The Driver Suit Blog-Throwback Thursday-Don Garlitts-1986

Don Garlitts races Swamp Rat 30 in 1986, before it ended in the Smithsonian

Attempts had been made to streamline dragsters in the past, but leave it to Don Garlitts to take it to a new and effective level with Swamp Rat XXX. The black with yellow and white logo color scheme works, and the relatively plain design works very well too. I do like the swamp rat characters on the front fenders. It’s an A scheme. The streamline concept was tried by others, as we will see in the next few weeks.

The Driver Suit Blog-Throwback Thursday-Darrell Gwynn-1985

Darrell Gwynn’s recently restored 1985 dragster was recently auctioned off

Metallic silver, light blue, and black. It might seem like an odd combination, but this scheme makes the color scheme work well. The stripes up the sides, especially the pattern that repeats itself on the DARRELL GWYNN logo work well too. The scheme is excellent, and it earns an A.

The Driver Suit Blog-Throwback Thursday-Johnny Abbott-1981

Johnny Abbott won the 1981 US Nationals in his Jolly Rancher dragster

All aboard the Candyland Express! The design looks really good. Jolly Ranchers had a really good logo that worked well on the sides of dragsters. This is no exception. I don’t really get the shade of tan that they felt the need to use. It just doesn’t look good. Also, if you pay attention to the right, you see the old four amber Christmas tree, which was eliminated in competition in 1986 due to Pro Stock drivers not being able to see the green light. It’s a solid A- scheme.

The Driver Suit Blog-Throwback Thursday-Jeb Allen-1980

Jeb Allen burns out his 1980 English Leather at the 1980 Fallnationals

Black, gold, orange, and white is a bit of a bold color scheme. That said, the design works very well. The stripes aren’t over done, the logos work well with the color schemes, and the car looks good as a whole. I like the idea of the front suspension and front wing being one in the same. I also see another instance of a useless windshield setup here. All in all, it’s an A scheme.

The Driver Suit Blog-Throwback Thursday-Stan Shiroma-1977

Stan Shiroma wins the 1977 Fallnationals in Seattle in this Lidtke & Zeller dragster

The stripes up the sides are a bit overdone, but they work with the color scheme. I do like the red background near where the driver sits. Is the split down the middle of LIDTKE supposed to be like that, or is that a mistake caused by the body panel design? I’m going to guess its part of the design. It’s a C scheme.

The Driver Suit Blog-Throwback Thursday-Don Prudhomme-1972

Don Prudhomme’s 1972 Hot Wheels wedge gears up for a run

The paint scheme itself is really good. The dark red with the white stripe design works very well, and looks great. The car itself is kind of odd. Did Hot Wheels design it? It looks like something that would be sold as a Hot Wheels car. This actually looks like many future tempts to streamline top fuel dragsters. These attempts came back to haunt many who drove them. This paint scheme earns an A.

The Driver Suit Blog-Throwback Thursday-Gary Beck-1972

Gary Beck won the 1972 US Nationals in his top fuel dragster

The NHRA Top Fuel month starts with this Gary Back example from 1972. The blue looks really good, but the white stripe design isn’t great. It’s overdone. It’s visually distracting, and ht doesn’t make the gold and black logos look that good. Granted this was the early 1970’s, but it could be a lot better. I give it a B-