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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

The First "Miss" Winston

By "Berserko" Bob Doerrer
Photos by Norman Blake

Return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear, 1976 to be exact.

The scene was the NHRA Division One Awards Banquet. As part of the annual festivities, Division Director Darwin Doll always had some "Gag" awards to present to racers who had endured trials and tribulations the preceding year. It was a tongue-in-cheek deal and always was a lot of fun and livened up the evening. Yours truly was selected to present these awards and I've appeared in a Gorilla suit, as Chris Econo-Wacky and other characters during the years.

I figured that since Winston had just come-on-board as the sponsor of NHRA Drag Racing I'd do something a little weird to show my appreciation. All I told Darwin about this was to introduce me as the new "Miss Winston" and stand back. He agreed and turned me loose.

I went to a box shop, found one I could fit into, cut out head and arm holes, painted it red & white like a Winston pack and took it to a local sign shop.

During the banquet, I was sitting at the Raceway Park table like normal, eating and drinking and everyone was asking what I was going to do this year. Only one other person knew what was up and he was in the men's room with the box in a plastic bag. At the right time I got up, went to the can, ripped off my pants and shirt, slipped into the box, and was ready to go.

Darwin then announced to the crowd that he was going to introduce for the first time, the new "Miss Winston" and directed everyone's attention to the men's room door.

Few people realize that Berserko Bob was the first Miss Winston in drag racing. Photo by Norman Blake
Few people realize that Berserko Bob was the first Miss Winston in drag racing.
Photo by Norman Blake

I'll never forget the look on Richard Dilworth's (head of Winston Drag Racing at the time) face when he saw his new Trophy Queen. I walked to the stage throwing Winstons to the crowd and gave out the gag awards. After I was through, I asked Dilworth to join me on stage for a photo op. That's Richard with me in the photos. When I asked him to turn around for the rear shot, he asked why and when I told him I had to get my other sponsors some ink, he understood.

Bob gets some ink for the rest of his sponsors, too. Photo by Norman Blake
Bob gets some ink for the rest of his sponsors, too. Photo by Norman Blake

And honestly, those pants Richard was wearing were in style at the time. So were Nehru jackets, Cowboy boots and goofy hats...

"Berserko Bob" Doerrer
berserkobob@earthlink.net

 

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