My Car Quest

May 22, 2024

Two Completely Different Race Cars

by Mike Gulett – 

In horse racing the saying goes “different horses for different courses”. An analogous saying is even more true in the car racing world but I can’t think of a clever, rhyming way to say it.

Dragster

1962 Greer-Black-Prudhomme Dragster

1962 Greer-Black-Prudhomme Dragster

This racecar is the 1962 Greer-Black-Prudhomme dragster. This dragster ran its first race in June 1962 at the Pomona Drag Strip in Southern California and launched the career of Don “The Snake” Prudhomme who is the most winning driver in quarter-mile drag race history.

Prudhomme won more than 90 percent of the races he entered between 1962 and 1964. This car was a key component of that success – it dominated drag racing in that period with consistent quarter mile times of less than 8 seconds at top speeds of more than 190 MPH. Imagine what those G-forces must feel like.

This dragster was tuned by Keith Black and built by Kent Fuller.

1962 Greer-Black-Prudhomme Dragster

Road Race Car

Below is a completely different kind of race car – a road racer. This 1965 Ferrari 250 LM is the last Ferrari to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans

1965 Ferrari 250 LM

1965 Ferrari 250 LM

It might be fun to see these two champion race cars race – well for a few seconds anyway until the first turn came up. The dragster would not do so well on turns and the Ferrari would be several seconds behind the dragster by the time it finished the quarter mile straight.

These two were made and raced at about the same time; one turning left and right, the other just going very fast in a straight line.

1962 Greer-Black-Prudhomme Dragster

The dragster was on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles many years ago. The Ferrari was at the Amelia Island Concourse in 2013.

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

Greer Black Prudhomme Dragster

1965 Ferrari 250 LM NART Logo

All photos by Mike Gulett.

Summary
Two Completely Different Race Cars
Article Name
Two Completely Different Race Cars
Description
It might be fun to see the Greer-Black-Prudhomme Dragster race a Ferrari 250 LM - well for a few seconds anyway until the first turn came up.
Author

Comments

  1. Robb Northrup says

    Class and craftsmanship always win out, no matter the genre. We can appreciate both as the epitome of their respective sports. Wonderful cars.

    And I can afford neither of them!

  2. Wes Stewart says

    The idea of cars from two different genres competing has me recalling a local event here in Tucson in 1958. We used to drag race on a taxiway at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. Far from today’s baby butt smooth tracks, slathered in traction compound, this was a rough ride.

    The race was between the famous Speed Sport Roadster, (SSR) owned by locals Greth, Fisher and Maynard, and a dirt track car. A later newspaper article described the dirt car as a jalopy, I remember it as a sprint car. Nevertheless, the dirt car got a head start in the pits, crossed the starting line flat out, at which time Red Greth launched the roadster. The roadster was about a car length behind at the finish.

    The SSR went 169 mph in 1957! In 1961, on the same track he went 174. In 1962 on a better track he went 183. Pretty good for an unblown, carbureted, 331-cu-in engine. Of course they were running 100% nitro and I still remember standing a hundred feet behind the car on the starting line and having my eyes watering.

    Arguably one of the most beautiful drag cars ever, it too was in the Peterson Museum. Some links of possible interest:

    https://tucson.com/sports/local/everything-was-possible-tucson-racing-legend-red-greth-was-an-innovator-on-off-the-drag/article_bb0b246a-a2b6-11eb-8614-cf87c441abc1.html

    https://video.wixstatic.com/video/5e96bb_b6acd5274fd94ad187974205783120ca/1080p/mp4/file.mp4

  3. Wes,

    Thanks for sharing – I loved the video. That is one of the best looking race cars I have seen.

    • Wes Stewart says

      Thanks, Mike.

      It brings back memories. I knew those guys, about like every guy in the car scene here did.

      Also thanks for hosting the website, It’s one of my favorites.

  4. Beautiful, classic and sexy.

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