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History Lions Dragstrip - 1960

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Ryan, Jul 6, 2016.

  1. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki



    Hi Chuck,
    Nice to hear from you...It was August 13, 1960. All of the final round elimination racers were all lined up in the staging area/starting line around 9 PM. We were the first to race, one on one for the C/Gas final. Our 58 black Impala was behind our 40 Willys and we were running around getting things off our check list. Back in the end of the staging area was the Albertson Olds FED with Leonard Harris driving, going for 13 straight Top Eliminator wins.

    There were people along the spectator seating near the fence. They got some of the fire extinguishers from somewhere and gave them to us. The Willys was locked into the fence, burning. No one could put it out with the extinguishers that were there and a couple from the racers on the return road. Atts Ono stayed with the Willys until everyone left the track, racers and spectators. We both went back on Sunday to put the burned out Willys on a flat bed trailer.

    Junji
    From the spectators seating bleachers, it was a ringside seat. So, you probably saw the flaming ball rolling across the track (after my brother jumped out beyond the traps) and wedged itself into the fence. The author of the latest book on Lions Dragstrip mentioned to me that he was in those stands as a young college kid. He still could not get over the flaming Willys just nearby the seats.

    I can still see the whole fiasco in my mind, to this day. When my brother was still around years afterwards, his burns always reminded me of the incident. I am sure it reminded him daily. There were other crashes and accidents through out the years, but there were only a few fireball incidents that actually shut down the racing for the night.

    In the next week's issue, Drag News played it down calling it a stoppage from a C/Altered that blew a clutch and spread things all over the track. (IT WAS C/GAS...) The flying pieces of the clutch, bell housing, and scattershield were spread all over the track, but the flaming Willys was the thing that stopped all racing.
     
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  2. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki

    upload_2018-7-25_4-1-45.png
    Hello,

    Being So Cal locals, we always like George Cerny’s paint jobs on all of the custom cars and race cars we saw at the car shows and race tracks. According to Kustomrama, George Cerny’s history is interesting as all of us growing up in the 50s probably had one of his early paint jobs sitting in our kitchens. Maybe someone still has one...

    He sprayed paint/porcelain on the O’Keefe and Merritt gas oven/stove combination appliances as one of his early painting jobs. So, we can safely say that we had a “George Cerny Paint Job” at our 1948 Craftsman house and our 1953 post war Westside Long Beach house. Our parents were sticklers for buying those brand name appliances.


    “George's first job was spraying porcelain for O'keefe and Merritt, who made home appliances.” Kustomrama…

    Cerny’s Compton Paint Shop was about 6 miles away from our Bixby Knolls cruising area. It seemed like, in a blink of an eye, we could drive the short distance to his shop to see all of the cars in various stages of paint. That was fun. No, our HS group did not have enough money for one of his paint jobs. The three hot rod/ cruisers that got painted, used the local Earl Schieb and a friend’s backyard. But, we could dream...
    upload_2018-7-25_3-41-31.png
    upload_2018-7-25_3-42-0.png In researching the changes in the 50+ years, the 1514 no. Long Beach Blvd, Compton, CA is no longer a sleepy street with a bunch of small industrial buildings. As anywhere has changed, so has Compton. The business address is now for sale.

    “In 1942 George decided to open up his own shop, and leased a property at 1514 North Long Beach Boulevard in Compton. He erected a rickety building, and called his new venture Cerny's Auto Paint & Body Shop. One of the trends George started back then was tinting white primer. A trend he called, Easter Colors. Back then a lot of the guys drove around in primer while they saved up to have their cars painted.”
    (Shades of our own primered 1940 Willys 671 SBC C/Gas Coupe in 1960.)
    upload_2018-7-25_3-43-21.png upload_2018-7-25_3-45-10.png
    In 1961, Cerny gave Tom McMullen’s 32 Ford Roadster a Metalflake paint job. This was before the final black with yellow flames and a 671 was added later in the rebuild.
    upload_2018-7-25_3-46-7.png upload_2018-7-25_3-46-17.png
    1959-60 Altered 32 sedan, before the new paint?

    upload_2018-7-25_3-50-11.png Kustomrama photo

    Jnaki

    Back in 1960, I was fortunate to be able to film a quick movie clip of George Cerny and the beautiful, rear engine, red, roadster at Lions Dragstrip. I originally thought it was just a pit crew pushing the roadster off of the Dragstrip, but it was later identified as George Cerny. Being great admirers of the famous, Speed Sport Roadster, we thought this rear engine roadster would be just as cool.

