Car of the Week: Mike "Tuff Paw" and Tami Eggleston's Danny Nelson Racecraft Chassis Dragster

Car of the Week: Mike "Tuff Paw" and Tami Eggleston's Danny Nelson Racecraft Chassis Dragster

Welcome to the BTE Racing Car of the Week series, where we feature our customers and fans, and the cars (and trucks) they love to race. Today, it’s all about Mike (Tuff Paw) and Tami Eggleston of Highland, IL and their 2013 Danny Nelson Racecraft dragster.

How did you get into drag racing?

I (Tami) started racing with my dad in Iowa when I was just a kid. Mike drove a 1966 Chevy II to high school and then he decided to make it into a race car (wish we still had that car!). 

When and where was your first race?

We first started racing at Cedar Falls, Iowa. Mike raced the Chevy II at Cedar Falls in the 1980s. Then he drove a pretty cool injected altered, and after that a few different dragsters. 

What model/year do you race now?

We have a 2013 Danny Nelson Racecraft Chassis dragster. 

Does your car have a nickname?

Not really, on good days, nice names, on not-so-good days, not such nice nicknames. Mike's nickname is "Tuff Paw!"

What's under the hood?

632 Big Block Chevy with 18 degree Big Chief Cylinder heads

Which BTE products do you use in your vehicle?

BTE torque converter, 1.80 straight cut gears, valve body, front powerglide pump, clutches

Why do you use BTE?

BTE has quality and reliable parts and great, fast service

Someone you look up to in racing?

I look up to my dad, Dan "Dmo" Hedges because he exposed to me racing when I was young and I have loved it ever since. I think anyone who can stay in racing for over 40 years is pretty impressive.

If money were no object, what would you drive?

We would probably just have TWO Racecraft Chassis dragsters and then a really nice, really fast pro-mod 1966 Chevy II to run on street outlaws!  

What is your pre-race ritual (if you have one)?

Well, I teach sport psychology at McKendree University, so of course Mike has a pre-race ritual. The main thing we try to do is to do everything absolutely the same. He gets in the car, thinks about the race, does the burnout the same, backs the car up, takes a deep breath, gets focused, and tries to cut a great light.

Posted by Amber Ambrose at 10:05 AM