"The Pause That Refreshes"
The story is one of those almost "Too unbelievable to be true" moments in Sebring history. Stirling Moss takes a Coke from journalist Bernard Cahier at the Hairpin Turn at Sebring in 1957. Moss had seen some of the photographers at the Hairpin the lap before drinking Cokes so he gave them the classic thirsty sign (pretending to bring a bottle to his lips) as he drove by. Cahier grabbed a Coke bottle, opened it, and waited for Moss to come around again. As he did, Cahier handed the bottle to Moss. He drank it during the lap, then promptly deposited it in the grass at the hairpin on the next lap and gave them a wave as thanks. Moss would finish second overall in his Maserati 300S with co-driver Harry Schell. Image by Smith Peter Kerr.
“This is “Snake” (Don Prudhomme) at 19 years old, in 1960, working on the twin Buick nailheads that powered Tommy Ivo’s gas dragster. Typical of the time, he’s wrenching in loafers. This photo was taken in Ivo’s 2-car garage, at the house in Burbank that Tommy still lives in to this day.
Prudhomme was a car painter at the time and a member of the Road Kings car club.
When Ivo became the first touring drag racer, running exhibitions all over the country, he took Prudhomme along with him. Of course, Snake would go on to become one of the most famous, competitive, and successful drag racers of all time.
Note that the twin 464ci Buicks are coupled at the ring gears in a handmade aluminum housing. Because the engines were geared together with no idler gears, the right engine had to run backwards with a custom-ground cam. Only the left hand engine had a clutch.
I believe that a second custom gearbox offset the power to the center of the car, and into a short shaft with direct drive to the rear axle.
Both engines had mechanical fuel injection and magnetos for ignition.
The car ran in AA/Gas Dragster and set a record of 8.69 seconds.
For his next trick, Ivo would build the 4-engine dragster, while Prudhomme would move on as the driver of the Dave Zeuschel and Kent Fuller’s nitro dragster and then the unstoppable Greer-Black-Prudhomme Top Fuel Dragster.”
Mari Hulman George, shown here at an unknown track with Bob Veith. Mari had a fascination with racing beyond her family's Speedway and would become a car owner, her famed HOW Specials being top-notch equipment. She would later marry driver, Elmer George. As a woman in a decidedly man's world, Mari had a large impact on auto racing.