The Rat Trap Fuel Altered celebrates 46 years of excitement. Since its initial construction in late 1968 and initial debut in early 1969, no other Fuel Altered has been as highly publicized as the Rat Trap. Its unique construction and design were an innovation unmatched by the other Fuel Altereds of it’s time. Independent front suspension was first criticized and laughed at by its competitors, but later earned the respect of those who taunted it.
The bantam body and Dennis Watson chassis were complimented by the high horse power, nitro burning Chrysler built and tuned by Don Green. The list of drivers for this radical creation reads like a who’s who of drag racing at the time. Such names as Gary Gabclich, George Hutchison, Dan Collins, Frank Harris, Dan Guyger, along with numerous others all took turns at guiding this Fuel Altered down the quarter mile.
The original car competed from 1969 through 1973, when it was sold to a racer in Alaska. The original car still exists today, although several modifications have been made over the years. The present car, which is an exact recreation of the original, was built in 1995-1996 and began active competition in 1997. As with the original car, Dennis Watson did the chassis layout. The body and paint scheme mirrored the original car and Don Green, once again, provided tuning expertise for the nitro burning Chrysler.
In the summer of 2004, the Rat Trap with 4 other fuel Altereds (Nanook, Pure Heaven, Pure Hell and Bradford’s Fiat) traveled to England as the guest of Lord March. All five cars thrilled fans at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
This car has been on the match race circuit each year since its reconstruction, with Ron Hope at the controls. Brian Hope assumed the duties as Crew Chief in 2004 and continues in that capacity. Sadly, Don Green passed away in September of 2007.
The Rat Trap continues during 2015, celebrating 46 years of bringing fans to their feet and providing unmatched excitement. Check our schedule for dates and locations where are match races will occur.
Feb. 3-5: Leadfoot Festival, Hahei, New Zealand
Mar. 2-5: March Meet, Bakersfield, CA
Mar. 16-19: International Drag Racing Hall of Fame, Gainesville, FL (static display)
Mar. 22-26: Beach Hop, Whangamata, New Zealand
April 1: Nostalgia Drags, Meremere Dragway, New Zealand
May 19-21: Goodguys Nashville Nationals, Nashville, TN (static display)
May 20-21: El Mirage (land speed racing)
June 11: El Mirage (land speed racing)
June 15-17: National Hot Rod Reunion, Bowling Green, KY
June 30-July 2: Goodwood Festival of Speed, Goodwood, England
July 7: Goodguys PPG Nationals/Friday Night Vintage Drags
National Trail Raceway, Hebron, OH
July 16: El Mirage (land speed racing)
July 29: Goodguys 30th Pacific Northwest Nationals/Friday Night Vintage Drags, Pacific Raceways
Aug. 12: US 131 Northern Nationals, US 131 Motorsports Park, Martin, MI
Aug 14-18: Bonneville, UT (land speed racing)