If you are into dirt track racing, or if you have ever caught a race at 5 Mile Point Speedway, you must have heard the name Mike Colsten.

Mike who had been racing locally for 51 years, died last week at the age of 70 after a long battle with cancer. Mike lived his whole life in Kirkwood, New York.

Not only did Mike race for 51 years, he was also married to his wife Lea for 51 years, and his race car number was 51. Mike was a force to be reckoned with in dirt modified racing. He was also recognized in three Racing Halls of Fame.

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According to his niece, Cindy Chapman, formerly of Binghamton, she said that her uncle was,

One of the nicest men you would ever want to meet. Even though he competed against other racers, he was always willing to share advice with the other drivers based on all the experience he gained over 51 years.

Mike's son Joey also races stock cars. He drives car number 151 in honor of his father. Five Mile Point Speedway has a bunch of pictures posted on their Facebook page in tribute to Colsten. See those photos here.

Colsten retired from Don's Automotive Mall after 44 years serving as the general manager there. He also volunteered in the community as a Sunday school teacher.

[via YouTube/justin markoff]

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