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Texan Racing Team


Eddie Hill



Wichita Falls, Texas


5 ft. 11 in.


March 6, 1936 (60)


160 lb.




Sabrina, 40


Dustin, 18

Eddie Hill



Tri-State Motor Scooter Flat Track Championships at Shreveport, La., on a Cushman, age 11, won trophy.

First drag race, 1955 at age 19, won top eliminator and set fast time at 106 mph at Karnack, Texas.



Began campaigning a Model T rail with Olds V8 engine in A/Open Gas (body panels of corrugated roofing tin) & his mother's '55 Chevrolet in a stock class.



Driving same car with improved body, ran 12 sec. & 117 mph, won 26 trophies, set track records at Winnsboro & Karnack , Texas



First driver to debut small profile front tires on a dragster, Cushman wheels on a Pontiac unblown gas dragster, first ever to use the engine as a stressed member.



First driver to use charcoal-filled breather mask. Won AHRA Nationals, Great Bend, Kan., & Texas championship, setting state records of 9.25 sec. & 151.77 mph in what was called "world's fastest" Pontiac dragster. Raced in 1st pro match race against Jack Chrisman's Sidewinder at Inyokern, Calif.



First driver to do smoky burnout to heat rear tires on a dragster. NHRA national E.T. record, 8.84 sec., which was the biggest improvement ever from an old national record (old mark was 9.40). Pontiac dragster was now supercharged. Introduced new twin-Pontiac blown dragster.



Hand-built Pontiac dragster set speed records of 202.07 mph, first over 200 mph on gasoline, at Hobbs, N.M., introducing technique of sliding the clutch to prevent smoking the tires.



May have introduced wing to drag racing with new single-Pontiac dragster. A few wins over Chrysler dragsters.



Drove 1st hemi fueler, hit 8.60 sec., 175 mph at Houston.



National Dragster dubbed him "Holeshot Hill." Eddie: "I got over it, though."



Converted his twin-Pontiac dragster to a long wheelbase car. Experimenting with nitromethane, crashed car at Oklahoma City. Hill unscratched. Later introduced new hemi fueler called the "world's longest dragster." It featured chrome-plated shift knobs in place of steering wheel. Retired Oct. 30 after fire at Green Valley Raceway in last run he ever made in a front-engine dragster.



Admitted to NHRA Hall of Fame



Returned to drag racing after 20-year absence.



Runner-up at NHRA Mile High Nationals



Set NHRA national speed records, 285.98 mph, at Texas Motorplex Oct. 4. On same day set his low E.T. of the year 5.095 sec. Only man in history to hold both land and water speed records. Posted best competition top speed marks at Reading (tie), Dallas, Phoenix, and Pomona, last 4 NHRA nationals of year. Runner-up in Tulsa ADRA, Dallas & Phoenix NHRA nationals. Became Pomona track record holder at 283.91 mph.









Set world E.T. records of 4.990 sec. in both Houston, Texas (NHRA) and Ennis, Texas (IHRA), making history on Apr. 9 by being the 1st driver ever to break the 5-second barrier. Other records¾ top speed, 284.72 mph, NHRA Winter Nationals, Pomona, Calif., Low E.T., 5.066 sec. NHRA Gator Nationals, Gainesville, Fla. Top speed of meet, 288.73 mph, IHRA Texas Nationals, Ennis, Texas; track records, 5.188 sec., NHRA Southern Nationals, Commerce Ga.;277.09 mph, NHRA California Nationals, Sears Point, Calif.;5.082 sec., NHRA U.S. Nationals, Clermont, Ind.; 5.065 sec. & 278.64 mph, IHRA World Nationals, Norwalk, Ohio; 5.110 sec., HHRA Fall Nationals, Bristol, Tenn.; 4.936 sec., NHRA Super Nationals, Baytown, Texas; 5.066 sec. (national records at the time), NHRA Fall Nationals, Chandler, Ariz. Won 7 meets, reached 3 other finals, 6 semi-finals & 2 quarter-finals. Named "person of the year" by Car Craft & Hot Rod magazines & IHRA AARWBA second team Auto Racing All American.



Survived NHRA Winter Nationals' most spectacular accident, going airborne at 270 mph and recording a 5.21 sec. qualifying run perpendicular to the track. Borrowed a car from Darrel Gwynn and actually qualified. Recorded his fastest top speed up to then at Houston in backup car, 291.82 mph and fastest reaction time, .405, at Denver. Reached finals of 3 straight races, Gator Nationals, Southern Nationals, and Mid-South Nationals.



Reached finals of NHRA Gator Nationals & semi-finals of NHRA Super Nationals, Cajun, Keystone & Chief Auto Parts Nationals. Near season's end, he got back on 4-sec. track at 3 straight meets, Keystone Nationals (4.945), Heartland Nationals (4.968) & Chief Nationals (4.965).



Recorded 17 4-second runs. Reached finals of IHRA Norwalk World nationals & semi-finals of NHRA Mile High & Texas Chief Nationals. Qualified No. 1 at NHRA's Gator Nationals & Heartland Nationals, IHRA's Spring Nationals & World Nationals. Set his all-time best E.T. up to that time, 4.918 sec. at Reading, Pa., in the NHRA Keystone Nationals.



Second best qualifier of season. He set new track records at Phoenix, Rockingham, Memphis, Seattle, Indianapolis & Pomona, topped by quickest run in history, 4.779 sec. At Gainesville he became oldest top fuel winner in NHRA national championship history (age 56) when he was first in history to record 4 straight 4.8-second runs -- 4.892, 4.801, 4.841, 4.846 -- in eliminations. The 4.801-sec. run was a new nationals record, later topped.