    George Cerny & Roadster at Lions

    The one of a kind roadster eventually wound up for sale in the 1960 Drag News classified section.
    upload_2018-7-25_3-53-23.png




     
  3. catdad49
    Joined: Sep 25, 2005
    Posts: 5,041

    catdad49
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Jnaki, always enjoy your stories. You really should consider putting them all together or in volumes as The Early Days as remembered by Jnaki. Please keep them coming, Carp.
     
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  4. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki





    Hey C,
    Thank you for your very nice comments. You might be in a party of one, though... All of my family background, (drag race, hot rod history, growing up in Long Beach) just seemed OK to remember and jot down. It also keeps the brain cells working in proper order. The older we get, physically, it gets harder, but, we always try to keep the brain working and fingers moving to keep the maladies away.

    In researching old photos and files remind us of spending the dark hours of the early A.M. in the book shelves/racks of the UCLA library back in the college days. It was a long drive from the Westside of Long Beach and Bixby Knolls, but, it was like an extended date night. They are all are part of our formidable teenage, early 20s years. Who wants to remember the bad times? It is the good times that keep all of us happy and content with what we have. Family, hot rods, great grandkid, plus attached memories, all make it worthwhile.

    Jnaki
    In our current lives, it seems so busy to sit down and organize the trials and tribulations of growing up in Long Beach/Orange County. It is nice to know someone is reading the stories and not just copying photos. Room for more thought, though. It is a research project for sure.
    Thanks...
     
  5. Black Panther
    Joined: Jan 6, 2010
    Posts: 1,764

    Black Panther
    Member
    from SoCal

    Jnaki....dont be modest....please post as much as you can! No matter what thread or topic...when I see you posted something, I look with glee. I know it's going to be good! You're a very thoughtful writer...and you were there, a participant...and a documentarian. This is a rare combo of traits. As I sit here, I cant think of a single other Hamber who fits this bill. I'm also partial to your posts because they are from the hub of hot rodding and I also live in Socal, north of you a little bit.
     
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  6. BadgeZ28
    Joined: Oct 28, 2009
    Posts: 1,107

    BadgeZ28
    Member
    from Oregon

    My first visit to Lions was during the 1963 Winternationals. We would go to Pomona all day, get something to eat, and we were off to Lions. A number of cars were there for test and tune. Thanks for this historical footage Jnaki
     
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  7. Junji, You Da man!

    Chuck
     
  8. JimmyD3234
    Joined: Dec 3, 2015
    Posts: 553

    JimmyD3234
    Member
    from PA

    very KOOL thanks
     
  9. lumpy 63
    Joined: Aug 2, 2010
    Posts: 1,431

    lumpy 63
    Member

    jnaki ...you just made a long crappy hot week all better! Ive been holding on to some stills from San Diego Raceway @ramona from the early 60's I'm gonna see what I can do to post them . They were found in a box of old slides at a house that was being cleared out about ten years ago.All great shots in color including Tommy Ivo's 4 engine car. :cool: I'll see if I can return the favor. Thanks again!
     
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  10. lumpy 63
    Joined: Aug 2, 2010
    Posts: 1,431

    lumpy 63
    Member

    Oh yeah .. It also includes twin bears.
     
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  11. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki




    Hey L,
    Thank you for the nice comments. I keep telling myself that I was just a kid with a movie camera at a dragstrip. But, I enjoyed every minute of that experience. My (late) brother was responsible for my involvement in mechanics, hot rods, drag racing, surfing, and photography. It was a battle of brothers... If he did it, then... it was competition at its finest, for sure.

