I have had the pleasure of knowing Broadway
Bob for over 30 years. “Broadway” Bob the best-known
racing promoter event organizer and track owner in the history
of drag racing was inducted into the Drag Racers Hall of Fame
on March 14, of 1996.
Bob was also inducted into the Jet Car Hall
of Fame. Bob has been known to tip a few beers at the racetrack,
so he would do things that no sober person would do. Like sit
on the front of Doug Roses Green Mamba Jet Car with a beer in
one hand, while 25 foot flames were coming out jet cars tail
pipe. The fans just loved it. They would go absolutely crazy.
Bob single-handedly transformed the socially
unacceptable sport of the 1950’s drag racing into a popular
entertainment medium in the conservative Midwest. His “Olympics
of Drag Racing” has survived since 1957 as the third oldest
event in drag racing. Highly popular with his fans, Broadway
Bobs showmanship and personal contact with his audience’s
indeed legendary among all forms of racing.
In 1995 after 40 years Broadway sold the legendary
Great Lakes Drag Way and retired when diagnosed with cancer.
Bob has fully recovered now.
I ran into Bob down at Don Gartlis drag racing
museum in Ocala Florida in March of 2006. Bob was with a couple
of his friends that he introduced me to. Bob started telling
his friends some stories about me. One of them was how Kitty
O’Neil drove my rocket car at over 325mph at his track
and she was blind. I said, wait a minute Bob, Kitty wasn't blind,
she was deaf. Every body started laughing, including myself.
All Bob with a strait face could say was, I have been telling
everyone for years she was blind. Then Bob said, know wonder
why nobody would ever believe me. I still get a good laugh out