Far as I’m involved, there isn’t a extra impactful sight that the 4 Buick V8 engines connected to the 4 wheels of “TV” Tommy Ivo’s magnum opus. Initially often known as Showboat and later, with a Buick station wagon physique that was added on by Tom McCourry, who was Ivo’s crewman on the time, the monster that wound up turning into the Wagon Grasp is certainly one of drag racing’s most iconic bits of madness and, so far as I’m conscious, is the ultimate phrase in exhibition dragsters. I’m certain Lohnes would possibly right me on that, however significantly, how do you high sixteen cylinders screaming out loud whereas all 4 wheels go up in smoke?
The fundamental premise of the unique Showboat was a Kent Fuller body and 4 Buick-supplied engines. The engines have been mounted into two pairs, with the pair on the fitting facet driving the rear axle and the left facet driving the entrance differential that ran a “reversed” ring gear that had initially been designed for the Novi Indy racers. Tommy then managed to work his manner out of driving the automobile…because of his performing gig for the tv present “Margie”, the studio wasn’t about to permit their expertise to hop into what regarded like demise arrived. Ivo initially supplied a younger Don Prudhomme a shot on the automobile and he did drive it a couple of instances, however when his then-girlfriend shot the concept of touring down in flames, McCourry took up the driving force’s slot.
Ivo had pushed the automobile a couple of times earlier than he bought the automobile to McCourry in 1963, who ran the automobile till about 1968, when he bought it to Norm Day. About 1982, Ivo purchased the automobile again, full with the Buick wagon physique on it, and it didn’t take lengthy for the automobile to chunk the hand that constructed it. Throughout a run in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, a piece of the observe had lifted as a consequence of frost and when the Wagon Grasp ran over it, Ivo crushed three vertebrae. His closing official drive within the automobile was on the 1982 World Finals at Orange County Worldwide Raceway, when he packed up driving in competitors for good.
Or, so most thought. That is from the 1996 Goodguys Sizzling Rod Nationals at Indy, the place he took two extra cracks at taming the Wagon Grasp as a part of his 60th birthday celebration. Not a foul technique to have fun the day, we predict!
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