This started when a few of us were in a discussion on the Standard 1320 E-mail Group, and the subject turned to the hassles of running organized drag races have become. Someone mentioned that Inyokern was about to celebrate it's Fiftieth year of continuous operation. Younger members of the group had to ask: Where's Inyokern? Others quickly explained the location and even posted photos from this historical place and why it is still running with what appears to be, very outdated equipment and facility. 1320 Member Ron Miller suggested that the group make a trek to this drag strip and help celebrate their anniversary. Others picked up the lead, this writer included, and volunteered to bring our drag cars and make it something special.
This was the winter of 2004. Ron Miller took charge and organized the gathering and many of us went and had a great time. So great that everyone wanted to do it again..."next year". Miller again took the bull by the horns so to speak and looked into having a Standard 1320 stand alone event. Via the internet, Miller kept everyone informed by email every step of the way. Eventually last fall, at the California Hot Rod Reunion, we agreed to contribute to the fund to make it a reality.
Contact was made with the operators of the strip, the Dust Devils of Inyokern, and they loved the idea.
Ron Miller, being a former promoter of the Winslow Arizona drag strip, ran with the project and saw it through to its completion. He did everything. Paid the rent in advance (we didn't know about this until after the event) collected the contributions, had Event T-Shirts printed, wrote and mailed out press releases (made the front page of 2 count 'em 2 California daily papers), herded the cats, and kept a watchful eye on the entire event as well.
From what I can tell we had about 50 cars participate, some famous...some not so famous as you will see, and some 250 people paid to participate and/or watch the exhibitions of speed.
Miller dubbed this event the "First Annual Standard 1320 Invitational Drag Race" and another member, Beth Crossley, had posters printed... I mean you would think this was some kind of big time event. WELL., it was...to those of us who were there. We were able to make as many runs as we wanted and one Chevy almost wore out his slicks, he made so many passes.
The success of this little gathering is gaining momentum as those members of our little group find out how a great a time we had and they are preparing to go all out to attend next years "extravaganza". Promoter Miller already has some cash left over to put down against the rent and we are ready to contribute again as necessary to make the 2nd Annual Invitational Standard 1320 Drag Race.
As they used
to say in radio commercials of a bygone era....BEEEE THEEEERE!!!!!
This was a red letter day for the Standard 1320 Group in general and Ron Miller in particular. Members able to attend were, Left to Right:
(Back Row) Don Prieto (Standing in his Roadster) Joe Golden, Mike Golden, Rod McCarrell, Bob Brown, Ronnie Rapp, Yvonne Broadribb, Lee Schelin, Red Greth Jr. Red Greth, Max Romero, Warren Walther, Ron Miller, Gary Edwards, Larry Steinegger, Peter Broadribb, Mike English Doug Peterson, Ron Johnson, Marc McCormick, Howard Haight, Tony Lloyd. and Ron Sterbenk.
(Front Row) Patty Hutsons daughter, Patty, Robin Millar, Robin Millars son, Ray Muller, Ora Mae Millar, Chuck Goebel, John Bradley, Chris Velasquez, John Spradlin, Lori Peterson, Pat Peterson, Loris Friend, Jim Davis, Kathy Lloyd, Hal Sanquinetti.
Mad Max was selling
the T-shirts Friday night at John's Pizza and they were going
like hot cakes ... in a pizza parlor!
Looks like standing
room only in the reserved section ...ha! Check out the street
sign. Yes, like Pomona the track at Inyokern has a street name.
For the first few NHRA Winternationals at Pomona there were no
track crew members. So the Dust Devils crew from Inyokern came
down and crewed the Winternationals at Pomona helping out Wally.
Ray Helm was the starter then, before Buster Couch. And Wally
Parks never forgot the favor the Dust Devils did for him ...
hence Inyokern is still a sanctioned, operating NHRA drag strip.
Like the man says on the radio ... and now you know the rest
of the story.
There were so many cars attending they had to be broken up into five groups to get photos.
Backing up to
the Friday night meeting... Check it out. Plasma monitor showing
some great 8mm & 16mm film that was transferred to tape (DVD?).
John Spradlin is wearing the "Over The Hill Gang" car
show T shirt. At the time this picture was taken, his home video
of his car racing at Ozark Int'l Raceway was showing. They also
showed John's Bowling Green '03 tape as there were people present
that were considering going and were curious as to what the area
was like. Sitting near Ronnie Rapp was great. There were very
few cars he couldn't recognize. Videos were from Fremont, Sacramento
and Half Moon Bay. Lots of copies of old newspaper stories, Drag
News and magazines ... don't miss Friday night next year.
Friday was a
terribly windy day. The 40 mph windsock looked like a shelf.
Saturday was breezy all day, but it remained quite tolerable
all day. Max and John Bradley got some help unloading from Robert
Briggs and Bob Brown. Pitted next to them was Ron Sterbenk.
"Potvin" Doug Peterson & Family proudly "flying the colors." That's John Spradlin wearing the Pith Helmet talking to Doug.
"Ardun Doug" King and his son Brian were on hand with their Ardun flathead digger. The car is a Dragmaster Dart repop that was built by the guy that drove the Champion Speed Shop Chevy fueler before Sammy Hale did.
Here is the Purple
Gang wheeling back to the pits after the photo session. I hope
I've got 'em correct here... Manny Maldonado (L), Jim Davis in
the seat, and Chuck Goebel (R). Nice car and a great bunch of
guys. Chuck and Jim went out of their way to make me feel welcome
when I arrived Friday night at John's Pizza - thanks guys.