    For me, these days, I scan most of the still photos that I took to make them digital. Then I can clean up any dust motes or crap that was on the lens at the time of shooting. Yes, those motes are part of the photo, but your eye originally did not see those motes. It is not photoshopping, just cleaning up to make an original photo. Finally, making sure the photos fit into the HAMB timeline of restrictions.

    If you do not have a scanner set at 600 or higher dpi, then take a good digital photo of each of your old photos. (tripod+digital camera, not a phone camera) Now, you have something to work with in the cleaning process. Remembering not to take away from the point of the photo from back then.

    Jnaki
    Now, store those digital photos along with all of your own family photos on an external hard drive for safe keeping... It helps in the grab and run from our California wild fires, instead of 15 photo albums under your arm.

    Looking forward to seeing those old photos. History is everywhere and now part of it will be preserved and shared. Let me know if you need help in the process. Thanks again, for the nice comments...
     
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  12. catdad49
    Joined: Sep 25, 2005
    Posts: 5,041

    catdad49
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Jnaki, it appears that I am Not alone. You have Much more to add than you give yourself credit for. Idea, contact someone that Loves the time period and ask for their help/incite. I know it would be a huge undertaking for just yourself, so why not ask for help. Just a thought, but whatever you decide, please continue sharing your experiences. Thanks, Carp.
     
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  13. rat deuce
    Joined: Feb 7, 2007
    Posts: 188

    rat deuce
    Member

    The twin engine rail with the Chrysler Chevy combination is the Warren/Coburn/Crowe car that was built by Bob Crowe from the rear engine car they ran in 58-59. every part except the frame was transferred to the new car... Screen Shot 2018-07-28 at 9.08.12 AM.png Screen Shot 2018-07-28 at 9.40.02 AM.png
     
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  14. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki

    SATURDAY AT THE DRAGS...

    Hey R,

    One of our favorite all time road trips was to drive to the Bakersfield Smokers March Meet #2 in 1960. We had seen the top racers at Lions 58-60 (we were there almost weekly) and in December 1959 at Riverside Raceway. But, the one that stands out was this March Smokers meet. Here is a story I posted in February on the Vintage thread. It just blew by many people without notice. It should have been in the Drag Cars in Motion or part in the Lions Dragstrip thread. Sorry…

    Jnaki


    Gary Reynolds originally posted the Warren Colburn twin photo.
    Gary Reynolds said: March Meet 1960 Warren and Coburn
    upload_2018-8-4_4-9-25.png

    Hello,

    Nice photo at the 1960 Smokers March Meet held at Bakersfield. The depth of the photo shows just how far across the chain link fences were to the actual dragstrip. But, those chain link fences were the hot commodity when viewing the time trials or the eliminations. When I was filming at Bakersfield in 1960, I was able to wander all over the facility with my pit pass.
    upload_2018-8-4_4-11-4.png
    Bakersfield Famoso Dragstrip 1960, behind the starting line.

    The Smokers event was one of the best drag meets we ever attended. All of the biggest names in drag racing were there from all over the USA. Of course, we were partial to the Lions Dragstrip locals.
    upload_2018-8-4_4-11-54.png upload_2018-8-4_4-12-5.png
    Warren/Colburn at Bakersfield Famoso Dragstrip 1960

    Jnaki

    We were at Lions in early 1960 in between racing our SBC Willys in B/Gas. We had just completed the SBC with 6 Strombergs and were trying to get it competitive in this class. It was fun, but the competition was pretty tough in B/Gas.

    While I was wandering around between rounds, I saw this most unusual dragster lining up in the pits staging lane. (A 671 hemi in back and a Stromberg/SBC in front.) No one else had that unusual combo at the time. We were interested because of the Strombergs on the SBC motor. The 6 Stromberg motor in the Warren Colburn Twin looked similar to our first SBC non supercharged motor.
    upload_2018-8-4_4-12-56.png
    Warren Colburn Twin at Lions 1960


    Warren/Colburn at Lions 1960 and the March Meet in Bakersfield 1960.




