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Shirley Shahan: The Drag-On Lady

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Meet drag racing legend and pioneer Shirley Shahan, the Drag-On Lady!

As the first woman to win an NHRA national event when she was named Top Stock Eliminator at the 1966 Winternationals, Shahan blazed a trail for women in drag racing. During the golden era of drag racing, it was rare to find diversity in the sport. Shahan is what’s commonly known as a living legend.

In a career that spanned the 1950s and into the early 1970s, Shahan drove 1956 and 1958 Chevys and was one of the lucky few who was able to purchase one of the rare 1963 Chevrolet RPO Z11 Super Stockers. Later, when she was driving for Plymouth and Dodge, Shahan made the name Drag-On Lady both famous and feared. She then moved to American Motors and raced very successfully with the new SS/AMX.

From 1958 to 1972, Shahan set records and won numerous awards. She was inducted into the International Drag Racing Hall of Fame, Super Stock Magazine Hall of Fame, and Mopar Hall of Fame, and she was honoured with a lifetime achievement award at the Bakersfield racetrack. In addition, Shirley won the Top Stock category at the very first March Meet at the legendary the Famoso Raceway track near Bakersfield, California, which made her the first person (male or female) to do so. In 1966, she was the named one of Hot Rod magazine’s Top 10 Drivers.

She raced against the best drivers during the golden age of drag racing and more often than not blew off the doors of her opponents. She had a fierce passion for winning, and in this book, you’ll feel what it was like to be behind the wheel as she steers you through her illustrious career. Fasten your seat belt; it’s going to be a wild ride.

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