Larry Dixon, Dick Lahaie and Don Prudhomme sweep 2002 Top Fuel Car Craft All-Star Awards. Prudhomme recognized for 40-years of dedication to NHRA Drag Racing. INDIANAPOLIS (Aug. 30) - The Miller Lite / Don Prudhomme Racing team swept the Top...
Larry Dixon, Dick Lahaie and Don Prudhomme sweep 2002 Top Fuel Car Craft All-Star Awards.
Prudhomme recognized for 40-years of dedication to NHRA Drag Racing.
INDIANAPOLIS (Aug. 30) - The Miller Lite / Don Prudhomme Racing team swept the Top Fuel honors of the 35th annual Car Craft magazine's All-Star Drag Racing team awards ceremony held in conjunction with NHRA's most prestigious event, the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals.
With their seven victories out of 11 final round appearances in 2002 and an 80-point lead in the year-end championship chase after 16 of 23 events, the Miller Lite tandem of Larry Dixon and crew chief, Dick LaHaie were selected as the Top Fuel recipients of the coveted Car Craft All-Star 'Christmas Tree' trophies.
"It's a cool deal," said a sincere Dixon. "I want to thank Snake for the shot he gave me to ride his horse and making it into a bad-ass horse. "When I was a kid, I used to ride my bike to (engine builder) Ed Pink's shop (in Southern California) where I used to work and would see all his Car Craft awards. Now to win just one time is a real thrill for me."
LaHaie, a former NHRA Top Fuel champion in 1987 as a driver and a two-time Top Fuel champion crew chief winner (1994-95) for Scott Kalitta, received his first Top Fuel All-Star award as the Miller Lite team leader. "Wow", said an excited and appreciative LaHaie, who previously had won the Car Craft All-Star team Top Fuel crew chief in 1996-97. "In my 44th year of doing this, I still get excited. We talk a lot about team sports and team commitment, but to my crew, I thank you. I get to stand up here, but they are the guys who do it and get the job done.
"To Snake, I say 'Thank you'. My many thanks to my wife, Claudia, Lynn Prudhomme and of course, Larry Dixon. He's definitely turned into a performer."
Car owner and former Funny Car champion and Top Fuel driver Don "The Snake" Prudhomme has collected 49 wins as a driver and 36 as an owner, giving him a total of 85 victories. He was recognized with one of the 'Special Awards' given by Car Craft magazine for his 40-years of dedication to the sport of drag racing.
"For Car Craft magazine, it was a special night for me", said a proud Prudhomme. "It was Car Craft's 35th anniversary and I was at the first one. I've been fortunate to win both Driver of the year and the Ollie Award (the all-star team's highest award). Now coming back as a team owner and have my guys win is very satisfying."
Prudhomme added his own comments to the night's high spirits for his driver and crew chief's achievements.
"I am very proud of Dixon and LaHaie," said Prudhomme. "It's well deserved and both of them have worked hard to get there. For them to run as well as they did last year and to come back with their performance this year speaks well for both of them. They would be the first to tell you without great sponsors like Miller Lite and Mac Tools, it wouldn't be possible."
Petersen Publishing's Car Craft magazine readers, Internet voting, and an elite panel of drag racing's participants determined the All-Star team.