     
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  15. IMG_0130.PNG Wow, I grew up on Harris Ave. 2 blocks West of this address. That house was on my paper route in 69-70. What a great thread to read. Thanks Junji and all who contributed!
     
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  16. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki

    WEEKEND AT THE DRAGS:
    upload_2018-9-8_4-4-33.png
    Hello,

    My brother and I were enthralled with the different classes of street legal roadsters and coupes when we went to Lions Dragstrip. Those were the cars that “spoke” to all of us, as they were able to be driven on the street as well as race. That was the original premise of starting the Lions Dragstrip on the empty property. “Get those hot rods off of the street and allow them to race separately…” That was music to everyone’s ears back then. A place to call our own.

    My brother knew that someday he wanted to build something to race, other than his 58 Impala. With the onslaught of more horsepower, factory stock cars jamming the class we were in at the time, it looked fruitless for our future efforts as stock class racers.

    Some were already showing some factory dealer backing, so it was beginning to look glum for us backyard hot rodders. There was only so much one could do to remain “stock” and still race.

    upload_2018-9-8_4-13-46.png
    When we walked around the pits at Lions in 1959-60, we saw plenty of different street legal cars in all shapes and sizes. Some were actual, "pop off the hubcap and go racing" cars to the “on the edge of a full on race car” with lights, license plate and wipers to be legal.
    upload_2018-9-8_4-14-35.png Doug Cook's C/Gas 37 Chevy and some kid in a blue nylon jacket, looking for some speed secrets...
    Doug Cook 37 Chevy…a fast C/Gas coupe…

    Two of the hottest street legal roadsters at the time were the Jim Morris, Buick powered, light blue, RPU and the Jim Cassidy, Black Roadster with Junior Thompson at the wheel. They each had legal mufflers and other items to qualify them as street legal roadsters. They were both very fast.
    upload_2018-9-8_4-17-42.png upload_2018-9-8_4-18-14.png

    Jnaki

    So which class were these roadsters? It was hard to say as they could be driven on the street. But, we thought they were on the edge of “full-on race cars” that just happened to be in a street legal class. We can all cap up and send the exhaust to our side or under the frame mufflers to be legal…


    MORRIS VS THOMPSON 1959-60





     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2018
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  17. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki

    upload_2018-9-29_4-34-57.png Scuderia FED 1960
    Hello,
    While editing my old Lions Dragstrip films for the umpteenth time, I came across a race that was filmed by me in 1960 from below the Lions Dragstrip Tower. It was very short and maybe that is why I passed over it so many times. I had been standing there filming my brother racing his 58 Impala and thought it was the best filming location I could find. Watch the black 58 Impala entering the staging lanes behind the silver FED race car in the fire up lane.

    Impala tower side
    upload_2018-9-29_4-37-44.png upload_2018-9-29_4-37-59.png
    Then when other racers came up, I was still on the tower side down on the actual dragstrip near the ambulance. Over time, after editing the Lions films to try and get the correct dates and times, (as well as identifying the racers from back then) I must have skipped over this very short clip.

    I was amazed that the streamlined FED in my early films was identified as the Scuderia in a race. It was over in a flash, but enough to identify the shape and design as the blue race car on a fast run down the dragstrip. Other racers from this time period have also identified the image as the Scuderia FED.

    So, the famous, blue Scuderia FED dragster created by Canadian, Jack Williams:

    upload_2018-9-29_4-44-44.png Lions Dragstrip 1960

    Scuderia at Lions

    The tower location was a great place to film the starts, but that was it. Everything was not clear in a few seconds. But, the sound and action so close by was a little thrilling. The security force did not like it that I was standing on the dragstrip while filming and gave me a few choice words to get the #&%% out of there.
    upload_2018-9-29_4-49-23.png upload_2018-9-29_4-50-4.png
    The streamlined “Scuderia” FED race car has been around a long time, with the original in the early 1960 to the reconstructed streamliner for the current nostalgia shows. The Canadian FED was beautifully constructed and was the envy of many drag racers back then.

