NEWSLETTER 325 - May 30 , 2014
Editors-in-Chief:Jack &  Mary Ann Lawford www.landspeedracing.com
President of the Society: Jim Miller, 1-818-846-5139.
Assistant Editor: Richard Parks, Rnparks1@Juno.com
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:
President's Corner; Editorials;

GUEST EDITORIAL, by Dyno Don Batyi:   
     The California Senate Bill-1077, known as the Mileage Tax presented by Bill DeSaulnier-D moved to the Senate Appropriations Committee and has been placed in the Suspense File and no hearing date has been set.  I did not expect this.  Moving the bill to the suspense file means it is all but dead.  If it is not put back on the committee’s agenda for review it will die at the end of its term.  I received the following from the President of the ACCC:     
     "Good Morning, Good news.  Not only was SB1183 sent to Suspense; SB1077 was also sent to Suspense in the Senate Appropriations Committee Monday May 12, 2014.  We will continue to watch and oppose both bills.  In the meantime I will send a letter of opposition to the Senate Appropriations Committee Chair and encourage our membership to do the same.  Senator Kevin De Leon can be reached at; 916-651-4022.    Rex."  Let’s hope this one doesn't come back, but I fear it will at a later date.  
     As the Mileage Tax Bill is in Senate Appropriations Committee and has been placed in the Suspense File and no hearing date has been set, I thought I would report on the Ethanol fight.  As you know, I oppose ethanol in gasoline for many reasons but our Hobby is an important one.  Our Classics simply cannot handle higher ethanol content.  At 10% we now have to add additives to the gas to neutralize the corrosive effects on parts not compatible with ethanol.  The EPA is going to make some sort of decision in June.   Below are some clips from an article I received from Bob Stearns, a past president of the Assn. of CA Car Clubs (ACCC) and a link if you would like to read the entire article.
     "When U.S. drivers fill their tanks with ethanol, they are essentially buying fermented corn grown by American farmers."  (Bob Stearns)  This statement isn't exactly correct.  Large NY Stock Exchange farm companies & distillers are the backing ethanol lobby.  "A 2007 law requires gasoline makers to add increasing amounts of the biofuel to the U.S. fuel supply.... advocates have backed plant-based biofuels as a greener source of energy."  (Bob Stearns)  Other than corn based is virtually nonexistent.   "However, rising costs and competition for resources have led some regulators to propose a reduction in the ethanol requirement."  (Bob Stearns)    Bravo, but it needs to be eliminated.
     According to Bob Dinneen, head
of the ethanol trade group the "Renewable Fuels Association," is that corn absorbs the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide as it grows.  ".....are produced from agricultural crops and residues that are taking carbon out of the air, something petroleum can't claim," Dinneen said.  This is bunk!  I have driven and flown across Iowa and Nebraska and I could not believe my eyes, miles and miles of corn fields. If it isn't happening now it ain't gonna happen.   "Ethanol has a flock of critics.  Poultry and other meat producers say their animals are now competing with ethanol for the corn supply. That has raised corn prices and costs for raising livestock."  Hobey Bowen, president of the Virginia Poultry Federation, said, "So, this policy has contributed to inflation, food inflation."  I only do a little bit of our shopping, but I can't believe some of the prices for corn based products in the grocery store!
     "Most U.S. gasoline currently contains 10 percent ethanol. Raising it to 15 percent would be one way to meet the law's requirements. But some cars may not be able to handle a higher mix of ethanol.  If you have a car that was designed to use E-10, and that fuel pump [in your car] is not compatible with E-15, it could leave you on the side of the road stranded."  Very true.  "The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing to lower the ethanol requirement for this year."  Dinneen, of the Renewable Fuels Association, says that's a bad idea.  Dinneen says Congress passed the law intending to drive major changes in where the United States gets its fuel.  These new biofuels can be made from garbage, corn cobs, or other plant matter, which could end the food-versus-fuel debate. http://www.voanews.com/content/alternative-fuel-ethanol-hits-a-wall-/1911796.html.  What fuels our cars in the coming years may use hinge on EPA's final decision, expected in June."
     However I don't think so.  This political battle will go on much longer; neither side will give up that easy.  One of our main problems is voter apathy; definition; "indifference, lack of concern."  As a Republic, we vote for representatives to represent us.  If we do not let them know how we feel, we are doing only half our job as citizens.  Please contact your Federal Congressman and Senator and let them know you appose ethanol in gasoline.    
STAFF EDITORIAL, by Richard Parks.
     The purpose behind California Senate Bill 1077, also known as the Mileage Tax Bill is to place the burden on drivers who use the highways the most to pay more in taxes.  The legislature is attempting to alleviate the crowded roads and freeways and raise revenue to expand our motoring needs.  The problem with this over-wieldy law is that there is a simpler way of doing so, simply by doing nothing.  Since taxes are levied on gasoline at the pump, the more gasoline you use the more taxes you pay.  Going to a mileage system, with electronic monitoring devices achieves no better result, but adds a highly complex system, more employees to the state and a high level of anxiety.
     I don’t believe the Mileage Tax Bill’s intention was to create fairness.  The system is already fair.  The purpose is to create a tiered level of taxation.  A lower fee for your cronies and a higher fee for those you don’t like or who won’t support your re-election.  California State officials and elected representatives have passed a number of bills aimed at reducing pollution by reducing cars on the road and pressuring us to use public transportation.  I can just see you pulling your LSR car to the lakes behind a Greyhound bus or high speed rail line built just for us to El Mirage.  Public officials see
a ’32 roadster as a dinosaur, one that has outlived its usefulness and is a gross polluter.  From their standpoint getting rid of a lot of old cars reduces pollution, but that isn’t true, because there just aren’t that many vintage cars on the road and they are not driven a lot of miles.  Even 1980 and 1990’s cars will someday have a legion of fans who want them. 
     Pollution isn’t increased by the number of cars as much as it is by the INCREASE in the state population.  Each time we increase the population we increase the desire for more cars.  You can’t expect new arrivals to California, by birth or immigration to forego owning a car in order to stop increasing amounts of pollution.  Prosperity also increases the demand for cars, and you can expect someone with only one car to want a second or a third car if their income rises.  So the current system won’t reduce cars on the road unless the elected representatives outright ban them and if they did there would be a recall election.
     The real reason for a mileage tax is to raise taxes to such a height that we decide to voluntarily give up our cars and ride the bus, walk, carpool or bike to work.  How would they do that?  It is simple.  The lawmakers would pass a low tax on anyone driving less than 10,000 miles a year.  They would double the tax on the next 10,000 miles and triple the tax on the next 10,000 miles.  Voters who aren’t taxed much will vote for the people passing the tax, because it doesn’t affect them.  Those that drive a ton of miles may rise up in revolt, but there won’t be enough of them to change the political status quo.  Our state representatives have stated in the past that we ought to live close to our work and walk or bicycle to our jobs.  This is the real reason for the new tax system and just because the officials were scared off this time doesn’t mean that they won’t try to ram this down our throats in the future.
