At Saugus (California) Dragway, this is Sonny’s homebuilt dragster powered by the 6-cylinder GMC engine and painted silver because of his love for German engineering. That’s Sonny second from the right, with Indycar driver Cal Niday is standing to Sonny’s right.
Photo: Courtesy Sonny Balcaen
Raoul “Sonny” Balcaen may not be a name with which everyone is familiar, but he grew up in Southern California in a world filled with automobiles and explored many of the pathways on that landscape. From an initial baptism in hot rodding, he moved naturally into drag racing, working with the legendary Ed Donovan. Then he turned to road racing, initially helping a young Jim Hall, and later enjoying involvements with two of America’s iconic road racing programs, Lance Reventlow’s…
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