    Jnaki

    The odd thing was in my research, there is no mention of the Scuderia FED prior to 1961-62 season.


    “The car was the most famous race car in Western Canada in the 1960's, won best appearing at the 1962 Winternationals and held the A/D national record in 1963.”

    “Scuderia made her debut at the 1963 NHRA Winternationals at Pomona, California in Top Gas, recording a best pass of 8.83 seconds at 169.17 mph (272.25 km/h) before mechanical trouble sidelined her. She also won the "Best Appearing" award. At Arlington, Scuderia set a Top Gas record (average of two passes) at 162.22 mph.”

    upload_2018-9-29_4-55-18.png

    Recently, the Scuderia FED is one of the more popular race cars in the vintage/nostalgia drag race circuit/events. It certainly stands out, with the bright blue paint. But, it was one of the first full body streamline FED racers on the scene that makes it unusual.
    upload_2018-9-29_4-57-10.png

    2016 Family Legacy:

    “Thirty years since its last, disastrous local appearance in competition, one of Canada’s greatest AA/Gas Dragsters came to cackle with late builder-driver Jack Williams’ daughter under its signature canopy. Wendy Williams rescued Dad’s original trailer from nearly six decades of British Columbia winters.”
    upload_2018-9-29_5-5-8.png
     
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  18. And then, it was probably not worth filming, but do you remember they would pair off two stockers for what was called a "LeMans" start. They would park on the right side, off of the strip at right angle to the strip and the drivers would have to run across the strip, tag the fence, run back, start the cars and race down the strip. I'm not sure if they checked seat belts. Strange times!
     
  19. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki

    Hey W,
    It was worth filming because of the entertainment value and knowing the two top racers that were doing their thing. Besides, it gave us time to go get some famous Lions Hot Dogs and Cokes. The activity at Lions was always hectic and dragstrip food was a pleasant break as well as being a necessity.

    The LeMans style cars came from the stock car classes. The 58 Biscayne was one of the fastest at Lions for several years. The black 59 Impala was one of the first 4 speed, 335 hp motor combinations and it started the run on the big 348s for the stock class domination. These bigger 320-335 hp motors were the downfall of our under powered 280 hp motor in the 58 Impala. That became a closed door for us. Now it was on to the big build in the Gas Coupe and Sedan classes.



    LeMans style racing during intermission at Lions Dragstrip.

    The LeMans race was filmed in 1959, but went on during 1960, too. Earlier versions we have all seen, were the drag racers actually running down the strip back to their cars and racing. That was strange, but fun.

    Jnaki
    As the stock car classes go, the 59 348s were fast until the bigger 409s started showing up and that closed the door for them. Then the progression kept up until the factory had more so called, "stock" cars than the general public racing. For my brother and me, it made us glad that old time hot rodding was still available in the build-it-yourself Gas Coupe and Sedan classes.
     
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  20. catdad49
    Joined: Sep 25, 2005
    Posts: 5,041

    catdad49
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Interesting, might have been a problem with bucket seats!
     
  21. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki





    Hey C,
    Interesting observation. Those two Chevys were bench seat models. The 58 definitely had a bench seat and column shift. The 59 Impala had the 4 speed floor shift which could have created problems, but at the time, they slid across the seats and raced. (having driven a 59 with a 4 speed, if left in 2nd gear, it was closest to the seat.) The 59 had more horsepower (335), but that 58 was the 315 model and not too out classed. 315 vs 335 20 HP could be made up from fast starts and quick shifts, which the 58 did to make him the fastest in those classes.

    The black 59 ruled the top S/S class with the 335 HP, but the 58 ruled the A/Stock class. We were in the A/Stock class with the 280 HP classification. We were under powered at 315 vs 280 a 35 HP difference, but could win with the right conditions. Asleep at the start, missed shifts, etc... all played a big part in overcoming the HP differences.