     Lawmakers in power in Sacramento subscribe to a philosophy called the Sustained Communities program.  It is rather beguiling and right out of the socialist philosophies of the 1950’s.  I remember reading and enjoying the book Walden II, a utopian novel written by behavioral psychologist B. F. Skinner, first published in 1948.  The community consisted of families all living together in a socialist paradise.  The people lived in apartments within walking distance of their work and social areas.  There was no crime, pollution and everyone worked and shared equally.  There were also few cars and it seems no one ever took any trips outside the commune.  I loved the book, but the only problem with it is that as a system it has never worked, so long as people loved their individuality.  That’s why the Mileage Act is so tempting to socialists as a way to remake society.  But in order to remake society the state has to get rid of anything that promotes mobility and that means THE CAR.  Someday, if the lawmakers succeed, the only cars we may ever see again will be in museums, or hidden on some ranch, buried in a barn.
Legendary Indy mechanic A.J. Watson dies.  Written by Jim Donnelly, Hemmings, May 13th, 2014.  Sent in by Anna Marco.  Photographs can be seen at Hemmings.com.   
     If Harry A. Miller and the Duesenberg brothers were the first geniuses of the front-engine American championship racing car, then Abraham Jacob Watson – the other icon of Indianapolis racing who went by the initials of A.J. – was surely the last. He died Monday, just four days after his 90th birthday.
     A.J. Watson, a profoundly laid-back and approachable guy known for his flat-top coiffure, was one of the last links to the great front-engine era at the Indianapolis 500. He’d driven – briefly, in California following a sojourn from his native Ohio – but achieved immortality as a fabricator, crew chief and mechanic. The offset front-engine roadsters that he designed and built were the ultimate expression of the traditional front-engine pavement car at the top level of American racing. Watson admitted that he took the principles of Frank Kurtis and Eddie Kuzma, among others, and made them better. A lot better. Before the rear-engine revolution conquered Indianapolis in the middle of the 1960s, it was commonplace for Watson roadsters to make up nearly the entire field at the Indianapolis 500.
     Watson fielded his first Indianapolis entry, the
City of Glendale Special, for Dick Rathmann in 1950. Rathmann finished next to last. Things got better. The final record shows that Watson won the Indianapolis 500 five times as a builder or crew chief, plus three USAC national titles. Arguably, his greatest success came after he refused to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma, to work for owner John Zink. Instead, he persuaded Bob Wilke to enter the sport with a new team, Leader Cards Racing, which won the 500 twice with Rodger Ward up. He was probably even more famous for his association with the other A.J., surname Foyt, who helped Watson mark his birthday last weekend at Indy. Foyt won his first two 500s aboard Watson roadsters. The second, in 1964, marked the final victory for a front-engine car at Indianapolis. Fittingly, a lot of Watson roadsters enjoyed second acts in their racing lives on the Supermodified circuit along the Great Lakes, their original Offenhauser racing engines swapped out for fuel-injected big-block Chevrolets.
STAFF NOTES; The following was sent in by Roy C. Morris.  Brickyard Invitational to honor A.J. Watson by the National Speed Sport News staff.  
     The Sportscar Vintage Racing Ass
ociation (SVRA) will honor legendary Indianapolis 500 mechanic and car builder A.J. Watson by awarding the A.J. Watson Tribute Trophy during the Brickyard Invitational vintage race event at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) June 6-8.  The Brickyard Invitational weekend will be the largest gathering of race cars ever assembled for competition in America. The SVRA has 11 groups of cars spanning 100 years of vintage machines and all will be in action at IMS. Most of the races will take place on the Speedway’s 2.43-mile Grand Prix road course but for the first time in history cars will be at speed on both the world-famous 2.5-mile oval and the road course on the same day. All cars will have a chance to tour the oval at speed, including the crowd-favorite 1950’s-vintage Indianapolis 500 roadsters.  “Honestly I think that even for those of us who were not around for the roadster era at Indy those cars are still the ultimate iconic Indianapolis 500 race car,” said SVRA President and CEO Tony Parella. “No one is more recognized for his roadsters than the great A.J. Watson and we simply want to honor him.”
     Watson roadsters won the Indianapolis 500 six times with some of the greatest names of the sport at the wheel: Pat Flaherty (1956), Rodger Ward (1959 & ‘62), Jim Rathmann (1960), Parnelli Jones (1963) and A.J. Foyt (1964). Watson reached the zenith of his career when team owner Ralph Wilke formed the Leader Card Team in 1959. Wilke combined Watson’s incomparable mechanical talents with Ward’s immense driving skills. The press loved it, dubbing the trio, “The Flying W’s.” Watson, who first came to IMS in 1948, led Indianapolis 500 race teams through 1984 and returned frequently afterwards as a consultant to teams. Demand for his roadsters remains strong and collectors purchased new ones that Watson constructed well into his eighties. He was inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame in 1996 and passed away May 12.
     The SVRA is forming a special team of judges who will review roadsters at IMS during the Brickyard Invitational weekend. The cars will be judged on appearance, function and historical significance and the winner will be called, “best roadster.” The SVRA is recruiting veterans of the Indianapolis 500 to serve as judges and those names will be released soon. Parnelli Jones, who won the 1963 Indianapolis 500 in a Watson roadster, will serve as Brickyard Invitational Grand Marshal for the weekend. Three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Bobby Unser will lead the Brickyard Invitational high-speed oval experience, which is open to all Brickyard Invitational cars including the roadsters.
     The Brickyard Invitational has over 700 race cars on its entry list. It boasts exquisite examples of select pre-war machines, classic sports cars, Formula One and endurance prototypes as current as 2009. The feature event of the weekend is the “Indy Legends Pro-Am,” an intriguing competition for as many as 24 veterans of the Indianapolis 500. This will be a 40-minute race of American muscle cars utilizing the IMS Grand Prix road course on Sunday, June 8. The cars for the Pro-Am will be 1963 to 1972 vintage Corvettes, Camaros and Mustangs of “Group 6,” with an engine displacement limit of 355 cubic inches. The Indianapolis 500 veterans will be paired with amateur drivers, each taking a 20-minute stint. Five minutes will be allotted for driver change.
     Donald "Duck" Pennington was born on December 19, 1942 and passed away on April 13, 2014.  "Those who knew him loved him and relished his brilliance and wit."  Donald Pennington of Vancouver, Washington, passed away at the age of 71.  He was born in Hollywood, California and moved to the Pacific Northwest in the 1960's.  Don had a lifelong love of street rods, car racing, baseball, and WWII history.  He was a master pinstriper, sign maker, automotive artist of many mediums, and author.  His creative genius was endless and his art prolific.  Don found the perfect companion in his wife, Shirleen and best friend in his daughter, Tracey. He is survived by them and 3 golden retrievers (Roscoe, Brinklee and Duke).  A private memorial rod run will be held on Saturday, May 24, 2014 in Vancouver, WA.  In lieu of flowers, please donate to his memorial account under Shirleen Pennington at any Chase bank.  Please sign his guest book at: www.columbian.com/obits.  Logo published in The Columbian on May 18, 2014 - See more at:
TONY SETTEMBER.  By Art Evans.  Reprinted from the Fabulous 50’s Newsletter.
