A Sampling of the Cars in the Early 1960s
The Early 1960s
The second decade of rear-engine dragster design expanded and extended the work of the pioneers of the fifties. These photos show a sampling of some of those cars.
"Tiller Miller" dual Pontiac-powered dragster
Speed Sport Special II
Tucson, Arizona. Lyle Fisher and Red Greth installed a blower on the fuel-burning Chrysler prior to setting out on the '25 T modified roadster's national tour in 1960. 187.50 mph. Click here to see 8mm movie footage of Speed Sport II; (1) begins at 2:24 mark and goes to 2:33 mark, and (2) begins at 3:16 mark and goes to 3:24 mark of the video.
Marr & Carruthers
Sacramento, California. Dave Marr (driver) and Lynn Carruthers. Chrysler. 149 mph.
Stu's Transmission Shop Sidewinder
Long Beach, California. Debuted at Lions Drag Strip in 1960. Click here to see video footage of the car making its first runs at Lions, appearing three different times in the first two minutes of the video.
Jim Fox/Merrill Speed Shop
Southern California. Chrysler-powered A/MFR driven by Jim Fox, 134 mph top speed
Magwinder/Sidewinder Plus One
Built by Kent Fuller with a body by Wayne Ewing, it was owned by Chuck Jones and driven by Jack Chrisman. Later sold to Bill Mann. Lastly run by Hammel-Cullinan & Mulvey from Lancaster, California.
Des Moines, Iowa. He ran a single Harley-Davidson engine in 1960, clocking about 100 mph in 14 seconds. He made it a dual-engine H-D dragster in 1961, improving his times to 115 mph in 12.8 seconds.
Compton, California. Chevy-powered modified roadster.
Hedrich & McClure
Altadena, California. Holly Hedrich and Bob McClure. 392 c.i. Chrysler A/MR. 158 mph in B/MR using a 331 c.i. Chrysler.
Jack McAfee Motors Special
Burbank, California. Porche Super 90-engined X/D owned and driven by Jack McAfee. 105 mph top speed.
Paul Nicolini designed this "Sidewinder II". It was owned by Jim Cambior and Chuck Jones. The engine was built by Joe Maillard and Jack Chrisman drove the car. Wayne Reed also owned it at one time, using Jack Chrisman as the driver.
Dugan & Turnow
Coleman Bros. Speed Shop Chassis Research Special
Baltimore, Maryland. Earl Howard (driver)
Ted Cyr's Sidewinder
B fuel Chevy-powered dragster. Driven by Emery Cook. 170.13 mph top speed
Driven by Zane Shubert. Chevy-powered sidewinder dragster. [2nd photo courtesy of Dennis Friend]
Speed Sport IV
Phoenix, Arizona. Lyle Fisher, Don Sullivan & Red Greth (driver). Three aircraft-engine starter turbine engines. 161.98 mph. Bottom photo courtesy of Ted Sitterley
Cook Bros., Jahns, & Hedges
295 c.i. Dodge C/FD. 180 mph+. They initially had a tricycle configuration, but later switched to a four-wheel setup.
Sidewinder Plus 1
Lancaster, California. Hammel, Cullinan, & Mulvey. 170 mph top speed on fuel.
Miami, Florida. Top Gas dragster of Cohen, Shapiro, Sonnenblik, and O'Brien. Driven by Paul Shapiro. Ran a blown Olds in 1963 (when driven by Leroy Goldstein) and a blown Dodge with Orner injector in 1964-65. 8.71 ET.
Scrima & Bacilek
377 c.i. Chevy on fuel. Ronnie Scrima, George Bacilek, and Roy "Goober" Tuller (driver).
Johnson & Spackman
Desoto-engined D/FMR. 158 mph top speed.
Tony Nancy/The Wedge/Century Olds
Sherman Oaks, California. Gas dragster. 179.28 mph top speed. Wedge I ran from 1963-64 before it was destroyed during a run at Sandusky, Ohio. Nancy built a replacement car, Wedge II, in 1964-65, running in succession a Plymouth Hemi, a Chrysler Hemi, then a blown Olds. He toured the car in Australia and Italy in 1966 before returning to the States and storing it. Gary LeDuc, of North Hollywood, bought the car from Tony Nancy in 1969, running it through 1971 as an A/GD with an injected Buick engine and automatic transmission.
S & M Speed Shop
Buffalo, New York. Jim and Dan Sivenpiper. 170 mph top speed in A/FD.
Long Beach, California. Doug Church, Bob Cowan, and Doc Hunt. Porche Spyder Carrera engine. 104 mph top speed.
Hatfield Brothers A/FMR
Southern California. Construction completed in November 1964. Unfortunately it crashed in early 1965 at Lions and was never rebuilt.
Nasty I & II
Somerville, Massachusetts. A & B Speed Shop sponsored a rear engine car owned by Al Czerniak, Ron Still, and Joe Jacono. The photo shows "Nasty 1" which ran in the early 1960s, but "Nasty 2" debuted in 1965 and had a longer wheelbase and was much more streamlined. It was billed as the world's fastest rear-engine streamliner.
Dart Charger/Polka Dart/Don Garlits' Dart
Dodge contracted Dick Branstner to build an experimental car. He and Jay Howell used a '64 Dart, putting a blown nitro-fueled 426 Chrysler in the rear of the driver. Roger Lindamood also drove it. The car recorded a top speed of 173 mph before the car was given to Don Garlits in 1966 at Branstner's request. Garlits made some modifications to the drive train and engine placement. Emery Cook was driving at Detroit Dragway on June 11, 1966, when the car was completely destroyed in a crash.
The Cotton Picker
NASCAR driver David Pearson drove this exhibition Dodge Dart station wagon in exhibition match races for owner Cotton Owens. It was powered by a fuel-burning Hemi in the back of the wagon.
Mahan & Verhelst
Bremerton, Washington. Mike Clancy built a '23 Ford-bodied coupe running a blown small-block Chevy for Ken Mahan and Jack Verhelst. 161 mph top speed.
Southern California. Modified roadster.
The Texsun II
The driver is sitting under the hood in this modified roadster, Just above the Mooneyes decal is a little window which enables the driver to see out to the sides, and the front grill shell is covering a piece of clear plastic so he can see where he is going.