The Phoenix rises again in New Zealand…
Lez Herst and family have lovingly restored the ex-Joe pierce car to it’s former glory down here in NZ after taking possession 5 years ago. Lez fell in love with this car when it toured here in the late 70’s.
Pics are from an event the team was asked to feature at last weekend and excite the crowd with scheduled fire-ups.
Here’s some History on the “Phoenix”
Chris Lane was one of the best funny car racers in the Southwest in the mid seventies. There were two “Phoenix” funny cars that Pierce and Lane raced. Chris Lane had teamed with Joe Pierce in 1974 to build the first “Phoenix” Cuda. Pierce had run the ”Elephant Hunter” funny cars with Ron Fassl. The Cuda ran a best of 6.49, 227 by 1975. The team built the Camaro in 1976. The team won several local races with the Camaro.
Pierce and Lane added local AA/FA racer Mac McCord as a partner in 1977. In late 77, they took the Camaro to Australia and New Zealand. There they and the “L.A. Hooker” raced the best Aussies and Kiwis had to offer. The team sold the Camaro to Bob Dunn and split up. Chris Lane drove the Powers Steel Camaro after returning to the U.S. and later drove the “Desert Rat” in the late eighties. Pierce continued to tune for other racers.The car was sold to Australian racer Bob Dunn after Lanes’ tour. Dunn got the car into the sixes. The car passed through several hands over the next twenty years. Les Ireland bought the car and brought it back to New Zealand. Ireland has repainted the car to its original “Phoenix” colors.
for More (ALL!) funny car info …go to: http://www.70sfunnycars.com
photo by Alan Ashton
They have Lez’s surname wrong in that article. Actually a few old drag racers said the info can be a bit haphazard on that site.
Well now …You Fellas DO have a bit of a twist to the English ,us yanks are not familiar with….Dino-edit