Ed’s racing career spans the late 40’s when he was racing his Whizzer to present day at the Bonneville Salt Flats…and a lot in
This includes street racing in Alvarado, Texas and a Texas Top Fuel
Championship in 1962. And professional racing at drag strips like Green
Valley and Caddo Mills, Texas; Bakersfield and Pomona, California;
Indianapolis, Indiana; Bristol, Tennessee and others all over the United
States. And some late night testing of Top Fuel cars on a certain street
in Arlington, Texas!
A pioneer in professional drag racing, milestones include developing
safety drag chutes along with Bill Simpson and Jim Diest; and especially
developing rear engine Top Fuel cars along with his rival and friend Don Garlits. This major design change has saved the lives for countless
drivers and paved the way for the 4 second ET’s and over 300 MPH speeds
of today’s dragsters. Ed was a founding member of the
Specialty Equipment Market Association's (SEMA) Chassis Rules
Committee in the late '60's. Ed built top fuel and funny car
chassis for race teams from the late '50's until the mid '70's. Ed
was inducted into the Texas Drag Racing Hall of Fame in 2000 at
In the 70’s and 80’s Ed and friend Lee Manis (and later David Wade)
formed Team Triumph Texas and built Triumph race bikes. Closely aligned
with Jack Wilson of Big ‘D’ Cycle, they set a multitude of drag race and
land speed records. Ed built turbocharged fuel-burning Triumph Trident
engines that make a LOT of horsepower…and the chassis that would handle
them. Star rider Jon Minonno was five-time national road racing
champion, two-time national Pro Mod drag racing champion and member of
the exclusive Bonneville 200 MPH Club.
Ed’s motorcycles have set 15 different World Land Speed records
Bonneville. His masterpiece, No. 601, holds class records exceeding 238,
224 and 213 MPH and a highest unofficial one-way speed of over 261 MPH.
At three-quarter throttle! It is the fastest “pushrod” motorcycle in the
In 2003 No. 601, Ed, Jon, David and Team Triumph Texas were on their way
to a tremendous qualifying run and potential new record, when they
experienced an oil fire at over 240 MPH.
As a result of his many land speed racing accomplishments, Ed was
inducted into the Dry Lakes Racing Hall of Fame in Buellton, California
in September of 2004.
Ed was a retired Bell Helicopter Engineering Manager, machinist, welder, race car and bike designer and fabricator, and was a United States Air Force pilot training to fly jet fighters in Korea when that war
ended. He was also a thinker, philosopher, humorist and long time supporter of
North Texas Norton Owners Association and its members.
Ed was the Grand Marshall for the NTNOA's 19th
The Newest Race Bike is 605.
It raced in the 750cc Pushrod Blown Fuel Category
Willie G Davidson visits Ed
605 on the salt last year.
604 at Bonneville
Ed and three of his Bonneville
racers at the 2007 International Motorcycle Show, 9-1 Nov.
Photos courtesy of Paul Valentine
The tradition started in 1955 with a World Land Speed Record of
193.3mph, followed by an unofficial record of 214.7mph in 1956. Although
not their first (or last!) Bonneville outings, these were the best known
efforts of the Stormy Mangum-Jack Wilson-Johnny Allen streamliner known
as "The Devil’s Arrow" and later "The
Texas Cee-Gar". Not bad for a normally aspirated 650cc Thunderbird!
The tradition continues with Team Triumph Texas (TTT), a direct
descendent of the great Team that beat the world in 1955 and gave the
Triumph Bonneville it’s name - arguably the best known marque and model
of all time.
A 1978 Triumph ad exclaimed "Triumph’s have been setting records on
the Bonneville salt longer than most motorcycle companies have been in
business!" Even more true today.
For many years, Triumph was truly the "World’s Fastest Motorcycle".
They are still "World’s Fastest" in a number of vintage, pushrod and
"heads-up" class records at Bonneville. Many have been set by Team
Triumph Texas, including the SCTA certified, but unofficial record for
the "World’s Fastest Real Motorcycle" of 256.264mph in 1992! A
"real" motorcycle being one you ride rather than drive,
and that you ride on rather than in. This dual-engine, early Triumph triple powered, turbocharged, fuel burning, 400+bhp, partial-streamliner (No. 601) was the TTT "flagship". The 256 run was at
"only" 70% throttle and we’re still trying hard for 100%!
The newest project was aimed straight at the record for the fastest
1000cc class motorcycle in the world, and frankly, making a big splash
for Triumph. Not vintage. Not pushrod. Just the fastest. The new bike
(No. 604) is a single engine, turbocharged, fuel burning, 200+bhp,
partial streamliner with (you guessed it)...a late model Triumph engine.
It is not a modified street bike, but a total race shop special. It
first competed in the 1998 Bonneville National Speed Week. The record
for this class was 211.698 mph set in 1990 by a BMW. We beat it with two
runs of 216 and 210 for an average speed of 213 mph.
- Fastest Pushrod Motorcycle awarded to:
Jack Wilson / David Wade / Ed Mabry
Speed: 250.623 mph
One of the dry/erase boards in Ed's shop.
<[Click here to check out the 2009 day-to-day
<[Click here to
see Dicky Hunter's photo album of Bonneville.]>
<[Team Triumph Texas during Speed Week 2008 at the Bonneville Salt Flats]>
<[Click here to check out the 2006 day-to-day
["The Dragster Insider - 50
years ago in Texas"] as seen in NHRA.com
"Bikes" of Mabry Racing]> <[Mabry
Racing Land Speed Records]>
Year Racing Summary]> <[The
Founding Members & Crew]>
<[Check out Mabry Racing back in
Current Race Team]>
*Mabry Racing - A member of
the FSSF group.
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