     Tony Settember died on May 4, 2015. He was 87 years old. His wife, Patti, survives. Tony had not only an amateur, but also a professional racing career that lasted for more than ten years. His first was at the one race we had at the Glendale airport in 1955 where he drove his own MG Special. His last was in the Riverside Trans-Am in 1968.  Perhaps Tony’s most memorable race during the fifties was the April 22, 1956 Pebble Beach. It was also the first race that he won. It was the Cypress Point Handicap event for production cars over 1500cc.  Competition was serious.  SCCA National Champion Dr. Dick Thompson came with an unofficially-entered factory Corvette. Walt Hansgen and Roy Storey also had Corvettes. In addition to Tony’s 300SL, there were two others. West Coast Champ Jim Peterson was among 14 Jaguars. At the start, Thompson led, but after six laps his brakes faded and Tony inherited the lead and won with Thompson second and Peterson third. 
     At that time, Settember owned a Mercedes Benz dealership in Ontario.  He campaigned a 300SL until 1958 in 17 races, winning four of them. Just for driving fun, he bought a new 1957 Corvette from the GM dealer in Ontario. His was the first 4-speed fuel-injected car. He started racing Corvettes in 1958 and continued for the rest of the 50’s.  In 1960, he went to Europe and drove a Maserati-engined Formula Two car owned by Hugh Powell. After testing at Modena, he won the Naples GP in the rain. Powell sold the car so Tony returned to California and drove Corvettes through 1962 winning six races. Powell entered Tony and co-driver Jack Turner in the 1962 Le Mans. After 11 hours, the transmission lost two gears and then, after 150 laps, the engine gave up. Although they were a DNF, they were scored 30th overall and 12th in the GT class. 
     Through 1968, Settember drove a number of different cars for various owners. In 1966, it was back to Europe again at the Targa Florio, the Nurburgring and Le Mans, but without good finishes. During 1967 and ‘68, he drove professionally for Webster Racing in a March and a Lola.  Tony was born in the Philippines in 1926.  When WWII came along, he joined the U.S. Army. While serving in the Philippines, he was captured by the Japanese, escaped, and hid in the hills until the war was over. After retiring from professional racing, Tony worked at various jobs until he moved to Reno in 2003. When he passed away, he was working at his favorite job: selling classic cars at Sierra Classics & Imports.  Services are planned for June 6 at 10 a.m. at the Fernley Nevada Military Cemetery in Reno, Nevada followed by a gathering at his daughter’s home, at 1 pm.

JIM JEFFORDS.  By Art Evans.  Reprinted from the Fabulous 50’s Newsletter.
     Born in 1926, Jim’s family lived in Milwaukee only a few blocks from the Milwaukee Mile. After discharge, he came home, got married and had four children . . . all boys. Going from job to job to support his family, he ended up selling used cars. One day, an XK120 Jaguar showed up on the lot. After demonstrating it a number of times, he ended up buying it himself.  Like many of us, he decided to race it. His first event was in 1954. It turned out that Jim was a natural behind the wheel. In 1955, he won 14 out of the 17 races he ran. In 1956, John Fitch had run the Corvette team at Sebring, showing they could be real sports cars. Jeffords wanted to get on board, so he called Chevrolet Chief Engineer Ed Cole and asked, “How can I get on the team, Mr. Cole? 
     Because of his record in his Jaguar, Jim was asked to drive a factory-backed and dealer-entered Corvette in the June 24, 1956 SCCA June Sprints at Road America. But a week before the race, he was told that the car was not ready, so he entered his Jaguar. Jeffords remembered that “There were Corvettes in front of me, Corvettes behind me. When the flag dropped, all the Corvettes just disappeared.” Determined, however, one by one, he passed all but the leader, Dr. Dick Thompson. Towards the end, he was gaining and had the Thompson Corvette in sight. But on the last lap, when he was just about to pass, the Jag engine failed. As he sputtered across the finish line in second place, the crowd cheered as if he had won. Jeffords was later to recall he thought it was his best race ever.
     Back in the pits, Ed Cole was impressed and Jeffords got his Corvette ride. After a number of drives in 1956, he joined the 1957 factory team at Sebring. Jim and his co-drivers finished second in class and 15th overall, helping GM win the Team Prize. In 1957, the Big Three, including GM, decided to stop sponsoring race teams. So Nickey Chevrolet, a Chicago dealership, stepped up and retained Jeffords. SCCA races were for amateurs, so his only payment was reimbursement for expenses. “Purple People Eater” was a popular song at the time. As a marketing gimmick, Jeffords’ Nickey Corvettes became the famous “Purple People Eaters.”  In 1958 and again in 1959, Jim won the SCCA National Championship. In order to do so, the team had to travel the country, competing in as many races as possible. August 1959 stood out in Jeffords’ memory. For some reason, SCCA scheduled two Nationals on the same weekend, one in Milwaukee, the other in Montgomery, N.Y. What a dilemma! Nickey sent cars to both. On Saturday, Jim won the B-Production race in Wisconsin, jumped into an airplane, and, with no practice and without qualifying, won his second National that same weekend in New York.
     Another memorable race was the July 1959 Kiwanis Grand Prix at Riverside. Bob Bondurant was entered in his old 1957 Corvette. (At the time, Bob worked as my Parts Manager at Evans Industries and I was there in my Devin SS.) On the last lap, Bob was leading when Jim, in an effort to catch up with Bob, passed a back-marker while a yellow flag was waving.  Bondurant took the checker 40 feet ahead of Jim. Bob was the winner with Jim second. Nickey Chevrolet was going to protest because Bob was running on illegal tires: Gardner-Reynolds retreads. Race Chairman Jim Peterson told Nickey that if they pursued the protest, Jeffords would be disqualified because he had passed on the yellow. So Nickey backed off. Later, however, Nickey protested directly to SCCA at Westport and John Bishop sent a letter, dated September 24, 1959, upholding the protest and giving the win to Jeffords. Years later, Jim and Bondurant were together at a party. Jim remarked that, “I flat out couldn’t catch you that day, Bob. You came out of the pack and just blew by me and I couldn’t believe it. You won that race.
     In 1960, Jeffords joined “Lucky” Casner’s CAMORADI USA team. His first race was in the 1960 Grand Prix of Havana. Jim won the production-car race and took his victory lap with Fidel Castro’s son holding the checkered flag. This was the last time a race has been held in Cuba. At Sebring that March, Jeffords and co-driver Bill Wuesthoff drove the Havana Corvette to second in class. Then in June, Casner entered Jim at Le Mans in a Birdcage Maserati. While running in 40th, he went off course, got sand in the gearbox and was a DNF. That fall at Riverside, again in the Birdcage, Jeffords was 4th.  Before the 1961 season started, Jim was struck with an allergy that almost killed him. He was in intensive care for nine months. That ended his racing career. In 2001, he was inducted into the Corvette Hall of Fame.
