Muldowney to attend 60th anniversary of NHRA US Nationals

By Martha Maglone Cha Cha unites with Garlits, Prudhomme and McEwen at Indy More than three decades after she won the NHRA US Nationals, Shirley Muldowney will be one of several drag racing stars returning to the Indianapolis track to celebrate not only her own memorable victory there in 1982 but also the NHRA’s 60th anniversary at the famed track. Scheduled for Labor Day weekend (Aug. 27 – Sept.1) the three-time NHRA national drag racing championship title holder with 18 career victories and the first female winner at Indy, Muldowney will attend this year’s spectacular to reunite with her fans and accept a presentation scheduled for Saturday. Recently moved to Huntersville, NC from her home state of Michigan, Muldowney earned the greatest victory of her distinguished Top Fuel career in September, 1982 at Indianapolis. Her only victory at the prestigious drag race, the triumph propelled her to a third NHRA championship title and international prominence, portrayed by the 1983 movie Heart Like a Wheel that characterized Muldowney’s life and career. “The fact that it was Indy and the final pair was the quickest and fastest side-by-side run ever at the time made it so special,” Muldowney has said. “There is a lot of prestige gained by winning Indy because people remember Indy wins more vividly than any other,” she added. “It’s the biggest race. I think its sporting credentials and its rich history make it so important. A race win there is always the one most cherished. Not every racer can say they have won it. I can say I have won it.” At that time, Muldowney called the...

Garlits re-sets electric dragster record at 185.6mph…with a little help from the Magic Kingdom!

Archie Bosman, August 10, 2014 On Friday, August 8, during a record attempt at Bradenton, Florida, Don Garlits (82) and his team encountered a mechanical failure in one of the electric motors of his Swamp Rat 37 dragster. Luckily they were able to borrow a spare motor from Disney World. They worked all night, they returned on Saturday, and they re-set the record. “The power of the Magic Kingdom saved the day!” said Don. Earlier on Friday they made two runs at 183mph and determined that greater electrical capacity was needed to reach and surpass 200mph. As a result, the motor package, which consists of six electric motors, is being returned to the Ohio manufacturer Lawless Industries where the motors will be upgraded from 180hp to 250hp. “It didn’t smoke the tires but it was slipping around pretty good,” Garlits explained, “so we will upgrade the tires from Alcohol to Big Fuel for further record attempts. I’ve got a big deal going on at the upcoming US Nationals, so we won’t do anything more with the electric program until after that.” How does it feel to drive? “I shift it, I have two-speed transmission and I can feel when it’s time to shift. But it is totally different from a conventional dragster. When you are sitting on the starting line, it is quiet and you just step on it and it flies! That takes some getting used to. In a conventional dragster it makes all kinds of noises and the car’s rocking all around. But in the electric dragster, hell, the crew can come up to you and talk...