Drag Illustrated Issue 178, September / October 2022 - Page 66


MR . 300 : Former Funny Car driver Jim Epler ( left ) and current Top Fuel star Justin Ashley pose alongside Ashley ’ s Phillips Connect / Davis Motorsports dragster at Heartland Motorsports Park-Topeka , where Epler made the first 300-mph Funny Car pass in 1993 . Epler is now the executive vice president of Phillips Connect .
TIME TESTED : Randy Protz has owned his trusty 1974 Chevy Vega for nearly three decades . He tours the car to tracks such as Coles County Dragway in Illinois , where he ’ s a past track champion . Most recently , he scored a Friday night gamblers race win at Wabash Valley Dragway to kick off the Lucky 7 ’ s weekend .
WILK ’ S WARRIORS : Funny Car veteran Tim Wilkerson signs a fan ’ s shirt during a break in racing at the NHRA Northwest Nationals . The popular Illinois-based driver has a legion of fans around the world known as Wilk ’ s Warriors .
DIPLOMATIC AFFAIRS : Canadian Pro Mod driver Justin Bond ( left ) is joined by Bahrain 1 Racing teammates Stevie “ Fast ” Jackson and Khalid alBalooshi , who flew in to be a part of a major event at Bond ’ s home track , Mission Raceway Park , in British Columbia .
BIG DADDY : “ Big Daddy ” Don Garlits remains a cherished part of the drag racing community , regularly attending events across the country as a driver and personality . Here , he was at Mo- Kan Dragway to help celebrate the track ’ s 60th anniversary . Garlits made his first appearance at Mo-Kan in the mid-1960s .
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