The guest list read like the
who's who of SoCal drag racers. Jay Carpenter shaking hands with
ex-drag racing photographer, now famous thoroughbred race horse
trainer, Mike Mitchell, with Danny Broussard and Don Prieto in
A rather fuzzy shot of
the hauler with John Ewald and Spider Razon.
"I don't know Prudhomme
very well, although I have probably known him longer than most.
He was with Ivo when they came to Minnesota in 1960 with the
twin Buick car and I was PR guy for Minnesota Dragways. The three
of us spent most of a day, going from newspaper to radio station
to TV station in Minneapolis and St. Paul to promote the event
coming up that weekend.
Don has always been friendly but preoccupied. This day he was
fully occupied with here and now as well as the past. He was
a charming host and circulated and talked to everyone. Here's
Don in the center with Bob Muravez on the right and Mike Mitchell
in the foreground." - Ron Johnson
Roland Kleinsorge, a member of
the Tommy Allen crew, on the left and Don Prieto (back to the
camera) talking to Steve Gibbs. Prieto assisted Prudhomme with
putting the event together. Prieto knows everybody!
Cacklecar Godfather Bill
Pitts center right in a conversation.
"Don has done a pretty darn
nice job of hanging onto artifacts from the past. I was told
that Lynn had a hand in that. That makes sense. There must have
been 30 or more "letter" jackets from various tracks
on display and then another area on the right where there were
driver suits and team racewear. Don showed me what was on the
shelves behind the Skoal banner on the right side of the shot.
They was full of crates and boxes which he said were full of
magazines, Drag News, trophies etc. etc. etc. He called it "my
stuff". There was a "lot" of stuff. I hope someday
it will get cataloged. Probably enough there for a Museum."
- Ron Johnson
The remainder of the
photos on this page are by John Ewald.
Most racers never had the means
to save complete race cars and room to store them. One car was
sold to build a new one. A firesuit was sold to buy a new one
etc. etc. It's a good thing that a few, like Prudhomme, Force
and Kalitta did have the ability to save some great pieces of
drag racing history and now share them with those who appreciate
Dode Martin, part of the original
Dragmaster Duo of Martin and Nelson at age 84 just passed a competition
driving license proceedure, with Don Irwin and Jay Carpenter.
Spider Razon, one of the original
Dead End Kids from New York, Prieto and Scott Cochrane, editor
of Drag Racer prior to Randy Fish.
Ron Johnson, Dale Armstrong
Left to right, Darrell Reid (makes
cnc'd hi-zoot rocker arms for top fuelers etc,) Don Mongomery,
the author and former lakes racer, in the checkered shirt, Roy
Meirsch, Jimmy Scott and Danny Porsche.
Left to right, Spider Razon,
Roger Garten who recently moved from Huntington Beach to Fallbrook,
Mike Kuhl and Frank Pisano.
Bob Muravez and Larry
Ofrea in the middle.
The Floyd and Vipe show.
Bob with Lynn Prudhomme
Don has probably signed more
autographs since his retirement than he did whole career. He's
finally having fun.
Prieto displayed his
deep admiration for The Goose...
Shrewsberry and Steve Gibbs
In back of the shop is the recently
found Mongoose transporter that was a twin to Prudhomme's during
the Hot Wheels years. Its in really rough shape but you can bet
it will be as nice as Don's when restored.
Tom Jobe, Muravez, Dale
Armstrong and Rick McDonald