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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 33: The Norm Newgord Collection, featuring the Blackwell & Decker American Express Charger, Ed Budd’s Magnum Force Corvette, Dale Emery in Bob Riggle's Hemi Under Glass Firebird, Tom Moulis in John Loukas' Mustang, Pete Miner in Don Nieves' Gold Coast Duster, Tom Motry in the Tolstram and Marrone Ghetto Rat Mustang, Dale Pulde in Joe Mundet's Eastern Raider Monza, Larry Coogle in the Freedom Machine Vega, Richard Tharp in the Mike Burkhart Satellite, and Steve Harris in Mike Young's Blackhawk Vega.


Clark Blackwell was the driver of the Blackwell & Decker "American Express" Charger. The funny car was only around for a year in 1973. Blackwell mainly raced on the UDRA circuit in the Midwest. The "American Express" Maverick was Blackwell’s first funny car. After the injected circuit, the team converted it to blown nitro. The new Blackwell & Decker Charger ran sevens before being sold to Butch Claunch. (Norm Newgord photo courtesy of Gary Newgord; info from Draglist files)


Ed Budd’s "Magnum Force" has been forgotten for the most part. The main reason is that the clean Corvette was not around for long. Another reason is that Swensen & Lani had their "Magnum Force" AA/FC and Norm Day had a "Magnum Force" funny car, too. Ed Budd raced his version in match races in 1978 and 1979. Budd attended the Olympics of Drag Racing at Union Grove and the Manufacturer’s Race at Byron. Little else is known about the late ‘70s match racer. (Norm Newgord photo courtesy of Gary Newgord; info form Draglist files)


This has to be Dale Emery’s most forgotten ride. Most do not remember Bob Riggle even having an AA/FC, but here it is: the "Hemi Under Glass" Firebird. The car was the ex-Gay Bros. machine with a new body and revamped chassis. Riggle and Emery paired up after Dale drove the "Flying Red Baron" wheelstander of Gary Watson for a year. The team did not race the flopper for long due to the costs involved. Best performances for Emery were a 6.94 at Warner Robins and 211 mph at Connecticut during the 1972 season. Parts from the car were converted into a wheelstander. Emery went on to drive the Jeg’s Camaro among others. (Norm Newgord photo courtesy of Gary Newgord; info from Dale Emery and Dennis Doubleday)


The John Loukas owned Mustang funny car was not around for long. Loukas bought the Mustang Mach I from Chris Karamesines, changed the lettering on the car, and kept racing. Loukas was most famous for the Loukas & Preisling AA/Fuel Coupe Bantam of the 1960s. Loukas hired Tom Moulis to drive the Mustang. The car raced during the 1973 and 1974 seasons, running in the seven-second zone. (Photo by Norm Newgord courtesy of Gary Newgord; info from Draglist files)


Pete Miner was a well-known chassis builder in the Southeast during the 1970s. He also gained some fame as a funny car driver. The "Gold Coast Duster" of Don Nieves was his best-known ride. Miner got his start in Bob Talent’s Camaro that was later updated to a Firebird. The "Prodigal" was destroyed in a fire in 1973. Miner began driving Nieves' car, the ex-Super Duster, in 1975. Pete drove the car from 1975 to 1978. Draglist files show best times of 6.78, 217.26. Miner won a few divisional and match races in the "Gold Coast Duster." Nieves began to drive his own cars in 1980. Gary Richards kept the "Gold Coast" name alive in the 1980s with the "Gold Coast Challenger." (Norm Newgord photo courtesy of Gary Newgord; info from Draglist files and Dennis Doubleday)


The "Ghetto Rat" of Tolstram and Marrone was Tom Motry’s first funny car ride. The team had raced in the UDRA injected fuel funny car class with Tolstram driving. The "Ghetto Rat" was first raced as an A/FC in 1973. The team next financed the building of the two "Fever" Corvettes that Ed O’Brien drove in 1974 and 1975. The two cars ended in crashes. The trio brought the Mustang back as an AA/FC complete with cast iron Chevrolet power. The driver’s name was listed as "Don Dork," but Motry was the driver. (Norm Newgord photo courtesy of Gary Newgord; info from Draglist files)


Joe Mundet's last "Eastern Raider" was a Plueger built Monza. The engine was a Milodon aluminum block with steel cylinder heads. Kenny Youngblood designed the paint and then lettered the car after Bill Carter sprayed the colors. The Monza raced only three times before Mundet and Pulde split up. The "Eastern Raider" was later stolen. When Hamby & Pulde built the War Eagle, the colors and layout of the beautiful "Eastern Raider" carried over. According to Dale Pulde, "I changed a few things on the car and kept the layout pretty close." Pulde added that Youngblood also designed and lettered the "War Eagle" with Bill Carter paint. (Photo by Norm Newgord courtesy of Gary Newgord; info from Dale Pulde)


Racing fuel distributor Larry Coogle began his funny car career with the former "Doug’s Headers" Vega of Dick Bourgeois. This "Freedom Machine" is not related to the Siegar & Cochran "Freedom Machine" that raced earlier in the decade. Coogle had Murf McKinney drive the Romeo Palamides built car in 1976. McKinney had a couple of wins in the car with best times of 6.81 at 203.16 according to Draglist files. In 1977, Coogle hired Dennis Russell to drive the repainted "Coogle’s Freedom Machine." Russell’s best times with the Vega were 6.71 at 219.81. (Norm Newgord photo courtesy of Gary Newgord; info from Draglist files)


This Plymouth Satellite was the only non-General Motors funny car Mike Burkhart ever owned. The 480 cubic inch Sid Waterman built Chrysler Hemi powered Satellite was driven by the infamous Richard Tharp. Tharp did not lack for self-confidence. A prime example of this was his business cards, which read, "Tharp & Texas, the damnedest things you ever saw." Burkhart had just retired from driving at the end of 1973. The team was short-lived, though, and split by the middle of the year. Tharp went a best of 6.34 at 213 according to Draglist files. Tharp managed to win the Division 4 AA/FC title despite driving two other funny cars. The Satellite was sold to Oklahoman Larry Brown. (Photo by Norm Newgord courtesy of Gary Newgord; info from Draglist files)


Mike Young’s "Blackhawk" Vega was Oklahoma’s quickest and fastest funny car of the mid 1970s. Mike Kase built the Vega in his Torrance, California, shop and became a partner in the car in 1975. The Vega had a cast iron Hemi for power. It debuted at the Grand Premiere race at Irwindale Dragway with Steve Harris doing the driving. The team almost pulled off an upset when made it to the finals. The Young, Kase, and Harris team split up after the 1975 season. Harris ran a solid 6.35, 225 in the "Blackhawk." Kase and Harris also built the first "Speed Racer" Vega. Young brought the car back to Oklahoma and began driving himself. The car and car hauler were put up for sale in National Dragster during 1976. Young later returned with a new "Blackhawk" Challenger. (Norm Newgord photo courtesy of Gary Newgord; info Draglist files and Bret Kepner)


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