Someone You Should Know: Keeping things running at Wylie Thunder Road

John Dumire is this week's Someone You Should Know.
Published: Jun. 16, 2022 at 8:11 AM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - John Dumire loves to keep things running at Wylie Thunder Road.

“It’s fun yeah. You get to get out there and mix it up with people. I have to test drive one every once in awhile, and its fun. And people don’t know you are an employee a lot of times, because I don’t actually an employee shirt on or anything. So I’m kind of incognito,” said John.

The Westport native, works in the small garage on the outside of the race track.

“Everything and anything that needs fixing. From the boats, to the go-karts, to all the maintenance of the buildings, and anything that needs it, is what I take care of. And everyone one of them. Every motor is a little different. They want a little something else, so you have to tune every one of them. But they’re fun to work on, light and easy,” said John.

He’s been here turning the wrench on the go-karts the past two years, after spending many years as an auto mechanic.

“Coming to this job. Everybody is happy to be here. While a customer comes in, he’s got problems. His car is broke down and it’s going to cost him X amount of dollars and they’re not always the happiest about it. Even though they know it’s not your fault. But coming to this job, they’re here for a good time,” said John.

“John’s got a real nice personality. Works hard, shows up on time. John’s very important to Thunder Road. The carts run well,” said owner Al Novstrup.

John has racing background. He’s a former track champion at Brown County Speedway.

“I won it in 1977. I would’ve been 18 years old. It was the year I graduated. And it’s kind of emotional for me, because my dad has passed away. Because my dad was so proud. It gets me,” said John.

It’s emotional, because his dad built his first race car. Now John is doing his part in a racing business, that’s for all ages.

“I like everything that’s fast or crazy you know. So that I guess it’s going to be my life until I’m pushing up daisies,” said John.

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