Mike Garvey is a racer. He’s been involved in racing all his life, beginning as a mechanic for his father’s Late Model team when he was 11 years old. At the age of 16, he went to work at Port City Racing and started driving racecars in 1980 at the age of 18, and continues to race today.
Garvey, who has made numerous starts in all three of NASCAR’s top tours, was perhaps most successful in the original American Speed Association during the 1990’s and early 2000’s. The Georgia racer won 21 times in the ASA National Series, his first-career ASA win coming on May 4, 1997 at Five Flags Speedway.
“I feel like I won so many big ASA races, it hard to pick just one that stands out,” Garvey admitted. “But the Pensacola win was certainly one of the most important wins of my career.”
Garvey’s win at Pensacola came in just his second ASA start since joining Gerry Gunderman’s team. Matt Kenseth drove the No.8 Pontiac in the first three races of the 1997 season before being hired by Robbie Reiser to drive in what was then called the NASCAR Busch Series. Garvey finished 15th in his first race with Gunderman at the now defunct Peach State Speedway the week before the Five Flags Speedway ASA National Series debut in ’97.
“The opportunity to step in when Matt got hired by Reiser was a milestone in my career,” Garvey continued. “Looking back, I really wish I could have started racing ASA sooner in my career. Who knows how successful we could have been.”
Before running ASA, Garvey was the NASCAR All American Challenge Series Champion in 1990, a predecessor to the NASCAR Southeast Tour Series that began the following season. The Michigan native has wins in the All-Pro Super Series, X-1R Pro Cup Series, NASCAR Southeast Series, ARTGO Challenge Series, and USAR Hooters Late Model Series to name just a few. He has two victories in the prestigious All American 400 at Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway (TN) and multiple big event wins.
Garvey’s ASA Career was spectacular, though he did not win a championship. He scored the most season wins on three occasions, and from 1999 to the series close in 2004 Garvey never finished worse than sixth in the championship standings, finishing third in that final season. Along with Scott Hansen, Garvey may have been the best driver to never win a title.
“ASA was the prefect series for me and a lot of guys,” Gavey continued. “Everywhere I go, most of the people I see at the track just want to talk about the old ASA.”
Garvey is still very much involved in short track racing, helping numerous drivers as a consultant and driver coach; and occasionally he still gets behind the wheel. Racing is in his blood, and you can see the sparkle in his eye when he gets to talking about the sport.
“I grew up in Michigan, ASA was everything to me. Mike Eddy and Bob Senneker were my heroes. Them and Butch Miller and Ed Howe. Getting the chance to race against my heroes is amazing.”
Garvey will get to see and visit with many of the former ASA racers he competed against on July 15 during the 50th Anniversary ASA Racers Reunion at Anderson Speedway. The reunion event is scheduled as part of the 57th Annual Greg Hubler Automotive Group Redbud 400, part of the ASA STARS National Tour season.
“Lisa and I wouldn’t miss this for the world.” Garvey concluded.
Tickets for the 50th Anniversary ASA Racers Reunion are available for a special price of $50. These tickets include access to the Racers Reunion luncheon, a Q&A session with ASA legends, an autograph session with these same legends, and a ticket to the 57th Annual Greg Hubler Automotive Group Redbud 400. Tickets for the ASA Racers Reunion can be purchased by calling Anderson Speedway at 765-642-0206 or by visiting the trackside ticket office located at 1311 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, Anderson, IN 46016.
On-track activities for the 57th Annual Greg Hubler Automotive Group Redbud 400 will kick off on Friday, July 14th with inspection and practice for the ASA STARS National Tour. Go Fas Pole Qualifying is scheduled for Saturday afternoon, July 15th, with the Redbud 400 set to go green at 7:30PM Eastern Time. Tickets for the event are currently being offered at a special price of $20 for an adult ticket until Friday, July 14th. Tickets for children aged 6-12 are $10 and children aged 5 and under are free. To purchase tickets, or for more information, contact or visit Anderson Speedway’s main ticket office.
The Redbud 400 will be co-sanctioned with the ASA CRA Super Series, which will be the third race of the CRA season. Gio Ruggiero won the opener at Salem Speedway, while race two will be contested on Sunday, July 2 at Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway.
The ASA STARS National Tour opened the ten race, six-state schedule at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, FL on March 11. Ty Majeski is the most recent winner, claiming the victory in the Father’s Day 100 at the Milwaukee Mile.
For the full ASA STARS National Tour schedule, plus Super Late Model rules and other information, please visit the series website at starsnationaltour.com, or be sure to follow the series on social media (Facebook: STARS National Series | Twitter: @racewithstars | IG: @starsnational).
ASA STARS National Tour
The ASA STARS National Tour debuted in March of 2023 for Super Late Model racing in America. Announced last October, many of the best drivers in America will compete in the ten-race national tour with a minimum $100,000 point fund. The championship team will be guaranteed $25,000.
The ASA STARS National Tour is made up of three races from each of the regional pavement Super Late Model Series under the Track Enterprises banner; the ASA CRA Super Series, the ASA Midwest Tour and the ASA Southern Super Series.
The Team Construction Winner’s Circle program has been announced as a part of the ASA STARS National Tour for licensed drivers/teams with perfect attendance. The program provides additional financial incentives to those teams who support the Series, thanks to Team Construction.
Track Enterprises, a Racing Promotions Company based in Illinois, will operate the ASA STARS National Tour. It announced the acquisition of the CRA sanctioning body in January and followed that up with the purchase of the Midwest Tour in July. In October, Track Enterprises President, Bob Sargent announced a partnership with the Southern Super Series which set the table for the formation of the ASA STARS National Tour.