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Who are your Land Speed Racing Heros?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by M.D., Jul 1, 2008.

  1. 29hotrod55kustom
    Joined: Dec 19, 2005
    Posts: 701

    29hotrod55kustom
    Member

    first its cool to see the name frank lockhart mentioned (it was my best friends great uncle).

    second its almost appalling to see Ak Miller's name only mentioned a couple times..

    and third.. what about Veda Orr??!!! she kept the spirit of the dry lakes alive during the war!!! AND RACED!!!

    on that note.. my heros are Ak Miller.. and Veda Orr.. all those others ARE bad ass.. but.. Ak Miller set 3 records in one day using one chassis and 2 motors.. as well as almost got his name shunned from hot rodding by being the first to use an OHV motor (olds) in the late 40's! and i pick Veda because come on, that shits rad, a chick racer and the fact that she helped keep racing alive during the war as well as all the other shit she did! so heres my pics..

    Ak Miller
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    Veda Orr
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    oh and half way through this i also realized that barney navarro was not even mentioned and i remember he was one of the first to use a jimmy blower on his flathead powered 27 (correct me if im wrong).. so yea.. pioneer and bad ass..

    Barney Navarro
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    then heres a few gow jobs i like that were big timers..
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    blam! thats my list.. and a damn good one if i must say so myself!
     
  2. flatheadjunk
    Joined: Nov 10, 2006
    Posts: 288

    flatheadjunk
    Member Emeritus
    from Orange CA

    It's all about the REAL guys you never heard of---the John Drakes,the Ed Newett's, the Barbee's, Dave Davidson,just like drag racing used to be.They made it happen, volunteered, and made it better for everyone else.Gave up their parts, even to the "enemy" so they could get the record.It's a family that can not be broken.
     
    Surf City likes this.
  3. Here's just a few of the "regular guys" you might meet in Land Speed Racing:
    Carr & Kaplan - first vehicle over 300mph at El Mirage w/ iron 392 Hemroid powered Lakester, years before Hill and Garlits reached 300 at the drags.
    Studebaker Joe - for saying "Who has more Fun" when I blew up his fuel-burning '55 Stude going through the lights @ 199mph.
    Ron Benham - for building more 200mph vehicles in his garage than you can shake a stick at, and for putting his old Boss Ak into the 2 Club.
    The list goes on . . .
     
  4. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,017

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

     

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  5. Bobby Green
    Joined: Jun 9, 2001
    Posts: 1,319

    Bobby Green
    Member

    This is a great thread and I'm glad someone started it. And if I listed all my land speed heros, it would take up two pages, because everyone that's ever ran are up there in my book, including all the people that crew for others just to say they were apart of it. Because without all the nameless friends and family that help out, nobody would have any records in the books.
    So here's to everybody never mentioned ...ever.
     
  6. buikwag
    Joined: Apr 21, 2005
    Posts: 472

    buikwag
    Member
    1. Buick Nailheads

    Walter Scott from "Scotty's Muffler" fame. Scotty was a member of our club until he passed away a few years ago. He was in his 90's and still involved with racing at Bonneville. His son Billy Scott was the driver of the roadster in the attached picture. They set a record that lasted for a while. Scotty was a member of the Hornets car club in the 1940's and was racing at El Mirage back then. He is a member of the SCTA Hall of Fame. He was always a gentleman, and I never heard him say anything bad about anyone. I miss him and his stories. A true hero, who was always willing to help anyone in any way he could.
     

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  7. Dan Warner
    Joined: Oct 25, 2004
    Posts: 557

    Dan Warner
    Member
    from so cal

    "Here's just a few of the "regular guys" you might meet in Land Speed Racing:
    Carr & Kaplan - first vehicle over 300mph at El Mirage w/ iron 392 Hemroid powered Lakester, years before Hill and Garlits reached 300 at the drags."

    I just found out about 30 minutes ago that Barry Kaplan has passed on. He was found in his home a couple of days ago, he apparently died from natural causes.

    God Speed Barry,

    DW
     
  8. cheap-n-dirty
    Joined: Jan 28, 2002
    Posts: 722

    cheap-n-dirty
    Member

    Bob Joehnck from Santa Barbara, he let me drive his and
    Mark Dees record setting roadster back to impound when I was 16. It forever changed what I wanted to do.
     
  9. cheap-n-dirty
    Joined: Jan 28, 2002
    Posts: 722

    cheap-n-dirty
    Member

    Bob Joehnck from Santa Barbara, he let me drive his and
    Mark Dees record setting roadster back to impound when I was 16. It forever changed what I wanted to do.
    I also want to say that Barry was a freind of mine and one of the smartest engine people that I ever knew.
     
