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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

Bring Back the Fuel Altereds (and Other Thoughts)

By Doug Evans

With action like this, Bring Back the Altereds might be the new battle cry! Photo by James Morgan
With action like this, Bring Back the Altereds might be the new battle cry! 
Photo by James Morgan

On Bret Kepner's no wheelie bars idea: he's right -- that rule would change things! I'm not sure I would try it though; I don't have enough $$$ to fix my car every time I let the front end come crashing down. It would be a hoot to watch but it would destroy a lot of hard work. Then there would be a lot of cars not coming back for another round. 

My car doesn't run on nitro hell, it's not even that fast -- but there have been times in my very short driving career that I have been damn glad those wheelie bars were there! You can ask any of my friends who come to see the drags. My restored, 100-inch, built-in-the-sixties altered sometimes goes any way but straight! 

I agree that drag racing needs a shot in the arm. Tell the powers that be to bring back Fuel Altereds! I haven't been to many national races, but here in Texas there are a bunch of guys who call themselves the Outlaw Fuel Altereds. Every time I go to see them run, the place is packed... I mean PACKED. 

I think that when we say "back in the day," or whatever, I think we mean back then you could go see cars that were built in someone's garage, and yeah, they went crazy. That's part of it. When you build stuff like that, they aren't very stable. Back then some guys could get together and build a fuel car in somebody's garage. I think that's what made it special.

I've been thinking about this stuff for a while now. My buddies and I are talking about trying to set up some kind of "Timing Association" or car club or something. I really need to research the history of drag racing more and I would like to interview some old timers about how they used to set the classes up. I know they went weight to cubic inch and stuff, but I'm really unclear on the whole A, AA, B, C, D, gas thing. I'm not sure how it went. I'm not that old (36). I wasn't around when that stuff was going on so I need to learn more about it. 

But here's the gist of my idea: I (we) are talking about setting up some kinda outlaw something or other that goes by the old rules, say circa 1969. You have to use factory parts or what was available at that period. I mean, the stuff can be new, but equivalent to what they had then. And of course, the safety stuff has to be current. Kinda like nostalgia racing but you could build a new car or at least use new parts. 

But no computers, trans brakes, delays, throttle stops, etc. Also, the engines would have to be based on the stock blocks and the same goes for transmissions and clutches. You know, bring back the little guys who get together and build a race car in their garage. Oh yeah -- you have to run stock configured heads. The idea is more in-depth, but I'm sure you don't have time to read all I have to say. I think you get my point. 

I went to a Goodguys thing at Sears Point a couple of years ago. The fuel dragsters all had modern top fuel engines and stuff that most people like me could never afford to build. So, I started thinking... Anyway, I would love to talk to anybody who's interested.

Doug Evans


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