When Funny Cars Had Names

There was a time when a catchy identify was as essential to a humorous automobile driver as a supercharger and nitro. A automobile wouldn't run sooner with a memorable identify, but it surely ensured worthwhile match race bookings. Match races paid the payments, so race groups put a number of effort crafting unforgettable names.

After all dragsters and gassers had names, lengthy earlier than the primary humorous automobile hit the monitor. Groups switching to the worthwhile humorous automobile ranks introduced their previous names with them. Roland Leong retained the label Hawaiian, made well-known along with his dragsters, on many profitable floppers. Connie Kalitta used the identify Bounty Hunter on his rails earlier than adopting the title for his humorous automobile. Stone, Woods and Cook dinner recycled the identify from one in all their gassers for the Darkish Horse 2 humorous automobile. When a crash destroyed that automobile, they constructed a near-clone of the unique Mustang. Slightly than calling the brand new automobile Darkish Horse 3, they christened it The Ghost of Darkish Horse 2.

Race automobile names had been impressed by occasions, actions and concepts. Roger Lindamood selected the title of a pop-county tune to adorn his automobile. The tune quickly light into obscurity, however for greater than a decade afterwards, Lindamood's followers continued to cheer on the automobile often called Shade Me Gone.

The Blue Max was each a film and a well-known World Battle I German metallic. It was additionally a extremely feared humorous automobile campaigned by Raymond Beadle.

Ford's Mustang impressed quite a few horse associated names, together with the Trojan Horse, Boss Hoss, Stampede and Warhorse.

The preferred humorous automobile driver of all time was Russell James Liberman. He first gained fame because the wheelman for Lew Arlington's Brutus GTO, however he quickly began touring his personal automobile. Though the identify on Liberman's vehicles was Jungle Jim, his followers and friends granted him Elvis standing and all the time referred to him as Jungle.

As groups began including superchargers to their vehicles, a rash of names beginning with the time period "Tremendous" appeared; Tremendous Cuda, Tremendous Duster, Tremendous Camaro, Tremendous Stang, Tremendous Bug, Tremendous Charger and others.

Whereas "shaker" was initially a slang time period for Chevrolet, it was a preferred identify on all makes of floppers. Al Bergler ran Vega, Mustang and Corvette variations of the Motown Shaker. Likewise, Hubert Platt campaigned his Georgia Shaker as each a Chevy and Ford. Different variations included the Boston Shaker, Bear City Shaker and Bluegrass Shaker.

Most likely essentially the most well-known shaker was Seaton's Shaker, owned by Pete Seaton. When he added a blower, he up to date the identify to Seaton's Tremendous Shaker. Driver Terry Hedrick, acquired the automobile when Seaton retired. He shortened the identify to Tremendous Shaker – a mixture of two of the preferred flopper names.

Most drivers retained the identical identify after they constructed a brand new automobile. As soon as a reputation was established, racers needed to retain fan loyalty. One man who bucked this pattern was Arnie "the Farmer" Beswick. Though Beswick was often called the Farmer, every of his race vehicles had an distinctive identify. These names included Tameless Tiger, Star of the Circuit, Tremendous Decide and Boss Chook.

Don Prudhomme, was often called the "Snake." His most profitable humorous vehicles had been sponsored by the US Military. Whereas the white floppers weren't really named Military, a bunch of followers paid good cash to see that "Military Automotive" in motion.

It might take a good-size e book to include an entire checklist of humorous automobile names. The tales behind Virginia Tornado, Secret Weapon, Yankee Peddler, Warlord, Destroyer and Japanese Raider must wait for one more time.

So what occurred? Why don't humorous vehicles have names any longer? One purpose is that match-racing is not viable. As an alternative of racing a number of occasions per week at small, out-of-the-way tracks, as we speak's touring execs focus on the massive nationwide occasions.

Immediately, there are a mess of massive races, many with full tv protection. As an alternative of operating for look cash, as we speak's hero hero drivers depend on sponsorship to pay their salaries. There isn’t any longer a necessity for a stimulating automobile identify.

Secondly, these company sponsorship offers contain enormous sums of money, and discovering a keen sponsor is troublesome. Sponsors who pony up huge bucks to put their identify on a race automobile don't need to share the automobile's flanks with a nickname. When it comes down to call or a profitable sponsorship deal, groups all the time go along with the money.

I assume that's progress. Nonetheless, I'm glad I used to be energetic within the period when humorous vehicles had been Vicious, Bushy, Candid and a pair of A lot!


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