(Photos by Bob Boudreau) – We’ve reveled in Bob Boudreau’s cool photos from 1970s NHRA drag races for the last several months. After the last gallery Bob had mentioned that his supply was cooked and we had gone though all of his best stuff. Well, apparently Bob found some photos he had forgotten about…200 of them! These are from the 1978 NHRA Le GrandNational at Sanair Super Speedway outside of Montreal, Canada and as with Bob’s other photos they have never been published before. Also like Bob’s other photos that we have shared they flipping rule. You’ll see Garlits, Prudhomme, Buddy Ingersoll, Bob Glidden in his Fairmont, Jenkins, Buster Couch, the amazing Linda Vaughn, and a veritable cast of thousands in this gallery.
You’ll notice that the stands are packed to the rafters even when sportsman cars are on the track. We’re going out on a limb to say that this was likely qualifying. Why? Because before the early 1980s there was no such thing as a “qualifying session”. Nope, the lanes were open and you got in. Could be a fuel car coming next or could be the I/Gas Pinto you see below. People never left the stands because you didn’t want miss Don Garlits even if that means wading through a lot of John Q. Publics to see him. Interesting, right? People would make 5 qualifying hits a day if they could. Once the lanes closed, the numbers got sorted out and off they went to the races. Today’s situation is a bit more organized if not less spontaneous.
The late 1970s funny cars in the gallery are great. Gary Burgin, Billy Meyer, Tom Hoover and Snake’s Army Plymouth Arrow are among them. Hey, you’l even see Graham Light driving his top fuel car as well as famed road racer Paul Gentilozzi during his pro stock drag racing days in a Plymouth Arrow!
We decided to run about 100 photos at you today and we’ll come back with another 100 tomorrow. Make sure you hit them all. As cool as the famous professional level cars are, the sportsman stuff is what we love. Pintos, roadsters, altereds, etc. This stuff is AWESOME and we have to thank Bob Boudreau for sharing them with us!