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70s Funny Cars - Round 1
70s Funny Cars - Round 2
70s Funny Cars - Round 3
70s Funny Cars - Round 4
70s Funny Cars - Round 5
70s Funny Cars - Round 6
70s Funny Cars - Round 7
70s Funny Cars - Round 8
70s Funny Cars - Round 9
70s Funny Cars - Round 10
70s Funny Cars - Round 11
70s Funny Cars - Round 12
70s Funny Cars - Round 13
70s Funny Cars - Round 14
70s Funny Cars - Round 15
70s Funny Cars - Round 16
70s Funny Cars - Round 17
70s Funny Cars - Round 18
70s Funny Cars - Round 19
70s Funny Cars - Round 20
70s Funny Cars - Round 21
70s Funny Cars - Round 22
70s Funny Cars - Round 23
70s Funny Cars - Round 24
70s Funny Cars - Round 25
70s Funny Cars - Round 26
70s Funny Cars - Round 27
70s Funny Cars - Round 28
70s Funny Cars - Round 29
70s Funny Cars - Round 30
70s Funny Cars - Round 31
70s Funny Cars - Round 32
70s Funny Cars - Round 33
70s Funny Cars - Round 34
70s Funny Cars - Round 35
70s Funny Cars - Round 36
70s Funny Cars - Round 37
70s Funny Cars - Round 38
70s Funny Cars - Round 39
70s Funny Cars - Round 40
70s Funny Cars - Round 41
70s Funny Cars - Round 42
70s Funny Cars - Round 43
70s Funny Cars - Round 44
70s Funny Cars - Round 45
70s Funny Cars - Round 46
70s Funny Cars - Round 47
70s Funny Cars - Round 48
70s Funny Cars - Round 49
70s Funny Cars - Round 50
70s Funny Cars - Round 51
70s Funny Cars - Round 52
70s Funny Cars - Round 53
70s Funny Cars - Round 54
70s Funny Cars - Round 55
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Round 27: Featuring our Australian cousins: Graham Withers’ Demon’s Disciple Dart, Bruce Phillips’ Panic Torana, Jim Read’s Chesterfield Mustang, Chuck May’s Certs Outcast Charger, the Sterling & Patterson Mustang, Bob Dunn’s Big Banger Charger, Bob Shepherd’s Mustang, Alan Walton’s Smokin’ Monaro, Jim Walton’s Thunda from Down Unda Monza, and Barry Bowing’s Mexican Mustang.


The “Demon’s Disciple” was the first funny car in Australia. Top Fuel racer Graham Withers not only raced the car but also built the chassis. The car featured an all-steel body with the nitro burning 392 Chrysler from Withers’ Ampol GT dragster. The car’s highly anticipated debut took place in late 1968 at Castlereagh. The crew was still welding pieces on the car in the staging lanes! The car’s fearless driver was Ray Zygadlo. The team raced the car over the next five years. The car’s best time’s was in the nine-second range. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


There were funny cars named the “Panic” on three continents and both coasts in America. This is the Aussie version owned by Bruce Phillips and driven by John Lumb. Like the Demon’s Disciple, what the “Panic” lacked in performance it made up for in showmanship. The team’s legendary fire and chained down burnouts are the stuff of legends. The Holden Torana debuted in 1971. The car featured a 307 Holden Chevy for power at first it; a 427 Chevy came in 1972. The team later raced the former Cowin & Johns Mustang before retiring. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


The “Chesterfield” Mustang was owned by Aussie legend Jim Read and driven by Rick Jones. What makes this car so amazing it that it is a dual barrier breaker. Rick Jones broke the seven-second barrier and 200 mile per hour with a 7.99, 203.67 pass. This was behind the American standards of the same era, but the eight-second barrier was broken only six weeks before by Norm Oakley. This was Jim Read’s second funny car, replacing the small block powered Torana he raced in 1972. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


Chuck May owned this unique funny called the “Certs Outcast Charger.” Chris Farrell made the unique Dodge Valiant Charger body in his Melbourne shop. A venerable 392 Chrysler “Chizler” Hemi powered the car. Peter Little did most of the driving. This shot of a smoky run at Castlereagh Raceway outside of Sydney was typical of early seventies racing in Australia. Clutch technology was behind the United States at the time, but the Aussies would soon catch up. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


The Sterling & Patterson 1973 Mustang had several novelties to it (as evident in the photo). The car, driven by Tom Sterling, had to be the last funny car to have mirrors. The flashing light on top added an extra touch. This photo is from the 1975 Nationals held at Surfer’s Paradise. Jim Read was the winner of that race. The Sterling & Patterson Mustang was also powered by a 392 Chrysler Hemi. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


Bob Dunn was a well-known racer in Australia in 1975. He had previously raced a Fuel Altered before buying this Charger. Dunn purchased the Charger from Gene Snow and  had it shipped from the ‘States. The Melosi & Son “Big Banger” Charger ran times in the mid- sevens. Dunn fought it out with the best Australia had to offer along with racers who came from the United States. Bob Dunn’s biggest win was the 1977 Nationals with the Charger. He retired the car at the end of 1977 and replaced it with Chris Lane’s Phoenix. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


Bob Shepherd is part of the famous Shepherd family of drag racers. The Shepherds are so prolific in fast drivers they have a Shepherd Family 200 M.P.H. club! The pictured Mustang was Bob Shepherd’s second funny car. It replaced a rather bad-handling Monaro. The 392 Chrysler powered Mustang ran seven-second times at best. Bob Shepherd raced funny cars off and on for the next twenty years. He is currently racing his Great Western Oil top fueler. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


Here is the “Smokin’” Monaro of Alan Walton getting severely crossed up on his burnout. This photo was taken at Adelaide. Before Pro Comp became a full time eliminator, alcohol racers had to compete against their nitromethane burning big brothers. Walton, a transmission builder by trade, ran his 392 Chrysler mostly on alcohol mixed with low doses of nitro. The car’s best times were in the seven-second range. Walton raced from the late seventies into the early eighties. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


Jim Walton had several things in common with his fellow Australian racers. He raced AA/Fuel Altereds like Graeme Cowin, Bob Dunn, and Bob Shepherd. He also bought a car from the United States from Gary Densham (see Round 9). The Thunda’ From Down Unda’ Monza was Walton’s second funny car after Walton had driven the Hussey Bros.’ “Canned Heat” Mustang. Walton had instant success with the Keith Black powered Monza, recording his first six-second times. He ran a best of 6.40 with the car in the eighties. Jim Walton also won the Nationals twice with the car in 1979 and 1980. The car was destroyed in 1981 in accident at Calder Park. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


Barry Bowing was the third owner of this Mustang II when he bought it in 1979. The car was built by Lil’ John Lombardo in 1975 and purchased by Dennis Geisler in 1978. Bowling bought the car from Geisler, who toured Australia in late 1978. Bowling renamed the car the “Mexican Mustang” and raced the car over the next couple of years, winning the Nationals in 1981. The car was sold several times over the next couple of years. Peter Russo, Garry McGrath, and Romeo Capitanio all took their first funny car rides in this car in the 1980s. Reports say Bowling has purchased the car and plans to restore it to the version he raced. (Photo & info from Steve Thomas)


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