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SOCIETY OF LAND SPEED RACING HISTORIANS
NEWSLETTER 273 - February 27, 2013
Editor: Richard Parks, Rnparks1@Juno.com 
President of the Society: Jim Miller, 1-818-846-5139.
Photographic Editor of the Society
: Roger Rohrdanz, beachtruck@juno.com
Northern California Reporter: Spencer Simon, sparklecraftspecial@yahoo.com
Field Reporter/Historian: Bob Falcon, RFalcon500@aol.com

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Some Names To Look For In This Newsletter:
Guest Editorial by “Dyno” Don Batyi; Staff Editorial by Richard Parks; Phil Remington, 1921-2013; I received the news about Phil Remington from Bob Falcon; All American Racers is sad to announce that Phil Remington passed away in his sleep Saturday morning, February 9th, just 2 weeks after his 92nd birthday; Mr. Fix It, Written on the occasion of Phil Remington’s 70th birthday; You wrote asking if you could have permission to copy the list of deceased LSR people from my website (Land Speed Racer Memorial) so that you could do research on them; In regards to the Harvey Haller Memorial Trophy, I spoke briefly with Art Chrisman last Saturday and more at length with Tom Bryant (via e-mail) regarding the Harvey Haller Memorial Trophy and the Miss 400D Car/Crew mystery; I just wanted to let everyone know that episode 1 is up; I picked up a curious little DVD (Santa Ana Dragstrip; A Trip Back in Time 1952-1959) that shows old film clips of drag racing, presumably at Santa Ana; Staff notes: Le Roi “Tex” Smith writes irregularly for www.hotrodhotline.com and is used by permission of that website; Staff notes; The following comes from www.hotrodhotline.com, where Jim Clark is a regular contributor; Staff notes: Ron Main sent in the following notice on the Dry Lakes Hall of Fame and the induction of the George Poteet and the Speed Demon streamliner; Loved the Ed Iskenderian bio; Legends of the Valley, words and photos by Chadly Johnson; RACING SCENE Column - Irwindale Speedway (1999 to 2011), February 8, 2013. By Tim Kennedy; The Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum presented by the Automobile Club of Southern California announced the election of two new members to their board of directors today; Here's the information on two of my current book projects; The Classic Woodys book and my new e-book "Forty Short Stories to read on a Plane; Staff notes: The following men have been honored for their racing exploits and should be prime examples to our members to reach out and try and complete biographies for them if they haven’t already been done; Open House, Sunday, February 17, 2013, 11AM to 2PM, 498 DW Highway (US3), Merrimack, New Hampshire; Ron Main sent in a link to a video of the 2012 CHRR Cacklefest at Famoso Raceway in October; I remember the times when you could drive to the track, tape up the headlights, get a number and go thru tech inspection, and be off to practice; Petersen Automotive Museum presents new exhibit fins called Form without Function; Hope you had a memorable time with Parker today at the Phoenix NHRA drag races.

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Guest Editorial by “Dyno” Don Batyi:
       One of my friends forwarded this to me.  Why is the US Government not pursuing this?  Doesn't anyone realize what this would do for our economy and National Security?  The prosperity and jobs it would create.  Why are we spending tons of taxpayer dollars on renewable energy scams that don't work?  Fighting wars in the Mideast for what?  "Dyno" Don Batyi 
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     Cruz Construction of Alaska started a division in North Dakota just six months ago.  They sent every Kenworth (nine trucks) we had here in Alaska to North Dakota and several drivers.  They just bought two new Kenworth's to add to that fleet; one being a Tri-Drive tractor and a new 65-ton lowboy to go with it.  They also bought two new cranes (one crawler and one rubber tired) for that division.  Dave Cruz said they have moved more rigs in the last six months in North Dakota than Cruz Construction moved in Alaska in the last six years.  Williston is like a gold rush town; they moved one of our 40-man camps down there since there are no rooms available.  Unemployment in North Dakota is the lowest in the nation at 3.4 percent, last checked.  See anything in the national news about how the oil industry is fueling North Dakota's economy? 
     Here's an astonishing read of important and verifiable information.  About six months ago, the writer was watching a news program on oil and one of the Forbes brothers was the guest.  The host said to Forbes, "I am going to ask you a direct question and I would like a direct answer.  How much oil does the U.S. have in the ground?"  Forbes did not miss a beat, and he said, "more than all the Middle East put together."  The U. S. Geological Service issued a report in April 2008 that only scientists and oil men knew was coming, but man was it big.  It was a revised report (hadn't been updated since 1995) on how much oil was in this area of the western 2/3 of North Dakota, western South Dakota, and extreme eastern Montana.  The Bakken is the largest domestic oil discovery since Alaska 's Prudhoe Bay, and has the potential to eliminate all American dependence on foreign oil.  The Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates it at 503 billion barrels.  Even if just 10% of the oil is recoverable (50 billion barrels), at $107 a barrel, we're looking at a resource base worth more than $5.3 trillion. 
     "When I first briefed legislators on this, you could practically see their jaws hit the floor."  They had no idea," says Terry Johnson, the Montana Legislature's financial analyst.  "This sizable find is now the highest-producing onshore oil field found in the past 56 years," reports The Pittsburgh Post Gazette.  It's a formation known as the Williston Basin, but is more commonly referred to as the 'Bakken.'  It stretches from Northern Montana, through North Dakota and into Canada.  For years, U. S. oil exploration has been considered a dead end.  Even the 'Big Oil' companies gave up searching for major oil wells decades ago.  However, a recent technological breakthrough has opened up the Bakken's massive reserves, and we now have access of up to 500 billion barrels.  And because this is light, sweet oil, those billions of barrels will cost Americans just $16 PER BARREL.  That's enough crude to fully fuel the American economy for 2041 years straight.  And if THAT didn't throw you on the floor, then this next one should - because it's from 2006. 
     U. S. Oil Discovery - Largest Reserve in the World.  Stansberry Report Online - 4/20/2006.  Hidden 1000 feet beneath the surface of the Rocky Mountains lay the largest untapped oil reserve in the world.  It is more than 2 TRILLION barrels.  On August 8, 2005 President Bush mandated its extraction.  In three and a half years of high oil prices none has been extracted.  With this motherload of oil, why are we still fighting over off-shore drilling?  They also reported this stunning news: We have more oil inside our borders, than all the other proven reserves on earth.  Here are the official estimates: 8 times as much oil as Saudi Arabia, 18 times as much oil as Iraq, 21 times as much oil as Kuwait, 22 times as much oil as Iran, 500 times as much oil as Yemen, and it's all right here in the Western United States. 
     HOW can this BE?  HOW can we NOT BE extracting this?  Because the environmentalists and others have blocked all efforts to help America become independent of foreign oil.  Again, we are letting a small group of people dictate our lives and our economy.  WHY?  James Bartis, lead researcher with the study says we have more oil in this very compact area than the entire Middle East, more than 2 TRILLION barrels untapped.  That's more than all the proven oil reserves of crude oil in the world today, reports
The Denver Post.  Don't think 'OPEC' will drop its price even with this find?  Think again.  It's all about the competitive marketplace, it has to.  If you don't take a little time to do let your public officials know how you feel, then you should stifle yourself the next time you complain about gas prices.  By doing NOTHING, you forfeit your right to complain.  For more information see; http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=1911, http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asID=1911, http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=1911, http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=1911.

