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Title: Bonneville Salt Flats

Publisher: MBI Publishing Co.

Author: “Landspeed” Louise Ann Noeth

Price: $39.95

Books about Utah’s Bonneville Salt Flats are nothing new, but until this one, most focused exclusively on land speed record attempts of men like Americans Ab Jenkins, Mickey Thompson, Craig Breedlove and Gary Gabelich and Englishmen Sir Malcolm Campbell, George Eyston and John Cobb.

Their attempts to go faster than any man alive are chronicled in Landspeed Louise’s book, but she also tells the mostly untold tale of small bucks racers who have careened down Bonneville’s long black line since 1914 in search of speed in everything from Model Ts and aircraft belly tanks powered by flathead Mercury engines to streamlined Lakesters created in backyard garages.

The significance of the Southern California Timing Assn. in establishing safety rules and class designations is that one car, such as the Xydias & Batchelor streamliner could be “fastest” at 156.39 mph, while Al Teague’s had to go 409 mph to gain the same bragging rights.


“This book will give the inexperienced the feel for the phenomenon we call ‘salt fever,’ ” said Teague. “I was recently asked by an acquaintance, not a racer, ‘Don’t you wish you had all the money you have spent on the race car now instead of just a race car?’ For those who understand Bonneville, the question does not even deserve an answer.”

Included are the 358 members of the exclusive 200 MPH Club, a diverse group that includes A. J. Foyt, Don Garlits, Andy Granatelli, Phil Hill, Burke LeSage, Bobby Unser and Jim Short.