Duel of the Duals
Hail to twin-engine tremendousness! You know the hot rod credo is that bigger is better and two is better than one. To celebrate one of the hot rodder’s Ten Commandments, here’s the Bob Muravez–piloted, twin-Hemi version of John Peters’ black Freight Train and driver Ray Motes in the red Motes & Williams Top Gas dragster from Russell, Kansas, at the Ontario Speedway for the 1971 Supernationals. Owner RC Williams’ Motes & Williams dragster was one of the most successful Top Gas dragsters ever and also one of the last.
Snagging the 1970 Springnationals and World Finals on the way to becoming Top Gas champions, and taking the 1971 Springnationals toward another Top Gas championship, Motes hit speeds at more than 210 mph. Cooking with those twin-392 Hemis, this was also a looker with its abundant use of chrome. As with so many other classes in the early 1970s, Top Gas was killed in 1972. Motes & Williams would go on to run in Top Fuel through 1974. For the last year of Top Gas, Peters teamed with Walt Rhodes to run the almost 800ci twin-Hemi Train, with their best win at the 1971 Gatornationals. Here’s a salute to them all, including such faves as Gordon Collett, Schultz & Jones, Ohio’s Jim Bucher, Texan Eddie Hill, Ron Braun’s GSTA, Cope Brothers, Frakes and Funk, Jack Moss, and so many others.