Hoop Schaible (real name Robert James Schaible) was my uncle. When I was around 10, 11, and 12 years of age, I used to spend the summers at my grandfathers home (Hoop's father) in Upper Black Eddy. At the time, I was living in North Carolina.
Having Hoop as an uncle was an adventure in itself as a young kid. I remember riding in his hearse to Frenchtown to gas up and Hoop would have me lie down in the rear so the station attendant would think there was a corpse inside. Once, my brother and I were both visiting for the summer. One day down at Hoop's garage, his "gang" were paying us to talk since we both had southern accents at the time. Their favorite phrase for us was "Y'all boys want some southern fried chicken". They would shove money in our hands and laugh like hell.
Since I was part of the "pit crew" I could get in Flemington race track for free. I don't remember a whole lot about Hoop's racing at the track. I was usually busy buying food and candy and telling all the vendors that Hoop was my uncle...which almost always got me something for free. In some of the articles they refer to Hoop as George. I am not sure why, but it may be because Hoop liked to wear shirts with a name tag other than his own.
The race car is still just like it was the last night that Hoop drove it. Now, it sits in his garage covered up with a tarp and 40 years of dust. But, it will always be the orange 95.
He had a ruddy complexion, a scar where one eyebrow should have been, and blonde hair that never seemed to be combed. He walked and stood in a kind of permanent slouch, usually with a cigar in one hand and a wad of chewing gum in his mouth.
Kids idolized, imitated him. Parents loathed his appearance and his antics. He was a hero in the mold of Huckleberry Finn--a devil-may-care one of a kind America legend. On top of all that he could drive a race car with a reckless abandon most others never possess.
Read John Snyder's Profile From the Past - Hoop Schaible...the Last of the Free Spirits.