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The 6 Best Cars for Drag Racing 0

Posted on May 19, 2020 by Martin Banks

Drag racing is a unique sport. Instead of focusing on things like handling, a dragster’s sole purpose is to generate as much torque and speed as possible. These aren’t the kind of cars you take to the track on the weekend and use for your daily driving during the week. If you’re looking to break into the world of drag racing, the first thing you’ll need is an automobile. What are the best vehicles to use on the drag strip?

1. Ford Mustang Cobra Jet

You can’t go wrong with the car Ford designed for the drag strip. The Mustang Cobra Jet debuted on racetracks in 1968 and then appeared again for its 40th and 50th anniversaries. Each of these incarnations saw a limited run. However, you might still get your hands on one if you’re looking for something made for the strip. Ford is even working on a new all-electric prototype — the Cobra Jet 1400 — that should debut sometime later this year.

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The History of Monster Truck Racing 0

Posted on April 16, 2020 by Martin Banks

There’s nothing more satisfying than watching a high-powered piece of automotive engineering tearing its way around the track — unless that engineering marvel happens to be a monster truck. These massive trucks are designed with their own look, personality and even their own theme songs, but where did the practice of monster truck racing begin? Let’s explore the history of monster truck racing and see where it might go from here.

In the Beginning

While we’ve always had the need for speed when it comes to racing, we didn’t start using massive trucks to do it until the early 1980s. In 1982, Bob Chandler created the world’s first monster truck out of a Ford F-250. With massive tires and a suspension that lifted the vehicle so high off the ground you needed a ladder to get in, it was barely recognizable as a Ford. 

That year, in the Silverdome — located in Pontiac, Michigan — Chandler used his heavily modded F-250, which he renamed Bigfoot, to demolish a pair of cars. 

The reaction was astounding. Suddenly everyone wanted to create a massive monster truck that could crush as many cars as possible, and these modded trucks started popping up at fairs and shows around the country. While these exhibitions were great fun to watch, they weren’t races. It wasn’t until 1987 that the United States Hot Rod Association stepped in to create competitive contests.

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How to Get Started in Truck Racing 0

Posted on March 10, 2020 by Martin Banks

Racing isn’t a word that naturally evokes images of trucks in your head. At least, it isn’t for most folks. Trucks do go racing, though! If your interest in motorsports centers on truck racing, you might not know where to get started. 

Like all motorsports, the secret to going truck racing is to get out and take the plunge. Many first-timers feel intimidated if they lack enough information about where to get started. It’s a big leap to start racing, so we’ve gathered a few good suggestions about how you can make your first foray into truck racing. 

Join the SCCA

As the country’s preeminent amateur racing body, the Sports Car Club of America will play a role in your racing career sooner or later. If you want some guidance on where to begin, there’s no better move than to join your local SCCA chapter. From there, you’ll get info about events happening around you and other motorsports-focused groups that you can participate in. You’ll connect with fellow racers, learn where to sign up and find out about the types of events you can participate in locally. 

Go to Rally School

Even if you’re not into truck racing, you might want to do this for fun. Across the country, driving professionals are opening schools on large farms and open spaces where you can learn the basics of rally racing. Will you be in a truck? Perhaps not, but the things you’ll learn about how to accelerate, brake and position the vehicle for corners on dirt will translate to your truck-racing career. In racing, robust fundamentals are everything.

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Surprise Winners of the Daytona 500 0

Posted on February 11, 2020 by Dean Hybl

Many familiar names in stock racing history, including Petty, Earnhardt, Waltrip, Johnson, Gordon and Yarborough have reached victory lane at the Daytona 500, but there have also been a number of surprising victors in the Super Bowl of Stock Car Racing.

Below is a look at some victorious Daytona 500 drivers who did not parlay their Daytona victory into memorable NASCAR careers.

Tiny Lund won the 1963 Daytona 500.

DeWayne “Tiny” Lund – 1963 Daytona 500 Champion; 5 career NASCAR wins

At 6-foot-5 and 270 pounds, DeWayne Lund’s nickname of “Tiny” was a bit of an oxy-moron, but the journeyman race car driver somehow managed to fit his large frame into a stock car and achieve notable success.

