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Don Garlits Net Worth, Biography & Wiki 2017
Donald Glenn Garlits, better known by his nickname “Big Daddy”, was born on the 14th January 1932, in Tampa, Florida USA, and is probably best known for being not only an automotive engineer, but also a race car driver – regarded by some as the father of drag racing – who won 17 World Championships. His career has been active since the mid- 1950s. Beside that, he is also known for being politically active.
Have you ever wondered how rich Don Garlits is, as of late 2016? It has been estimated from authoritative sources that the total size of Don’s net worth is over $15 million, which has been accumulated largely through his successful career as a professional drag car racer.
Don Garlits Net Worth $15 Million
Don Garlits hails from a poor family; he spent his childhood in his hometown, Tampa, where he attended Hillsborough High School. Following his matriculation, Don became interested in racing, and built his first car out of 1927 Ford Model “T” Roadster, a 1948 Mercury, a 1939 Ford, and a 1948 Ford parts. With this car, Don won the first race he ever drove in, at Lake City, Florida. Just three years later, Don became a professional drag racer, and since then has been an integral part of the drag racing scene for six decades. Named as the father of drag racing, he won ten American Hot Rod Association Championships, four International Hot Rod Association championships, and also three National Hot Rod Association Championships. In 1970 he suffered a terrifying accident, when his car exploded and parts of the engine tore off a part of his right foot; this incident led to the invention and development of rear-engine drag racing cars.
Since 1987 he has been in semi-retirement, racing occasionally, but most recently he has set another record, registering a 184 mph speed record in an EV dragster, which is a battery powered car.
During his career, he received several prestigious awards; in 1989 he was inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America, in 1997 he was inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame, and in 2004 he became a part of the Automotive Hall of Fame. In 2008 he was named as the 23rd top driver of all time, by the ESPN.
Garlits now runs the Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing, which has taken over the grounds of his family home in Ocala, Florida. He also maintains his contact with racing by doing commentary on ESPN and Speed Vision at racing events and performance expositions.
Apart from his successful career as a racer, Don is also recognized as a politician; back in 1994 he was the Republican nominee for Florida`s 5th Congressional District, however, his campaign was unsuccessful, as he lost to Karen Thurman of the Democratic Party. Throughout his campaign, Don made numerous controversial statements, on such topics as homosexuality, racism, and other delicate topics. In 2008, he was one of the supporters of the presidential candidate Ron Paul.
When it comes to speak about his personal life, Don Garlits has been married to his high school sweetheart Patricia Bieger since 1954; the couple has two children together.