    Jnaki
    It was a fun time regardless of the class of racing and stuff that goes with trying to "out-do" the other racers. Tuning, specific parts, quickness, plus other items were necessary to get the best times and speeds. In the stock class, there was so much anyone could do to make it fast and competitive. But, as the years went on, being out gunned by 40-50 horsepower was too much to overcome. So, that is why the Gas Coupe and Sedan classes started to make sense for our next build.
     
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  22. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki

    upload_2019-3-23_3-34-18.png
    Ed Garlits at Lions Dragstrip in 1960


    Hello,

    My brother and I were just teenagers that happened to live nearby the old Lions Dragstrip in Long Beach. (actually Wilmington) The LB city line was on one side of the dragstrip and it was hard for anyone to call it Lions Dragstrip located in Wilmington. I am sure the “accurate police” will step in here, if not, then we will continue to call it Lions Dragstrip in Long Beach. There are some here on the HAMB that actually lived within blocks, but in Long Beach.


    The most read newspaper for all of drag racing in the USA, Drag News, called it Lions, LADS, or in the results or stories, Long Beach.
    upload_2019-3-23_3-35-20.png
    We were into drag racing, first with my brother’s new 348/280 hp 1958 Impala. Then as the years and more experience rolled around, we had plans to build something cooler and faster. We wanted a national record. But, all during this time period, I filmed drag racing/hot rods whenever I could and where ever I was at the time.
    upload_2019-3-23_3-36-1.png
    One day, I was filming during the breaks between our 40 Willys 283ci, 6 Strombergs in the B/Gas Coupe class. I was able to walk around and take some exciting action from just about everywhere that was legal and some places not so legal. One of those places was next to the orange, Lions Dragstrip tower, standing next to the ever present white Pontiac Ambulance. I was able to get some interesting “on coming” shots, until I was kicked out of the so called, “secret spot.”
    upload_2019-3-23_3-37-5.png
    This is why...No one was allowed here except for the white Pontiac ambulance. The racers were within touching distance away when they zipped by the spot.

    Ed Garlits unusual driving style, low in the seat, neck craning around the big Hemi blower motor and lots of thrust. It was coming at you with lots of power.


    1960 March: Ed Garlits total


    Jnaki
    Ed who??? We all knew about Don Garlits,aka, the “Swamp Rat.” but who was Ed? (Ed was the younger brother of Don. He was Ed L. Their father was Ed E.)
    We had seen Don Garlits' SWAMP RAT, months earlier in December of 1959 at Riverside Raceway, but never saw this Garlits family FED anywhere. Well, here it was in our own backyard dragstrip, Lions, a few months later.

    upload_2019-3-23_3-41-53.png
    Ed Garlits, Lions 1960 photo art
     
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  23. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki

    upload_2019-6-15_3-3-59.png Most photographs and movies are taken from the spectator side.
    Hello,

    When I was a teenager taking 16mm color movies at Lions, I wanted to have some extra shots normally not seen on film. So, I wandered over to the tower side and took some shots from the bleachers. That gave a different prospective of the starting line area looking West. But, the action was short lived as the race cars went by so fast.
    upload_2019-6-15_3-5-58.png
    There seemed to be a spot right on the track below the timing tower that would make a great starting line shot or take off filming point. The rest of the films would be a blur, because of the angle of the action coming right at the photographer/movie maker.
    ed garlits 1960

    While standing there taking several minutes of film, I was able to talk to the white Pontiac Ambulance driver. I remember that he was contracted to provide services with the dragstrip. He was nice and had seen his share of mangled accidents over the years. Little did I know that I would see him again in August 1960 at 9:30 p.m. down past the finish line, in the dark.
    upload_2019-6-15_3-7-32.png The white ambulance on the right of the photo/film clip. Scuderia


    My brother had just made the fastest pass of the day/evening and win in the final elimination race of the C/Gas coupe class. But, just before the final traps, he blew a clutch, the gas tank exploded and the Willys Coupe was on fire. My brother tried to put the fire out with the extinguisher, but had to jump out due to the heat and flames.

