Drag Racing: The AA/FA Gallery
This image was captured at the 1970 NHRA Indy Nationals. This huge Drag Racing spectacle (NHRA Nationals at Indy) has always been the biggest Drad Race of the year. In this image we see Willie as he man handles the snaking altered toward the Indy finish line. The unpredictable car is several hundred feet of the line and still carrying the left front wheel as he approaches half track. The slicks are starting to grow, indicating a lot of wheel spin or a lot of speed, or both. In this case it was both. The AA/FA team of Marcellus and Borsch were the first AA/FA in the 8's, the first in the 7's, and the first over 200 mph.
#101. 1970 AA/FA: Wild Willy Borsch - "Winged Express" Loose Burnout
This photograph (exceptionally sharp) was captured at Thompson Drag Raceway (Thompson, Ohio) on August 29, 1970. On this evening, four of these touring monsters match raced at Thompson.... (Winged Express) (Pure Heaven 3) (Magnificent 7) and (Rat Trap). In this print, we see the Marcellus and Borsch roadster already starting to get out of shape as Willy heats up the slicks. At that time this team was running in the low sevens at close to 200 mph.... wicked quick!
Gilchrist created the unique lighting of this night shot by moving a powerful strobe light to the left of the camera and triggering it with a long sink cord.... interesting technique.
#146. 1970 AA/FA: Wild Willie Borsch - "Winged Express" Burnout
Another image from Thompson: In this print, the infamous driver (Wild Willy Borsch) is seen heating up the slicks on another loose burnout. The infamous AA/FA team of Marcellus and Borsch were the first in the 8's, the first in the 7's, and the first over 200 mph. Awesome!
#103: 1970: AA/FA, "Magnificent 7" - Loose Burnout
In this print, the gorgeous model T roadster (Magnificent 7) is seen heating up the slicks. Notice how high the engine sets in the chassis. This was done in an attempt to transfer more weight to the rear wheels during the ferocious acceleration. In the full size print, the drivers eyes can be clearly seen....total concentration.
Gilchrist created this great image with a telephoto lens and a powerful strobe light positioned to the left of the camera which was triggered it with a long sink cord....Wow!
Note: This negative remained in the artist's files and unprinted for over thirty five years. Here it is at last.
Here we see a race between "Magnificent 7" and "Rat Trap, a hard and smokeless launch by both cars, headers streaming fire. At this point in the race, the very short, nitro powered roadster (Magnificent 7) has almost a car length on Don Green's famous AA/FA (Rat Trap) but that could change in an instant. Many AA/FA races would see both cars leading several times. These things were truly a handful, requiring very skillful use of the right foot.
In this image, we can see just how really short these AA/ Fuel Altereds were. Most of these cars were powered by the blown Chrysler Hemi but "Pure Heaven 3," used a very potent big block Chevrolet.
Gilchrist created the unique lighting of this night shot by moving a powerful strobe light to the right of the camera and triggering it with a long sink cord, using a relatively slow shutter speed and panning the camera with the car.... interesting technique.
#147. 1970: AA/FA, "Pure Heaven 3" - Burnout - Side
Here's another one: A nice burnout.
#250. 1970: AA/FA, "Pure Heaven 3" - Burnout
In this image we see the Gretchko Brothers AA/FA Bantam roadster at speed, the shoot about to pop. This image was captured in 1971 at Dragway 42 (date in question)
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Copyright © 1964 - 2006 by Charles Gilchrist
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