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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

It's Time to Create Nostalgia Pro Stock

By Danny White

Cars like Gene Turnage's 1971 Maverick are what Danny's talking about! Photo by Bob Fermier
Cars like Gene Turnage's 1971 Maverick are what Danny's talking about!
Photo by Bob Fermier

The nostalgia craze has taken a strong hold across the country. Almost all the classes of the sixties are represented from Top Fuel to blown 'slammers. But the class that epitomized Detroit's zeal for all out high performance is not represented. The class I am talking about is Pro Stock. I for one would love to see gear-slamming cars running nine seconds. 

The key to the success of the class is to set clear and precise parameters. The cars would have to be '67 to '72 era. Cars that would be acceptable would be any that ran during that era. There would be no tubbed subframed cars, so you can leave your Pintos and Vegas home! 

These cars would run big blocks and cast tunnel rams, no sheet metal types. To keep the costs under control, make them run wet sump oil systems and no trick MSD style ignitions. The big crowd catchers would be real four speed transmissions, no clutchless transmissions. I can see where you allow aftermarket racing transmissions that are stronger than the stock style. This would separate the men from the boys in the driving category.

I would not allow any tube frame cars or even tubbed cars. You can get 10.5-inch tires under the wheel wells. Slapper bars and old fashion torsion bars would be the only acceptable traction devices. The reason I dictate this is that the first Pro Stockers were real cars and this would keep cost down. Every time a major innovation took place in 1970s Pro Stock, there was a drop in the number of racers. Prime examples of this were the Grumpy Jenkins Vega and a year later, the Lenco transmission. 

The only acceptable wheels would be era-correct Cragar S/Ss, Keystones, Fentons, etc. No new style wheels and no modern hood scoops. Instead of the old weight break system that choked Pro Stock racing almost to death, we would go with a 3,000-lb. Minimum weight, 470 cubic inch maximum to start with. Some racers might have to add weight, but most racers would have to gut the cars to get to that weight. 

The only necessary modern equipment would be safety equipment. Full roll cages would be mandated because the cars would have to be NHRA/SFI legal. It is hard to say what these cars could run. I think high eights or low nines might be possible and would be entertaining to say the least. The cost to run these shows could be low so the small tracks where it would be best to run them could afford them. 

Well that's it. Tell me what you think and drop me line at ddgw@valornet.com with your ideas. 

Danny White


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