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Thursday, January 26, 2017

Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Protection Chevrolet

    Hello Racing Champions fans!~ Well, it doesn't seem like it, but this is my 99th blog post~ Since we're so close to 100, I figured I'd make this one a special post too~ I actually just got this car a few days ago, and I'm pretty excited about it~ What we're going to be looking back on today is the Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Protection Chevrolet~ Blakley drove this car during the 1994 Goody's Dash Series season, as well as a DNQ in the Busch Grand National division~

    In case some of you may not know, Ramses is a brand of condom~ This car was very controversial in its time, and the team used to hand out samples of the condoms to the fans.. at least for the first race~ They also promoted AIDS education, and safe sex~ At first, Blakley went to Ramses parent company, London International, looking for sponsorship from their manicure implements division, but the Sarasota Florida based company had another idea~ We'll get to that, and more in this edition of the NASCAR Racing Champions Blog~

                                                Racing was one of Sherry's many talents~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch

    Even before she started her professional racing career, Sherry was a fierce competitor.. competing in softball (shown above), basketball, figure skating, and cheerleading~ She attended Clark High School in Texas, and was the co-captain of the cheerleading squad~

    As a youth, she participated in go-kart racing, and won several events~ With her father backing her, she was able to compete for wins, and even championships in the go-kart ranks... but to move up the chain, you need sponsors to back you, and Blakley soon found this out~

                                                Young Sherry getting coached by her father~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch

    After spending her early teens in go-karts, Sherry was growing tired beating everyone, and was looking for her next challenge~ She had accomplished all she could in the go-karts, and it was time to make the step up to Late Models~ That whole sponsor thing came into play here for the first time~ She picked up sponsorship from Bud Light, and drove a Pontiac in several Late Model starts~

    She was quite competitive in the Late Model division, and with good looks on her side, she was able to keep the sponsorship dollars rolling in, allowing her to move up the ranks quite steadily~ Before long, she was knocking on the door of the Goody's Dash series~

                                               Magazine insert of Blakley's Bud Light car~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch

    Sherry was one of the few female TIDA Late Model drivers~ Under the guidance of her father Jack, she quickly learned how to mix it up with many experienced male drivers on the TIDA Southwest Circuit such as Slick Yoemans, John Kelly, Rick Rapp, David Umscheid, Greg Davidson, Jay Watson, and dozens of other well known drivers~

    Along with Bud Light, La Quinta was another one of her earlier sponsors~  Before running Late Models, she raced in the All Pro Super Series, running a five race campaign during the 1988 season~ She would compete the following year in the TIDA Late Models, due to poor records, all I can tell you is that she had a best known finish of 14th in a race at Twin Cities Speedway, in Odessa Texas on April 1st, 1989~ Larry Schild won the event~

                                                      Blakley in the All Pro series days~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch

    As you can see in the picture above, La Quinta was a sponsor during her All Pro series races~ Texas Pete, Skoal Long Cut, and Gatorade were all series secondary sponsors~ I also found it interesting that she drove an Oldsmobile during this time, though it wasn't uncommon~ I had just seen information of her driving either a Pontiac, or a Chevrolet.. up until researching for this post~

    Blakley ran five races during the 1988 season of the All Pro series~ She had a best finish of 12th twice~ The first time came in the San Antonio 100 @ San Antonio Speedway, and the other was the Hoosier Tire 150 @ Mobile International Speedway, in Irvington, Alabama~

   She ran her first Goody's Dash Series event in the 1991 Cam 2 100 @ Five Flags Speedway, in Pensacola, Florida, where she finished in 15th place~ She made that lone start in the series, and took the entire 1992 off, perhaps to be with her family, but I'm not sure of the exact reason~ She returned in 1993 to run the entire schedule, and was quite impressive, as we'll soon find out~

                                                    Sherry at a promo shoot for Ramses~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch

    The 1993 Goody's Dash Series season was perhaps her finest moment, as far as racing goes~ She ran the complete schedule, with a best finish of 3rd, in the Goody's Dash 100 @ Florence Motor Speedway, in Timmonsville, South Carolina~

