It’s Gonna be a Great Year!

Drag Racer - - The Mongoo$e Journals -

MY FRIENDS, I’M GONNA BE ON THE ROAD THIS YEAR MORE THAN I’VE BEEN SINCE I HUNG UP MY FIRE SUIT, AND I’M RE­ALLY LOOK­ING FOR­WARD TO VIS­IT­ING WITH YOU.

What’s gonna get me out of my TV chair and into an air­plane seat? NHRA is crank­ing up a new pro­gram for 2018 and 2019 that I’m very ex­cited about, and I hope you will be too.

THE NHRA LEG­ENDS TOUR

NHRA’s PR depart­ment has cre­ated a press re­lease ex­plain­ing the tour, so in­stead of try­ing to ex­plain this new deal, I’ll just pass on the info from the horse’s mouth.

NHRA has a spe­cial treat in store for long-time fans of NHRA cham­pi­onship drag rac­ing. Be­gin­ning at the Amalie Mo­tor Oil NHRA Ga­tor­na­tion­als in Gainesville, Florida, NHRA will be­gin a year­long cel­e­bra­tion lead­ing up to the 50th an­niver­sary of this iconic event. What bet­ter way to cel­e­brate than with the NHRA leg­ends who made the sport what it is to­day? The NHRA Leg­ends Tour will fea­ture some of the most beloved fig­ures from the early days of drag rac­ing in­clud­ing “Big Daddy” Don Gar­l­its, Shirley Mul­downey, Kenny Bern­stein, Joe Amato, Ed “The Ace” McCul­loch and me to name a few. The NHRA Leg­ends Tour will fea­ture mee­tand-greets, au­to­graph ses­sions and many op­por­tu­ni­ties to in­ter­act with your fa­vorite NHRA leg­ends.

In ad­di­tion to the folks men­tioned above, there will be lo­cal rac­ing he­roes at in­di­vid­ual races par­tic­i­pat­ing in the tour.

I’m still work­ing out all of the de­tails, but right now, in ad­di­tion to the Win­ter­nats, which will have passed by the time you read this, I’ll be see­ing you at the DENSO Spark Plugs NHRA Na­tion­als Apr. 6-8 in Las Ve­gas. This is now a four-wide race, like Char­lotte, so you re­ally need to at­tend this one, it’s a his­tory-mak­ing event. Then I’ll be head­ing on down to Hous­ton, Texas, for the NHRA Springna­tion­als, Apr. 20-22.

At the races, I’ll be cir­cu­lat­ing through­out the pits at spe­cial venues that NHRA will set up for the Leg­ends Tour par­tic­i­pants. In be­tween those events,

I’ll be hang­ing out with my friend, Randy Ranew, at his Red Line Shirt Club booth. We’ve been brain­storm­ing some brand-new T-shirt de­signs that will be avail­able for sale, and I think you’re re­ally gonna like them.

Speak­ing of Randy and the Red Line Shirt Club, he has a new deal, the Di­nosaur Shirt Club. Ev­ery month you’ll get a cool new dino T-shirt with an orig­i­nal de­sign fea­tur­ing a real di­nosaur. It comes with a dino col­lec­tor card and a lim­ited edi­tion dino de­cal. For more info, check out Di­nosaur­shirt­club.com.

Once again, I’m sad to re­port on the pass­ing of sev­eral drag rac­ing he­roes. D. Dantt, who, along with Dale Emery and “Waterbed” Fred Miller, pro­pelled Ray­mond Bea­dle and his Blue Max to many wins and worked for me on the Coors Corvette in 1987. Ray­mond God­man, fa­mous for his Ten­nessee Bo-Wee­vil Top Fuel Drag­sters and Funny Cars, also passed. In 1972, at the Na­tional Chal­lenge PRO race at Tulsa, Ok­la­homa, one of the most fa­mous races, I faced off against Pre­ston Davis, driv­ing for God­man, in the Funny Car fi­nal and

Pro Stock su­per­hero Bob Glid­den. Bob, Etta and their boys won an in­cred­i­ble 85 NHRA Na­tional Events and 10 world cham­pi­onships.

Speak­ing of leg­ends, one of the best places to meet your he­roes is at the NHRA Mu­seum’s Re­unions. The next one com­ing up is the Hol­ley Na­tional Hot Rod Reunion at Beech Bend Race­way Park, Bowl­ing Green, Ken­tucky, June 14-16. Visit Nhra­mu­seum.org, for more info.

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