    When we saw this accident from the starting line, we (Atts Ono and I rushed in my 58 Impala) to the site of the Willys on fire, stuck in the chain link fence on the spectator's side, burning like crazy. After trying to put the flames out and not seeing my brother inside, I was told to go back to the finish line where the ambulance was helping my brother.
    upload_2019-6-15_3-9-57.png
    I got to the white Pontiac Ambulance and my friend, the attendant, was helping my brother on a stretcher. They were placing my brother into the back of the ambulance. My friend, the attendant, said to not worry and they will be at the local hospital,(Long Beach Memorial) in the emergency wing. He said he would wait until I got there. Thanks, Mr. Childers...
    upload_2019-6-15_3-11-2.png Lions tower side

    Jnaki

    Little did I know at the time that I would go to high school (1960-62) with the teenagers from the family that owned the ambulance service and local mortuary. (see aside below)
    upload_2019-6-15_3-12-16.png
    From the Crash Helmet in 1957:

    “The above picture is typical of a scene one would see if they were to look around any of the drag strips. The driver shown is Mr. C.B. Childers of the Dilday Ambulance Service. His ambulance is provided at the Lions Dragstrip, located at 223rd Street and Alameda Street, Wilmington. An ambulance is provided at every dragstrip to take care of any injury that might occur, even though a strip is the safest place anywhere to take your car to find out the best time it will turn in a quarter mile. These strips are being made safer every day.”


    THANKS, @RRuss ON THE HAMB 2009 (Plus, the original post of movies from Lions Dragstrip in 1960 of our Willys Coupe running in B/G)


    https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum...m-days-gone-by.428585/page-5063#post-12435193 AMBULANCE STORY


    Aside:
    The Latin root word, mort, means “death.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including mortgage, mortuary, and immortal. The Latin root word, mort, is easily recalled through the word mortal, for a “mortal” is someone whom “death” will claim one day.

    Mortuary = place of death
    Immortal = no death in the future
    Mortgage = a certificate that we carry on until death? Ha Ha... morbid thoughts.







     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2019
    Sky Six and Montana1 like this.
  24. George Klass
    Joined: Dec 31, 2007
    Posts: 939

    George Klass
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Doug Cook's '37 Chevy...
     
  25. George Klass
    Joined: Dec 31, 2007
    Posts: 939

    George Klass
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I was 21 in 1960 and had been going to Lions since 1955. So many memories...
     
  26. FuelRoadster
    Joined: Nov 17, 2005
    Posts: 1,069

    FuelRoadster
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Wait til you see THIS Lions Dragstrip Museum~~~
    MUSEUM FLYER.jpg
     
    jnaki and elgringo71 like this.
  27. So, what's there?
     
  28. FuelRoadster
    Joined: Nov 17, 2005
    Posts: 1,069

    FuelRoadster
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    1.Re-Creation of the Tower that goes across the staging lanes, (almost full scale--people in the Tower,steps/stairs up to it)

    2.Starting line with full size Tree hanging across the 2 lanes.

    3.Real bleachers on right lane side of the track.

    4. Accurate painting of the original Tower, left lane, accurate painting of ambulance and tow truck below Tower.

    Too much to list, but it's absolutely amazing. Been there about 4-5 times in the last 2 months and no pictures were allowed, I only took personal pics of my dads stuff in a display case.
    Someone DID post a pic on FB. There's a VIP deal Friday night, and the Grand Opening from 1-6 PM Saturday-See yellow flyer.
    There will be tons of pics posted of this deal,,trust me.
     
    jnaki likes this.
  29. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki



    Hey B,
    That "brown" Chevy coupe was actually painted the ever popular Tahitian Red from that time period. This 1937 Chevy was owned by Doug Cook and was one of the fastest in C/Gas. It would have been one of our main competitors in that class, as our 671 SBC Willys Coupe was also in C/Gas.

    https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/lions-dragstrip-1960.1025215/page-3#post-12104748
    upload_2019-6-15_18-31-35.png

    Doug Cook 1937 Tahitian Red Chevy Coupe (with some sneaky kid trying to get some speed secrets by peeking inside and all around...)

