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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

1981 AHRA Grandnationals - BB/Funny Car

By Rick Howard

Dick Malone defeated Ken Veney in the final in a major upset. Photo by Rick Howard
Dick Malone defeated Ken Veney in the final in a major upset. Photo by Rick Howard

It looked as if Ken Veney had the first spot locked up in BB/FC. But, just like in Pro Comp, a last minute charge demoted the fans local favorite to No. 2. Lee Zeinert's "Darth Vega" stepped up with a 6.74/205, which stood up all weekend as Low ET of the Meet. Veney had to be content with a 6.75/210. The "Assassin" 'Vette of Mascol & Malone, with Dick Malone at the controls, was third with a 6.83/205. George Cambra, making a bit of a jaunt from Hawaii, was fourth with a 6.86/208. Talk about your burnouts. Cambra looks like Double A! Herb Rodger's "Flyin' Glass" Trans Am was fifth, recording a 7.00/200. Dave Sebring, piloting Harry Rydbom and Art Guiher's '81 Mustang was sixth at 7.01/205. Norm Day and his "Magnum Force" was seventh at 7.13/196. And "Diamond Jim" Crownhart sat on the bump with a 7.19/187.

Alcohol Funny Car action was kicked off Sunday when Dick Malone defeated Norm Day, 7.01/201 to 7.47/189. Ken Veney (no time given...trivia question #2) got by Dave Sebring's losing 6.76/209. Lee Zeinert and George Cambra advanced to the semi-finals with wins over Herb Rodgers and Jim Crownhart (no times given...trivia question #3), respectively.

In the semis, Malone upset No. 1 qualifier Zeinert - both running identical 6.93s. Malone's 6.93/(no speed given) beat a 6.93/203. In the other semi-final pairing, Veney ended Cambra's day, 6.74/205 to 6.86/208.

Veney had his final round competitor covered by several tenths and inexplicably red-lighted, throwing away a 6.75/207, and handing the win and the bucks to Malone, who carded a winning 7.07/196.

Rick Howard
Rickie.Howard2@wpafb.af.mil

Thanks to Don Garlits for the use of his personal copies of the AHRA Drag World issue covering this race. Text above was in part from this magazine/newspaper, editor unknown. However, I've made corrections to spelling, ETs, and speeds as needed. RH

 

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