Welcome to the Arfons Family section.
I have a lot of articles and pictures that Dad saved and a bunch that I have found since starting this site.
I didn't realize there was so much documented material on this family and I still don't have it all, if that's possible !
They are given credit for :
- The first "Slingshot" and "Sidewinder" style dragsters.
- In 1955 the first Allison Powered "Green Monster" made a two pass average of 132 mph on it's first time out.
- The first 150 mph in "G.M. #6" at the 1956 Nationals Labor Day
weekend in Kansas City (Art), also 131 mph top speed gas class in "G.M. #5" (Walt).
- Ran 157.89 mph in "G.M. #5", at the First International Drag Meet
in Chester S.C., winter 1957, on pump gas ! Also the first crash at an ITA supervised strip, same event, 152 mph (Art).
- The first 170-172 mph National Record 9-3-59 (Art).
- The first 180 mph at Brookville Fla. 1959, also 8.43 et at Chester S.C..
- Collected the first significant appearance money ever paid to a drag racer,
- Contributed two important safety devices since made mandatory for drag cars:
The overhead roll cage, 1954 and The parachute in the Eastern USA, early
1959 (Art & Walt).
- The first to use Jet Engines in race cars (Walt).
- The first run of the first successful Jet Dragster was Aug. 6 1960 (Walt).
- One super low E.T. of 4.18 set at Houston in 1961 (Walt).
- 213.23 mph and 7.38 et on July 29 1961 at Fontana Raceway (Walt, Nook Bakewell driver).
- The first Jet Funny Cars both Steel and Fiberglass bodied 1967 (Walt).
- The first 324 mph 1/4 mile run 1979 (Craig).
- The first 370 mph on water 7-9-89 (Craig).
- Land Speed Records include 413 mph, 434 mph, 515 mph, 536 mph, 559 mph,
and 571 mph.
- Art set 8 different National and InterNational records in just two passes on
- In 1962 at Bonneville, Art's first Jet Dragster (Cyclops) topped 342 mph, the fastest run ever recorded by an opencockpit vehicle.
- Walt had the first rocket powered Land Speed Car, also the only private citizen
to use J.A.T.O. (jet assisted take off) bottle rockets.
- At age 65, Art was the oldest active driver ever inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame.
- Art was timed at 615 mph before losing a wheel and surviving one of the most violent crashes in motorsports history.
I`m sure there are countless numbers of individual records all
over the United States. Imagine what we will never know about, but still happened !
This is an amazing group people when you look at what they brought into this world for us to enjoy and be in awe of.
I welcome any stories, pics or articles you my want to help out with.
If any other family member would like to be added, just contact me, all I need is the material.