by Dave Densmore Mon, 2022-05-23 23:01
The phone call I received Sunday morning was not unexpected. I knew that Dave McClelland had been wrestling with the demons of age. Slowly, methodically, they had robbed him of his mobility, his memory, and ultimately his will to unreasonably extend a battle whose outcome, unfortunately, he already knew. As did we all.
Nevertheless, the finality of knowing that the big, booming, one-of-a-kind voice that once defined NHRA drag racing would now forever be silenced was something for which I apparently was unprepared.
I’ve lost lots of friends the last few years. Raymond Beadle, Dale Armstrong, Paul Candies, Ernie Walker and, sadly, racer and journalist Johnny DiBartolomeo, of whose death I was informed just this morning. At my age, every time the phone rings, there’s a better than average chance it’s another confirmation of the inevitable.
by Richard Brady Mon, 2022-05-23 17:31
I was on my way back home from a trip up to Billings, Montana, when my cell phone rang. I grabbed it and answered to find it was John Di Bartolomeo, or John D as we all called him; on the other end, I pulled over so as not to lose the signal. The gist of what he told me left me pretty much numb and speechless at the time because what words can someone say to a friend, in the case of a very close friend, who has called to tell you that he has pancreatic cancer - one of the more deadliest forms of cancer out there, with little to no chance of total survival.
by Bobby Bennett Wed, 2022-04-20 22:26
Odd stuff usually happens in this office during the early morning hours.
Early is a relative term, so let's just say in this instance that 7:30 a.m. is early.
So I'm working away, and this kid rides up to the sidewalk in front of the office where I can see from my desk. He puts the kickstand down on his black Takara 10-speed, which looks a lot like the one this writer used to have when he was a young teenager. He just sits there looking at the posters we have in the front window. So I go back to work editing the latest episode of Legends: The Series.
by Dave Wallace Thu, 2022-04-14 08:22
by Susan Wade Mon, 2022-03-28 20:13
Initially, the news about Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park closing after the NHRA’s 2023 visit there to Chandler, Ariz., sounded terrible.
The mere fact the NHRA delivered it in a press release at 11:58 p.m. Pacific Time Friday (2:58 a.m. Eastern Time Saturday) smacks of damage-control mentality. It’s an old public-relations ploy: “Let’s hope nobody sees it or at least let’s mitigate the backlash.” Granted, we have no background information or any logical explanation why the timing is so suspicious, but it doesn’t matter, really.
The point is the NHRA has lost another venue. By that last suburban Phoenix race, five racetracks will have dropped off the circuit in six years. For various reasons, it permanently lost dragstrips at Englishtown, N.J., in 2018; Joliet, Ill., in 2020; and Commerce, Ga. (near Atlanta) this year. Houston is hosting its final race late next month, and by the end of the 2023 campaign, Phoenix (which has been a regular stop since 1985) will have closed its gates.
by Bobby Bennett Fri, 2022-02-04 18:22
There was a time when Australia was almost like a second home to me.
I learned certain words don't have the same meaning here in the United States as it does there.
For instance, when a female says she took off her thong and whacked a spider, one should not get overly concerned.
by Whit Bazemore Sun, 2022-01-02 13:32
Most drag racing fans who are familiar with my story, know that I worked as a photographer for many years before my own racing career finally got underway in 1986. Once I started racing, I put away my cameras and focused (pun intended) solely on my career. All of my past work was no longer important to me. But even though I no longer cared about my past, I did manage to lug around 11 big plastic bins of negatives and transparencies from the mid eighties all over the country. They've been stored in numerous storage units, moved from Atlanta to Indy back in 1994, stacked up in the not-so-dry 1932 era basement of my first house, and most recently, stored in the garage next to all of my and my family's cycling and ski equipment out here in Oregon. How I kept them, and why, I am not sure, but, boy, am I glad I did. I kept all of my camera equipment too, for the most part, although I did sell my 500mm lens to noted photographer and fellow Super Stock Magazine contributor Francis Butler after we had blown something up in the funny car in 1990. I last did a professional shoot (for WInston) in 1989 to raise some quick money when Gary Evans and I formed our own team, Bazemore Evans Racing. I next shot our car in 1996 for the cover of National Dragster. That was it until 2005 when my son Dashiell was born. In 15 years, I had picked up a camera exactly one time.
by Bobby Bennett Sat, 2022-01-01 16:33
Somewhere I heard that life is a test
I been through the worst but I still give my best
God made my mold different from the rest
Then he broke that mold so I know I'm blessed - Aloe Blacc
I've heard many times in my life, "That which does not kill you only makes you stronger.
Today is the start of a new year, a new resolution. Many will use January 1 as the launching date of a new approach to life or whatever they seek for self or professional improvement.
by Bobby Bennett Mon, 2021-12-27 22:04
Fri, 2021-11-26 20:54
The fences still remain, as do dilapidated buildings, a reminder that a once proud drag strip occupied the land.
To the drag racing community, Spartanburg Dragway was just another drag strip that fell victim to a new neighborhood where the neighbors created a community around the strip and then realized that drag strips are loud.
Spartanburg Dragway wasn’t purchased for a real estate investment. It was purchased to be silenced.