  10. Bobby, thats why I mentioned the Peek Bros. car...........it was the FIRST I recall.......I am 38, the mag has been with me since 74ish when my dad let me loose with them. So many TRUE hereos, I simply stated the one team that influenced me as a kid in teh early 70s
     
  11. I'll second Walter Scott and the Scotty's Muffler roadster ...

    ... and I better add Duane McKinney (pilot of the 'Sundowner" Corvette and the Burbank Engine Service 4-wheel drive Roadster) to my list:

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    Last edited: Apr 28, 2020
  12. Dynoroom
    Joined: Feb 26, 2008
    Posts: 561

    Dynoroom
    Member

    I liked the Burbank Engine car more when it was turbocharged! As Glen always told me "cars don't just happen, people make them happen". I sure do miss Glen.
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    Duane has been do'in it longer than most, I think he'll be 74 this year. I'm sure glad I got to inturn on those two cars.

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  13. Michael "Dynoroom" LeFevers,

    I liked it better with the turbocharger too! ... have a few pics of it in that trim as well (with the rubber duckie floating in the i/c tank).:)

    Funny you should post here ... After adding Duane to "my list" ... I was going to add Dave MacDonald & Lionel Pitts to the list (but didn't since their '92 Pontiac Firebird is OT for the H.A.M.B.) ... and the natural progression would be to add you & the Kugel's to the my list of LSR heroes ... being the 1st stock-bodied passenger car to exceed the 300mph barrier is simply mind-blowing ... and a testament to your engine-building skills!

    humbled by your presence
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2020
  14. oilslinger53
    Joined: Apr 17, 2007
    Posts: 2,491

    oilslinger53
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from covina CA

    al teague.
    and for airspeed chuck yeager(sp?)
     
  15. 392_hemi
    Joined: Jun 16, 2004
    Posts: 1,737

    392_hemi
    Member

    Warner Riley. Factory Harley and S&S racer. First person over 200 mph on open motorcycle. Last count I think he had 16 world speed records. His 200 mph Sportster, named Nitro Express, was on display at the S&S 50th last weekend.
     
  16. old kid
    Joined: Mar 21, 2005
    Posts: 826

    old kid
    Member Emeritus
    from middle ga

    all of them!
    dan
     
  17. 29hotrod55kustom
    Joined: Dec 19, 2005
    Posts: 701

    29hotrod55kustom
    Member

    great thread, i gotta keep comin back to see what else has been added.. but its still sad that im the only one who gave veda orr mention.
     
  18. TraderJack
    Joined: Apr 10, 2008
    Posts: 330

    TraderJack
    Member

    well, mine was John and don Vesco, both San diego Roadster Club members. At first 1949 salt race , John did 203 with his 4port riley Model A. and , of course, Don carriied on with the speed stuff. Still have the 1949 Program here on the shelf, with a picture of me and my brother in Paul Schiefer's shop.

    Oh, that was 60 years ago, and John Vesco was running his 1934 Riley head and original cam in the car. Beat some of the big V8s in the lakester drive by Dinkins.

    Reversed drop tank with nose in the back.

    traderjack
     
  19. model.A.keith
    Joined: Mar 19, 2007
    Posts: 6,282

    model.A.keith
    Member

    John Godfrey Parry Thomas - BABS

    The car was originally built in 1923 by Count Louis Zborowski as the fourth of his Aero engined Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang cars. Being the last and the largest he named it the Higham Special.
    The car was named 'Babs' and after carrying out a considerable amount of work he took it to Pendine for a crack at the landspeed record. This was in October 1925 but the weather precluded any chance of a record breaking run. To cap it all Henry Segrave posted a speed of 152.33 mph. In April 1926 Babs was transported back to Pendine at Shell-Mex's expense for another attempt. After a couple of warm-up runs Parry-Thomas achieved a speed of 169.30. A day later he pushed the record over the 170 mph mark. <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com[​IMG]</st1:City>Campbell was among those who sportingly congratulated Parry-Thomas and, in the nature of the challenge, he prepared his own car for another attempt on the record. In January 1927 he achieved a top speed of 174.883 mph.
    As the competition for the record increased Parry-Thomas wanted another crack at it; he knew Henry Segrave was to attempt a run for 200 mph, i<st1:State w:st="on">n Florida</st1:State>. He arrived back in Pendine, unwell with 'Flu', in March 1927 and with the assistance of Shell and Dunlop staff began to prepare the car for a run on the beach. After the usual start and warm up procedures had been followed he set off up the beach on a timed run. The car skidded, turned over and over and then slewed round to face the sea. The scene for those first to arrive was not pretty, Parry-Thomas was still in the car, partially decapitated and burned. the car was on fire and in order to retrieve the body from the blazing wreck two of Parry-Thomas's crew had the unpleasant task of breaking the legs of the corpse before the fire prevented them reaching it. The car was buried in a big hole on the beach and that was thought to be the end of the story.
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    However, in March 1969, 42 years after the car was buried, the car was dug up by Owen Wyn Owen, a <st1:placeName w:st="on">Technical</st1:placeName> <st1:placeType w:st="on">College</st1:placeType> lecturer for North Wales. Having restored other cars he thought it would be nice to get some pieces of the car to display in a museum as a tribute to Thomas. The car was, however, more complete than imagined, but was badly damaged as a result of the accident and 42 years of salt water had corroded all the aluminium. The car is now restored and on display at Pendine.
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  20. owen thomas
    Joined: Jun 15, 2008
    Posts: 186

