LIVING THE AMERICAN DREAM WITH A STICK-SHIFT NOVA
Distance is only a number, just ask Dan Williams.
Williams, a drag racer from the United Kingdom, had his 1969 Nova shipped from the United Kingdom so that he could race in this year’s A/Stock Challenge, class eliminations for the top of the line for conventional Stockers at the NHRA U.S. Nationals.
“We love stock eliminator, and we know we have to race stock in Sweden because in the UK, we don’t have NHRA Stock,” Williams explained. “We’ve been racing for quite a few years and we figured well, we got to go to the home of the best racing in the world. So we got to come to the US, and we’re just having a ball.”
This year’s event was not the first time for Williams and his brother, as they brought their AA/Stock Automatic Camaro to last year’s event.
In the United States where a stick-shifted Stocker is in the minority
“It’s just something about a car with a 4-speed, letting that clutch out, leaf spring car,” Williams explained. “These things are wild to draw. It used to be an automatic car. I changed the stick, and I just have so much fun with the car. You go down the track and you’re really fighting it, it’s like driving an old pro stock car. It’s just so much fun. And once you’ve had a stick, you never go back.”
Racing a stick car at the most prestigious drag race in the world, there are just no words strong enough to describe the euphoria.
“I’m going all goose-pimply now thinking about it,” Williams admitted. “You go on YouTube, and you watch all the legendary races like Bill “Grumpy” Jenkins, all the old guys, and you feel so special you’re on the same turf as all these famous guys. They’re my hero for this type of stuff, and I don’t know, it just gets the Goosebumps going. It’s unbelievable.”