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On a sun-filled afternoon in June 1960, a group of young men from the Tri State area of Illinois, Iowa and Missouri put on a formal drag race at the Clark County Fairgrounds at Kahoka, Missouri. The races were held on a parking area where the Highway department mixed asphalt for cold patches on area roads. This writer had the honor of winning the original Top Eliminator trophy that day, driving a ’32 Ford coupe B/A powered by a ’58 Pontiac engine.
On hand to challenge for the premier title were: Jerry Childers’ Bold Venture’, a Latham supercharged, Chevrolet powered ’29 Ford sedan (finished runner-up); a ’32 Ford five window coupe built by Kent Martin with Buick V8 power (semi-finalist) and Bob Morris of Bob’s Mobil in Keokuk, Iowa, with a ’27 T roadster featuring 331 Dodge Hemi power.
The races at Kahoka, which became known for Top Fuel dragster action, started with Altered and Roadsters. Through the next seven seasons, the category produced many winners.
In doing research for this column, I noticed Drag News results from an April 21, 1963 race at Cordova, Illinois. You may note a few very familiar names reported here. Folks like Arnie Beswick, your writer, Andy Perry, and Powers & Riley.