Outlawed-#12 In A Series Of 12
Posted 27 January 2008 - 11:04 AM
March, 16, 1966- the beginning of the end or the end of the beginning for true stock car based stock car racing? That's the day that the new Fairlane racer the Wood Brothers brought to Bristol International Speedway was refused permission to race by Nascar officials.
Its disqualification marked "the end of the beginning" of FoMoCo's attempt to replace their full-size stock car racers with their newly upsized intermediates, now offered with big block engines, to bring their cars more in line with the intermediates that Mopar had been running.
It was the first hybrid , or "half-chassis" car in Nascar that had, up until now, required a stock frame catalogued for that body be used in the construction of a legal racer. It was disqualified for a number of reasons, one of the main ones being that the front track was wider than stock.
The main reason for that was the fact that chassis wizard Ralph Moody had grafted on a front snout from a '66 Galaxie to eliminate the shock towers of the stock Fairlane and allow the tried and true Galaxie suspension to be used.
Two weeks later the boys from Virginia show up with the pocket sized Ford again, this time at the "Hickory 250" in Hickory NC. By now Moody has taken a few inches out of the crossmembers and narrowed up the front suspension so that it meets the rules and it takes the combination of a Hemi with no less than David Pearson, that year's eventual point champion, to beat ol' Pops in the new Fairlane. Tuner led the first three laps and then lead from lap 171 to 198 when Pearson got around him to lead him at the end by four seconds.
This race marked the "beginning of the end" for the traditional stock car as this chassis would be refined and would be the basis for what would become known as the "rear steer" or "Banjo" chassis perfected by another chassis genius, "Banjo" Matthews, from Arden NC and used sucessfully in Nascar for the next twenty five years or so.
This brings to an end this series of models of OUTLAWED stock cars from the early years. I hope you have enjoyed them and I look forward to hearing from you about the series. Also, I am open to suggestions for new photo series featuring racers from my collection of stock car models of the fifties and sixties. Until then, keep it between the fences.
Posted 27 January 2008 - 07:59 PM
My only disappointment is in not finding Smokey's 7/8th '66 Chevelle in the mix.
Posted 27 January 2008 - 08:53 PM