    owen thomas
    Member

    My hero was Karol Miller - drives his ’56 Ford up from Texas, runs on pump gas, stock mufflers I think, sets records and drive home. The West Coast guys didn’t even know who he was. No big secrets, just all about tuning.
    My current hero is my good and dear old friend Bob Williams who is probably out there right now. Go get em Bob. Bob is paralyzed from the waist down, but one hell of a builder and a self-taught engineer with a couple of world bike records so far. 500cc: Fastest one mile average 228.58 mph August 18, 2006; 650 cc: World Record S-G 650 210.728mph August 4, 2004. The other guy in the photo is the driver/rider, my old racing buddy Gary Hensley who set a couple of records back in ’75 too. Gary will be out there this year I think as a crew chief for an Aurora IRL powered effort.
     

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  21. beaulieu
    Joined: Mar 24, 2007
    Posts: 362

    beaulieu
    Member
    from So Cal

    Bill Burke and the Kellison that did 237 mph in the early 60s
     
  22. fabianvaldez
    Joined: Jan 28, 2008
    Posts: 25

    fabianvaldez
    Member

    The people that directly made me feel like I could do anything, with support and encouragement: Ron Benham, Joaquin Arnett, Tony Piner. The rest of the 5 mile long list is filled with people that help make it all happen, volunteers, family,!
     

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  23. Fabian,

    Great pic of Ronnie. Anyone who knew him was richer for it. Thanks for posting. I miss him dropping by the shop with his monthly El Mirage reports. RIP Ron.
     
  24. Rudebaker
    Joined: Sep 14, 2007
    Posts: 1,598

    Rudebaker
    Member
    from Illinois

    Anybody runnin' a Studebaker. ;):cool:
     

  25. OK, I'm just guessin' but what I did to this 53 at El Mirage in May of 62 probably won't get me on your list. We did build another one though, after I got out of the body cast. :eek:
     

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  26. Rudebaker
    Joined: Sep 14, 2007
    Posts: 1,598

    Rudebaker
    Member
    from Illinois

    Heck no, it died with it's boots on, doing what it was built to do! :cool:
     
  27. Silhouettes 57
    Joined: Dec 9, 2006
    Posts: 2,791

    Silhouettes 57
    Member

    Craig Breedlove because he was one of my heros growing up.
     
  28. scottrod13
    Joined: Aug 8, 2008
    Posts: 1

    scottrod13
    Member

    The Summers Brothers are my heroes. My dad was Bob Summers, the driver and chief engineer. There are so many things my dad and his brother did with that car that were way ahead of there time. The record still stands today as a matter of fact. They brought the record back to the USA from Britian's Campbell. It was the only car ever that the government gave a grant to restore as a "national treasure". Read the article about the restoration in Hot Rod magazine. There are many heroes at the salt lakes, but the Summers Brothers are mine.

    Scott Summers
     
    banjeaux bob likes this.
  29. There are many heroes at the salt lakes, but the Summers Brothers are mine.

    Scott Summers[/quote]

    I never saw the Goldenrod run, but I did see the tear drop car with the tandem rear wheels and the crank driven blown hemi the first year they brought it to speedweek. 64,65? Bob couldn't get the front wheel drive to hook up, salt was pretty wet. They went into town and gathered a ton of old batteries from in back of the Wendover Garage. Busted them open and melted the lead into a huge slug, and bolted it over the front end. Next day went out and qualified around 300 mph I believe. The Goldenrod was an engineering masterpiece, but I think the little tear drop car was a work of art. Any idea where it is?

    You should be proud of your Dad and uncle. They are Bonneville heros!
     
  30. owen thomas
    Joined: Jun 15, 2008
    Posts: 186

    owen thomas
    Member

    Can't forget Don Vesco...r.i.p.
     

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