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Thread: Intro - IanT

  1. #1

    Smile Intro - IanT

    The short version:

    Ian Thomas, Highworth, Wiltshire.

    Into hot rods and drag racing since the early seventies, but my black '54 Ford Pop - born the same year as me - is my first rod.

    The long version

    Around 1965(?) my dad took me to a UK Dragfest for some unknown reason. At the time I didn't know what I was seeing, but I do remember two cars smoking the tires for just about the full quarter mile. Only many years later did I learn the significance of what (and who) I had seen..

    We moved to Australia in the late sixties, and it was here that I first saw real custom cars close up. Those custom Holdens FBs and FJs with Cragar S/S wheels and metalflake paint jobs were the prettiest things I'd ever seen. I swear those metal flakes were as big as my little fingernail! Of course, I started reading the imported US hot rod magazines, and building hot rod models.

    When we returned to the UK in early 1970 I was disappointed to see almost no custom scene at all - the flashiest wheels you'd see would be a set of Rostyles. I started preaching about drag racing to my school mates - but almost nobody had ever heard of it. But soon Custom Car magazine was launched, and I discovered that there were a few people around who were into hot rods and drag racing, and I attended my first drag race at Santa Pod in 1970.

    Even though I had no car at the time, I joined the BDR&HRA and the NDRC, and became a marshal for the NDRC - marshalling at Blackbushe, Silverstone, Long Marston, Wroughton, etc. Here I am at Blackbushe, I think, aged about 21 (ahhh).

    It's a long time ago, but one of the best memories I have is getting a stint on the startline at my 'home' strip at Wroughton in 1975. Here's the only photographic proof I have ever found - anybody else got any from Wroughton, 1975?!

    Although I continued attending drag racing events - mostly at Santa Pod - by 1978 I was married with a mortgage and a baby. Thoughts of drag racing & hot rods got pushed to the back of my mind...

    >> FAST FORWARD >> 27 YEARS >>

    ...a trip to the Hot Rod Drags at Shakey a few years back suddenly rekindled my interest (you'll know that it can never really go away).

    I realised that there were people out there just having fun with affordable rods.. perhaps all those years of reading Hot Rod magazine had kind of put those cars at an unattainable and unaffordable distance.. but no - it could be done..

    Joining the NSRA forum was the first big step. Here I got a feel for the people already involved, and found how they were willing to help each other out with support and advice.. and despite the ocassional hiccup, they still are.
    After a visit to Westside Streetrods BBQ, and some encouraging advice from Geof Harris (for which I'm grateful), I found and bought my Pop - my first, and current car.

    I'm no builder, but I'm learning as much as I can to work on my own car. In the meantime I'm having fun and meeting a bunch of good, similarly-minded people. That includes some of the Bristol Hot Rod guys, and I'm proud to have been able to design and build their web site for them at

    Hey! thanks for listening!
    Last edited by IanT; 07-11-07 at 10:24 AM.

  2. #2
    We ran 'Super Pumpkin' at Wroughton in '76. Were you there then? There's film of it on one of Time Travels dvd's.

  3. #3
    Cheers, I was there and loved the car (I posted up an old pic of it on the old forum).
    Will have to investigate those Time Travel VD's. Ta!

  4. #4
    blimey Ian,you have'nt changed one bit lol!!!!

  5. #5
    Hey Ian, those jackets are back in fashion, if only it still fitted!

    I hope you're well?

    See you soon


  6. #6


    Now that IS a Barry Sheene hairdo !. .. . jealous ? ? ... me ???. never .. .Bald is beautiful !

    Best wishes Ian..

    P.S Is that one of them Mini-moto`s on yer lap ??


  7. #7
    Cheers guys, now let's see if I can get this animated gif to work...

    Last edited by IanT; 09-11-07 at 06:21 PM.

  8. #8

    hi ian

    hi ian ,well you said it would be worth the wait ,and look's like you were right ,and that's clever with the clip above, you have to tell us how you do that one ,but i thought you might of found a way of it beating my van
    cheer john

  9. #9

    Thumbs up Thanks to Ian T

    I would like to thank Ian from all of us around the Bristol area for the excellent job he is doing with our website .
    It all came about after someone else asked for advice ref web queries Ian replied and I then latched onto him . Glad to say after 10 months and his expertise the site is getting better and better .

    Oh! John is right , that is a bit of a Barry Sheene , and how did he spot that bike in the photo ?

  10. #10
    Hi Ian,
    Just saying hello from one Pop owner to another so to speak. That was a very good intro, and the pictures, and video are very good too, I think you have a brilliant Pop and it must give you loads of laughs. You have done a wicked job with the Bristol web site.

    I came down to Bristol with Nervous Nick, and Just Jim earlier this year, of Nervous Surgeons fame when we went to see Merv's, and Spencers rides, unfortunately we didn't come to yours, as a look around your Pop would have been the icing on the cake for me anyway.

    Hope to have my ride on the road next year, and to catch up with you, and yours,

    All the best,
    Mike C.

  11. #11
    Thanks for the words, Mike. My Pop's nothin' fancy, just a good honest little car.. make sure you keep us up to date on yours.
    IanT (°||°)
    "that Plymouth had a Hemi with a Torqueflite"

  12. #12
    Hi Ian,
    No worries will do, some pics are on Radicals thread in the Pop forum.

    Mike C.

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