Return to Lions Drag Strip Long Beach California 2008
This is the third year of featuring restored dragsters that have run the 1320' Lions Drag Strip in its hey day... This video, typical of going to a drag strip, despite John Ewald telling everyone to stand back, you never get to see much when they display cars this way. Typical of the drag strip, all the vehicles require too much support, they stand around the car and block the view.... At the CHRR in Bakersfield, the Cacklefest is blocked by a bunch of folks standing at the concrete wall on the track blocking the view to the grand stands as if the concrete barrier wasn't enough....I have been going to the drags since I was a youngster and it seems the problem is no one can stay seated for a run and your typical day at the drags to this day takes on a Jack in the Box atmosphere.... I guess that is the way it is.....Anyway, the City of Long Beach Chamber of Commerce puts on a nice event and I hope it continues into the future.
When the stars line up in front of me, I just have to record it.
I have no choice.
And this was one of those moments.
I don't know if this will ever happen again. I certainly hope it will--and
in front of the grandstands at some selected NHRA events. For you see, you
just don't see this happening at all-- when you look back at how unlikely
it is that the car and the driver would still be around in 2012!
Take the driver, Don Prudhomme. How many times did he make full passes in
a top fuel dragster or funny car? And for how many years?
In short, it's a miracle that he is in one piece, after all that--and he
is! Thank goodness!
Then the car:
The Greer, Black, and Prudhomme dragster, built by Kent Fuller and raced
from 1962 through 1964, with the original partners, it ran up an incredible
record at southern California tracks of 81 wins and only 8 loses!
(According to Phil Burgess) Then lengthened--bought and raced as the
"Bonanza" for a while, eventually stripped of it's motor and left sitting
for years. Restored by Steve Davis, bought by Bruce Meyer--How likely is
it that it would be allowed to join up with "Snake" for this moment?
Pretty unlikely--except that it's owner Bruce Meyer, is a good friend of
Don's, and after hearing about Rick MacDonald, they gave him the nod to
bring the car to the track, and push start it to life. Now the driver
could have been someone else....but it wasn't.
That's what makes this fire up so significant.
And like I said: All we can do is hope that this mind blowing moment will
happen again at a track near you.
And if you hear they are coming, better "Make the Scene". For the chance
may not come again.
Like an old legendary cowboy on a white horse in your local parade. And
all you need to do is what you did when you were a kid: Sit on the curb
and watch him go by.
SURFS UP: THE SURFERS DRAGSTER
The Surfers top fuel dragster fires up.
After 6 years "THE SURFERS" Top Fuel Dragster recreation was completed by
Andy & Ron Marocco of DRAG CITY. Many believed that it wouldn't get done,
but we proved otherwise.
1969 NHRA U.S. Nationals Tournament of Champions Part 5 - 1960s Vintage Drag Racing - Indy
Buy Drag Strip Riot Posters! http://www.maziracing.com/2004poster/index.htm
Vintage Drag Racing - Tournament of Champions Part 5 - 1969 NHRA U.S.
Nationals. Narrated by the late Steve Evans. Qualifying and eliminations
featuring Top Fuel Winner Don Prudhomme, Runner-up Kelly Brown; Top Gas
Winner Domenic Santucci, Runner-up Phil Hobbs; Funny Car Winner Danny
Ongais, Runner-up Rich Siroonian; Super Eliminator Winner George
Montgomery, Runner-up Ron Ellis; Competition Eliminator Winner Terry
Fritsch, Runner-up Neil Ellis; Street Winner Glen Self; Runner-up Carroll
Caudle; Super Stock Winner Ronnie Sox, Runner-up Ron Mancini; Stock Winner
Bill Morgan; Runner-up Tom Neja.
Drag racing from the 60s.
DRAG RACING: 7 SECOND LOVE AFFAIR
What Drag Racing was all about in 1965.
Lions Drag Strip at the peak of drag racing's golden age is the backdrop
for this award winning documentary about the Adams,Wayre & Stewart Top Fuel
Team's trials and tribulations in 1965 and focuses on the life of Rick "the
Iceman" Stewart (the current NHRA chief starter) as he attempts to grab the
second half of the two part world's speed record. This is the one DVD that
every drag racing fan MUST HAVE! GET IT TODAY at: www.ClassicFUEL.com
Freight Train fires up at 2008 CHRR
Legendary twin engined gas dragster the Freight Train fires up in the pits.
While it doesn't have the cackle of the nitro cars, the "whomp" of 16
cylinders of small block chevy and the cloud of blackie carbon is pretty
awesome...not to mention the engineering feat of linking and synching two
V8s is a neat deal. One of the few gas dragsters that made top fuelers
nervous when running for Top Eliminator.
