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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

Obscure Memories of Lions Drag Strip

By Bruce Wheeler

So, I trust that everyone knows what the 'Lions' in Lions Drag Strip refers to the Lions Club(s) public service groups. The real name for the drag strip was "Lions Associated Drag Strip," AKA "LADS."

I have questions in this regard: did Mickey Thompson ever belong to a Lions Club? Did Lions Club members actually work at the strip? How much of the gate, on average, went to the 'associated clubs?'

Another question: I've heard it mentioned the proximity of Willow Street to the track. Was Willow situated at (or extremely close to) the very far end of the strip's shutdown area? If one were unfortunate enough to run past the end of the shutdown, where did one end up? Would ‘one' (LOL) actually cross Willow St./Sepulveda Blvd.? (Those two streets 'merged' at about that point...)

Finally, at LIONS there was, for awhile, a wooden, open-air, tower-like structure that was situated alongside the strip's surface, right at the finish line. I can remember being in that 'tower' for one round of the '67 PDA race, after we put ourselves on the trailer that evening. It was quite thrilling to be so close to the cars as they passed by, and not just a little scary, too! Do any of you LIONS vets have any recollection of that tower/stand? (I thought that tower may have been the finish line judge's stand, from a time when they only had single lane timing, with no win lights, etc.)

Talk about obscure memories!

Bruce Wheeler

Anybody have the answers to Bruce's questions? Send them to bilden@draglist.com and we'll attach them to this page! bp


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