There have been many influences and events that have raised the awareness of drag racing and hot rodding as sports and pastimes. Automotive shows and films like American Graffiti and Grease, feature articles, displays, TV coverage and festivals – all have played their part, particularly on a national basis. The popular music culture has always been a primary source of what is considered cool or not –by young people especially – but as far as drag racing and hot rodding is concerned only one band can be described as the masters of the music that promotes our sport internationally.
The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame (BDRHoF) in association with the National Street Rod Association (NSRA) is proud to announce that The Beach Boys will be the recipients of a special Global Impact Award being presented at the BDRHoF Gala Awards Dinner being held at the Sheraton Skyline Hotel, London Heathrow on November 19th. And the big news is that one of the original Beach Boys, David Lee Marks, will be there to accept the award on behalf of the band. They have been behind the music that inspired more than a generation of hot rodders and drag racing enthusiasts and via their concerts they have continued to raise awareness of these unique sports throughout the world for over 50 years.
The latest issue of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame’s on-line magazine HOFtalk is now.
The British Drag Racing Hall Of Fame in association with US Automotive continues into its tenth successful year and is pleased to announce the 2016 intake. Nominees are eligible by dint of having raced, owned, designed, built, maintained, prepared, promoted, officiated, supported or taken part in British drag racing in any capacity, having been involved for at least twenty years, or having made a significant and recognisable contribution to the sport. The 2016 inductees, in alphabetical order, are US dragster builder, driver and overseas pioneer the late Bob Keith, engineer, crew chief and race car builder Rob Loaring, Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary the late Paula Marshall and Europe’s first permanent drag racing track Santa Pod Raceway.
NHRA’s Eileen Daniels and Quarter Mile Foundation’s Traci Hrudka planning return visit to 2016 British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala
Consultant to the NHRA Eileen Daniels and Chairman of the Quarter Mile Foundation Traci Hrudka are planning a return visit to the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala evening which is taking place on Saturday 19th November at the Sheraton Skyline Hotel at London’s Heathrow Airport.
Eileen, together with husband Bob who died in 2007, helped grow NHRA to the prominence it currently enjoys. In their racing career, their Fiat Topolino Altered enjoyed many wins. In 1959 Wally Parks recruited Bob as a Division Director for NHRA. After twenty years of opening tracks and organising events in the division, Bob was appointed as General Manager for Indianapolis Raceway Park where he and Eileen worked until their retirement.
At last year’s Hall of Fame Gala, Eileen (pictured right) inducted Yvonne Tramm into the BDRHoF. Eileen said ‘What a wonderful time we all had in England last year, it was a trip of a lifetime. Yvonne Tramm followed the same path as me in working at Santa Pod Drag Strip for 32 years. Her history is very near my life career story. She is a lovely lady and I was proud to present her award to her.’
To any UK drag racing enthusiast of a certain age, the names Don Schumacher and Paula Murphy conjure a special moment in time: Summer of ’73. Heading a band of American racers attending that year’s July Internationals at Santa Pod Raceway, the pair unleashed the first full-tilt American Fuel Funny Cars seen on these shores and seared the occasion into the minds of all who witnessed it. The spectacular, ground-shaking Funnies – essentially nitro-burning dragsters cloaked by lightweight, saloon-car-replica bodyshells – were all the rage across the Atlantic, drawing huge crowds to America’s dragstrips. Schumacher and Murphy together created a seminal moment in the sport’s British history.
The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame is therefore proud to announce that Don Schumacher and Paula Murphy will be reunited on UK soil for the first time as honoured guests at its 2016 Gala Awards Dinner, to be held on Saturday 19th November at the Sheraton Skyline Hotel at London’s Heathrow Airport.
To a modern drag racing audience, Don Schumacher is proprietor of the most powerful team in America’s NHRA Drag Racing Championship. Since its foundation in 1997, Don Schumacher Racing’s drivers have won no fewer than 14 NHRA Championships in the Top Fuel Dragster and Funny Car divisions, including eight Top Fuel titles for Don’s son, Tony, at the wheel of the US Army dragster. Yet Don once had an illustrious driving career of his own.
Having set out as a Sportsman racer in 1963, he switched to the new, professional Funny Car class in 1966 and became one of its greatest stars as the class took drag racing by storm. A year after his Santa Pod visit in 1973, he retired to lead his family’s Schumacher Electric Corporation and develop the company into the world’s foremost manufacturer of battery chargers.
After just two years, November’s third weekend is now firmly established on the international drag racing calendar as “Gala Weekend” for the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame. The sparkling, black-tie occasion celebrates British drag racing’s past, present and future before an audience of racers, fans and contributors to the sport, along with a gathering of distinguished figures from home and abroad, and honours the year’s new roster of members inducted into the Hall of Fame.