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Staff Editorial by Richard Parks
   I just received word from Bob Falcon that Phil Remington passed away.  I am very saddened to hear of this news, as Phil was a friend to my father and to all of us and a great man in racing.  Phil was also a dry lakes guy from the distant past.  We are losing so many fine men and women of the WWII and Great Depression generation.  Please do what you can to redouble your efforts to get bios, stories or interviews with as many people of this era that you can.  We are running out of time and losing so many wonderful people.  If anyone has something to say about Phil please send me an email and I will see that it is published.
   Roger Rohrdanz and I have been invited to speak at the Costa Mesa Historical Society on March 17, 2013 at 2pm. The address is 1870 Anaheim Ave, Costa Mesa, California. The topic is on hot rodding in Southern California and by now you all know that I am a shameless namedropper. To protect your reputations you may want to attend and defend your honor. It feels good to know that people are interested in a positive way about the hot rodding history that we share. We’ve come a long ways from the days of negative publicity. 
   The following email comes from LandSpeed Louise Ann Noeth. "I would not support the premise of two separate awards in the name of Road Runner Harvey Haller.  I believe Wally Parks started the award out of grief, admiration and respect for his pal and the sponsorship was secondary.  Just like the 200MPH club that has had multiple sponsors, this award is a singular honor whose history is muddled because the folks giving it failed to document things properly.  Moreover, the gaps in this award and others is simply a case of a lack of effort at the time, or perhaps no one was considered worthy.  These attitudes are befitting the racer mentality of the day (1950's).  The Stonecipher book is a novel or personal recollection.  The author is under no obligation to report factually or historically, only to tell their own story.  I give this reference very little weight.  Parks started the honor as a Road Runner club member and then when overall interest waned, or it was not being given the respect he felt it should have, I think he simply took action and shifted the award to emanate from within the NHRA.  When Haller died in 1953, so with him died any familiarity he could have engendered with the up-and-coming racer.  With no team members or family to perpetuate his influence, Haller faded from the racers mind's and with his memory went the obligation to continue." 
     Sometimes it is very small and maybe trivial questions that open up a huge view of the world of racing.  That's why I never overlook the least clue, because that small piece of history leads us into great discoveries.  I can't stress enough the importance of the early SCTA, Russetta, Mojave, Bell, Western and other timing associations to the furtherance of land speed, drag and oval racing.  I wish we could expand from the SCTA into the other associations and car clubs and give them their due, but these records are often lost to us or very hard to find.  Meanwhile there is a large source of SCTA material that is readily accessible.  Harvey Haller, Ak Miller, Jack Henry, Wally Parks, Eldon Snapp, John Riley and dozens more Road Runners were very influential men in racing, speed equipment, design and building of fast vehicles. 
     My mother and father often mentioned Harvey Haller.  The club meetings were held in Jack Henry's garage and that made him a very important club member.  Eldon Snapp was an artist and cartoonist of the highest caliber.  Ak Miller and my father crisscrossed through life for seventy years and each supported the other to achieve great things.  My father did not mention the Haller Award, but that wasn't unusual.  He had a hand in so many things that no one can tell you all that he did.  He worked all day and then answered correspondence all night.  Wally Parks was tireless in helping other people with their projects.  I think he enjoyed helping others more than he did in his own profession.  That's what hot rodders are all about; using their talents to their maximum and helping others to do the same. Haller died in 1953 and the NHRA award began in 1954.  Harvey Haller deserves to be recognized and remembered.  Another man who needs to be remembered is Arthur C. Tilton and his Trophy, which was taken away from him and given to another man, should be restored to him.

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Phil Remington, 1921-2013. February 10, 2013. Article from www.racer.com
   Racecar development pioneer Phil Remington has passed away at the age of 92. After service as a flight engineer in the South Pacific in World War II, Remington threw himself into the post-World War II hot-rodding and motorcycle scene in Southern California. A severe motorcycle racing crash led him to turn his attention to the engineering side of racing, building intake manifolds for Eddie Meyer while producing Indy cars for millionaire Sterling Edwards. He was involved with Lance Reventlow's Scarab Formula 1 effort before joining Carroll Shelby and the Ford Le Mans racing program, where he played key roles in the development of the Shelby Cobra and subsequent Ford GT40 and Mark IV Le Mans cars. Remington subsequently entered into a long relationship with Dan Gurney's All American Racers, serving as "a fabricator, designer, draftsman, engineer and all around problem solving genius" at AAR for 43 years. At a 90th birthday party for Remington, Gurney – his boss and friend for more than three decades – called Remington AAR's "Rock of Gibraltar.” "He is a marvel, an old salt, and an inspiration to young and old. I know, it is a cliché, but when they made old Rem, they threw away the mold," said Gurney.

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I received the news about Phil Remington from Bob Falcon. I knew the name right away from my interest in Carrol Shelby. I heard he was a great racer and his name pops up from time to time. It was nice to know that Bob Falcon had the privilege of knowing him. Phil is one of the greats. Thanks Bob for letting us know. Spencer Simon

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All American Racers is sad to announce that Phil Remington passed away in his sleep Saturday morning, February 9th, just 2 weeks after his 92nd birthday. "Rem” joined AAR in the fall of 1968 after an already stellar career in the motor racing world. He was universally admired and recognized as the greatest fabricator of his time. Until his health started failing last summer Phil never missed a day of work, he was an example both professionally and personally to legions of young people who studied under him and who worked by his side. It will be difficult for us to walk by his old wooden workbench on the shop floor and not hear the sound of his hammer or see a smile break out on his face having just finished his latest masterpiece. Our heartfelt condolences go to his daughter Kati, his son-in-law Dave and his two grandsons Tynan and Brady.
   On the occasion of his 80th and 90th birthdays we wrote tributes to Phil which we think capture the man and his life and work, we like to present some excerpts here: Watching Tom Hanks try to get off the island in the movie "Castaway" a few years ago, all we could think of was "Where is Rem?" Had the legendary Mr. Fix-it, motor racing’s best known fabricator been there, they would have been off that island in no time. Phil would have known how to hammer together a boat from bark and build a make-shift helicopter from old socks. He was a one man fire brigade which the top factory racing teams called upon when in trouble.
   In 44 years at our company, nobody remembers Phil missing a day of work. His ability as a fabricator, designer, draftsman, engineer and all- technical -problem - solving- genius has inspired three generations of racers be it behind the wheel, in the pits or on the shop floor. A huge number of alumni of AAR's Remington University have gone on to establish their own often formidable careers in the racing industry. Born in 1921 in Santa Monica, cradle of the hotrod civilization, Phil served as a flight engineer in the South Pacific in World War II. After the war he started racing hotrods on the dry lakes. A severe motorcycle accident which almost cost him a leg, finished this particular career and launched another. He found out what he could do with his hands, a hammer and a piece of metal. And he could do it faster and better.
   And so the journey began which took him around the world with the greatest racing teams of the day. He was with Lance Reventlow in Monte Carlo when he ran the first American F I car, he helped the Ford Shelby Cobra Team win the Championship over Ferrari in 1965, he was in the pits when Dan Gurney and A.J. Foyt won Ford's biggest victory at Le Mans in 1967, he joined Holman and Moody on the Southern circuit and led an endurance test for Ford Motor Company through hazardous Afghanistan in the middle 50s. He was at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway when the Gurney Eagles dominated the Indy car scene in the early 70s. He saw Bobby Unser drink that precious bottle of milk after winning the Indy 500 in 1975 in an Eagle which Rem helped build and naturally he was at Daytona, Sebring and Watkins Glen when the GTO Celicas and GTP Eagles won IMSA Championships. Phil - literally - had a hand in every victory.
   Modest, handsome, outspoken, politically incorrect, proud, fiercely competitive, cantankerous, enthusiastic and blessed with a wicked sense of humor, he became a respected and beloved elder statesman at the company. After his wife Joy died in 2000, he lived on his own shunning any talks of help or of retirement. Last spring at 91 years of age, Phil was part of the AAR crew which built the DeltaWing - what a fitting finale to a great life in the motor racing industry!
   Justin Gurney, AAR CEO, said Phil's merciless work ethic and can-do attitude reverberated throughout the shop and will continue to be a shining example in the future. "Most of us in the younger generation have known Mr. Remington for our entire working lives. Considering his robust health almost to the very end, we were tempted to think he would live forever. We have been in awe of his talents and afraid of his scorn. If something was not done to his exact specifications, the hammer came down... If for instance he did not like the music emanating from somebody's radio, he would not hesitate to saw it in half during lunch hour. Next time we hear thunder, it might just be Rem with his homemade hammers repairing the Pearly Gates."
   Dan Gurney called Phil AAR's ‘Rock of Gibraltar'. "He was a marvel, an old salt and an inspiration to young and old. We owe him a ton of gratitude for all the good things he has done for us and many other racing teams through the last half century. He was an original and can never be replaced. God's speed Rem, we love you and we will miss you every day." Further data on Phil Remington's life and career can be found on our webpage www.allamericanracers.com. An article, “Mr. Fix-it” by Preston Lerner which appeared in the July edition of Sports Car International Magazine in 1980 is posted in the "archive" section.
 

