Mark Oswald’s drag racing career has literally been a step-by-step ascent to the top like none other.

As a teen, the Cincinnati native hitchhiked his way to local drag races and became hooked for life. He fibbed his way into a job in a machine shop to spend more time around cars and learn what made them tick.

He began racing a ‘68 Camaro and climbed the rungs until he and friends Tom Kattelman and Ross Thomas built a Top Fuel car that they massaged into a national event-winning ride. Their performance, including a runner-up showing for the IHRA csrown, earned him a slot in the legendary Candies & Hughes cars. It was a powerhouse team, as Oswald powered to six championships, half of which came in one year when he swept the NHRA, IHRA and AHRA crowns.

For the past 15 years, he put his mechanical expertise to work full-time as a crew chief, and his skillset helped make it possible for Antron Brown to capture three NHRA Top Fuel titles. Brown has lauded Oswald as “one of the best drivers, innovators and crew chiefs that our sport has ever seen.”

Learn more about this Hall of Fame competitor in the latest installment of “Legends.”