EUNICE, N.M. – Sam Hodges will make his final visit to the winner’s circle at Cardinal Motor Speedway on Thursday night, June 28.
Memorial services for the late track owner, promoter and IMCA driver begin at 8 p.m. that evening in the winner’s circle at the Eunice speedplant he helped build.
“Sam loved dirt track racing and it showed in every facet of his participation, from a racer to a promoter and track owner,” said IMCA President Brett Root. “He will be missed by all of us at IMCA.”
Survivors include his wife Jill; his daughters, Cari Coy and husband Matt of Eunice, and Casey Hodges of Eunice; his son Cody Hodges and fiancée Jessica of Eunice; grandchildren, Tanner Bill (Whip) Coy, Tyson Coy, and Ellie Sikes; his sister Lea Ann Lord and husband Mike of Seminole, Texas; nephews and great nieces.
Hodges, died last week at the age of 56. He and brother-in-law Mike Lord built Cardinal 20 years ago. He promoted before the track was leased to Chris Meyers and Toby Herring in 2011.
Hodges underwent cancer surgery in 2015 and returned to win both IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stock features at Cardinal’s season-opening weekend the following March. He sent his $500 winnings to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, promising to donate his share of purses earned throughout the season for cancer research.
Hodges was named Eunice’s Citizen of the Year in 2001. As the obituary states, his legend will live on each Saturday night as the lights come on and the cars drive on to the track.