domestic, commercial, and agricultural customers.
Years passed and in 2018, Klynsma’s son, Justin, wanted to go racing. They purchased a sport mod from NF1 chassis from Nordquist Fabrication. It was the first sport mod built by the company founded by racing brothers Keegan, Kole, and Kyle Nordquist.
When the younger Klynsma purchased a new NF1 chassis in 2021, the elder Klynsma took over the old car. With that ride, John Klynsma took home that victory at Clay County Fair Speedway. Justin finish 10th in the same feature. In victory lane, Valerie expressed her joy for her husband’s triumph.
“Valerie was so happy and extremely proud,” said Klynsma. “She knew I gave up racing for our family and all the time it took.”
Racing has come full circle for John Klynsma as he now races with his son in the same division.
“Being out there and being competitive means a lot to me,” Klynsma said. “Justin and I have been taking care of the cars. I was the setup guy, but now he’s taking on more of a role. We’re bouncing around, concentrating on the big-money shows this season.”
The Outside Groove Director of Photography has written hundreds of stories since the website’s inception. This year marks his 54th year of covering auto racing. Adaskaveg got his start working for track photographer Lloyd Burnham at Connecticut’s Stafford Motor Speedway in 1970. Since then, he’s been a columnist, writer, and photographer, in racing and in mainstream media, for several outlets, including the Journal Inquirer, Boston Herald, Stock Car Racing, and Speedway Illustrated. Among Adaskaveg’s many awards are the 1992 Eastern Motorsport Press Association (EMPA) Ace Lane Photographer of the Year and the 2019 National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) George Cunningham Writer of the Year.