Ron Burch's Showdown with the Outlaw
By Chuck Pacini
Chuck Pacini shows Ron Burch what it's like on the other side of the camera.
Photo by Ron Burch Racing Photos
Here is what might be my favorite racing shot. I gave Ron Burch, the track photographer at Sacramento Raceway, a ride in the race car. Don't know if anyone remembers Ron? It was great. I had offered him a ride a few weeks earlier and set it up with Sacto track owner Dave Smith. Dave said that at the end of a race, I could do it. I already put an extra set of seat belts in the car. Came the time to give Ron a ride and we were looking all over the race track. No Ron! He was hiding in his van. He didn't want to do it. We just about had to drag him to the race car.
I got strapped in and my crew helped Ron get strapped in. Just before we lit the engine, Ron was pushing hard on the passenger door to get out. Because there was no door handle on the inside of the passenger door, he couldn't open it. I gave him a slight back hand and said, "Ron you wanted a ride; now shut up and sit there!" My plan was to give him the full meal deal. I did a couple of burnouts. Left the line with the wheels in the air. At the end of the quarter, I even pulled the chute so he could feel that. I coasted to a stop, not a word out of Ron.
I got out to go open his door and let him out. He got out and literally kissed the ground. Then like an open faucet you couldn't shut him up. For the rest of the night, he had his throttle stuck. This picture was taken by his photog friend he brought for getting a picture of him in the car. The look on his face says it all -- it's priceless! Keep in mind the fastest thing he was ever down the track in was his stock Chevy van!