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Dick Landy out at the Drags these days.Dick Landy's drag racing career spans four decades and, as a driver and spokesperson, his name is synonymous with Chrysler and Mopar Performance.

Dandy Dick Landy, with his white pants and tennis shoes, trademark cigar, ready smile, and blistering fast cars, was a crowd favorite in the '60s and '70s. His revolutionary design ideas changed the face of drag racing forever.

Landy was one of drag racing's first "factory" drivers, wheeling a 413 Max Wedge Plymouth to ever faster and faster quarter mile runs. In 1964 he moved to a 426 Wedge Dodge and, in his pursuit of quicker elapsed times and faster speeds, began the revolution of altered wheelbase funny cars. The most famous of these was his 1965 Hemi®-powered "Landy's Dodge."

The '65 altered-wheelbase Dodge was one of 12 (six Plymouths and six Dodges) built by Chrysler Corporation for its race teams that year. In an effort to put more weight on the rear wheels, the front axle was moved forward about 15 inches and the rear axle about 10 inches. The car was soon running in the low nine-second range at speeds of over 140 mph.

The unique configuration kept Landy and his "Landy's Dodge" out of NHRA competition, but the car and its flamboyant driver quickly became a crowd favorite at match races from coast to coast, as Landy moved into his long and lucrative match race career.

In 1967 Chrysler Corporation changed the direction of its program and Landy began conducting a series of Performance Seminars for Dodge dealerships across the country. These seminars helped form the basis for the Direct Connection Parts program, known today as Mopar Performance.

Landy continued racing until 1980, winning NHRA Pro Stock national events, claiming the AHRA world championship in both 1973 and 1974, and winning match races across the country.

These days, Landy maintains his ties with drag racing through Dick Landy Industries, a research and development company in Northridge, California. DLl provides high performance parts for a number of manufacturers, including DaimlerChrysler and Mopar Performance.