Vintage footage of the 1963 Smokers Fuel & Gas Championships at
Gassers At 131 Dragway In The '60s
This is an updated version of my video "Drag Racing In The '60s part 3". I
made that video about three years ago and since then I have upgraded my
photo and video editing software. I have been able to clean up the photos
and video a bit and I added sound to the movies that I extracted from some
recent video I took at the drags. I thought it would be fun to add some
sound to the old 8mm movies. I also made it widescreen. The soundtrack is
me jammin' on some Booker T and the MGs and CCR.
Nostalgia Dragsters at Gasser Magazine Reunion - Thompson Raceway Park,
Jungle Jim and Jungle Pam - Drag Racing Legends
Years before John Force arrived on the scene, drag racing's original
flamboyant showman was "Jungle Jim" Liberman; a larger-than-life individual
whose flaming burnouts, glib personality, and boundless energy helped
endear him to fans in a manner that eluded other drivers with better
Liberman was much more than a touring professional; with his wild
wheelstands, 100-mph backups from burnouts, stubborn refusal to lift on
even the most out-of-shape runs, and his curvaceous companion, "Jungle Pam"
Hardy, Liberman provided all the entertainment of a traveling circus.
Liberman's life, like the lives of many fast-living icons of youth such as
James Dean, Jim Morrison, and Janis Joplin, was as short as it was
fast-paced. He died at the age of 32 after suffering fatal injuries in a
head-on collision with a bus on Sept. 9, 1977. His premature passing left a
void in the sport that wasn't replaced until Force's explosive personality
emerged in the late 1980s.
Today, the legend of "Jungle Jim" lives on with "Jungle Pam," his constant
companion in his heyday who titillated race fans with her skimpy outfits
and provocative on-track actions.
"At every race track that I go to," said Hardy, "everyone comes up and asks
for my autograph. They ask what he was like and if he was as crazy as
they've heard. The fans really miss him, and they miss the fun part of drag
racing. The sport has become so professional now that there's no room for
any of that anymore."
"I was just 18 when I met him. I was still attending high school in West
Chester, Pa., and had never been further away from home than the next town
over. I was walking down the street one day, and here comes this yellow
Corvette speeding down the street. This guy walks out, comes up to me, and
says, "Hi, I'm Jim."
I had never been to a drag race before, but the next thing I knew, we
we're heading for his match race in Xenia, Ohio. He showed me how to back
him up after the burnouts, and from then on, my life was just a whirlwind
tour all over the country."
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers song "American Girl" was released in 1977,
the same year Jungle Jim passed away.
Well she was an American girl
Raised on promises
She couldn't help thinkin that there
Was a little more to life
After all it was a great big world
With lots of places to run to
Yeah, and if she had to die
Tryin' she had one little promise
She was gonna keep
Oh yeah, all right
Take it easy baby
Make it last all night
She was an American girl
It was kind of cold that night
She stood alone on her balcony
She could hear the cars roll by
Out on 441
Like waves crashin' in the beach
And for one desperate moment there
He crept back in her memory
God it's so painful
Something that's so close
And still so far out of reach
Oh yeah, all right
Take it easy baby
Make it last all night
She was an American girl
This video was created from clips from the Diamond P video "Fabulous
Floppers" and photos that I took of some of Jungle Jim's cars at 131
Dragway back in the '60s. The photos of Jungle Jim and Pam at 1:48, 1:53
and 1:59 are courtesy of Tom McCrea tmccrea. Photo at 2:36 is by Steve
Scott. Other pictures are from unknown photographers.
Lions Drag Strip incredible Grand Premier accidents 1972
Season opening Grand Premier at Lions Drag Strip in Janaury 1972 marked the
return of NHRA sanction to the world famous Wilmington/Long Beach, CA
racetrack. Incredible clip is from Part 1 (of 3 part) video documentary
"Lions - The Greatest Drag Strip", and shows the unusual amount of
accidents that took place, thanks to veteran lensman Paul Sadler and Dave
Kerr. Lions would close after its 17-year run just eleven months later.
DRAG RACING WHEN IT WAS FUN!
Five minute promo from the full length video available through Jim Amos'
Bee On Video. Drag Racing action from the 1960s at various drag strips:
Pocono Drag Lodge, Pocono Raceway, Kel-Rica, Wind Gap, Vargo, Numidia,
Island, Forty Fort, Maple Grove, Tri Cities. The full length video is fully
narrated unlike this promo clip which only includes car sounds.
WHEELS OF FIRE
Wheels of Fire is a 1970s drag racing movie that has a mix of fact, fiction
and excellent camera work that entertains its audience with big names of
the sport like "Big Daddy" Don Garlits, Shirley Muldowney, Don Prudhomme,
Billy Meyer and Richard Tharp. The DVD is now available at DragStalgia.com