One of the things that I always love to learn about is the history of drag racing in places outside of the USA. The reason that it fascinates me is because while the sport itself was exported from here to foreign lands, the equipment that most guys ran and hot rodded, at least in the early days, was mostly from their home turf. For instance, when things got cranked up in England, guys built dragsters with Jag engines in them and Coventry Climax engines, etc. It wasn’t just a carbon copy of what was happening here in the USA. The same can be said for our pals in Australia and we have the video proof!
BangShift reader Ed sent us a tip about a YouTube channel that features a series of films made at the Brooksville Drags outside of a town called Two Wells in the southern portion of Australia. These videos (we think) start around the early 1960s and end up with some pretty professional looking strip action that we’d date around 1970.
There’s some hot rods and dragsters that look like the stuff guys were building here in that time frame, but then there are all the old Australian models of cars that we don’t know, but love looking at. There are altereds, gassers, and just plain weirdo stuff that looks to have been gas welded together out of old steel beams and sheet metal. Basically, this is hot rodding Aussie style in the 1960s and it is just as neat and cool as the work the guys in California were doing thousands of miles, and a couple of time zones away.
Here’s 5 of the best videos from this channel. We’ll run them in the order of coolness. Starting with the coolest first. They are all old 8mm footage so there is no sound, but the sights are pretty freakin’ awesome.
Press play and take a glimpse into the early days of Australian drag racing! There’s even footage of the epic “Courage of Australia” rocket car in here!