A part-time driver in NASCAR’s highest series, Lund came to the 1963 Daytona 500 looking for a ride. Not only did he leave as the Daytona 500 champion, but also as a hero. When his friend and 1961 Daytona 500 Champion Mavin Panch suffered an accident driving an experimental Ford in the Daytona Continental three-hour sportscar race (a precursor to the 24-hours of Daytona), the car burst into flames. Lund ran into the fire and pulled Panch from the wreckage. The act earned him the Carnegie Hero’s Medal and also a ride as Panch’s replacement in the Daytona 500.

Driving for the Wood Brothers, the plan was for Lund to maneuver the 500 miles on one less fuel stop than the rest of the field. Lund led late in the race before being passed with 10 laps left by Fred Lorenzen. However, he soon ran out of gas to give the lead back to Lund. Ned Jarratt soon passed Lund and looked poised for victory. However, with three laps left he too ran out of gas. Lund ran out of gas on the final lap, but was able to coast home for victory.

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How to Get Started in Truck Racing 0

Posted on January 09, 2019 by Martin Banks

If you own a truck, you may have thought about taking it racing once or twice. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as just showing up at the track and paying the entry fee. What do you need to do to get started in truck racing?

Choose Your Race Type

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Just like with cars, there are different types of races you can enter your truck in once it’s ready. The preparations you need to do will vary depending on the competition. There’s drag racing, where you will need to increase horsepower and torque to blast down a quarter-mile strip as quickly as possible. There’s off-road racing, where your suspension and tires will require a serious upgrade. There’s track racing, drifting, desert racing and even super truck racing, where drivers speed around the track in souped-up delivery trucks.

Your next steps for getting started in truck racing will depend on the type of race you choose. Read the rest of this entry →

NBA and NASCAR Give Sports Fans Another “Super Sunday” 0

Posted on February 17, 2018 by Dean Hybl

LeBron James and Stephon Curry are the captains as the NBA All-Star Game tries a new format.

LeBron James and Stephon Curry are the captains as the NBA All-Star Game tries a new format.

The NBA All-Star Weekend has become a great mid-season opportunity to celebrate and enjoy the great athletes of the NBA.

NASCAR does things a little different than other sports as they start each year with their biggest and most prestigious race, the Daytona 500.

NBA All-Star Game is a Star Studded Event

Professional sports All-Star games are kind of like new pennies. They are too bright and alluring not to pick up, but you quickly realize that they aren’t really worth much.

Of the “big 3” sports, the NBA All-Star Game is probably the best, if only because the rosters are small enough that you have some of the best stars on the court from opening tip to final horn.

In recent years, the NBA has turned the concept of the All-Star Game into a star-studded three-day extravaganza where the actual game can almost be anti-climatic to all the events that precede it.

The idea of special events in advance of the All-Star Game actually dates back to the ABA when Julius Erving dazzled fans with his famous foul line dunk. The NBA created its own dunk contest in 1984 and added a three-point shootout two years later. The weekend now includes a celebrity and rising stars games that were played last night as well as the dunk contest, three-point contest and skills challenge that will happen tonight.

By the time the actual All-Stars take to the court on Sunday night, seemingly half the players in the NBA will have participated in one event or another. Read the rest of this entry →

  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Rusty Staub: A Man For All Ages
      April 8, 2024 | 1:26 pm
      Rusty Staub

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is a former major league baseball player who came into the game as a teenager and stayed until he was in his 40s. In between, Rusty Staub put up a solid career that was primarily spent on expansion or rebuilding teams.

      Originally signed by the Colt .45s at age 17, he made his major league debut as a 19-year old rookie and became only the second player in the modern era to play in more than 150 games as a teenager.

      Though he hit only .224 splitting time between first base and rightfield, Staub did start building a foundation that would turn him into an All-Star by 1967 when he finished fifth in the league with a .333 batting average.

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