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History E.J. Potter

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by tfeverfred, Jul 12, 2017.

  1. clrogers
    Joined: Aug 15, 2008
    Posts: 8

    clrogers
    Member

    I was stationed at Kincheloe AFB in upper MI from 1965 to 67, not to far from Sault Ste Marie, MI & Canada. I used to go to a little drag strip in Canada to race my motorcycle & he was there one day. He was personable & answered all questions & then got his bike started (it was a Corvette 327 engine), rocked it back on the center stand by the rear wheel, revit up, rocked it forward & took off. The front wheel never touched the ground until he crossed the finish line & where we were by the starting line there was little black molten bit of pieces from his Cadillac rear tire falling from the sky. He sure was crazy but fast.
     
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  2. Fulvia
    Joined: Dec 15, 2014
    Posts: 69

    Fulvia
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  3. Jon Lundberg
    Joined: Feb 2, 2008
    Posts: 230

    Jon Lundberg
    Member

    Saw EJ make his first drag strip run EVR on "Bloody Mary" at Central Michigan Dragway (now the Mid Michigan Motorplex) at Stanton, MI, in August 1960. He talks about the "uncomplimentary announcer " in his book (that's me). As originally conformed by EJ, in the family barn, it was an accident waiting to happen and I said so. After a few decades, I saw him get on the updated version at the 2007 Super Stock Drag Racing Hall of Fame event at Virginia International Raceway (Dinwiddie, VA) and on his second pass (after a 25-year hiatus) run 160 MPH!
    Quite a guy!
     
  4. Harms Way
    Joined: Nov 27, 2005
    Posts: 6,849

    Harms Way
    Member

    The last time I seen E.J. My buddy Clyde and I sprung him from the nursing home he was in, just north of Ithaca Mi..... He wanted to go get a "Rat Burger" (The name he gave any food you could get from a fast food restaurant)..

    When we were getting close to Burger King,.. He got excited when he seen a Subway. That was where he wanted to go! .... Subway, Here we come! We make our orders and sat down. EJ said,.. "Yeah this is healthier for us than rat burgers."..
    I look at him and say "EJ, after all the crazy stuff you've done, and all the chances you've taken. Why the sudden interest in eating healthy?"... He gets a crazy grin on his face and says.. "It's never too late to develop healthy habits"...

    The world got a little smaller the day EJ crossed the finish line... He was truly one of a kind !

    My Pal Clyde, Ownes "Bloody Mary #1" and "Widowmaker #7" (or as EJ refered to them as "The Bookends") The first and last Bikes... He would like both Bikes to stay together, But he feels he needs to find them a new home. (none of us are getting any younger) So,.. If you want to own a part of Hot Rodding history with a TON of related items to EJ and these two historic Bikes,... And your serious,.. PM me and I'll put you in touch with him... (They won't be cheap).
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2017
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  5. Harms Way
    Joined: Nov 27, 2005
    Posts: 6,849

    Harms Way
    Member

    [​IMG]

    The full story behind the Wagon, was (as most of his stories) HILARIOUS !,... But 100% true.
    [​IMG]

    This is his "Super Slot Car".... I bought the old Ford pick up from EJ that he used to haul the Allison powered generator and cable reels with... many moons ago.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
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  6. seb fontana
    Joined: Sep 1, 2005
    Posts: 5,934

    seb fontana
    Member
    from ct

    Geezus, I knew he had an electric car but a generator powered by an Allison I did not!!
     
    loudbang likes this.
  7. I could be mistaken, but I remember a pic of him in Hot Rod magazine going through the traps at 160+, smiling and flashing the peace sign at the photographer. In high school he was one of our heros.
     
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  8. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 23,609

    loudbang
    Member

    In the pits taken apart in Arizona

    EJ POTTER and EJ.JPG
     
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  9. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 23,609

    loudbang
    Member

    Found a bunch of photos. Some may have been posted but enjoy a second look.

    Double Ugly Twin Allison pulling tractor.

    Double Ugly twin Allison pulling tractor.JPG


    Jet trike


    Jet Trike.JPG


    Widow maker at speed


    Widow maker at speed.JPG

    The man later years

    EJ Potter.JPG

    Early

    EJ Potter1.JPG

    EJ Potter2.JPG

    Bloody Mary 2009

    EJ Potter Bloody mary  2009.JPG

    Bloody Mary II engine intake

    EJ Potter Bloody mary II intake.JPG


    Bloody Mary II

    EJ Potter Bloody mary II.JPG


    Number 3 on stand

    Number3 on stand.JPG


    Number 3

    Number3.JPG

    On Bloody Mary

    On bloody Mary.JPG

    Widow Maker engine

    Widow maker engine.JPG

    Widow Maker VI

    Widow Maker VI.JPG
     
  10. frank spittle
    Joined: Jan 29, 2009
    Posts: 1,622

    frank spittle
    Member

    I can't express how much respect I have for Potter. His courage of climbing on his first Chevy V-8 powered Harley and not knowing if it would kill him says it all.
     