    Also, that small silver rear engine race car was built at Stu's Transmissions in NE Long Beach, just past Bixby Knolls. That place was a gathering of almost anyone with transmission problems or set ups. The mechanics there were very good and popular with the drag racers and street cruisers/racers.
    Stu's Transmission
    In this NE Long Beach locale, there were plenty of outstanding shops that catered to the drag racers and home builders. From Stu's Transmissions, to Henry's Machine Works for axles/frame mods, etc. A great tire store and alignment place, as well as several muffler shops for the custom pipes and exhausts.

    Jnaki
    We were fortunate to be able to drive a short distance to give our business to those shops and mechanics. it was a hot spot just north of Bixby Knolls. Jocko's Porting Service was also nearby.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2019
    Ron Funkhouser and belair like this.
  30. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,978

    jnaki





    upload_2019-11-9_4-24-36.png upload_2019-11-9_4-26-32.png
    Hey 302,

    Thank you for actually looking at that old film. The many times that I have watched that edition, that custom, 1951 Buick Sedan whizzed by quickly in the background. The film was a bunch of 1960 stuff I had put on a large reel for viewing back in our old Long Beach house as a teen. But, it was a hassle to set up the projector, large screen, and thread each reel through the 16mm projector before we could watch any action.

    So, 55 years later, it was a compilation what the video/film converter guy thought should go into the digital files as Lions 1960. Since that time back in 2015, I have been able to get edits on all of the major digital editions. There were a lot of scenes that were from 1959.


    As a teenager, when I was doing the actual 16mm film editing on my film cutting machine, I ran the whole films from a certain day. Then I added the other films from similar days, hopefully all in 1960. It was a new thing, but no one else was doing any kind of filming and editing. Again, my brother and I were just happy there were some films of us at Lions. It helped that the drag racing we did and saw were preserved all of these years.

    The 1958-61 editing machine we had was a 3 inch screen and it was difficult to cut and paste to make a complete film. In those days, cut and paste was actually cut the film right on the holes, then sand or rough up the edge that is going to match the other films edge. Then using a photo glue, paste the two edges together. So, if we had 5 different days on one reel, but interspersed with my dad’s filming stuff, there was a lot of cutting and pasting going on during the editing phase.

    Here is the last remaining editing stuff for portable editing on the go. The editing machine with the 3 inch screen has gone to movie making heaven years ago. This guy still hangs around.
    upload_2019-11-9_4-28-22.png upload_2019-11-9_4-28-37.png from 1958
    top plate 8mm bottom plate/cutter 16mm


    The digital edition I thought was all 1960, had other years and time periods included. Sorry for that, but in 2015, I was so happy that someone digitized my old films from back in those times. So, I was enjoying watching the color digitized films. So, like it was mentioned earlier, I sent off the whole film to Ryan to see if he liked it. Little did I know, until watching them over and over, that something was not right. Back to the drawing/editing board.

    This time digital editions were a lot easier to cut and paste. Now viewing them on a 17 inch laptop or 31 inch desktop monitor for clarity was like night and day. But, watching them on any digital screen certainly brought back great memories of growing up and getting involved in hot rods and drag racing.


    Jnaki

    Yes, there were a bunch of big old sedans back in those days. Mild customization was easier for all concerned as usage was not just for car shows, but for daily driving to jobs and school. Here is almost the same model of 1951 Buick Sedan with some modifications that was prevalent back in those late 50’s, early 60’s days. The look is straight from the 1958-60 time period. Captured on a Panasonic/Lumix (Leica) digital camera around 11:30 AM.

    upload_2019-11-9_4-29-32.png

    PURPLE PERIOD CORRECT OR NOT ?
    PURPLE is/was a popular hot rod/cruiser color. So, yes it was popular.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2019

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