     Jeffords wasn’t only an excellent race driver, he was also a successful businessman, doing very well in real estate as well as with his advertising agency. Although he maintained a home in Milwaukee, in later years, he lived much of the time in Palm Springs. I had a winter home there too and we became fast friends. I remember parties at one house he had across the street from Bob Hope.  Unfortunately, Jim was plagued with health problems during the last years of his life. In 2001 he was diagnosed with cancer and his doctor gave him only a few months to live, so he decided to have a “pre-wake” party to say farewell to friends. John Morton and I were invited and John flew us to Palm Springs in his Beachcraft Debonaire. But the occasion was premature as Jeffords was to live for 13 more years. During those years, however, he was afflicted with many health challenges. Finally, however, it caught up with him and he passed away on March 6, 2014. He was 88 years old. 
     Do the competition numbers on a car go to a registry and can they be researched as to the car/driver history?  Mark Holdaway
     MARK: At the time of competition, in whatever league the drivers are competing in, such as NHRA, SCTA, etc the car numbers are assigned and after a run the ET, speed and other components of a race or time trial are recorded.  But what happens to those registration numbers and the results after the race is over is uncertain.  They have been lost over time in many racing associations.  Sometimes they are kept as part of a historical record by societies dedicated to saving past records, or painstakingly re-created by men such as Jim Miller in the SCTA, Leslie Long on the dry lakes and for the Santa Ana Airport Drag Strip and Bob Frey for NHRA National Meet records.  Jim Miller goes to great lengths to try and create a registry of land speed cars, the names of their drivers, owners and crew, license plates on cars photographed at the lakes and other data.  This information he uses to identify old photographs that he finds.  His email address is
Miller212.842@sbcglobal.net and maybe he can answer your question more fully.
     I was at El Mirage Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  Not a good El Mirage May.  You likely know by now that the meet got "blown out."  Lots of folks came a long way and many did not get to run.   We had two members, first time El Mirage, who came from Northern California and Colorado that did not get to make a pass due to the wind, holds and cancellation of the meet.  On a very positive note, I did get to meet and spend time talking with Kaylin Stewart and her Dad.  Kaylin is a most impressive young lady. Fantastic that she is pursuing Land Speed Racing!   Jerry Cornelison
     Here are some photos on last week’s meet at El Mirage, May 2014, an album on Flickr; 
Steve Metz, Staging Lane Productions, Monrovia, California 91017.
     Thank you again for all of your help with this.  I hope you enjoy the show. 
http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/channel/episodes/breaking-barriers/.   Jillian Bergman
READERS: Be sure to follow the National Geographic special on breaking barriers.  They always do a nice job of reporting.
     This is the Bloodhound SSC Car that a British team will attempt to break the Land Speed Record and the 1000 mph barrier in South Africa later this year or early next year. 
http://www.bloodhoundssc.com/project/car.   John Hutchinson, England
     Speed Demon is now using the latest aero from GM.  Speed Demon teamed up with the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, or NACA, for this 1941 film reel titled "Taking the Air." NACA was founded in 1915 to stimulate aeronautical research; before it was replaced by NASA, it gave us the legendary NACA duct -- which has appeared on some of favorite automobiles, like the Ferrari F40 and Lamborghini Espada.     http://www.autoweek.com/article/20140516/CARNEWS01/140519872?utm_source=DailyDrive20140516 &utm_medium=enewslett.  Ron Main
     We have just confirmed that ERC Racing Fuels will be at the Salt July 11-13, 2014.  He will be bringing his pickup truck and 5th wheel trailer.  So we now have gas and fuel.  Gary & Ellen Wilkinson Utah Salt Flats Racing Association World of Speed September 6-9, 2014
     A few weeks ago I was having fun with ft-lbs vs pounds feet terminology One of the members said, hey, we can get pins made.  So why not?  If I had a few zillion of them made, would any of you purchase them?  Printing seems to be fairly cheap, but, not free.  An inch pin at 500 quantity runs about $1.25 or so each.   I could have that many made but as you can see that would be about 750 bucks and I really, really don’t want to eat that much at all if nobody buys them.  I would send them out at my cost plus shipping or mail or carrier pigeon.  So, any interest out there and for how many pins so I can try and make a good decision which doesn’t kill my pocket book.  Larry Mayfield 
LARRY: I may have misunderstood your question but I have an answer anyway.  When I ran the Boat Racers Reunion we had enameled pins made and sold about 300 sets of 5 pins.  That exhausted the market for old wooden boat racers and the best that we could do was to donate the rest (300 sets) to the Motorsports Museum.  They couldn't even give them away.  So if it is collectibles or car parts, find out what the market will bear before you invest.  Unless you have an understanding wife who will let you fill your spare bedrooms and garage with "stuff."

     High school students from northern California get the chance to race against police officers at the drag strip.  Read the article and see the videos at www.racingjunk.com
My Biography.  Written by Anna Marco.
     Anna Marco is a multifaceted media professional.  She is a credited feature editor for automotive and culture magazines, a professional makeup artist/stylist/ actress/model and advertising expert with a lifetime of experience in the entertainment industry.   Anna's extensive professional credits include 47 theater/film/TV crew credits and authorship of over 550 print/PR projects for such clients as: Koolhouse Publishing, Warner Brothers, MGM, Disney-ImagineFilms, Petersen Publishing Company, Chevrolet Trucks, Harley Davidson, 20th Century-Fox Studios, The Glendale Center Theater, The NFL and The City of Los Angeles. 
     As a published author/photojournalist, currently on staff for the past 9 years at Koolhouse Publishing as the Senior Feature Editor of Ol Skool Rodz and Car Kulture Deluxe Magazines, she is also responsible for Key Makeup/hair and styling for photo shoots.  She is a member of the AARWBA (American Auto Racing Writers & Broadcasters Association) and credited with editorial contributions online and in print for clients such as Apparel News, AOL, Hot Rod Harley's, Tikilounge Magazine, SmokinShutdown, Kustom, Turning Wheels, Horse: Backstreet Choppers, Renegade, and Hot Vettes Magazines among others.
     She is a contributor to five automotive books (Watson’s Custom Car Confessions, Old School Customs, America’s Coolest Wagons, Custom Cars, Hot Rods).  Anna formerly worked with Robert Petersen at Petersen Publishing for nine years for the Petersen Automotive Group in various capacities with renowned automotive industry professionals Harry Hibler, Lee & Aaron Lasky, John Dianna, Gray Baskerville, and DeEtte Crow. She was a longtime staff member at Rod & Custom Magazine under editor and automotive historian, Pat Ganahl.
