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WATCH THE VIDEO WHICH INSPIRED LEGENDS: THE SERIES - JOHN FORCE CHASING UNCORPORATE AMERICA

10 09 2013 forceJohn Force didn’t need to lose two major sponsors to realize the pitfalls of drag racing sponsorships.

The 15-time champion had been down this path before.

When both Ford and Castrol announced they would be stepping away from the iconic drag racer at the end of the 2014 season, he immediately hired a marketing, social media and reality television dream team to chase what he coined as “Corporate America”.

Decades ago, Force didn’t have this option. He didn’t have the wherewithal to chase the corporate dollars.

RARE VIDEO AT CPTV - 1981 AHRA WORLD FINALS, SPOKANE, WA.

We've unearthed a rare broadcast from Spokane ABC affiliate KXLY Channel 4 bringing the final results of the 1981 AHRA World Finals at Spokane International Raceway.

While it's only about 3 minutes long, the report covers the event winners from Top Fuel to thye unique Pro Stock category where big blocks and nitrous-injected small blocks did battle. 

Relive the glory days with interviews featuring Jerry Ruth, Shirley Muldowney and Don "The Snake" Prudhomme.

CLASSIC VIDEO: 1980 NHRA SPRINGNATIONALS

Hard to believe it's been 40 years ago when this race took place at National Trail Raceway, just outside of Columbus, Ohio.

Then considered one of the majors in drag racing event, the annual pilgrimage to this NHRA Div. 3 stronghold always brought out the best in racers whether it was Shirley Muldowney winning her first event in 1976, or the multitude of Don Prudhomme versus Raymond Beadle. Then in Pro Stock there was the domination of Bob Glidden, until this driver named Lee Shepherd came along.

There's also the bad weather from time to time, and the absurd; case in point Billy Meyer's nitro-fueled game of chicken. Of course, there's the Tim Grose crash. Catch it all in this flashback to the good old days.

CLASSIC VIDEO - 1986 IHRA POPULAR HOT RODDING NATIONALS, MARTIN, MI.

Travel back in time back to 1986, during the last IHRA season sponsored by Winston.

The Popular Hot Rodding Nationals had been a staple of drag racing for many years, and attended by many of the sport's leading touring professionals. In the past, it had been a major divisional event for the NHRA, but in this season U.S. 131, flying the IHRA sanction, was elevated to nationals event status.

Watch as you see IHRA drag racing's movers and shakers, Kenny Bernstein, Mark Oswald, Tom McEwen, Rickie Smith, Roy Hill, and Carol "Bunny" Burkett battle it out for supremacy in Michigan.

SOUTHEAST GASSERS ASSOCIATION - MOORESVILLE DRAGWAY RECAP SHOW

 

Catch all the excitement of the gear-jamming, wheels-up action from the 2020 season from the Southeast Gassers Association, drag racing's strictest period correct series.

This year marks the ninth season of the specialty series which takes racers and fans alike back to the good old days of 1967. This video focuses on the action from the Mooresville Dragway event, the second race of pandemic-delayed season.

CLASSIC VIDEO: 1984 NHRA U.S NATIONALS

The 1984 NHRA U.S. Nationals could have been confused with a Hollywood movie script.

"Big Daddy," the "Bounty Hunter," and the U.S. Nationals battled it out for the big daddy of all drag races.

Don Garlits, joining forces with Art Malone, another veteran racer and the operator of two dragstrips in Florida, came out to the big one at Indy and showed the youngsters how its done -- AGAIN. He won his sixth U.S. Nationals.

Significant winners included Jim Head (Funny Car) and Warren Johnson (Pro Stock).

CPTV VIDEO: RARE 1977 U.S. NATIONALS VIDEO WITH SOUND

Rare home video captured from the 1977 NHRA U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis. And just as a teaser, this video opens with the small block Vega of Paul Blevins jamming the gearbox with Jenkins Competition horsepower. Did we mention there's real cackle from the Blue Max?

CLASSIC VIDEO: 1985 IHRA STROH'S NATIONALS, DARLINGTON, SC

Travel back in time during the action-filled 1985 season, when the drag racing was filled with excitement.

During this season, the IHRA was a serious player in drag racing when their Winston-sponsorship drew the big names to NASCAR-related venues such as Darlington, SC. This season will forever be remembered as the one when Kenny Bernstein became a championship player, Bruce Allen filled the void left by the loss of Lee Shepherd, and cars such as Dale Pulde's Buick Miller Warrior Funny Car became an attraction.

The Stroh's Nationals was season-ending event on the IHRA tour, and in this episode you will see plenty of Funny Car action, along with the mountain motor Pro Stocks. Don't be surprised if you see some sportsman action as well in this ESPN broadcast.

VIDEO FLASHBACK - 1981 NHRA SPRINGNATIONALS

There was one thing you could always count on when it came to racing at National Trail Raceway located outside of Columbus, Ohio. More times than not it would rain on your high horsepower parade.

The NHRA recognized the true meaning of sideways rain during the 1981 event which was rained out and returned the following weekend where it rained more through severe thunderstorms. While today's drag racing coverage is accustomed to video at night. Back then, producer Diamond P, did the best they could with the resources available.

VIDEO FEATURE - THE CLOSEST CALL WITH MIKE DUNN

Mike Dunn is a decorated veteran of nitromethane drag racing. However, these accolades didn't mean he didn't take a scary ride or two. The 1983 season, Dunn's third behind the wheel of Roland Leong's Hawaiian Punch Mopar Funny Car , was nearly his undoing.

Dunn had two severe crashes during the season, both of which were no fault of his. However, this didn't mean he didn't take a couple of sporty rides. The worst by far was his top end crash at a distance-challenged National Trail Raceway. Dunn walked away without as much as a scratch in an incident which could have taken his life if not for the forethought of then NHRA Race Director Steve Gibbs' decision to put in a second catch net.

Hear, in Dunn's words, about the moves he made to walk away from a crash which should have taken his life.

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