Captured his first NHRA World championship as the oldest professional driver (57) ever to win a major season title. Won 6 NHRA nationals to tie the all-time record for victories in a season, jointly held with Don Garlits, 1985; Darrell Gwynn, 1988; Gary Ormsby, 1989, Joe Amato, 1990, and Kenny Bernstein, 1991. Hill's margin of 1,256 points over Scott Kalitta in the season top fuel point race was the largest since Don Garlits won the championship by 2,204 points over Joe Amato in 1985. Hill's win were at Phoenix, Gainesville, Atlanta, Topeka, Sonoma & Brainerd. Voted by Car Craft Magazine readers a member of Car Craft's Drag Racing All-Stars and "Top Fuel Driver of the Year." For being season's second best qualifier, with one 1st (Sears Point), six 2nds, 4 3rds and 16 top-8 qualifying spots in 18 races, Hill won the right to race in the Budweiser Classic, reaching the finals for the first time before losing. Clinched championship in 17th of 18 races. Best season marks were 4.818 seconds elapsed time at Phoenix, 300.80 mph at Topeka & .438-second reaction time at Phoenix and Topeka. Set top time & new track record (4.818) at Phoenix.

Invited to drive in FastMasters series at IRP despite road racing inexperience, qualified 5th of 8 drivers, won the consolation race, started last (5th) & finished 2nd in the main event to qualify for the $100,00 final round, where he finished 4th in a 6-car semifinal.



Won NHRA Winter Nationals at Pomona, Calif. Runner-up at Spring Nationals in Columbus. Finished 5th in points.



Won NHRA Mile High Nationals at Denver. Runner-up at NHRA Champion Auto Stores Nationals, Brainerd, Minn., where he was No. 1 qualifier. Improved his all-time best marks to 4.629 sec. at Sonoma, Calif., and 308.53 mph at Topeka, Kan. Finished 10th in points. Recorded fastest speed ever at half-track, 265.40 mph. Led all drivers with a 2-0 record for holeshot wins.




Began racing motorcycles. Competed in short track, hare scrambles, moto-cross, drag racing & cross country through 1972, scoring many wins.



Texas state champ in stock production road racing. At Green Valley Dragway, Texas, won two classes on a stock Kawasaki at 12.002 Earned his AMA junior license.




Saw his first race, Austin Aquafest, owned a drag boat 27 days later. Won first race he ever entered, at Oklahoma City, set national speed & E.T. records in his 3rd race, Liberty, Texas.



Began racing Kindsvater Chrysler blown fuel hydro, fastest class.



Set world water speed record of 229.00 mph at Chowchilla, Calif., on Sept. 5. Record stood until 1992, when Ron Braaksma recorded a speed of 229.06 mph at Puddingstone Dam next door to the Pomona Fairplex.



Won World Series championship. Also set E.T. record of 5.16 sec. at Firebird Raceway, Ariz. This was 1st drag boat record quicker than a land mark (at that time Gary Beck held NHRA mark of 5.39).



Set Canadian water speed record at 223.32 mph. After clinching World Series title again with perfect pass at Firebird, airborne boat threw Eddie through side of hull at 217 mph, breaking 7 bones, causing concussion, eye injuries, multiple cuts, contusions. Left drag boat racing after becoming 1st driver to hold 4 national records at same time, 229.00 mph, NDBA; 220.76 mph, SDBA; 212.78 mph, IHBA, & 215.82 mph, ADBA. Still holds Canadian water mark of 223.32 mph. Hill won every major race in sport at least once, as many as 4 times, won biggest meet, NDBA Nationals, 3 times in a row.




Used his racing motor scooter to deliver newspapers, rigged it with a sidecar to hold the papers. Including his father, a veterinarian, and daughter, Hill & family are 3 generations of Texas A&M graduates. Eddie, an alumnus of Longview HS, was graduated from Texas A&M with B.S. in industrial technology, 1957.

Out of college he worked as a sales engineer for a Lufkin, Texas, firm, which he quit to go racing full time.

Retired from drag racing, 1966, lack of funds. Opened Eddie Hill's Fun Cycles in Wichita Falls, now the oldest Honda & Kawasaki dealership in Texas. Met his wife Ercie at a drag boat race in High Point, N.C. They were married on Valentine's Day, 1984. She was a paralegal secretary, now manages his business affairs and handles marketing & PR for the team. A friend of the late country western performer Marty Robbins & his son Ronny, she wrote a hit song for him, "A Simple Little Live Song." Ercie frequently writes columns and stories about the human side of racing in weekly National Dragster, Christian Motorsports Illustrated & other publications. Two of Eddie's favorites: Classical music, M&Ms.

The Hill's traveling cat, Monkey Bat, retired from drag racing in 1994, but Hills continue to be accompanied by their pet dachshund, Hot Dog.

After the 1995 Oklahoma City Federal Building bombing, Eddie & Ercie Hill organized an aid project that resulted in acquiring a van for the church across from the courthouse to replace the one that had been destroyed by the blast.

Rode to just-under-sonic speeds (0.999 Mach) in a U.S. Air Force Talon T-38 jet fighter at Sheppard AFB, Texas. Hill achieved speeds up to 730 mph. Hill also controlled the plane and did aerobatics.

At midseason 1996, Hills introduced a prize fund, $500 per race for top fuel and for funny car winners for the last 9 races of the season, to be paid to a recognized charity of choice by the recipients. The program raised $10,000 for various charities.