Duluth Racing Community Remembers One Of Its Champions

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There’s a sense of emptiness in the Duluth racing community now that it has lost one of its champions.

Any car lover knows Kyle Smalley was an inspiration to everyone he met.

He was the brains behind the Kia of Duluth Drag Races and Car Show event and passed away Monday night.

Friends remember him as someone who loved people and was the type of person you could always count on.

“Everybody knew Kyle. If you were into cars, muscle cars, everybody knew who he was, and he had a very generous spirit about him,” said Ryan Kern, a friend of Smalley’s and president of Kernz & Kompany, the promotions company for the drag race.

Friends said Smalley will not only leave a lasting legacy in the racing community, he will leave a mark on people’s hearts.

“Whenever somebody’s car would break down, Kyle was the first one that you would call, and he was more than willing to go out and help fix it. Even if he wasn’t feeling good, even if he was sick and under the weather, he would still come over and do what needed to be done. His spirit was amazing,” said Kern.

Smalley had been battling Lyme disease for years, but there has been no confirmation on exactly what caused his death.

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