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Mr. Fix It, Written on the occasion of Phil Remington’s 70th birthday. Article by Preston Lerner, July 1990 edition of Sports Car International Magazine. Photography by David Gooley. Period photos by David Friedman.
   Phil Remington can design, build, repair, patch together, and generally fix anything on a race car, from the manifolds on a Scarab to the sweeping tail of a Ford Mk IV at LeMans. Preston Lerner visited Mr. Fix-it at the All American Racers shop in Santa Ana, Ca, where "Rem" was fabricating a brake cooling duct for Toyota's IMSA GTP car. A COUPLE OF YEARS AGO, Woody Allen made a movie called Zelig about a guy who always managed to be on the scene whenever history was being made during the twenties and thirties. He could be found hobnobbing with Adolf Hitler at Nuremburg, Herbert Hoover and Calvin Coolidge at the White House, Pope Pius XI at the Vatican, even Babe Ruth at Yankee Stadium. Wherever the crossroads of history happen to fall, Woody Allen's Zelig was there.
   The motorsports community has its own version of Zelig. His name is Phil Remington, and his hard-to-believe career provides continuing proof that fact is stranger than fiction. When West Coast hot rodders started tearing up the dry lakes before World War II, he was there. When Sterling Edwards won the first bonafide sports car race staged on the West Coast after the war, he was there. When Lance Reventlow ran the first American Formula One car at Monte Carlo, he was there. When Carroll Shelby's Cobras crushed all comers from Riverside to Daytona, he was there. When John Holman and Ralph Moody were dominating the Southern stock car scene, he was there. And when Dan Gurney's All American Racers finally won Indianapolis 500, Phil Remington was there.
   It sometimes seems as if the man has been everywhere – Formula One, Indy cars, endurance racing, Can-Am, Trans-Am, NASCAR, GTO, GTP. Once, he even made an around-the-world promotional trip for Ford as chief mechanic, fabricator, and all-purpose nuts-and-bolts wizard with a pair of new 1958 four-wheel drive trucks that he'd disguised as '57 models by rigging them with aluminum skins and headlight conversions. "We had to be able to look 100 percent, appearance-wise, all the time," he says. "If those trucks got skinned up or damaged, we had spare sheet metal to repair them. We had paint, thinner, a compressor, and welding outfits so that we could fix anything." 
   And make no mistake: if there's a piece of an automobile that Remington can't fix, then he can make a perfect copy to replace it. If he can't copy the piece, then you'll have to wait until God creates another. "He's the best fabricator in the world, and that's not his strong point," says Carroll Smith, a longtime racing consultant who worked with Remington on the Ford assault on LeMans. "His strong point is his incredible intuitive feel for machinery. When there is a problem, by the time other people realize it, he's already made six fixes." Back during his days as director of research and development at Shelby American, Remington was responsible for hundreds of modifications to the all-conquering Ford GT40s, Mark IIs and Mark IVs. On the sketches for these fixes, there used to be a legend: " Draftsman: Remington. Designer: Remington. Engineer: Remington. Approved: Remington." Just call him the last of the soup-to-nuts mechanics.
   EAGLE GTP; A generation later, Remington's still at it. When we caught up with him at All American Racers shop in Santa Ana, he was fitting an air scoop to a carbon-fiber rear brake on the latest Eagle GTP car. The new configuration of the redesigned rear suspension was making things difficult. The hours passed without much in the way of discernible progress, but Remington remained imperturbable, jaw set, eyes steely, face impassive. The man looked implacable, and it was clear that the air scoop was going to break before he did. There was no wasted motion while he worked, no tapping his feet to the rock 'n' roll playing on the radio, no breaks for coffee, no time devoted to gossip. Hour after hour, he trimmed and eyeballed and cut and massaged and measured and did whatever it took to get the damn air scoop to fit. "Phil's like a machine," says one former coworker. Says another, ex-Shelby team manager Al Dowd: "We called him Super-Twitchy Phil. He was a little hyper. He couldn't sit still at all. He'd work so hard and so fast, but he always got it right."
   The roster of people Remington has worked with during his career reads like an Automobile Racing Hall of Fame. Naturally, some of them shared their expertise with the young Remington, but mostly, he mastered his trade the hard way. "I learned to do metal work on my own," he says. 'Well, I'll build my own car,' and I just started building it. I learned to weld by trading an intake manifold for a welding outfit when I was 17. I guess I'd have to say my expertise is being able to do a lot of things that other people can't do." 
   Born in 1921 in Santa Monica, Rem - as he's known in the trade – grew up in the cradle of hot rod civilization. As a teenager, he was a member of the Santa Monica Low Flyers, and rival hot rod clubs, he became acquainted with many of the people who would dominate the post war west coast scene – Phil Hill, Ritchie Ginther, Jim Travers, Frank Coons, Stu Hilborn, and Vic Edelbrock, just to name a few.
   After serving as a B-24 flight engineer in the South Pacific, Remington returned home after World War II and headed straight to the dry lakes of California. With an ultra-modified Model-A fitted with a flathead V8 Ford, he set a class record by running 136 mph and change at El Mirage. "He was always a little bit ahead of everybody," Travers recalls. A blown-up photograph of Remington in his car is one of the few racing mementos displayed in his house.
   MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT; Remington later hooked up with Travers to work for millionaire sportsman Howard Keck, who was running a trio of midgets at the time. Unfortunately, Remington was hit by a truck while riding a Triumph Tiger motorcycle, and he spent a year in the hospital. "The left leg was terribly damaged," he says. "They were going to take it off at one point, so I called my mother and got her to bring me some clothes, and I bailed out." Although he walks with a slight limp, he still has his leg.
   When Remington got back on his feet, he joined well-known Indy car builders Emil Diedt and Lujie Lesovsky in their shop in Los Angeles. Their so-called Flexible Flyer proved to be a fiasco, but the team produced a bunch of successful specials. The most notable was a tube-frame, fully independent Ford 60 one-off for Sterling Edwards, who used to win at Palm Springs in 1950, generally considered to be the first official sports car race held on the west coast.
   After building intake manifolds for Eddie Meyer, Louis' brother, Remington moved to San Francisco to help Edwards in his quest to get his attractive sports car into production. Besides building a few prototypes for the young millionaire (and making what he believes may have been the first fiberglass automobile body), Remington ran Edwards' racing program. When he could find the time, he also did a little racing of his own, at least until he totaled a C-Type Jaguar at Pebble Beach after clouting a Jowett Jaguar. After he became convinced that Edwards wasn't going to get his sports car off the ground, Remington returned to LA and did a stint with Stu Hilborn. Like we said, the man was everywhere.
   More to the point, he was wherever the action was the hottest. In 1957, he contracted with former Indy winner Pete DePaolo, who ran Ford Motor Company's quasi-factory racing program, to make an around-the-world trip with the '58 trucks. By the time he returned, Ford had quit racing, so he rejoined Lesovsky and worked on Indy roadsters, midgets, and dirt cars. And then, in 1958, he got the call to work for Lance Reventlow in building his fearsome Scarab sports cars.
   SCARABS; Remington arrived too late to work on the prototype, but he helped build the second and third sports cars and was in the inception of the Formula One car that appeared in 1960. Later, he was primarily responsible for the last of the Scarabs – a trim and neat rear-engined sports car that remained competitive for over three years. Although it achieved its greatest success with a small block Chevy in the engine bay (and A.J. Foyt in the cockpit), the rear-engined Scarab was originally equipped with a small Oldsmobile V8. To pump some extra power out of the motor, Remington fabricated a series of ever-more-elaborate crossover manifolds that not only worked effectively, but looked extraordinary. "I'd love to have one of the manifolds just to look at," says Warren Olson, who was the general of the Scarab operation. "It was just a work of art."
   Remington doesn't often brag on his own work, but he can't resist crowing just a little about those manifolds. "First, I built one with 40 millimeters on it, "he says. "Then I built one with 48 sidedrafts, and that ran pretty good, so I built them another one with 58 millimeter Webers. I started off with 1.75 in. tube and I hand-bent it into an Ess shape. Then I took the big end and put two wedges in it and made it out to be about two-and-three-eighths for the Weber. The Esses interlaced both ways and went into two flanges. Boy, it was a lot of work making those things, but it put out some real good power on the top end." In fact, the 298-pound engine was rated at 300 horsepower.
   If you look hard enough, you can find former coworkers who aren't members of the Phil Remington Fan Club. After all, he tends to be stubborn when he thinks he's right, and he's stepped on more than a couple of toes over the years. But nobody - not even his worst detractors – criticizes his work. And when your craftsmanship is as exquisite as Remington's has always been, there's never any shortage needy of people clamoring for your help.
   As soon as the Scarab operation folded in 1962, for instance, Remington landed on his feet with the Cobra program. In fact, when Shelby started leasing shop space in Venice from Reventlow, Remington more or less went with the building. As he puts it, "I just changed payrolls, I guess you could say." A few weeks later, when Billy Krause broke a rear hub carrier while leading at race at Riverside in the Cobra's maiden race, Remington was the guy who picked up some forging blanks from his friend Ted Halibrand and made a set of new ones. These served as the prototypes for all future rear hub carriers which, by the way, never broke again.
   LE MANS WORK; From Cobras, Shelby and Remington together segued into the Ford LeMans program. Although these years have been the subject of countless books and articles, the full extent of Remington's exploits will never known. This much is clear: Remington solved the coupe's recurring brake-cooling problems by stealing the intakes off a C-47 he saw taxiing outside his office window. And he's the guy who chopped the long tail off the experimental J-Car at 2 o'clock one morning to turn the slow-moving breadvan into the invincible Mark IV. "Without him, it would have been an unbelievable failure," says Pete Weismann, who worked as a Kar Kraft engineer on the Ford project before becoming the nation's leading authority on racing transmissions. "He's the master. Whatever the engineers dreamed up, he was the one who made it work for them."
   Remington's last job for Shelby was preparing the unsuccessful car raced by Peter Revson. After a brief stint in Charlotte, N.C., building Ford Talladega Grand National stockers for Holman and Moody, he returned to LA in time to help get Gurney's McLeagle Can Am car off the ground. Since then, Remington's had a hand in virtually everything to come out of the All American Racers shop. And at the age of 68 – he could pass for about 50 – he still puts in 60 hour weeks in Santa Ana and then accompanies the team whenever and wherever it goes racing. "It gets a little old," he admits, not sounding entirely convincing, "but everything on the car is kind of a prototype and you have to keep changing things at the racetrack all the time. The crew is busy doing their mechanical stuff, and they need a lot of advice sometimes if they think that something's wrong or something's cracked. "I'm thinking about retiring more and more," he says. But don't expect him to disappear anytime soon. When an Eagle finally wins a GTP race, Remington will probably be there, too.

