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Old 05-04-2014, 12:22 PM   #1
Gravdigr
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Big Daddy Don Garlits does It Again...At 82

Big Daddy Don Garlits has set yet another national drag racing record.

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On Wednesday Garlits took an all electric dragster down the 1320 in 7.26 seconds at 184.01 mph. Electric, mind you. 0 - 60 mph in less than one second. The kicker? That was the first full pass down the strip for the dragster. The real kicker? Big Daddy is 82 fucking years old!

All of Mr. Garlits' dragsters have been named 'Swamp Rat'. This iteration is Swamp Rat 37.

Garlits has won 17 national championships, w/144 wins over a nearly 70 year career. I've been following him since I was a boy.

Go, Big Daddy, go!

Read more at MotorSportsTalk.
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Old 05-04-2014, 05:11 PM   #2
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Kewl!!!
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Old 05-04-2014, 05:45 PM   #3
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Quote:
The first driver to break the 200 mph barrier in a gas-powered dragster (as well as 150 and 250 mph marks) in 1964, Garlits on Wednesday set the national record for an electric-powered dragster, covering the 1,000-foot racing surface at Bradenton (Fla.) Motorsports Park in 7.26 seconds at 184.01 mph.
Although this is an IHRA track, it looks like they shortened it to the NHRA standard of 1,000 FT. Or the writer at the MotorSports Talk link is full of shit.

There's been a bunch of youtube videos of electric powered mad scientist vehicles tearing up strips around the world. I hadn't seen any efforts like this, mimicking a recognizable drag racing vehicle, probably because there's no class for them yet.
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Old 05-05-2014, 03:48 PM   #4
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Hmm...I didn't catch that. I assumed it was a quarter-mile.

The NHRA doesn't run 1,320 feet. That is a nuclear-weapons grade newsbomb to me. I had no clue. None. I would have argued that till the sun went down.
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Old 05-05-2014, 03:50 PM   #5
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Big Daddy is still 82 yo, though, so, I'm still impressed.
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Old 05-05-2014, 07:07 PM   #6
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A couple years back they were having too many crashes, because the motors had outgrown the brakes on all but purpose built race cars. Knowing many strips have a tenuous relationship with the local governments, and most strips would have a tough time acquiring more property and/or zoning permission for more shutdown, they voted to shorten the competition surface.
I understand, but I don't approve.

Garlits? He's always had the touch and still does, although he's a bit of a dick. A lot of the pros I've met, and watched work, were a bit of a dick... sometimes more than a bit.
I suppose Garlits had to be to get where he did, as those west coast boys weren't cutting him any slack.
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Old 01-24-2018, 10:12 PM   #7
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Speaking of Garlits when he showed up in the early '50s The newly formed NHRA and by extension Hot Rod Magazine, refused to show his picture.
The organization was trying to build a professional image and the Swamp Rats were embarrassing.
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Old 01-25-2018, 10:52 AM   #8
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Fantastic.

Once in a while, someone has the talent, the drive, and the larger-than-life imagination to become "the" name that defines a field of human endeavor.

Anyone who is interested in motor sports of any kind, please do yourself a favor and visit the Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing in Ocala, Florida.
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Old 01-25-2018, 03:25 PM   #9
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Garlits used to drive the family station wagon to the strip, change the ring gear in the parking lot, race all weekend, win the weekend, change the ring gear back, and drive the wagon home.

I bet those high noses were really embarrassed when they couldn't beat him to save their lives.

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