As Cole Coonce once called it....
"Prankster-ism" Tom Jobe explains...... "We used
anything we had to put over the engine to help keep the heat
in which improved the odds that the engine would start reliably
Also you can see the ground is
wet so the blanket would help keep the water out of things too.
It also helped keep people from messing with the engine. Later
Simpson made some custom fit canvas engine covers that were so
good that you could tow down the highway on an open trailer with
the engine cover on.
Another advantage of an engine
cover is it added to the mystery when we were able to run a little
better, and people wanted to know "what made it tic".
You never wanted to miss a chance to mess with the folks in some
subtle way."~ tom jobe...
Surfers at Fontana in 1966.
Tony Nancy getting the best of
Norm Wilcox in the Gotelli Speed Shop car at Pomona in 1971.
Bruton Smith's dumbass 4-Wide
is not a new thing. Here is one of many 4 wides held at Fresno
in the mid 60's. Fresno invited a lot of teams to participate
in those four wide races, but only the bravest drivers and teams
were up for it. Luckily nothing ever went wrong with those four
wide races but you have to appreciate everyone's concerns about
the whole idea.
Jeep Hampshire in his
first AA/FD ride, the Gross & Hampshire car at Lions in 1963.
Roland Leong in his first Hawaiian.
This car had more than an interesting history. Here it is is
Leong's own words. But to start with I'll established his driving
"It started when I got my
license at Riverside in my blown gas Chevy powered Dragmaster
dragster. That was. I think 1962. I worked at Dragmaster at the
time and build an injected. Dodge wedge gas dragster and went
to Indy. I race it in Pomona & Fontana before taking back
to Hawaii. I think I won Middle Elim at Fontana and also Pomona.
Then I built a blown 480 cu.
in Blown Dodge wedge gas dragster and ran it only once. I think
Long Beach before shipping it back to Hawaii where I set the
Top Speed and Low e.t. for the state at the old drag strip @
8:50 180 mph.
Then in early '64 they (Hawaii)
built an all new track and I won Top Eliminator there. I then
sold the car cause I had this Kent Fuller, Wayne Ewing body,
Keith Black 392 fuel motor car built (above).
On my first run at Lions on 47%,
I ran 8:01 at 191 and couldn't find the parachute handle and
ran off the track. Well C. J. Hart took my license away cause
I was suppose to make a 1/2 run cause it was a new car. I never
heard of that before. You know " young and dumb".
After the Lions deal I went to
Blacks Monday morning and he called me into his office and said
"Boy you really scared me. I'm going to give up running
the GBP car and you ought to hire Prudhomme to drive and you
run the car. And the rest is HISTORY.
PS. "When I crashed it was
116" WB. When Fuller front halved it it was 136". We
won the '65 Winternationals & the Indy Natls that year. Then
Prudhomme quit cause B&M gave him the Torquemaster car. I
hired Mike Snively and we won the '66 Winternatls. Which was
the 1st back to back Winternats pro win at the time."
"On the way out of town
to our first date, a car ran us off the road and we crashed the
rig. Station wagon ended upside down and trailer broke off and
was in the desert and 1/4 away. Fuller front halved the car again
and the wheel base was now 155". We went back on tour and
ended up winning the Indy Natls again. Which at the time the
2 biggest races of the year.
The next year we didn't do as
good. We only won the '67 Bakersfield Meet and the Hot Rod Mag
meet at Riverside."
Prudhomme in the final
'65 version at Fontana.