     Anna has personally raised over $30,000 for various charity organizations. She curates the annual artwork series for the Save The Salt Foundation in collaboration with various artists such as Tick One, Ben Von Strawn, Squindo and Ruben Duran; She is active in military fundraisers for veterans and cancer patients. She has created a series of hot rod and pinup posters entitled “Altered Art” and “The Wrench Wenches” that are frequently donated for free. Her most recent project is a personal poster for legendary drag racer, Mousie Marcellus (A/FA Winged Express (fuel altered). She has performed as a print model and film/TV actress for Pennzoil, Hot Rod TV, Speed Scene Live and The Treasures of Long John Gone among others.
     Her current ongoing role as “Anna Octane” acts as a spokesperson geared to promote the heritage and showmanship of Nostalgia Drag Racing at racetracks worldwide. After befriending, Linda Vaughn “Queen of Motorsports” at Famoso Raceway, Anna resurrected Linda’s unique Miss Hurst Golden Shifter racetrack style as a tribute to her and to honor her contributions to auto racing. Today, Anna is a primary “Revelette” for The Byrd Team modified fuel roadster that originally raced at Lions Drag strip. The 7-second racecar ran Lions Drag Strip in 1968 and now pays homage to the 1960’s Golden Era of Drag Racing. The car has appeared and match raced at nostalgia events for over 25 years. Anna makes promotional appearances at local automotive events in the Los Angeles area and continues to assist in the production of various automotive film projects as a consultant and is recipient of two Best Backup Babe awards at the 2012 Nitro Nostalgia Reunion (Taupo Dragway, New Zealand) She is seen on the cover of Petrolhead Magazine (NZ).
     Anna Marco is a former member of Women in Film and co-recipient of the AFMA Award for period correct makeup and hair on a 1930s era film (Birth of Babylon, Best Short Film, WorldwideCompetition) at The American Film Market. Anna is a member of SEMA and The Assn. of California Car Clubs. She is founder of an all women car club called the Wrench Wenches that promotes women in hot rodding. She retains memberships in The Studebakers Drivers Club and West Coast Kustoms. She has been commended for her work with the US Military by the 5th Special Forces Group  (Airborne) based at Ft. Campbell, Kentucky “for her unwavering support of gear heads Army wide.”  For more information see: www.IMDB/Anna Marco and
www.facebook/AnnaMarco or www.AnnaMarcoPhotography.com.


Me!  Written by Anna Marco 
     Bo Huff calls me “The Mother of All Rat Rods,” and Larry Watson called me “Hollywood Anna.”  I'm a real 36F’s in 4-inch heels; “I like my heels high and my cars low.”  My occupation is: Sr. Feature Editor, Car Kulture Deluxe & Ol Skool Rodz Magazines, (Koolhouse Publishing).
     The Boss, Geno DiPol, took a risk and published my first story “Hellbent Lucy” for Ol Skool Rodz.  He’s been stuck with me ever since.  Lucky me.   Without Managing Editor Alan Mayes, I’d mumble words (he always says “Resource: Strunk & Whites Elements of Style”).  Art Director Pablo Colomban makes me look good in print.  Koolhouse Publishing rocks; “Respect The House.”
     The tools of my trade are: Twenty-eight years of experience, one V8 motor, two Canon cameras and some baditude.  I started out with disposable cameras because no one would work for me.  Then I bought an old Sureshot from Doug Dorr for $100 and started shooting stuff myself.  Anything’s possible if you put your mind to it.
     My mentors include my mom Joan Petrone, Marne Carmean, Avery Zia, Nina Jacob and DeEtte Crow. These women made me get my act together.  I’m eternally grateful.  It’s been a long haul and Mom’s my hero.  What I do is talk a lot, roll around on asphalt next to cars, shoot pix, write funny stories until 2 am and work my butt off.  I’m always dirty.
     My hobbies are work because I love what I do.  Also flirt with boys, shop, and try to bribe artists such as Gene Winfield, Jr. Huff and Tick One to paint Barbie’s for me.  My favorite cars are radical customs and hot rods.  John Saltzman’s Atomitron Studebaker and Slim Cranford’s motorcycles are at the top of the list.  My favorite music is old rockabilly, blues and C/W (country western) stuff.  My favorite bands are Everlast or Tony C & The Truth.  I have a crush on Mad Max & The Wild Ones.  Who I’d like to have met would have been Von Dutch & Rat Fink.
     I hope my work makes people happy.  I made my bones at Rod & Custom Magazine and it took 9 years.  I chase hot rods for a living.  It’s not easy.  They go fast.  Used to crawl out the bedroom window and go to the street races despite being grounded.  My daily driver is still my hot rod from high school.  I’m glad the kustom kulture scene is mainstream now; Let's protect it.
    Joke: Guy walks into a bar carrying a piece of asphalt with him.  Lays the chunk on the bar and says, “One for me and one for the road.”  Last words: My job is taken. There is a Hot Rod God.  Zoom.  See: Anna Marco/Facebook.
Trophies Suck!  By Le Roi Tex Smith.  Reprinted with permission from Internet Brands and
     Yeah, I know. I’ve won a few so they don’t mean much to me.  Not so, bucko.  But it is the trophy itself that has no importance in my life.  I mean, winning something in hot rodding like the 9-footer at Oakland was significant, but way more of a milestone would be taking the top speed of the meet at the salt.  THAT is something.  Because it requires far more than parking on a cement floor and getting out the wax.  Don’t get me wrong, when you achieve the pinnacle of any sport or hobby, you've had to put in the effort.  Otherwise, just go to a sporting goods store and buy yourself an award. But a trophy seems to be all the less important the larger it becomes.  At least, the taller it becomes.  During the 1950’s and 1960’s, every little parking lot car show vied to present the tallest trophy around, usually something about the size of a broom stick, and as meaningless.  I got a ton of them.
     But I had a solution to the problem of ownership: I gave them away soon as I got home.  Every kid in the neighborhood wanted a trophy, and they would eagerly haul anything shiney to their bedroom. Usually for no more than an overnight, when they would come sheepishly back to my garage proclaiming that their mom wouldn’t let them have any more pieces of wood and plastic.  Damn, what then?  I solved that problem by breaking the awards down.  The plaque could often be removed and nailed to some convenient 2X4 in the garage.  The wood was often good hardwood, so I had a large box for those pieces (although I don’t remember ever having reused the wood).  The tinfoil and other cheap metals found the trash, and then I could often slip the kids the car or winged lady or whatever was left.
     Way back when, if you won a roundy round heat race, you got to be in the main event.  If you won that, you probably got a two dollar trophy and a five dollar bill.  You deep sixed the trophy immediately, or better yet, sold it back to the promoter for a buck. This is why I have steadfastly refused to give away meaningless trophies at the drags or the lakes or the car shows.  If I pick a car, it is usually for safety, or for imaginative engineering.  Not for shiney paint or flashy threads!  For that very reason, there is usually all kinds of background muttering when I give an award.  But I don’t give a damn what joe lunchbox thinks, I care what the rod builders think.  Because they know what is going on, while average tire kicker is lucky to find his own ass with the paper.  Years ago I was close with Al Slonaker, producer of the Oakland Roadster Show, and he would ask me to MC his trophy awards program. He liked to accommodate the bike crowd, which served very well to keep Sonny Barger and his ilk from trashing the show. One time, I announced a motorcycle class winner, whereupon a biker chick strutted onstage, took the trophy, which was half glass, walked to the stage edge, and dropped it on the cement floor.  I never flinched, and the crowd never accommodated the female with any comment at all.  But, I kind of felt the same way about all the trophies.  Why bother?