How many guys tow their competition to the starting line? Subtitled, "The Banana Pulling The Carrot".
Don Prieto, Red Greth & Lee Schelin know the secret ... Standard 1320 Invades Inyokern! This was just before the two old vets squared off (below).
The 8 Stromberg 97s hemi-powered Speed Sport has a "slight" holeshot over the flathead powered Top Banana.
King being towed through the pits with Peter Broadribb's restored
321 gasser in the background.
Doug & Lori Peterson warming up Ol # 2. Doug has the Hydrazine bottle in his hand. He claimed to be running only 2%. Thats John Spradlin & Hal Sanquinetti in the background. John said he'd bring his SPE dragster next year
Ron Sterbenk's great looking flathead dragster in the pits and on the track. The youngest of the three owners is 72, they kept arguing all day about the tune-up, it seems like Ron didn't think the altitude made any difference and the other two kept trying to convince him that it did.
Tony & Kathy
Lloyd's bitchen flathead. Just for the record, Kathy was behind
the wheel in '02 & '03 of Flathead Jack's dual flathead doing
those smoky burnouts. Tony built Jack's engines. Jack & the
Lloyd's have since parted company. Kathy pulled two nice wheelstands
Saturday and I caught the first one (below).
Bud Burke in his little '64 Woody flexi-flyer with the 268" Olds F-85 engine called Olds Cool (Old School!).
Jeff Crider in his K-88 after the photo-op. He was motoring back to the pits when this was taken. You can see Robert Briggs and Gary Brown in the background- Gary with the dual strobes on a monopod.
Not all was nostalgic as witnessed by Big Yohn's new rig that holds both the Jr. Fueler and the Shubert & Herbert car.
Peter Broadribb's beautifully restored "Moody's Garage" US Nationals winning '55 D/G Chevy.
Jess Tyree came up for the Dust Devil's Sunday race a day early to be with the 1320 group.
Lori Peterson with the injected hemi & Kathy Lloyd in her injected flathead matched up and Lori drilled the tree with a 0.002 light. Kathy wheelstands (again) at the hit. Round to Lori.
Here's a shot
of the Limeworks Speedshop from Whittier CA, I purchased my steering
wheel for the 48 F1 from them and told them about our race, They
showed up in force with their whole crew and car. They must have
made at least 5 or 6 passes. It's powered by an in-line Jimmy
6 cylinder, Way cool
you know me, I like those engines that
not a lot of people use for racing. It was powered by a 6-cylinder
Chevy with dual-quads and sounded like it was turning 9 grand
before each shift. Steve thinks he broke the crank in it, so
maybe it was.
Red Greth in "Ol Noisy" v Jim Davis. The flagman should be out there by the lights. Davis never looked backed.
Here is a view
of the formidable Steinegger & Eschenbaugh car parked for
the early afternoon photo-op on the strip. Jamie S. is on the
right, while Larry keeps cool in the golf cart behind. Fellow
Arizonans Ron Miller & Hal Sanguinetti are in a discussion,
next to Larry is John (SPIKE) Spradlin 1320 member from Missouri
and the guy on left is Ray Miller who had the FED w blown Hemi.
Larry Steinegger does some tinkering on the engine while son Jamie pours in the good stuff.
Nice car. Here's
something on the Web about the Ardun flathead hemi heads. I never
knew Zora Arkus-Duntov and his brother Yura Arkus-Dontov were
the brains behind it.
Photos & Commentary by Robert Briggs
Haight brings the Shubert & Herbert dragster back to life ... whummMMPP!!! Big Yohns must be grinning ear-to-ear.
is still thickening and curling behind the slicks. Howard holds
the line straight and true. Crew member Marc McCormick and the
Chief Cat Herder himself Lee Schelin watch trackside. Don Prieto
wearing his whites and solar powered Pith Helmet can be seen
at the fence.
Last shot in this series. Howard flashes by. My camera's memory buffer is full and this is the last shot it'll take. Tire smoke fools the auto focusing a bit though Howard's helmet appears in focus. What a super run!! Congrats to Big Yohns, Howard Haight, Kol Johnson & Marc McCormick. Great show for the car's first burnout.
Orah Mae and
Robin Millar were on hand with lots of neat Pete Millar goodies.
Check out their site:
Don Prieto dressed for the part and his very cool lakester/dragster roadster. Check out his "Deck Lid of Fame" below.
Later in the day Howard Haight brought Big Yohns' Shubert & Herbert fueler up for another smoky. After 5 or 6 seconds on the line Howard has the revs up and begins the 2nd track launch of the Schubert & Herbert.
still up and even. Again, nice smoke pattern.Front wheels still
up and even. Again, nice smoke pattern.
Notice the smoke is darker now. The rear end is sliding to the left and the guardrail must be coming into Howard's view.
A driver with lesser driving skills than Howard Haight the S&H would be in a repair shop today.
The circling of the wagons. Here are a few of the folks (there were many more beyond this pic) at the circling of the motor homes on Saturday just before dusk. It was windy and soon became chilly. The new jackets did a fine job at keeping us toasty.
Lee Schelin, Hal Sanquinetti, friend of Ron M., Ron Miller, Warren Walther, and "Mad Max" Romero.
Ron Miller spins another yarn as Jim Davis, Hal Sanquinetti, Ron's friend (sorry-didn't catch his name) and Warren Walther take it all in.
It finally happened. Riceman's brass model of the Shubert Herbert is shown here at dusk on Saturday with its big brother, the real car. Big Yohns, their proud owner, is holding the display plate on which the model is resting.
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