mountainside in 1965. In the more than four decades
since, the track known as “Thunder Valley” has carved its niche as a world-class facility in professional drag racing. Located adjacent to Bristol Motor Speedway, the dragway’s well-earned nickname stems from the unique acoustic experience fans get when the power of unlimited racing engines echoes off the nearby hillsides. Bristol Dragway retraces the track’s early history, its role in shaping the sport, and its return to prominence after an $18 million renovation in the late 1990s. The book features images of drag racing’s greatest stars and chronicles decades of the sport’s most memorable moments.
The Pacemakers brought southern Ohio its first reliability runs (1952), custom auto shows (1954), and drag racing competitions-setting national records (1958, '63, '64) and winning national championships (1963, '64, '65). When the hot rodders were not busy upgrading their drive train for more horsepower or "chopping" and "channeling" for improved performance, they could often be seen on the streets of Middletown feeding expired parking meters or rescuing motorists whose cars had broken down or run out of gas. By 1966, as was the fate of so many hot rod clubs, the mass production of Detroit muscle cars ushered the Pacemakers to fold.