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You wrote asking if you could have permission to copy the list of deceased LSR people from my website (Land Speed Racer Memorial) so that you could do research on them. Absolutely; that will be wonderful. I got my information mostly from newspaper articles that I found on newspaper databases and other public records. I recall someone contacting me and telling me that they had a scrapbook of news clippings, etc. that had been kept of Muroc and El Mirage and that I had all the deaths that they knew about from those places. I looked through my correspondence, but unfortunately don't find that communication copied there.  I know that could be a very good beginning. Mel Bashore, Land Speed Racer Memorial
   Mel: Have you contacted Leslie Long? He has an extensive listing on dry lakes racing. Jim Miller also has an extensive history of LSR. Please write up some background on your website and send it to me to publish at www.landspeedracing.com

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In regards to the Harvey Haller Memorial Trophy, I spoke briefly with Art Chrisman last Saturday and more at length with Tom Bryant (via e-mail) regarding the Harvey Haller Memorial Trophy and the Miss 400D Car/Crew mystery. Neither remembers the car and not a lot about the Trophy.  I checked with another Road Runners member from the late 1950's early '60's, Mel Weber.  Mel remembers the Trophy, but its beginning pre-dates his time in the Club.  Mel is checking with his Road Runners friends, Jerry Kugel and Mike Wheeler who were in the Club about the same time to see if they can shed any light on this.  I'm still checking and will keep checking to see what we can discover.  I'm beginning to think we may be talking about two different Harvey Haller Trophies.  All the Club history that we have about it, both written and from memory, suggest that the Trophy was created by and awarded to Road Runners.  The first recipient was Tom Bryant in 1958.  We still have the Trophy (quite large I might add) and I believe it will be awarded again this year.  The recipient gets to keep possession of it for the year.  A bronze tag is added, with their name.  They also receive a nice, engraved, 9 x 12 inch wall plaque to keep.  I'll take a picture of the trophy when I go to our Road Runners meeting next Tuesday and send it to you.  Jerry Cornelison