    She finished 4th in the Goody's Dash 125 @ the Nashville Fairgounds Speedway, and finished the season off with a confirmed two top 5's, and ten top 10's, while finishing 8th in the final points standings~ Two of the races during the season don't have confirmed stats, so she could have gotten more top 5's, or top 10's.. but I an confirm the above stats stated above~

                                                             Blakley's Dash Series car~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch

    I'm not sure why, but there are more stats for the 1993 Dash Series, than there are for the 1994 season~ Five races are missing all of the stats, so I can't give a complete rundown on her season, but here's what I know~ She had two top 10's, with the first being an 8th place finish in the NASCAR Goody's Dash 100 @ Florence Motor Speedway, in Timmonsville, South Carolina, and the final one coming in the Dooly Printing & PSK Radio 300 @ the Motor Mile Speedway, in Radford, Virginia~

   Blakley attempted to make one start in the 1994 BGN series season, in the All Pro 300 @ Charlotte~ She was supposed to run a five race deal with Ramses, however NASCAR didn't like the fact of people handing comdoms out to their fans, so they banned the sponsor from the sport, effectively ending Blakley's BGN career~

    She finished off the season in the Dash Series, with mostly lackluster finishes, and ran the final race of her career in the American General Finance 125 @ Hickory, where she finished in 12th place~ After her racing career ended, she got remarried, and sold cars at her new husbands dealership, in North Carolina~

                                                    Blakley during her ice skating days~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch

    Sometimes in life, we take things for granted when we shouldn't~ We expect people to be there for us, and then one day, they're not there anymore~ Then you start to regret not spending more time with them~ That's why it's important to always be with the ones you love, and let them know you care~ One day, Sherry Blakley was a teenage ice skater, then a race car driver, then, on February 13th, 2011, while vacationing with her husband, she failed to wake up from her sleep, and was gone~

    I haven't ever seen a cause of death for Sherry Blakley, but I'd imagine she had some kind of cardiac arrest, though that is just my speculation~ For someone not even 50 years old to just die in their sleep... it just seems odd to me~ I'm sad that she's dead, but I'm happy that I was able to do this blog post on her, to let people be able to know a little about who she was~

                                              Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Protection Chevrolet~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch
                                                              Click pics to enlarge~
Sherry Blakley #83 Ramses Pontiac Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Goody's Dash BGN Busch

    After watching Mark Martin drive the #6 Viagra car, which was totally hideous looking.. this car actually looks pretty amazing!~ The pink stripe down the middle, the Delta Airline wings on the hood (in gold!), the pink striping around the numbers, and along the bottom of the car, which is also trimmed in gold... along with Sherry's name... this car is just all around top notch, and more than worth the current price you can get one for~

    The card shows a great picture of Sherry in front of the car, with rows of palm trees in the background~ Since NASCAR banned this sponsor, the car was taken off of store shelves immediately, so this car is a little bit tricky to find at times, but never more than 15 bucks when you do find it~ I got this one on Ebay for five bucks, free shipping...which is way low, in my opinion~

    As far as the Racing Champions quality scale on this one, I've got to give it an A+ all the way around~ It's a great looking car, with an awesome card.. what more can you ask for from a Racing Champions diecast?~ As always, I'd like to thank you all for checking out the blog~ Please share this post on social media, and click the "Follow" button on the top of this page, on the right hand side to get updates on new posts~ Below I have posted some videos featuring glimpses of the Ramses car, as well as a bonus car~

                           **Bonus Car** Diggity Dave #46 Pizzarias Pizza Chips Chevrolet~
Diggity Dave #46 Pizzarias Pizza Chips Chevrolet Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog custom

    When I was a kid, I loved Pizzarias Pizza Chips!~ They were the most awesome things ever at the time, and then one day... POOF!~ They were all gone... never to be seen again~ I wish they would bring them back, even if they give you cancer, I still loved them, and want them in my life again~ :)

                                  1994 Florida 200 & Daytona 500 highlights~ Blakley crash~

                                           Goody's Dash Series comp~ Blakley appearance~

                                             1993 Goody's Dash Dave Stacy in the Lake~

                                                                   Weird AIDS PSA~

   
   
                                                    
                                                            

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