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 After 50 years I'm done with racing. 

 

      

 

William Tyler Jenkins

 

 

I'm not bragging or bench racing, just informing you of our quest to go fast and racing with a limited cash flow. I'm sure you will understand this if your married and have a family. 

I started going to the drag races in 1955 with a few older friends that had taken up the sport after loosing their driving privileges for street racing. Our parents where more of an issue than the local law in those days. 

Started out with a few old cars that proved to not be as fast as a 16 year old thought. By 1960 I purchased a new Olds F85 and started to have some success with the help of a local racer/tuner Bill Jenkins that lived in our neighborhood.

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"Anyone that thinks there's is a worst thing than loosing, has never won anything"

Grumpy Jenkins

 

 

 

This was my 1960 Olds F85 tuned by Jenkins Competition, Berwyn, PA. Seen are just a few trophies won in D/S in 1960 with the little 215 inch aluminum V8. We had to run '58 to '60 Chevy conv. equipped with the 348, 3-2 setup because of the light weight of the little Olds per AHRA / NHRA. Jere Stahl of "Stahl Headers" built a set of little headers that really helped (sounded like a bumble bee when on the line). Even had a few starters complain about the noise being different than most.

PEE - WEE - 1959-60 - 1960 Olds F85 - D/S

 

The Olds F-85 was fun to race but I wanted to go faster than what this little car was capable of. Jenkins suggested selling this car and purchasing the year old 1960 Pontiac Catalina factory race car of Howard Ramsay, now running in A/S. The purchase was made but a  few problems with this car was I'm not the four speed shifter that Dave Strickler or Jenkins was and the car is not street legal. The street legal was an issue as I'm driving my work truck for everything, not cool when your in your early 20s. After a season and a half the car was sold in favor of one that could do both duties again, drag racing and street legal plus be paid for with no payments.

PONCHO     - 1961-62 -  PONTIAC Catalina - A/S

[AHRA - set MPH (1) times, ET (3) times.]

 

By that fall of '62 I changed cars again getting out of making a car payment on a vehicle that wasn't legal for street use. Now purchasing a 1959 Dodge D500. Little did I know this would be a major brand change that has lasted for close to 50 years. The 1st in a series of the BANDITO   Dodges.

BANDITO I - 1962-64 - 1959 DODGE D500 - H/SA-I/SA

[AHRA/NHRA - set MPH (11) times, ET (9) times.]

UNBEATEN IN 3 YEARS OF RACING IN EITHER CLASS.

 

The D500 was a fun car to drive and lasted until moving to Colorado in 1965. Sold the car to make the move and pay off loans from a local speed shop.

We found a very clean 1964 Dodge Cornet in '67 that I thought would be a good class car. Sold this one after running a season, finding it was not a good class car as first thought.

BANDITO II - 1967-68 - 1964 DODGE CORNET - C/SA

 

Sold the last race/street car in 1968 not sure I could afford another dual purpose car at the time when I saw a new 1969-1/2 [A12] Dodge Super Bee "Six-Pack" being unloaded at a dealership in West Denver. This was No. #3 car of 5 [A12] cars delivered in the Rocky Mountain region at the time.

BANDITO III - 1969-72 - 1969-1/2 DODGE - D/SA - SS/FA

[AHRA/NHRA - set MPH (14) times, ET (12) times.]

UNBEATEN IN 4 YEARS OF RACING IN EITHER CLASS.

 

Look at this Challenger we just SOLD in 2012. Talk about a very nice race car that was of show quality plus ran like there was no tomorrow. 

At 72 years of age with some health issues that tell me its time to go to an easier sport, pro street or ????

Hate to let this one go after all the work, probably the best drag race car we have ever had for the way it's setup. I keep telling myself the new owner will give the car the care it should have being a Mopar Collector living back East at sea level (212' above sea level - beats hell out of 5860' a mile high). 

Look out for this little guy to hand out some "whoop ass" in the mid to low 10s.

BANDITO IV - 1970 DODGE CHALLENGER RT - PRO ET and with a motor change legal for SS/F

 

 


Once retired I worked as an SFI Certified Tech Official (NHRA / IHRA) inspecting race cars for safety and SFI requirements. Provided customer service in helping racers pass through the inspection process for their vehicle, making suggestions for failed safety issues as needed.

Tech jobs I have worked at part time over the years.

  • 1958-1960 Tech Official - Lancaster Drag-O-Way, Lancaster, PA.

  • 1960-1962 Tech Official - York Drag Strip (now York US 30), York, PA.

  • 1963 Tech Official – Atco and Vineland (once a month at each track), NJ.

  • 1965-1968 Tech Official - Mile High Raceway Drag Strip, Erie, CO.

  • 1971-1972 Tech Official - Century 21 International Speedway, Aurora, CO.

  • 1975 Tech Official – Dragway Denver (formerly Denver International Raceway), Denver, CO.


These Tech jobs where easy, not must done in the early years when compared to what we look at now. That's kind of scary how much was missed when you think about it.

  • 2001-2007 Certified SFI Tech Official - Bandimere’s Speedway, Denver, CO.

BANDITO IV - 1970 DODGE CHALLENGER RT - PRO ET

Never really seriously tested in competition since finished.

GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN

Car setup to compete in several classes with motor changes, now ready for Pro ET - NMC - Super Stock competition.

At 72 years old its time to go to an easier sport, pro street or ????

Old School Racing & Other Remembrances

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   updated 10/12/2012

 

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