     I think I have become too jaded by all this winner, second winner (first loser), etc. I like it as the LA Roadsters do their show.  Just give the exact same pewter beer mug, suitably inscribed, to every entrant.  Some guys I know have kept every one since the beginning.  I have a few scattered here and there, mostly as holders for pens and pencils.   One guy I know was a cameraman in Hollywood, and during the course of his career he had won several Emmys and Oscars.  He had them scattered throughout his house, and into the garage, as well.  Trophies.  Big whoopee do!  You can’t eat trophies.

Gone Racin’…Drag Racing, Yesterday and Today; the Story of the World’s Fastest Sport, by Wally Parks   Book review by Richard Parks, photographic consultant Roger Rohrdanz

   Drag Racing, Yesterday and Today; the Story of the World’s Fastest Sport, by Wally Parks is the first and only book by the founder of the National Hot Rod Association.  Printed and published by Trident Press in New York City in 1966, this gem of a book has long been out of print and there are no book stores currently carrying it for sale.  At best you can find it on eBay and on rare occasions, in a used book store.  The original price was $4.95 and for years was purchased mainly by drag racing fans and family.  But like all things that have true value, over time such works become classics and a signed edition would probably sell for about one hundred times its original cost.  I have had three or four of the books in my library and mysteriously, they tend to disappear, hopefully into the hands of family and collectors who value them.   To be fair to the readers, Wally Parks was my father and thus it must be pointed out that I may have some tendency to be partial.  That being said, let’s look at the mechanics of the book and then an appraisal of its literary worth.  Wally Parks is the main author, but Lyle Kenyon Engel is the co-author and producer.  Dan Roulston, George Engel and Marla Ray did research, preparation and review of the material.  Drag Racing, Yesterday and Today is a hard-bound, red covered book with 240 pages, a dust cover jacket and a high-quality cloth binding.  There is no ISBN number assigned, but the Library of Congress Catalog number is 66-16184, though as I said, the book is very rare and not in any book store.  Dad told me once that 5000 copies were produced, but I can’t verify that for certainty.  There is a Table of Contents, a three page preface by Wally Parks, ten chapters, a five-page glossary of terms and an outstanding ten-page index.  There are 170 black and white photographs, but none in color.  The pages are a light bond, not the waxed paper that you find in quality pictorials, but the paper appears to be acid free and has not yellowed with age. 
Drag Racing, Yesterday and Today
has survived the test of time because it is a classic.  The dust cover jacket is white, black and red and is often lost, torn or destroyed.  Losing the dust cover jacket has not decreased the value of the book, but in the future it will.  There is a demand for another reprinting and the estate is considering doing just that.  The book is maroon colored with an embossed outline of a dragster.  The cloth binding is superior and that’s one reason that the copies of Drag Racing, Yesterday and Today have survived for four decades in such good shape.  Nearly all the copies that I’ve seen are in very good condition, though few dust cover jackets have survived.  Yes, I’m nagging the owner, take care of that dust cover jacket or the value of your copy will not rise as fast in the future as someone who has a well preserved sleeve.   Parks evidently looked into the future and guessed, correctly it seems, that readers would welcome a glossary of terms.  Many of the terms are still in use today and a few seem quaint and archaic.  The index is first class, ten pages and precise.  Whoever did the index is a master historian or secretary without equal.  The photographs are all in black and white.  They are as clear and crisp looking as is possible on non-waxed photographic paper.  This is one part of the book that could have been improved upon.  The captions are full, to the point and explanatory.  The photographs could stand alone, without the text, and yet still tell the story well.  Parks wrote the first few chapters and you can see an almost poetical style and zeal.  The rest of the book is a collaboration with the co-author and the structure becomes more fact-filled.  Perhaps the urge to fill this tiny book with all the knowledge of the new sport of drag racing made it imperative to skimp on the lyrical feelings so evident at the beginning.  Regardless, the book only suffers a slight reduction in readability towards the end.  By and large, the writing and construction are superior to what we have today.
   Drag racing evolved out of dry lakes land speed and illegal street racing.  Wally Parks had a burning desire to see order brought forth from chaos.  His talent lay in inspiring others to work together for the same goal, to save lives and create a sport that allowed men and women to build and race cars capable of great speed and performance.  He wasn’t the only pioneer in this field.  There were brilliant men and women who worked to make drag racing a sport that would become respected and loved by millions.  Drag Racing, Yesterday and Today tells the story of drag racing from its roots to the acceptance that it achieved by 1966, the year that the book was released.  A lot has happened since then to cement drag racing’s place in the pantheon of the world’s automotive sports.  Yet this book needs no other additions to explain to the public what inspired drag racing and why it is so important to men and women today.  The first two chapters describe the early dry lakes and land speed racing.  Many of the men and women, such as Ak Miller, Stu Hilborn, Otto Crocker, Karl and Veda Orr, Lou Baney, Chuck Potvin, Vic Edelbrock, Don Blair and others became well-known and prospered in manufacturing or other types of racing.  Chapter three tells about the need to find racing venues closer to the cities in an effort to get young people to give up illegal street racing and race on safe and sanctioned drag strips.  Chapter four talks about the Safety Safari, a group of young men sent out by Parks and the fledgling National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) that Parks created to teach car clubs how to put on safe drag races.  Bud Coons led a group composed of Eric Rickman, Chick Cannon and Bud Evans from one city to another across America to bring the NHRA’s principles to local car clubs.  Chapters five through ten explore the rapid growth and professionalization of drag racing, beyond the wildest dreams of the early founders.  Someday a sequel will be written that will bring the public up to date on the events that happened in the four decades after the book was published.  Very likely a second edition will be published.  If you are fortunate enough to come across an original copy of
Drag Racing, Yesterday and Today
, buy it and add it to your library.
Gone Racin’ is at
Gone Racin’…
Hot Rod Kings, Top Traditional Rod and Custom Builders, by Perry and Thomson.  Book review by Richard Parks, photographic consultant Roger Rohrdanz.   28 August 2007.