I'm attaching 3 pictures of the Road Runners Harvey Haller Memorial Trophy. Pict 1 is the trophy. Pict 2 is the descriptive plaque on the trophy. Pict 3 shows the first trophy recipient, Tom Bryant 1958.
I verified that there are no award tags for 1969 to 1977. Only explanation I have been able to get is, "It just was not awarded during those years." “I may have a lead on information on the 400D Car and Crew. I spoke with Bill Lattin, SCTA President. He remembers the car. A Studebaker. He is checking on some additional information for me.
Jerry Cornelison

     Jerry: Thank you for your research.  According to Land Speed Louise Ann Noeth, the November 1955 issue of Hot Rod magazine has information on a trophy named after Harvey Haller and presented to people for good sportsmanship.  Since my father was the editor/editorial director of the motorsports division and at Hot Rod magazine and a good friend of Haller's, I agree with Louise that this had the fingerprints of Wally Parks are all over this trophy.  Also, Parks never missed an opportunity to bring "good" public relations to land speed and drag racing whenever he could and Robert 'Pete' Petersen always backed up dad with financial support in these matters.  I hope we find out the facts behind the trophy. 
    Awards like the Harvey Haller Memorial Trophy have a wealth of information to tell us.  Often these awards languish in obscurity, unknown to all but a handful of people, and this is unfortunate.  All awards should be notated and researched.  It's important to make sure that not only the honoree, but the sponsoring club and original endower of the award be kept front and foremost in our minds.  Haller was a brilliant man and he was a part of a club that dominated land speed racing for quite some time.  
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     I think I may have solved this mystery, or at least part of it.  I found a book called
Stonecypher Road by Warren Longwell and Nancy Longwell. From Chapter 1, "Bonneville Salt Flats, Western Utah, 10 August, 1959 there is a reference to the Harvey Haller Memorial Sportsmanship Award presented by the NHRA. Another reference in Chapter 2, "The Canfield Cottage In Chautauqua, Boulder, Colorado, 25 January 2004," also mentions the Harvey Haller Memorial Sportsmanship Award from NHRA. The recipient was Tommy Thompson, who received the award in 1959. Unfortunately, I have not been able to find anything at all about the Miss 400D Car/Crew winner from 1955. http://authonomy.com/books/47964/stonecypher-road/read-book/?chapterid=456621#chapter.  I now am convinced that there are two different awards: The Harvey Haller Memorial Sportsmanship Award given by the NHRA and the Harvey Haller Memorial Award given by the Road Runners for outstanding service to the Club and first awarded in 1958.
     Here is a list of the Road Runners to have received the Harvey Haller Memorial Sportsmanship Trophy Award winners, 1958 to 2011: Tom Bryant 1958; Emil "Griggs" Grisotti 1959; Bill Graham 1960; Larry "Old Dad" Miller Sr. 1961; Ron Yost 1962; Gerald Tucker 1963; Roland Gravel 1964 and 1965; Lowell "Big Red" Holmes 1966 and 1967; and John Alvaney 1968.
     Then there is a gap and I do not know why from 1969 to 1977 and I will do more researching.  Continuing: Clete Culp 1977 and 1978; Ed Culp 1977 and 1978; Jim Culp 1977 and 1978; Mitch Culp 1977 and 1978; Gordon Hoyt 1979; Ralph Konstan 1980; Glenn Miller 1982 and 1989; Reese Adams 1983, 1986 and 1987; Mike Ferguson 1984, 1992 and 2000; Gary Foster  1985 and 1990; Art Clayton 1988 and 1991; Patty Clayton 1993; Charlie Miller 1994; Mike Miller 1995; Jerry Cornelison 2006; Pat Riley 2007 and 2009; Buddy Fitzgerel 2008 (In Memoriam); and finally Dale Wester 2011.
     Picture of the Road Runners Trophy to follow.  Looks like I have another mystery to research, why the 9 year gap in awards from 1969 to 1977?    Jerry Cornelison, glc311@att.net, Road Runners - SCTA (est. 1937) http://www.ussarcherfish.com/roadrunners.
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Staff notes; the following email came from David L. Parks.
   I found the following in the November 1955 edition of
Hot Rod magazine regarding Bonneville 1955; "The "Miss 400" crew won the Harvey Haller Memorial Award, donated by the National Hot Rod Association for sportsmanship. Their magnanimous act of donating a few essential parts to their closest competitor, Art Chrisman, and then have Art break the record of the "400" was sportsmanship at its best, a fitting award for a deserving group."
   I also found this in the November 1954 issue of
Hot Rod magazine for Bonneville 1954; "The National Hot rod Association presented Gene LeBlanc with the Harvey Haller Memorial award, given for sportsmanship. Gene's determination and contagious good humor, in spite of his many difficulties, made this choice a ‘natural.’" I didn't see anything in 1953 Bonneville coverage about the award.   David Parks
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   I don't have any record of a Gene LeBlanc as a Road Runner. I still think they are two different Harvey Haller awards. The NHRA award was for Sportsmanship and the Road Runners award is for outstanding service to the Club. It appears the Sportsmanship award was related to Bonneville, at least for the two years mentioned, 1954 and 1955. Jerry Cornelison

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I just wanted to let everyone know that episode 1 is up. Thanks to everyone who helped make this possible. Please visit www.wheretheyraced.com - sit back, go full screen and enjoy; then tell all your friends. Buckle up! Harry Pallenberg, www.wheretheyraced.com
   Harry: I watched the video and you did a great job. We need this type of programming on TV to tell the history of motorsports in Southern California. We also hope that you will inspire others across the nation to do the same type of researching and videotaping of their local history of racing. 

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I picked up a curious little DVD (Santa Ana Dragstrip; A Trip Back in Time 1952-1959) that shows old film clips of drag racing, presumably at Santa Ana. The DVD starts with footage of a drags reunion sometime in the late 1970’s or early 1980’s, then proceeds with interview of Creighton, Arnett and others; then early film footage of Santa Ana. The film quality is not good, but still a very interesting piece for racers and historians. The Schiefer roadster is included in at least two segments; in its rear-engined configuration when Red Henslee and Emery Cook were running it; and as the '27 T front-engine configuration with motorcycle wheels up front and mags in the back (Paul Schiefer and/or Bean Bandits). Do you know anything about this DVD? David Walker
   David: It is most likely a DVD made by Don Tuttle, who was the announcer at the Santa Ana Airport drag strip. I purchased that DVD directly from Tuttle shortly before he passed away. Don made a lot of these DVDs and a number of hot rodders in the area have a copy of this and other Tuttle DVDs that he produced. However, DVDs and discs are very common and I come across them from a variety of places. One of the things that the Society should start doing is to do movie/video reviews of those DVDs, discs, 8 and 16 mm films that we have in our possession so that others know what is available. Most are not very high quality, lack narration and are difficult to understand where and when they were taken. But a good number of these discs, tapes or film are absolute gems for historians and for racing fans. A few are being re-edited and reproduced for sale and we have a movie review section at www.hotrodhotline.com
   Reviews are accepted by anyone willing to write up a review and we will post them at the HRHL website as well as at www.landspeedracing.com. Jim Miller, our Society's President, often will borrow and reproduce film/tape/disc material so that it can be stored, archived and used for research. I've included him on this email and his email address is Miller212.842@sbcglobal.net. I will also send this email to Jack Underwood, who was present at those reunions as well. Your DVD sounds like it was made at one of the Santa Ana Drags Reunions put on by Creighton Hunter at the Elks Club in Santa Ana, right next door to the Santa Ana Zoo. I went to a number of them and I do remember some people with video cameras and Joaquin Arnett, C. J. Hart and Creighton Hunter were present and always eager to tell the history of the famous drag strip. Would you like to do a review of the DVD and send it to me? There are no requirements; a reviewer always sets his own standards and I will help you edit your review if you like. 

