Volume I, Issue 3, Page 33
Roann, Indiana, racer (inset) Steve Blue stood his pristine ’69 Camaro up on the bumper and drove it 450 feet down the Byron quarter mile before feathering the throttle and making a soft landing. He was heard to say that he would have driven it farther but it was starting to pick up a lot of speed and he decided to quit the lap.
Just south of downtown Chicago you’ll find historic Byron Dragway. Legendary drag racer/promoter/announcer/track owner Ron Leek has been putting on drag racing extravaganzas at that track for more than three decades. Byron Dragway was the site of the very first big money drag races, which were known as the Bracket Nationals and were held on the same weekend as the NHRA’s U.S. Nationals. Byron also hosted huge fuel funny car events in the 1960s and ‘70s, which were known as the “Manufacturer’s Meet” and were attended by the biggest names in funny car history. In keeping with his record of putting on great events Leek now stages a yearly race known as the “World Power Wheelstanding Championship” where wheelstanding, stock-appearing door cars compete for more than $40,000 in prize money. What started as a whim by Leek has turned into a genuine drag racing happening.