Most every drag racing fan will proclaim “Big Daddy” Don Garlits as the greatest drag racer who ever strapped himself into a dragster. But mention it to Garlits, and he will say he never liked being branded this. Instead, he offers, “I’m just me.”
Garlits, the man who advanced safety in the Top Fuel division further than anyone, learned how to drag race by growing up in a family affected by the great depression. He carried the banner in a male-dominated sport and when a talented female driver made her way into the ranks, did his best to win one for the boys all the time.
In this video, Garlits discusses his upbringing, as well as the occupation he nearly had before being led into cars. He’ll also discuss his proudest moments as well as a couple of racing fatalities that touched his heart deeply. Garlits also revealed his complicated relationship with Wally Parks and how the love of his family fueled his success.