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Dick LaHaie

Dick LaHaie has been involved in drag racing for over 35 years, beginning as a driver. He competed in AHRA, IHRA and NHRA. He was NHRA Top Fuel champion in 1987 and was number 31 in the list of NHRA's top 50 drivers.. He left the driver's seat and was a two-time championship crew chief for Scott Kalitta in 1994-95. He currently is crew chief for Don Prudhomme's Top Fueler driven by Larry Dixon. Darr Hawthorne sat down with him for a conversation in Las Vegas.

DRO: You seem like a very serious man and certainly this is a very serious business. Do you have fun doing this?

DL: I must have fun doing this, because I've done it for so long, it's my 34th year. It's a different type of fun than when I drove. It's serious, we fool around with somebody's life in the car. Plus, I take the competition very seriously, I guess it's just my nature. I'm not out here to have a good time, I'm not out here to make friends. I've got a job I want to do, I want to do it better than anybody out there, I want to be able to teach the guys that work with me how to do this stuff, and I want them better than anybody out there. If I didn't feel that way, I don't think that I would be doing the sport justice, so yeah, I am serious, I'm very serious, in everything I do.

DRO: Do you ever miss the days when it was just you and your daughter Kim out there on the road?

DL: No, no. I mean we had a wonderful time, but I wouldn't think of going back and doing it again to save your life, because you look back and see what we accomplished, nobody ever done that and nobody ever will again. It was just our time to do it and I cherish those days. There were times when Kim and I had to go on the road, we could go a thousand miles and never say a word, because we had our agendas and we needed to do and try to make sure that we were doing the right stuff, but we always communicated very well.

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