Eleven drag racing heroes and contributors were honored at the recent International Drag Racing Hall of Fame Induction Dinner presented by the NHRA, Summit Racing Equipment and Lucas Oil Products on March 14 at the Paramount Plaza Hotel & Suites in Gainesville, Fla.
The ballroom of the hotel was occupied by more than 500 current and former racers, sanctioning body officials, sponsors and fans paying tribute to the inductees whose accomplishments, both on and off the track, helped build the sport.
“This was one of the best induction dinners in the 23 years we have been doing this event,” said Don Garlits, chairman and founder of the Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing, which includes the Hall of Fame. “We filled every chair and had a waiting list, and the caliber of the presenters, and especially the world champions, added to the evening’s intensity. It was a very special night!”
According to a press release, the “Class of 2013” included Dave Boertman; Wally Booth; Bernie Fedderly; Harry Hibler; the Top Fuel race team of Kenny Hirata, Phil Hobbs and Bobby Vodnic; the late K.S. “Tiger” Pittman; the late Dick Rosberg; Louis Senter; and Dr. Robert Post.
Post was also the winner of The Founders Award. Although his time as a racer lasted only a few years, Post pursued a love for the sport through a long career as a writer, editor, teacher and museum curator.
The honorees were selected by a committee of veteran drag racing and performance industry figures, and the presenters for the inductees were also notable figures the sport such as current NHRA/Mello Yello Drag Racing Series World Champions Allen Johnson, Antron Brown and Jack Beckman, and John Force of John Force Racing. NHRA announcer Bob Frey served as the induction dinner’s master of ceremonies.