Garth Hogan, of Wanaka, with a photograph of the ''funny
car'' he broke the 200mph (320kmh) barrier with in 1978.
Photo by Mark Price.
The most ''misunderstood'' form of motor sport will have
its five minutes in the spotlight at a ''gathering of geezers''
in Wanaka tomorrow night.
Former drag racer Garth Hogan, of Wanaka, is one of 25 New
Zealand or world motor racing champions who will share their
memorable motor racing moments with more than 300 guests at a
function in the Warbirds and Wheels Museum.
Mr Hogan told the Otago Daily Times yesterday there
was much greater complexity to drag racing than the public
realised - particularly around building and tuning engines.
''You've seen the motors blow up? Well, they've only got to
stay alive four seconds and you struggle to keep them alive
In 1978, Mr Hogan became the first person in New Zealand to
reach 200mph (320kmh) in a car.
He recalled it came at the end of a season where half a dozen
drivers and crew were vying for the honour.
''We were melting pistons and wrecking everything, trying to
''We had run out of money and we had run out of parts ... we
cobbled everything together just to go back one last time.
And the old girl went 203 ...''
Mr Hogan said it was impossible to describe the sensation of
travelling from zero to hundreds of kilometres per hour in a
few seconds but the driver was ''very busy''.
''He's got quite a bit to do and he doesn't have a lot of
time to do it in. In the meantime, he's going through an
experience that is extraordinary, to say the least.''
Other speakers include Paul Radisich, David Oxton, Steve
Millen, Graeme Crosby, Mike Marshall and Paul Fahey.