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Staff notes: Le Roi “Tex” Smith writes irregularly for www.hotrodhotline.com and is used by permission of that website. Tex is the editor we all look up to and has his own style of writing and editing that the rest of us just cannot attempt to redact. He is in his own unique style and personality, so we won’t change him.
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DOIN’ THE KHANA THINGIE. By Le Roi Tex Smith 
   You can call it Autocross, or gymkhana, or street khana, it is all about doing some high end handling on a very tight course. Quick is good. Precise is good. Gut grunt doesn’t mean much. Tire spin means nothing. Max RPM doesn’t mean much. Good torque is vital, good brakes are vital. Precise steering is vital. Good tire adhesion, well, you get the idea. Khana work by any name is about going where you wanna in the shortest amount of time. 
   This kind of restricted course for automobiles (anything, actually) is not something invented by the Now Generation, you know. It has been around since cars came on the scene, and in some respects, since horses. I stumbled across it first in Europe, where I had been doing the big race course and hill climb thing in my Healey 4. And from the git go, I loved it. Not a steady diet, perhaps, but great for something to do between Nuremburg Ring and Monaco and those trivialities. 
   When I got back to the States, I discovered that some of the tea baggers were beginning to put on driving khanas (I suspect the word Khana is a carryon from horse contests, but don’t know), usually in market parking lots. It was something for them to do with their undersized, underpowered, under everything imports, and it held sway in their camps undisturbed until the Corvettes and such unwashed Yankee ilk began to show up and write done deal. 
   It should be noted that these almost-clandestine shenanigans failed to gain a spectator appeal, more because of the moribund attitude of the sponsoring clubs than for driving excitement. Sports car clubs were not, are still not, hot beds of youthful enthusiasm. 
   At the very first
Rod & Custom magazine Street Rod Nationals, I introduced this closed car mayhem to a receptive, if askance, crowd. When we discovered we had a far larger turnout of rodders than anticipated, Tom Medley said, “Man, we gotta come up with something for everyone to do, because we don’t have the show ‘n’ shine until tomorrow.” So I asked a few of the local host club members if they could round up some traffic cones, some cardboard boxes, and a couple of stop watches. Also, did anyone know of a good sized, vacant paved parking lot? With that, we spread word-of-mouth that a special driving event would be held in a nearby movie theatre parking lot in two hours. 
   I showed the host club volunteers what we should do to lay out a driving course, and how it would be judged. From there it was a matter of letting the rodders attack. Which attack they took to with verve. There were a dozen or so driving and parking tests, with a ton of laughter. There were even a couple of Civilian Corvette drivers ask if they could join the fun. Yep, ok by us. 
   In the end, it was the most unlikely car among the hot rods in attendance to show how it was all done. A little bit of a car named, aptly, “Itty Bits.” I won’t reveal more, you just have to find a report on that first Street Rod Nat’s. Like the wise man says, the race does not always go to the swift! Meantime, get off your duff, dust off some sticky tires, and hit the GoodGuys Autocourses!

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Staff notes; The following comes from www.hotrodhotline.com, where Jim Clark is a regular contributor. Photographs and captions can be found at http://www.hotrodhotline.com/content/seat-belts-old-hot-rods-story-and-photos-jim-clark
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SEAT BELTS FOR OLD HOT RODS. Story and photos by Jim Clark (The Hot Rod MD)
   If you were born after the fifties you probably take seat belts, an important safety feature, for granted. But for graybeards like myself they were more of a nuisance than a safety feature on that new ’55 Chevy hardtop that my dad bought. We saw them as just another intrusion into our personal lives by “big brother”.
   In the ‘60s we installed an Air Force surplus lap belt in Tom McMullen’s ’32 roadster so that we could compete at the drag strips and dry lakes, but they remained beneath the seat cushion the rest of the time. When we did the major rebuild of the roadster, adding the big 427 Ford engine in 1967 for the Popular Hot Rodding Magazine articles, we did add a set of lap belts.
   By the ‘70s seat belts were now mandatory equipment on all vehicles and used by many drivers, though still resisted by some even after the failed attempt to make use mandatory in the late ‘60s by wiring the belt’s buckle to an ignition disconnect system. The vehicle wouldn’t start unless the driver’s seat belt was buckled. Some people buckled the belt and then sat on it.
   I was one of the diehard fools that resisted using seat belts until the mid ‘80s when, while discussing racing with 3-time World Driving Champion Jackie Stewart, he pointed out that seat belts not only protected you from injury, but keep you firmly in place to regain control of the vehicle after the first impact of a crash. This allows you to avoid additional impact with other objects because the first impact is not usually with that famous “immovable” object. Three-point seat belts are the most effective in your everyday “driver” but are not easy to install in my open roadster. So I had to install a set of lap belts in it because I no longer drive anything but a motorcycle without them.
   To install them I followed the instructions included with the set. First consideration was with the anchorages. All US passenger cars, beginning with the 1962 models, have seat belt anchorages for at least two lap belts in the front seat. Since January 1, 1968, vehicle manufacturers have been required to install lap belt anchorages for each front and rear seating position and upper torso belt anchorages at each forward facing outboard seating position. On January 1, 1972, this same requirement became effective for trucks. Where the manufacturer has made special provisions to attach belts, be sure to use those fittings. When you use the manufacturer’s threaded floor fittings, it is important that all full-threads be engaged to obtain the ultimate strength of the anchorage.
   Seat belts should not be attached to the seat, unless the vehicle manufacturer indicates that the seats and seat mounting systems have been specially designed to withstand seat belt assembly loads. However, for vehicles produced prior to 1962, anchorages have to be created. There are excellent and inexpensive kits available for doing this from companies like Juliano’s, but I chose to make my own mounts and weld them to a combination floor support and rear seat channel mount.
   The Juliano's safety anchor plate has a specially rounded form designed to gather and reinforce the sheet metal floor instead of tearing through it. This design also makes Juliano's Safety Anchor Plates ideal for reinforcing seat mounts, too. Specifically engineered threaded steel plate comes complete with bolts and washers. Sold in pairs. Dimensions: 2 3/8" x 4 1/2".

