When Chevrolet introduced its small block in 1955, the decades-long winning streak began. Drag racers immediately loved the compact V8. It was lightweight, could carry some seriously high RPM, and responded to performance mods like no other engine of the time. In fact, Chevy saw a record year in sales in 1955, thanks to a combination of restyled bodies and the new mill. It was the age of experimentation, and those who could get their hands on the new engine were swapping it into engine bays that once housed other weaker mills.
Even though Ford’s flathead, had been the dominating force for so long, it was rendered obsolete, almost overnight. It didn’t take long until aftermarket manufacturers got on board and offered all the go-fast goodies needed to make Chevy, not just a winner, but a dominant winner. Whether it was a dragster or Stock-class racer, Chevy’s success was immediate. Thanks to a combination of years of great styling and a vast array of driveline combinations, it was a long-term success.
Now, you can read all about those pinnacle of performance accomplishments as an accomplished racing author, Doug Boyce, takes a celebratory look at those years of success, with a focus on the first 25 years (1955 through 1980). His latest book, Chevy Drag Racing 1955–1980 A Celebration of Bowtie’s Success at the Drag Strip chronicles the endeavors of many racers we now call legends. For many enthusiasts growing up, Chevrolet gave rise to such stars as Bill “Grumpy” Jenkins, “Jungle Jim” Liberman, “Sneaky Pete” Robinson, “Dyno Don” Nicholson, Sox & Martin, Dick Harrell, Dave Strickler, and many more.
World champs and fan favorites all drove Chevys at some point in their careers. The success showed in the record books. No brand has won more races and events or has set more national records than Chevrolet. And unlike the other manufacturers, it was done with little or no factory support.
Whether you are a hardcore Chevy fan or just love catching up on the history of drag racing during this golden age, this nostalgic look at Chevy racing history is sure to entertain you for hours on end.
This 8.5 x 11 paperback (ISBN: 978-1-61325-499-8) features 176 pages filled with 300 photos. This book can be ordered for $36.95 (plus $6.95 shipping and handling for three books or fewer) by calling CarTech at (800) 551-4754 or by clicking here.