How about this Drag Queen she drove just about every Mopar there was...

Classic Mopar Racing Forum

  1. bremereric

    bremereric FMJ Body Moderator

    Messages:
    3,555
    Likes Received:
    218
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Location:
    Jackson Missouri
    Judy Lilly Biography

    Judy Lilly, and her eventual "boss wrench", Dennis Maurer, were the Queen and King of the NHRA Super Stocks at Colorado drag strips in the 1960's driving their Hemi-powered Plymouths.
    If Judy lilly was in attendance in the Super/Stock pits at a Colorado drag strip, "SHE" was the favorite to win, since she rarely lost a race. Judy Lilly raced at local Colorado events, at NHRA Division-5 points meets, the CDR High Altitude Nationals, the Bandimere Mile High Nationals, and at NHRA National events around the country.
    Over the years, she was the Division-5 Super Stock champion many times, and also won numerous NHRA national events, including the Winternationals and Summernationals. I've no doubt ommitted lots of other accomplishments.​

    Judy20Lilly20Autgraph.jpg

    In 2005, Judy Lilly was inducted into the Colorado Motorsports Hall of Fame. Very fitting. Now lets have a look at some of the cars that Judy Lilly drove over the years... ​

    Just before the 2008 NHRA Finals at the Mopar Mile High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway, SpeedFreaks' Kenny Sargent and Mopar's Sunil Lahoti give the crowd a taste of the new Dodge Challenger Drag Race Package Car powered by Mopar. "Big Daddy" Don Garlits, in the white, and "Miss Mighty Mopar" Judy Lilly, in the liquid metal, light'em up.​


    An early photo of Judy & Lou Lilly's Corvette racing at CDR in the mid 1960's
    judy_02.jpg
    Judy, who was a hairdresser by profession, began her racing career with her husband, Lou Lilly, in the 1960's by driving the 1961 (I think) fuelie Corvette pictured that raced in various NHRA Sports Car classes, such as the D/SPorts class shown here. She won her sports car class at the 1965 (E/SP) and 1966 (D/SP) NHRA Winternationals, and the (E/SP) in the 1966 NHRA Indy Nationals. Notice that Judy's Vette is rolling on Keystone Classic wheels in the below 1966 photograph, and on steel wheels in the above 1966 photograph. Judy Lilly's race cars rolled on Keystone wheels for years, and her HEMI Belvedere was even even in one of Keystone's magazine advertisements in 1967...kinda kool at the time, since most Colorado drivers didn't get much national recognition at all. In the photo below-right, is Judy in her 'Vette at the 1966 NHRA Winternationals....sans the Keystone Mags, but still with the small front tires. Notice the Hurst shifter decal on the Vette's quarter panel..ol'George probably thru in a shifter to the project in exchange. ​

    judy_03.jpg

    judy_24.jpg

    Judy20Lilly20Denver20Track20small.jpg

    Judy20Lilly20Pappy20Fry20Close20Up20small.jpg

    Judy20Lilly20Signiture20Pic20small.jpg

    That's "Dick Landy" chatting with Judy Lilly in the staging lanes.

    [IMG]http://i918.photobucket.com/albums/ad26/bremereric/Scans20Feb201620200920220Small.jpg[/IMG]

    Scans20Feb201620200920320Small.jpg

    Scans20Feb201620200920420Small.jpg

    Magazine20Ad20Judy20Lilly20Keystone.jpg

    Photo from: Drag Racing Magazine 02/68, Photo by: Bill Sievers



    judy_04.jpg


     
  2. bremereric

    bremereric FMJ Body Moderator

    Messages:
    3,555
    Likes Received:
    218
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Location:
    Jackson Missouri
    continued....

    In 1967, Judy Lilly teamed with Dennis Maurer to field a light-yellow 1967 Plymouth Hemi-Belvedere coupe in NHRA Super/Stock (SS/B). By the way, the '67 Hemi Belvedere Coupe was unbelievably rare, since Plymouth only made a couple of them. If you'll recall, Plymouth installed the Hemi engine mostly in the 2-door hardtop GTX body style and a few R023 factory race package Belvederes. The Lilly Belvedere was an odd car in that it was a 2-door sedan body style, and yet it seemed to have all of the equipment of the 1967 RO23 factory Hemi race-package cars, including the hood scoop from the R023 package....look at the photo. I never did quite understand the pedigree of this car. Why NHRA let the car race in this configuration in the SS/B class is also one of those unanswerable questions. NHRA always had a unique point-of-view on what constituted "stock" or "legal".

    But, make no mistake, watching Judy pound the gears in this 4-speed Mayflower was unforgettable. Wow, this little lady made this car sound like it had an automatic in it...well, other than the explosive sound a crash-box tranny makes during a gear change! As an aside, the Belvedere was also memorable because it was sponsored at one point by Denver used car dealer, "Pappy Fry". Pappy advertised like crazy on top-40 radio station 95-KIMn, and always had a bunch of kool rides sitting on his south Broadway lot. This car won the 1967 CDR High Altitude Nationals Super/Stock Eliminator.

