Of all the seemingly zillions of drag racing cars I watched this year I may have been most excited to see the Folts and Schuh dragster when I pulled into the gate for Hot Rod Magazine’s Drag Weekend stop in Fontana, California. This car became the second VW air cooled machine to ever run 200 in the quarter mile early in 2015 and as it turns out Les Mayhew was in Bakersfield and captured the whole story with his camera. By “story” we mean the run.
The car looks like a typical dragster until you get to the area behind the driver’s head. One you get back there you are not going to find a V8 engine but instead one of the most powerful air cooled flat fours ever built. There’s not much, ok, there’s not anything VW left but it is the correct engine style, the correct layout, and it makes that correct and unique noise that flat fours to. The turbocharger sure does make the right amount of boost to have this thing really flying and the whole car just seems to work very well down track. The run is drama free, deep into the six second zone and the crew celebrates, appropriately.
The greatest thing about the sport of drag racing is the diversity in its competitors and its cars. Machines like the Folts and Schuh dragsters are proof positive that there is no wrong way to go fast. Those are some of the hardest working guys out there and to see them crank this baby into the 200 mile per hour zone, more than a DECADE after the last 200 mile run. Those are still very magic numbers in the VW realm.