Tucson’s Bob Huebner started his Arizona Racing Association in the early sixties, right as the drivers from Tucson became more dominant at the hotbed of racing in this state at Manzanita Speedway in Phoenix.
After a couple of impressive drives in 1963, Huenber’s first state championship came in 1964 when he teamed up with the previous year’s titleholder, Frank McDaniel, and garnered the first of three Arizona Racing Association championships. He followed with a dominating season after teaming up with Tucson car owner, John Carter, and Chief Mechanic, Mickey Meyer, Sr. in a Bruce Robinson-built car. Not only was “Hibby” the driving champion, Meyer was named mechanic of the year! Had Huebner not suffered from appendicitis three days before he would make his USAC National Champ Car debut in Sacramento, CA (in the same car Jimmy Bryan won three AAA/USAC National championships in 1954-1956-1957), Arizona racing history may have taken quite a different path.
Until he retired from active competition after 1972, the driver once known as “Bashful Bud” remained one of the most successful and flamboyant drivers in Arizona history. 1969 was his best year where he won his 3rd ARA sprint car championship and the 2nd running of the Western States Championship, as it was called in 1969, after a 50-lap duel with legendary Midwest sprint car driver, Dick Suttcliffe.
Two very important pieces of Huebner’s career are displayed at the Arizona Open Wheel Museum; the impressive 7-foot tall trophy Bob won for his 1965 title and the “Big Bad Buick From Eloy” a car that Hibby drove early in his career.