To open our coverage, Friday
concluded with the Honoree Reception at the National Corvette
Museum in Bowling Green.
GRAND MARSHALL: It's hard to
find an area of automotive activity not influenced by Carl Casper.
Designer, builder, craftsman, promoter, racer, restorer, artist,
and collector are all terms that describe him. His high school
'51 Chevy that he customized into the Empress show car won countless
honors including Top Custom at NHRA's 1961 Nationals Show in
Indianapolis. Named one of 1962's Top Ten customs in Car Craft
magazine, it put him on the national map. The Undertaker modified
roadster took Sweepstakes at the 1963 NHRA Nationals Show, and
was the first of dozens of model kits scaled from Carl's machines.
Next was Casper's Ghost, a wild hand formed roadster powered
by a twin-supercharged Pontiac. It won Sweepstakes at the 1964
NHRA Nationals Show, the Rod Championship at the '65 Winternationals
show. and he won the coveted America's Most Beautiful Roadster
at the Oakland Roadster Show. A series of wild show cars and
movie cars followed through the '80s. A series of Top Fuel dragsters
was topped by his championship Young American. He produced over
1000 custom auto shows, including the extremely popular Louisville
show he founded in 1963. He is a member of countless Halls of
Fame and continues to be active building and restoring new projects.
Other Honorees included the late
Funny Car racer Carol "Bunny" Burkett, Indiana racer
and chass builder Hal Canode, Hall of Fame Pro Stock racer and
racing school owner Roy Hill, Modified Eliminator standout with
his six-cylinder Pocket Rocket Chevy II, Cotton Perry, and Pennsylvania
race car and hot rod builder Ed Quay.
MC Bob Frey made his
opening remarks to start the program.
First up was the new
Director of the NHRA Motorspots Museum, Martin Betz.
Holly rep welcomes everyone
from the event sponsor.
Opening the Honoree presentations
was Gary Prichett accepting for veteran funny car driver Bunny
Burkett who passed away earler this year.
Accepting for himself was the
popular Hal Canode who has been building race cars since
the 60s and had some of his cars competing over the weekend.
Hal chose to wear a Bunny Burkett
T-shirt as a tribute to his fallen friend, whom he had raced
against and for whom he had much respect.
NHRA Museum Curator Greg
Sharp presented the Award.
Out next was another
proxy, Kenny Nowling accepting for Roy Hill.
Hill's award was presented
by museum board member Graham Light.
Introduced next was Modified
Eliminator icon Cotton Perry.
Since 1973 Ed Quay has
built a solid reputation for providing excellence in performance
products and services.
Lastly it was Grand Marshal
and legendary custom car builder Carl Casper.
There were two glaring omissions
from this Honoree Ceremony. For the first time there were no
Wally's in hand, but they were sent to the honorees a couple
of weeks later. And, no cacklecar fire-up at the conclusion.
Dave Kommel, Hal and
Greg Sharp, Hal Canode
and Graham Light
OUT AND ABOUT IN
There were two autograph
sessions over the weekend.
Montgomery and Hal Canode, lots of drag racing history here.
Carl Casper and Bruce
In the pits there was
plenty of eye candy like Hal Canode '33 Willys.
2 - Practice Push Starts & Parade
3 - Cacklefest - Lite em' up
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