     An interesting and informative book on traditional rod and custom car builders is Hot Rod Kings, by David Perry and Kevin Thomson.  The book is 9 inches in width and 11 inches in height.  Hot Rod Kings is a hardbound book in a quality cloth binding along the spine and a nice dust cover jacket.  The price is $34.95, which isn’t bad for a hardbound book of this quality.  Be sure to keep the dust cover jacket in good shape as it gives the book a first class appearance.  Otherwise the book is a drab looking black with white lettering.  Hot Rod Kings was published by MBI Publishing Company, a subsidiary of Motorbooks, in St Paul, Minnesota.  The ISBN # is 13-978-0-7603-2738-8 and you can order it through most bookstores or call Autobooks/Aerobooks at 818-845-0707.  Hot Rod Kings is printed on high quality, heavy bond, waxed paper and this makes the photos stand out in rich texture.  There are 160 pages, with a Foreword by rock legend and car lover, Billy F. Gibbons.  Kevin Thomson writes the introduction and then there are ten chapters, one for each of the car builders who are portrayed.  Following that is a list of acknowledgments, a one-page history of the authors and an adequate and complete index.  Kevin Thomson is the writer and a fan of the car culture and music scene.  He is also a music songwriter.  David Perry is the photographer and has collaborated on many other books.  There are 230 color photographs, 8 posters, 4 drawings, 2 black and white photographs and 21 off-tone photos.  Perry does a good job of altering some of his photographs so that they appear to be color and yet fade into off-tones. 
     Hot Rod Kings is an effort by the authors to portray the traditional styles of custom hot rod building.  They have chosen eleven men to write about and honor.  The book is a visual feast and the writing is adequate, but the readers keep asking the question, “why these custom car builders?”  What is it that drew the author and photographer to these particular men?  Who are they and where are they located.  Perhaps the authors intended to touch just the surface and leave the discovery to us.  Custom car building has been around since the first car was junked and then recovered.  It changes from style to style as new men and ideas are formed and new tastes are developed.  The word traditional in the full title of the book rules out rat rodders and suede builders.  Traditional custom building in the sense that these cars are meant to be built and sculpted in ways that have come down to us through the history of the automotive age.  Traditional in the sense that they are the best that can be done and still be a hot rod that one can drive on the streets.  Don’t look for addresses, phone numbers or email addresses.  The authors are giving you a visual feast, not an ad for exceptional car builders.  Search the text and the photos for details if you must, but Perry and Thomson are creating a book meant to inspire, not send you out to purchase a hot rod.
     It’s not important to enumerate the chapters.  Each car customizer gets his own chapter.  They authors also honor one trimmer/upholsterer.  The first person to be reviewed is Cole Foster, who owns Salinas Boys and works out of Salinas, California.  Cole's father is the famed drag racer and dragster builder, Pat Foster.  Cole builds traditional motorcycles as well as hot rods.  Scott Mugford owns Blue Collar Customs and his shop is located somewhere in Northern Sacramento.  As the shop name implies, Mugford is comfortable with the work that he loves so much, but he never envisions himself as a street rod shop.  The Kennedy brothers, Joe and Jason, grew up in Southern California and were influenced by the So-Cal Speed shop.  Their work is 1940’s street rods and their music is 1980’s punk rock, with traditional California surfboards hanging from the ceiling of their Pomona shop.  Mercury Charlie Runnels and Sean Johnstun operate out of Austin, Texas.  Charlie builds and customizes and Johnstun creates stunning upholstery designs for cars and bikes.  His Fat Lucky’s pinstriping designs in leather steal the attention away from the cars.  Keith Tardel owns Rex Rod & Chassis, a shop somewhere in northern California.  Keith followed in the footsteps of his father, Vern Tardel and their tastes run all the way to Bonneville Salt Flats racing.  Rudy Rodriguez operates out of Orange, California.  He has done some serious chopping and his cars reflect a traditional Southern California look to them.  Rudy is a family man and his wife and sons reflect a car culture that is deeply felt by them.  Mike Smith owns California Hot Rods, and he also has a wife and two young sons imbued with a love of hot rodding.  Located in Sonora, California, Mike’s style is neat and tidy, like his business.  Jimmy White owns Circle City Hot Rods in Orange, California.  He left Boyd Coddington in 2002 to open his own shop and builds clean looking hot rods, with a special emphasis on his chassis work.  Gary Howard is the last of the star custom car builders and color is his passion.  His shop is located in Weir, Texas, just outside of Austin.  His 1950-60’s cars are exceptional and the paint schemes are top of the line.  Hot Rod Kings doesn’t explain why these men were chosen to represent the traditional hot rod designers and customizers.  However they found these artists, they chose very well.
Gone Racin’ is at
Gone Racin’…
Racing Outboards 1907-1989, A History of the Great Horsepower Race, by Don Peterson.  Book review by Richard Parks, photographic consultant Roger Rohrdanz.  28 August 2007.

     Racing Outboards 1907-1989, A History of the Great Horsepower Race is a recently published book by Donald W. Peterson, and covers outboard racing motors.  This book isn’t for everyone, especially those people who think of outboard boat racing engines as the poor man’s alternative to the big inboard engines and turbines.  There are, however, dedicated fans of outboard motorboat racing who will find this historical book on outboard engines to be fascinating.  Peterson has an easygoing style that makes his books interesting to the novice as well as the expert.  Racing Outboards 1907-1989, A History of the Great Horsepower Race is a paperback book measuring 8 inches wide and 10 inches in height, perfect for your shelves or as a coffee table book.  The cover shows two boats in the water, a modern outboard racing boat and one from the past and they are expertly doneRacing Outboards 1907-1989, A History of the Great Horsepower Race is 130 pages on white matte paper and published in 2006.  Peterson is the author, researcher and publisher for his series of books on motorboat racing and can be reached at 1-360-835-7499 or by email at .  Many of his books are available through the Hydroplane and Race Boat Museum in Kent, Washington.  You can find the website for the Museum on the Internet. 
     There are 251 black and white photos in the book, some which are clear and others that are grainy and hard to make out.  In addition there are 61 drawings, 31 Ads and posters and 13 diagrams and cut-away drawings.  The text is sometimes in the hand of the author and sometimes from other sources and writers.  There is a table of contents that list the preface, acknowledgments, 14 chapters, appendix, bibliography and index.  The author makes a good effort at creating a scholarly work while at the same time making it understandable and enjoyable to the fan of outboard motorboat racing.  The Index runs to two pages, but does not record every subject.  Many books do away with an index altogether, but Peterson tries to give the book a workable index.  The acknowledgment and bibliography provide the source material for the book.  The appendix gives the world’s record for the one-mile outboard class from 1925 to 1989.  The fourteen chapters separate the book into subject matter and important developments in outboard engines and the men who designed them.  The construction of the book itself does not seem to require chapters, as the book goes along a chronological history of the outboard engine. 
