The mission of The Classic Gear Jammers is to promote stick shift racing in the Southeastern United States in a way to give the spectators a nostalgic view of stick shift racing in an organized, safety oriented, family environment. The goal of The Classic Gear Jammers is to be an organized drag racing and spectator appealing show with emphasis on making it affordable to our members and rewarding to the track operators.
The Classic Gear Jammers, although not named as such until 1994, started in 1990 at Elk Creek Dragway in Elk Creek, Virginia with an idea to bring back the high revving, wheel standing, 4 & 5 speed straight shift cars. As a competitive class and as a show for the spectators.
There were 5 cars at the first race. Each paying a $30 entry fee and running for a 150% payback. A total purse of $225. There were 4 races that year. No points were kept so no championship was awarded.
In 1991, stick shift drag racing returned to Elk Creek Dragway with races scheduled once a month. Spectator interest continued to grow as well as race car entry's. Race car entry's increased to an average of 16 cars to a race. The purse did not increase but points were kept by Elk Creek Dragway with Lones Combs of Fancy Gap, Virginia winning the Championship.
In 1992, an effort was made to organize the stick shift racers into a club, with it's own championship and points fund. 43 drivers attended the meeting with the Stick Shift Drag Racers club formed. Membership was approximately 50 members. Mike Walters was President and James Akers was Vice-President. Alex Moses of Christiansburg, Virginia won the Championship.
In 1993, the Stick Shift Drag Racers saw an explosion in popularity, with race tracks in Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia requesting race dates. An awards banquet was added to recognize the members, track operators, sponsors and their families. Membership grew to approximately 80 members. James Akers was elected President, Mike Walters as Vice-President. Leroy Woolridge of Pamplin, Virginia won the Championship.
In 1994, the Stick Shift Drag Racers changed their name to the present Classic Gear Jammers, Inc. In 1993 everywhere the club raced it was said we were "gear jamming", thus the name was chosen for the "classic cars" and the "classic style" of racing that the club had become known for. James Akers was elected President and George Houston as Vice-President. Leroy Woolridge won the Championship again.
1995, found the Classic Gear Jammers racing nearly every weekend from late March to mid October. Still our main goal was to entertain the spectators while giving anyone with a stick shift car a place to race and be competitive. The club now received a fee for their appearance, with the club handling all payout, etc. James Akers was elected President, George Houston, Vice-President. Alex Moses, from Christiansburg, Virginia won the Championship.
For 1996, The Classic Gear Jammers continued racing nearly every weekend. It was decided that for the club to continue to grow, a business like organization was needed. The Classic Gear Jammers, Inc was incorporated and a rule book was created. The Classic Gear Jammers newsletter was started to keep membership informed of club events, sponsors and race results. James Akers was elected President, George Houston, Vice-President and Alex Moses as Asst-Vice-President. Wilt Thompson of Greensboro, North Carolina won the Championship.
In 1997, the Classic Gear Jammers were one of the main attractions at Motorsports Jam at Farmington Dragway near Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Approximately 9000 spectators were in attendance for this day long event. Average race car attendance was 26 cars with membership at approximately 60. James Akers was elected President, George Houston, Vice-President and Alex Moses as Asst-Vice-President. The Championship points race came down to the last race with three drivers within reach of the title. Mike Boyles, 8 time IHRA Super Stock World Champion, from King, North Carolina won the Championship.
As technology has tremendously advanced, the best way to keep up with us is our website and Facebook page.
We are grateful for the many racers over the years, all of the ones who are still racing since the beginning and to all of the ones we have gained.