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Staff notes: Ron Main sent in the following notice on the Dry Lakes Hall of Fame and the induction of the George Poteet and the Speed Demon streamliner.
   The Dry Lakes Hall of Fame will be held on April 20, 2013. George Poteet and Speed Demon will be inducted into the Dry Lakes Hall of Fame that day.  Please try to join the crew and I to honor George and the SPEED DEMON at the 20th Annual Dry Lakes Racing Hall of Fame.   Ron Main, 818-998-7848    
   The Gold Coast Roadster & Racing Club announces the 20th Annual Dry Lakes Racing Hall of Fame and GAS-UP party will be held in Buellton, California on Saturday, April 20, 2013. We expect another exceptional turn-out as we greet the new racing season. The event begins at 9 AM, and includes a Buellton-style Barbeque lunch followed by the Dry Lakes Racing Hall of Fame induction ceremony and concludes with raffle prizes until 5 pm. Event Schedule as follows; celebration starts 9am, wet bar and hor d’oeuvres, 12 Noon Buellton Style BBQ, 1 pm induction ceremony, 3pm various raffles throughout the day with the Grand Prize drawing after the ceremony.  Your Gas-Up packet includes pit pass, meal, drink, raffle tickets and souvenir program will be waiting for you at the front gate. If you would like to bring your race car for the outside display area, please call the club phone number listed for further information. All reservations postmarked by April 5, 2013 are guaranteed admission at $45. Due to space limitations any reservations received after that date will be $55 and subject to the attendance limit. Order tickets at http://www.mendenhallmuseum.com.

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Loved the Ed Iskenderian bio. He is a true icon of American business the way it should be, as well as a hot rodding icon. I have never met him, but did business with his company. We ran an Isky 550 Super Le Guerra roller cam [what a great name] in our race motor. Once, we broke a roller, which allowed the lifter body fork to gouge the lobe. They repaired the cam, rather than telling me I had to buy a new one. Here is a little known fact about motor oil: there is Pure Pennsylvania oil, and Pennsylvania grade oil. They are not the same animal. Back in my day, Kendall and Wolfshead were the only 2 Pure Pennsylvania motor oils. If you had an Isky cam that failed, you sent it back, and Isky would chemically analyze what oil you were using. If it was pure Pennsylvania, they would fully warranty the cam, no questions asked. Something about that oil makes it superior for lubricating purposes. Of course, this was back in the day when oil came in cans. Lord knows what the story is now. Just a little trivia, but an interesting tidbit about the Isky story.
   As a former licensed emissions inspector here in Florida I can offer some advice to people going for emissions tests. If you have to wait in line, for any length of time, put your vehicle in park, and hold the revs up around 2000 rpm. This will keep the catalytic converter "hot" so that you will get an accurate test. I used to have a Ford van that had long since had the catalytic converter removed. I found I could still tune it to pass the test. First, I would lean the carb adjustment to get the CO in line. This would cause the HC to rise out of range, which I could cure by disconnecting the vacuum advance, thereby retarding the initial timing. After passing the test, I just went home, and reset everything to run right. I got around the visual inspection by screwing an old converter shell to the exhaust pipe. Of course, it helped having a 4 gas analyzer to help with the setup. We only had emissions inspection in Florida for about 3 years. It had no effect on air quality, so they scrapped the program, thereby wasting millions spent on buildings, test equipment, and training costs. Our government at work. Jeff Foulk

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Legends of the Valley, words and photos by Chadly Johnson.  
   As relatively young enthusiasts, the guys in my car club and I looked up to the veteran builders in our town. You know, the guys who actually lived the era that we were so in love with as traditional hot rodders; the guys who were turning out killer rides decades before we were even born. Often these older guys were a tough nut to crack for a younger guy. It's hard to know who you can trust. But, as a passionate car enthusiast with the gift to gab, I often found myself being welcomed into the inner circle of these amazing men which gave me access to their shops and collections as well.  One day while hanging out in one such shop, it hit me that what I was seeing was truly sacred. The four walls that surrounded me had such deep history, so many late nights of toiling labor to bring visions and dreams to life. It was at that moment that I knew I had to tell the story of these talented builders through images of where all the magic happened: inside their shops, because some day after they pass all this history will be gone with them. The walls will get painted over and a mini-van parked where a once great hot rod shop once stood.  I hope you enjoy a visual peek into the lives of these amazing builders who will basically remain nameless. They wanted to remain anonymous as these images could represent nearly any city in America, as well as the builders across our great country. To see the photographs go to http://www.hotrodhotline.com/legends-valley-words-photos-chadly-johnson-feb-13-2013

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RACING SCENE Column - Irwindale Speedway (1999 to 2011), February 8, 2013. By Tim Kennedy
   Irwindale Speedway welcomed racing fans for the first time on Saturday, March 27, 1999 with a standing room only crowd of 7,000+ in attendance for USAC competition featuring Silver Crown, midget, and sprint car racing. Renowned racing team owner Roger Penske waved the initial green flag in what would become 13 consecutive years of oval track racing, primarily under sanction by NASCAR, on the progressively banked half and third-mile ovals. USAC, ASA stock cars, Star Mazda Series, Lucas Oil modified and other sanctioning bodies also raced at the state of the art Irwindale Speedway. The year 2012 had no sanctioned racing while the track underwent a financial transformation under new ownership. The oval track hosted LA Racing Experience students during 2012 as usual under current track operator Jim Cohan. The eighth-mile Irwindale Dragstrip also operated in 2012 on Thursday nights. (For the rest of the article by Tim Kennedy go to http://www.hotrodhotline.com/racing-scene-column-irwindale-speedway-1999-2011-%E2%80%93-feb-8-2013).

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The Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum presented by the Automobile Club of Southern California announced the election of two new members to their board of directors today. The museum welcomes newly elected board members Linda Louie, vice president and general counsel for the NHRA, and Glen Cromwell, vice president of national event marketing for the NHRA. “The museum board is pleased to have the ongoing support of NHRA executives in helping to preserve the rich history of racing and its future success,” said Thomas McKernan, chairman of the NHRA Motorsports Museum Board.
   Louie joined NHRA in 1999. She received her bachelor’s degree from University of California, Los Angeles and her J.D. from the University of Southern California. Prior to NHRA, Louie was a business litigator in private law firms. She has been a lawyer for more than 20 years. “I am honored to be able to do my part to support this aspect of Wally Parks’ legacy,” Louie said. “I look forward to working with the board of directors as the museum works to further its mission.”
   Cromwell joined NHRA in 1997 and is responsible for marketing services and a variety of functions at NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series events. He has also served as director of national event marketing and Division 7 (Pacific) director in NHRA’s National Field Office. “Wally Parks worked hard to make the NHRA Museum the popular tourist destination that it is today,” said Cromwell. “I’m looking forward to working with the museum’s management team to offer positive feedback, and help develop resources to advance the museum’s projects, as well as provide long-term marketing goals that will continue Wally’s legacy.”
   Rotating off of the museum board after serving 12 years is NHRA executive vice president and general manager Peter Clifford, and Gary Darcy, NHRA senior vice president of sales and marketing, who served since 2005. Gale Banks, president and founder of Gale Banks Engineering, and Jack O’Bannon, a five-time NHRA world championship team owner, were elected to the board in September. Louie and Cromwell will join the following board members: McKernan, Alex Xydias, Steve Gibbs, Dave McClelland, Wayne McMurtry, Banks and O’Bannon.

