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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

Early Ramchargers Fueler Notes

By Bob Snayko

Ramchargers at the '65 Winternationals by Byron Stack

The 64 Ramchargers dragster (with the front mounted shocks) was built by Dan Knapp. It was the first elephant motored car. Knapp received the engine in the late spring of '64. He ran the car with a shorty body painted Chrysler Orange until the 64 Nats where it showed up with a nose and the candy striped paint. The 65 car was a Woody Flexi-flyer, one of only five built, I have been told. 

With respect to driver Don Westerdale, he never was a member of the Ramchargers. He actually was employed by Ford Motor Co. at the Rouge during this period. He had driven all three of Knapp and Chester Blazik's "Double Troubles." He was the only one Knapp really trusted driving. Westerdale became partners in 63 with Ray Gallagher in the Top Cat dragster. When Knapp received the Hemi, he called on Westerdale to drive. I believe Westerdale moved west in around 66 and Merek Chertkow took over driving. 

Chuck Kurzawa, who had a string of modified roadsters, was driving the Smith & Goulet Probe in 66. When Phil Goulet became a member of the Ramchargers dragster team, Kurzawa went over to drive the car.

Bob Snayko


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