Mike Kuhl was
no stranger to Top Fuel dragsters when he ordered what would
be his last front engine car from Woody Gilmore in early 1970.
The car ran basically on the West coast for the 1970 and early
1971 seasons with such notable drivers as Steve Carbone, Bill
Tidwell and Dick Rossburg but the car would be remembered and
restored with Carl Olson in the seat. Kuhl & Olson would
enjoy great success in the '70s with a series of rear engine
Top Fuel cars until both went their own ways to pursue their
Mike Kuhl debuted the
car in early 1970 with Steve Carbone in the drivers seat.
Here is the car at OCIR
in 1970 with Bill Tidwell at the controls.
By mid 1970 Kuhl hooked
up with Carl Olson, who had driven several fuel cars in the late
'60s to be, what turned out to be, his last driver.
Kuhl, Fats and the guys
raced hard and played hard and were not beyond doing outlandish
things like the fire burnout at OCIR.
183 inch Woody Gilmore
chassis built in 1970
Restored in 1999 by Mike
392 Chrysler Hemi by Mike Kuhl
Horsepower: 2500 on 90% Nitromethane
Unlike most, Kuhl had the foresight
and means to keep his last FED in tact when he made the switch
to the rear engine configuration in mid 1971. The car sat in
one of Mike's shops until 1999 when he decided to restore it
for display in the NHRA Wally Parks Motorsports Museum. Again,
with the idea of something called Cacklefest over year off, Kuhl
had the foresight to restore the car in running form - clutch
and all. As a result he and Olson were ready to roll when Cacklefest
was born in 2000. They were one of the original nine cars to
Here is the Kuhl &
Olson car as it appeared at the inaugural CHRR in 1992 - before
it was restored to its current paint job.
Push start for Cacklefest
One in 2000.
On track 2000.
Olsen did a burnout on
Friday at the 2001 CHRR.
Push starting for the
Carl Olson in the seat
for the 2002 Pre-Cacklefest Parade.
2002 CHRR Cacklefest
2003 NHRA Winternationals
Cacklefest push start.
Olson does a burnout during the 2003
2003 National Hot Rod Reunion - Bowling Green, KY
Nick Licata Photo
Carl Olson in the seat
for the 2005 Pre-Cacklefest Parade.
Over the last five years
the Kuhl & Olson car has been seen coast to coast by thousands
of fans and don't look for it to stop being one of the stars
of any Cacklefest any time soon. As Kuhl says, "This is
way too much fun!"