     Chapter One is called
The formative years and begins with Gustave Trouve’s first outboard engine in 1880.  Chapter Two is titled 1928 – The Banner year and discusses the 1928 Elto Quad that set many records.  Other outboard manufacturers bring out their models to compete with the Quad and Chapter Three discusses the heavy competition that ensues.  In a short span of time the rpm rise dramatically into the 3000, 4000 and then into the 5000-rpm range.  Johnson, Evinrude and Mercury bring out their outboard motors to vie with the Quad.  Outboard waterspeed records fall continuously as new motors are tested.  An unofficial time of 16 mph in 1925 by W. Clay Conover is broken 16 times until Harrison goes 51.98mph in 1930.  Johnson and Elto’s are the predominant power plants of this age, with an occasional Laros motor also setting three records.  Six more records are set in 1931 alone and again Johnson, Elto and Laros are the engines to beat.  Only eight records are set from 1932 to the outbreak of World War II and new competitors rise to the top in outboard engine development.  Soriano engines move the record from 56mph to 74mph by 1936, when the Draper and Eldridge engines take over the records.  Soriano retakes the record and then racing goes into a sleep until after the war. 
     In 1953 a Soriano engine records a time of 83mph and with improvements from Lesco, improves on the record with a run that breaks 100mph for the first time.  But that would be the last time the Soriano engines would outpace their competitors.  From 1958 until 1989, the outboard engines to beat would be Mercury, Evinrude and Johnson as they swapped records.  Records would fall in huge numbers until Bob Wartinger would use an Evinrude V-8 to set the water speed record of 176.56 on November 30, 1989.  The little outboard engines had grown up and were no longer the little guy’s engine. 
Racing Outboards 1907-1989, A History of the Great Horsepower Race
ends with the year 1989 and so the development of the outboard engine and the records they set will have to wait for Peterson to write a sequel on outboard engines post 1989.  Peterson has put together a book on outboard racing that is fun to read and to dissect.  The drawings and diagrams help to explain the development of the outboard engines and his history helps us to put names and faces to a sport that is often an unknown.  Men such as Carl Kiekhaefer at Mercury, Gustave Trouve and Ole and Ralph Evinrude are shown with their creations.  If you love outboard motor boating, you will enjoy reading Racing Outboards 1907-1989, A History of the Great Horsepower Race
Gone Racin’ is at
     The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame (BDRHoF) is proud to announce that the King of Drag Racing – Don Garlits – is flying in from the USA to attend the BDRHoF Celebration Gala Dinner held in the Great Hall at the Savill Court Hotel, Windsor Great Park on November 22nd 2014.  Together with the induction of the Hall of Fame’s new members for 2014, the occasion will celebrate a landmark, half-century anniversary. In 1964, the International Drag Festival gave Britain its first full taste of the American sport of drag racing. A joint-venture between Sydney Allard and Wally Parks, president of America’s National Hot Rod Association, the ‘Dragfest’ brought a team of leading US racers of the day to race on airfield sites across England. Already the foremost star among them was ‘Big Daddy’ Don Garlits, who in the ensuing decades would become the true titan of the quarter-mile – not merely the greatest drag racer who has ever lived, but a touchstone figure who would define the very landscape of the sport we know today.    
     At 82 years of age, Don continues to serve as Chief Executive of the Don Garlits Museum Of Drag Racing and the International Drag Racing Hall Of Fame, both based at Ocala, Florida. Daughter Donna is General Manager and Chief Financial Officer of the Museum. While not (currently) active in competition, Don has never ceased his on-track exploits and innovations. Within the past month he has established a new quarter-mile record for a battery-powered electric dragster (7.25sec/184mph) and is intent on breaking the 200mph barrier for the class.                        
     Don Garlits said, “Travelling with my daughters Donna and GayLyn along with members of their families, this will be my first trip outside North America since my last visit to Santa Pod Raceway in 1977. Donna and GayLyn were with me during my visits in 1964, 1976 and 1977. We are all looking forward to visiting your country again because I have many happy memories of my earlier visits. I hope to meet up with old friends made during those trips and to celebrating those who have helped establish the sport since the early 1960s. As CEO of the International Drag Racing Hall of Fame I know what it takes to organise such events and I congratulate the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame for their work over the last few years”.    
     Donna Garlits commented, “Of course there will be one person missing on this trip and that is my beautiful Mom Pat who we lost earlier this year. We all miss her very much. And in some ways this trip is our way of remembering what great times we had as a family following Dad round the drag strips and what a truly amazing person she was”.  Chairman of the BDRHoF Stu Bradbury said, “Apart from film footage taken at the time I did not see Don racing in 1964. But I was fortunate enough to have been Chief Starter at Santa Pod during his 1976 and 1977 visits. I remember feeling at the time what a great privilege it was to be bringing the world’s leading drag racer into stage. Now to have him and his family as guests at this year’s BDRHoF Gala Awards Dinner is unbelievable. I’m sure he will receive a fantastic welcome by all those attending and all of us at the BDRHoF feel honoured that he is going to join us. I must thank all those who have made this possible, particularly Geoff Stilwell of Beech Underwriting.” 
     Further news of the Gala Night and of Don Garlits’ UK visit will be released on www.eurodragster.com and tickets for the occasion may be obtained by contacting the Hall of Fame via its website on
www.britishdragracinghof.co.uk/latest-news/bdrhof-announce-2014-gala-award-dinner.  This year’s new Hall of Fame inductees will be announced during the Dragstalgia event at Santa Pod Raceway, 11-13 July 2014.     The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame is sponsored by many businesses and associations. Without this support it could not exist. They are Beech Underwriting; U S Automotive; Power Race Graphics; Santa Pod Racers Club; Pennine Drag Racing Club; Eurodragster.com; Avon Park International Racing Association, Shakespeare County Raceway; Santa Pod Raceway; York Raceway; Allard Motor Company, Flint Insurance Group and Lucas Oil.  Further Press Information from Robin Jackson RJProMod@aol.com, Tel 01933-222917.

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Jonathan Amo, Brett Arena, Henry Astor, Gale Banks, Glen Barrett, Mike Bastian, Lee Blaisdell, Jim Bremner, Warren Bullis, Burly Burlile, George Callaway, Gary Carmichael, John Backus, John Chambard, Jerry Cornelison, G. Thatcher Darwin, Jack Dolan, Ugo Fadini, Bob Falcon, Rich Fox, Glenn Freudenberger, Don Garlits, Bruce Geisler, Stan Goldstein, Andy Granatelli, Walt James, Wendy Jeffries, Ken Kelley, Mike Kelly, Bret Kepner, Kay Kimes, Jim Lattin, Mary Ann and Jack Lawford, Fred Lobello, Eric Loe, Dick Martin, Ron Martinez, Tom McIntyre, Don McMeekin, Bob McMillian, Tom Medley, Jim Miller, Don Montgomery, Bob Morton, Mark Morton, Paula Murphy, Landspeed Louise Ann Noeth, Frank Oddo, David Parks, Richard Parks, Wally Parks (in memoriam), Eric Rickman, Willard Ritchie, Roger Rohrdanz, Evelyn Roth, Ed Safarik, Frank Salzberg, Dave Seely, Charles Shaffer, Mike Stanton, David Steele, Doug Stokes, Bob Storck, Zach Suhr, Maggie Summers, Gary Svoboda, Pat Swanson, Al Teague, JD Tone, Jim Travis, Randy Travis, Jack Underwood and Tina Van Curen, Richard Venza.

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