Renowned for its outstanding collection of historic automobiles, the Gilmore Car Museum, in Hickory Corners, MI, will open an exciting new exhibit covering the fascinating history of drag racing for the 2009 season which begins May 1. Museum staff secured milestone drag cars from a number of private collectors located throughout the country to create this year’s exhibit, “History – ¼ Mile at a Time.”
This all-new exhibit features vehicles from some of the most iconic names in drag racing history, including “Big Daddy” Don Garlits, Arnie “The Farmer” Beswick, Don “The Snake” Prudhomme, Gas Ronda, John Force and "The Michigan Madman” E. J. Potter, just to name a few. Assembled together will be Funny Cars, Rails, Pro Stock, Gassers, Drag Bikes, and many more drag cars from all eras.
The cars and drag bikes for this special exhibit have come from as far away as Texas, Florida, and Nebraska, and from the Museum’s own backyard: former NHRA World Champion and nearby Kalamazoo resident Jerry Arnold has lent his 1932 Austin Bantam Competition Eliminator for the exhibit.
Drag racing—a truly American phenomena—grew following WWII from illegal street racing to the organized sport it is today with races taking place on commercial drag-strips. The race, however, has remained the same: two vehicles, side-by-side, make a quarter mile dash from a standing start with one goal—the fastest acceleration. To put that into prospective, modern Top Fuel Dragsters can reach speeds over 300 mph before you were able to finish reading this sentence!
Drag racing is the one motorsport where the amateur can take their daily driver to the track, don a helmet, buckle in, and compete among the highly specialized professional teams.
During the 2009 season the Gilmore Car Museum, along with premium sponsors; Engine Pro, Hastings Piston Rings, Mahle Clevite and Fel Pro, will offer guests the rare opportunity to see some of the most extraordinary examples of “Drag Racing History – ¼ Mile at a Time” up close in this special exhibit that runs May 1st through October 31st. And, just in case the cars and associated memorabilia doesn’t get your imagination revved up, the Museum has an added surprise that is certain to—a multi-sensory element, never before utilized in a museum setting, which will immerse the visitor into the drag race experience.
The Gilmore Car Museum’s 43rd season begins on May 1, 2009 and remains open daily from of 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (6:00 p.m. on weekends), through the end of October. Located in the heart of west Michigan, the Museum is midway between Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids, Lansing and Battle Creek, on M-43 and Hickory Road.