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Here's the information on two of my current book projects; The Classic Woodys book and my new e-book "Forty Short Stories to read on a Plane."   These are short stories collected over the past 50 years.  It's a collection of interesting and funny tales from the road - all automotive related in some way.  I can send you a review.  David Fetherston

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Staff notes: The following men have been honored for their racing exploits and should be prime examples to our members to reach out and try and complete biographies for them if they haven’t already been done.
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EMERY COOK; Don Garlits said that when he entered into the Top Fuel class, Cook was the top banana. His 166.97-mph aboard the Cook & Bedwell dragster, all-timer at Lions in Feb. 1957 was so far ahead of its time that it led to a fuel ban, at least for NHRA, for six years. He was the first driver in the 8's with an 8.89 in 1957. He had nine of the best 17 speeds that year (in his Red Henslee’s rear-motored roadster) and capped it all with winning the AHRA Nationals at Great Bend, Kansas. Cook wasn’t done there. In 1966, he drove Don Garlits’ topless Dodge Dart roadster to a 200.44-mph speed, the first Funny Car over 200 mph.
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TED CYR; Ted Cyr and original partner Bill Hopper were one of the most successful teams in the country during the late 1950s and early 1960s. The Escondido, California-based Cyr got his name in lights when he won the Top Eliminator title at the 1958 NHRA Nationals with a blown gas dragster, and really cemented his reputation by winning Top Fuel at the Bakersfield March Meet in 1960. As testimony to his prowess, the first Drag News Top Fuel top 10 list (May 1960) had the Cyr & Hopper dragster No. 2 trailing only Don Garlits. Cyr stayed in the sport as an owner from roughly 1962 through 1976.
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AL ECKSTRAND; Al Eckstrand was a formidable Super Stock and FX driver in the mid-1960s. The Michigan lawyer called his Dodge cars “the Lawman,” winning Stock at the 1963 NHRA Winternationals and the Unlimited FX class at the famed inaugural Super Stock Magazine Nationals. Eckstrand match raced his fuel-injected, nitro-burning Dodge until roughly 1966-1967.
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DALE EMERY; One of the genuinely underrated nitro driver/tuners in the sport. Emery made his bones with Rich Guasco’s “Pure Hell” blown Chevy and later in blown Chrysler Fuel Altereds. He was a consistent winner on the West Coast, with his Fuel Altered win at the 1968 Hot Rod Magazine championships being the probable topper. He drove Top Fuel and Funny Car, winning the 1973 NHRA Winternationals Funny Car title. He retired a few years later, heading up three-time NHRA Funny Car champ’s “Blue Max” team, a group where he was the crew chief.
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ENGLISH-FRAKES-FUNK; Dale Funk was the driver for the famed "Kentucky Moonshiners," winning the A/Comp title at the 1968 NHRA Nationals. The team switched to Top Gas in 1971, winning a number of Division 3 points races with speeds approaching 205 mph. In 1971, Funk switched to Top Fuel where he lasted until his 1976 retirement. In 1974, he was IHRA Top Fuel World Champion and the NHRA Summernationals Top Fuel champ. He had another great year in 1975, winning the NHRA Gatornationals and the Popular Hot Rodding magazine title.

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Open House, Sunday, February 17, 2013, 11AM to 2PM, 498 DW Highway (US3), Merrimack, New Hampshire. It will be held in the historic Pynenburg garage, Exit #11 from Everett Turnpike, then north on DW (US3) for 3 miles. Check out our nostalgic facility and equipment. Excuse the CNC plasma machine, digital miller and some other modern concessions. Chat with our customers and our customer cars will be on display - weather permitting. Inspect our craftsmanship and procedures. We specialize in components and complete rolling chassis for Front Engine Dragsters, REDs, Nostalgia Funny Cars, Altereds, Land Speed Race Cars, Street Rods. We can also provide you with off-the-shelf items from numerous race car and hot rod suppliers. Enjoy snacks, soft drinks and product giveaways. Here are some upcoming local nostalgia events: 4 "club" events (May, July, August, September) at New England Dragway, Gassah Guys at Winterport, Nostalgia Dragster Invitational at Oxford Plains, Orange Drag Reunion 330 Nationals at Fitchburg, Inaugural NHRA New England Hot Rod Reunion at New England Dragway. Gil Coraine gil1320@yahoo.com.

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Ron Main sent in a link to a video of the 2012 CHRR Cacklefest at Famoso Raceway in October. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lUP6w7wIPtA.

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I remember the times when you could drive to the track, tape up the headlights, get a number and go thru tech inspection, and be off to practice. Hopefully you did well and ended up in good enough shape to drive it home with your trophy tucked away behind the seat. I have added a page to my web site; www.classicvintagemotorsports.com, featuring Production Sports Car racing photographs. Ron Nelson at ron@prairiestreetart.com, info@prairiestreetart.com.

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Petersen Automotive Museum presents new exhibit fins called Form without Function. Today fins are remembered as the outward expression of American automotive design prowess during the height of postwar optimism. But they were first used far earlier than most would imagine. This exhibit, opening February 23, will feature more than a dozen vehicles ranging from icons like the 1959 Cadillac and Exner-designed Chrysler to the impossibly Art Deco 1937 Delage Aerosport and wild 1952 Spohn Palos. Together, they speak to a period of automotive history during which the public craved chrome-laden dream machines and imagination was the stylist’s only limit. The complete list of vehicles in the exhibit include: 1937 Delage, 1948 Cadillac, 1951 Crosley Skorpion, 1951 Ford X-51, 1953 Spohn, c. 1956 Cosmic Concept Mystery Car, 1957 Chrysler 300C, 1957 Toyota Toyopet, 1958 Dual Ghia, 1956 Lone Star Meteor (boat), 1959 Cadillac, 1959 GSM Dart Alfa, 1960 Electric Shopper, and 1962 Chaika. For more information, call 323/930-CARS or visit the Museum's Website at: www.petersen.org.

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Hope you had a memorable time with Parker today at the Phoenix NHRA drag races. I remember my first local drag race at National Trail Raceway when I was only 11 (1968) like it was yesterday. We watched local racers like "Ohio" George Montgomery, Larry Morgan, Jeg Coughlin Sr., Bob Riffle, K.S. Pittman, Jim Thompson and many others whose uncorked headers shook the hills of central Ohio like a spring thunder storm...I was HOOKED.
My brother and I had no money, so we hitchhiked over 30 miles to the track & snuck under the fence to gain access to the pits & racers. A lot changed over the years as Steve eventually worked for JEGS, Gil Kirk's Rod Shop, Scott Griffen motorsports and other racers. He will soon retire from General Electric's nuclear power division as a welding engineer after 25+ years.
The attached photo is the first dragster I saw at National Trails, driven by Gordon "Collecting" Collett, a hometown hero who dominated Top Gas in the 60's. Steve and I eventually became "swet for admission" pit crew members for Gordon…a true legend of the sport who often raced your host today, Connie "The Bounty Hunter" Kalitta, back in the day. We used to hide in Gordon's trailer entering race tracks to avoid paying admission fees since racing funds were tight. (Yes, I know I'm old!)
If your son's first drag race was half as great as mine, I'm sure he will be a quarter-mile fan for life. Glad you got the VIP treatment you deserve, rather than sneaking in like Steve & I had to do…you could not have a better host than Bob Lawson & all the great folks at Kalitta Racing.
Eric Studer

Parker's first NHRA race - Gordon
Gordon Collett checks his Top Gas rail at Indy Nationals.

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