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  11. "Injection is nice, but":cool:......not when your shirt/jacket catches on fire with those roman candle injector stacks:rolleyes:
     
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  12. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 5,785

    56sedandelivery
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I don't watch a lot of T.V., but within the last 2 weeks, I caught some sort of "pickers type" show. This episode included a segment on the purchase of 2 of Potter's V-8 bikes. Maybe someone else caught it also? I am Butch/56sedandelivery.
     
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  13. raven
    Joined: Aug 19, 2002
    Posts: 4,311

    raven
    Member

    I want to build a bike like his soo bad!
    r


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
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  14. jailbird
    Joined: Jun 18, 2015
    Posts: 151

    jailbird

    my uncle raced that guy I believe
    he was on a ford 289 with hillborn injection this bike had some kind of clutch
    If I can find the pic of his bike I will post it
    The last time he raced it for the owner of this bike and after he made his last pass that time the owner decided to ride it back to the pits himself from the end of the track
    something happened and the chain broke and ripped his leg off of something like that its was the last time my Dads brother raced that machine
    cool looking machine some kind of coupler was on this bike (hirth -joy?) I think maybe a hydraulic clutch Ill have yo ask him
     
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  15. I must of missed this the first time around.
    I was lucky enough to see him years ago on that home made pulling tractor.
    At the time I did not know it was Mr. Potter but really got a kick seeing that thing out pull all the high dollar sponsored rigs. As it turned out he must of been beating them on a regular basis because he had a room full of Pulling trophies and I was lucky enough get two of the cooler ones. He was damn good at turning an idea into reality using what ever he had available.
     
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  16. jailbird
    Joined: Jun 18, 2015
    Posts: 151

    jailbird

    a few days ago pickers had those bikes on tv it was so cool thgink they said $45000
     
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  17. koolbeans
    Joined: Apr 12, 2015
    Posts: 349

    koolbeans

    I lived in Yipsilanty, Ann Arbor and Adrian when EJ was killin Milan, Detroit, and Bay City.
    What a show and he could ride that monster.
    I doubt there was anyone before him?

    Sent from my XT1710-02 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
    loudbang likes this.
  18. I was too young to see ej do his thing in the 60s. I to was at frank spittles super stock reunion and saw for the first time ej run his bike. Just a amazing feat I wont ever forget. The ss reunions were like going to a magical place were I could see all my heros.
     
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  19. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 23,609

    loudbang
    Member

  20. quick85
    Joined: Feb 23, 2014
    Posts: 1,724

    quick85
    Member

    I saw the "American Pickers" episode a couple of times. What I couldn't believe was that those
    two dolts had never heard of E.J.P. If I'm not mistaken, they purchased two of the bikes along
    with parts and sold them to a motorcycle museum owner. Wait! Here's a clip from the show...

     
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  21. seb fontana
    Joined: Sep 1, 2005
    Posts: 5,934

    seb fontana
    Member
    from ct

    Thanks for the clip...Everyone is right; seeing him run once and for ever in your memory!!
     
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  22. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 23,609

    loudbang
    Member

    E. J. Potter, the Michigan Madman, lays on the Chevrolet V-8 power.

    ej potter E. J. Potter, the.jpg
     
  23. The guy sold it WAY TOO CHEEP!
     
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  24. Mike VV
    Joined: Sep 28, 2010
    Posts: 1,615

    Mike VV
    Member
    from SoCal

    Saw him on one of his bikes at Irwindale...many moons back.

    Mike
     
  25. rd martin
    Joined: Nov 14, 2006
    Posts: 2,290

    rd martin
    Member
    from indiana

    it was interesting to talk to ej , one time when clyde brought him from the nursing home to dave cranes party. he was having trouble with dementia then, but still had a good talk. i had seen him run when i was a kid. the one and only michigan mad man!
     
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  26. frank spittle
    Joined: Jan 29, 2009
    Posts: 1,622

    frank spittle
    Member

    When I watched his insane runs for the first time in 1964 I didn't think he had long to live. Not in my wildest dreams did I think of him living well into his 70s and dying of Alzheimer's. He was absolutely brilliant proving this is a disease that can affect anyone.
     
    loudbang likes this.

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