    JLilly-CFink71Springnationals09-71PopHotRodpg24120Small.jpg

    Judy_26.jpg

    judy_05.jpg

    The photograph above of Judy Lilly's Cuda that appeared in a April/1970 magazine article. This was the 1969 paint job, and might have been the early-1970 paint job, too. I just can't remember exactly. It seems like everytime I saw this car, it was painted a bit differently. This paint-job was just a frosty metallic blue fogged over the top half of the plain white (and then silvery) bottom half of the car. Sorta like a "fish" appearing paint-job. Looked pretty sharp for the times, and the Cuda ran like "jack the bear" ! If I recall correctly, this car had Judy's name lettered on the side in gold-leaf or silver-leaf. One of Judy's biggest assets as a driver, other than her quick reactions, was no doubt her light weight (100-lbs, maybe less). It was amazing to see this tiny woman getting out of this monster of a car loaded with Dennis Maurer-built HEMI horsepower. I still don't know how she was able to reach the pedals!
    Photo Courtesy of The Al Booton Collection, Photo by Al Booton

    judy_06.jpg

    Above is Judy Lilly's SS/BA Hemicuda in color, must be from 1969-ish. Ms. Lilly is walking by the car in front.

    Photo from: Hi-Performance Cars 02/71, Photo by: Jeff Tinsley

    judy_07.jpg
    This is a photograph of Judy Lilly's Cuda that appeared in a February/1971 magazine article. This was the late-1970 paint job, and was almost certainly the 1971 paint job. Fabulous paintwork, it was fogged misty-blue and purple, over a pearl silver base, and then psychadelically striped. Really classy, must've cost a fortune in 1970-ish dollars, and taken a long time to paint. Anyway, Judy Lilly is pictured here, "dressed-to-the-nines", beside her "evil, wicked, mean, and nasty" running Cuda. I don't recognize where this photograph might have been taken, but it's presumably somewhere in the western Denver suburbs. Notice Judy's name has gotten bigger on the side of the car, while the "Plymouth" letttering has gotten smaller. The tail panel reads "And on the 7th day, God created the Hemi". True. So very, very true. ​

    Photo from: Super Stock & Drag Illustrated 05/72, Photo by: Don Varian

    judy_10.jpg
    This is the 1972 version of the Judy Lilly Cuda in the nationally famous "flower paint job", which featured a giant lilly (what else?) artworked down the side of the blue and white painted Bakkaruda. The Cuda is shown racing at the 1972 NHRA Winternationals...which she won. The car carried this paintwork for the 1972 racing season. Judy Lilly seemed to have the quickest reaction time of about any driver I ever saw drag race. No kidding, just amazing! This MoPar would just "flat get after it", and I rarely ever saw Judy Lilly lose a Super/Stock eliminator drag race. In the early-days of NHRA Pro/Stock racing, Judy Lilly would show-up at local Colorado match races and spank the field with her automatic Super/Stocker....quite an acomplishment. Notice the Keystone Classic wheels have been replaced at this point by Cragar Centerline spun aluminum racing wheels. Not as pretty. But, no doubt, much, much lighter. I wonder if these wheels made any "real" performance difference?

    Photo from: Speed & Supercar Magazine 02/73, Photo by: unknown

    judy_09.jpg

    This is a photograph of Judy Lilly's Cuda that appeared in a February/1973 magazine article. This car carried the "MISS MIGHTY MoPAR" livery for the 1973 racing season. In the previous 1972 racing season, Judy Lilly began to get a national reputation with the wicked "flower" Bakkaruda, after winning a number of NHRA national events. And, as a result, she eventually received factory sponsorship in the form of the "MISS MIGHT MoPAR" deal. Judy got so nationally prominent in this timeframe that there was even a MPC 1/25th scale model car made of her Cuda....kind of a collectors item today, and fairly pricey to acquire. Notice how much larger the tires had gotten on Judy's Cuda over the course of 4 or 5 years compared to the first year she ran the car in 1968. This was the last paintjob of Judy Lilly's Cuda. Lilly/Maurer parked or sold this car in about 1974-ish. By the way, does anyone out there know what ever happened to Judy Lilly's 1968 HemiCuda? If so, please e-mail with the details. Let's hope it is safe and sound in somebody's car collection. Probably been thrashed into an unrecognizable condition by now, if it even exists in one piece. One can only hope.​
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2011
  3. bremereric

    bremereric FMJ Body Moderator

    Messages:
    3,555
    Likes Received:
    218
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Location:
    Jackson Missouri
    continued....

    Photo from Drag Racing Magazine 09/73, Photo by: unknown

    judy_01.jpg

    Photo from Car Craft Magazine 05/73, Photo by Bob McClurg

    judy_11.jpg

    This is Judy Lilly at the 1973 NHRA Winternationals, where she lost in the S/S finals.​

    Photo from Super Stock & Drag Illustrated Magazine 01/75, Photo by Neil Britt​

    judy_12.jpg

    In about 1974-ish, Judy Lilly and Dennis Maurer parked the 1968 Hurst Hemi-Cuda, much to the disappointment of all of their fans I might add, and began racing a 1974 NHRA SS/LA or SS/MA (not sure what the difference was) 1974 Plymouth 360-Wedge Duster. Wonder what the "51" means on the side glass? Yeah, right! I wonder if this car, or the Cuda, won the number? Anyway, presumably, Chrysler wanted the pair to be racing a more current body style if they were going to carry the factory sponsorship. Just a guess. It was odd seeing Judy Lilly get a "headstart" on Super/Stock competitors, instead of chasing them down in her 'Cuda. No surprise, though, Judy continued to have national success in the Super Stock eliminator with the new car. The Duster continued to fly the "MISS MIGHTY MoPAR" sponsorship.​

    Photo from: Super Stock & Drag Illustrated 12/75, Photo by Neil Britt​

    judy_13.jpg

    This photograph was from December/1975 magazine article, and the car carried this paint-scheme in 1974 and 1975. Judy Lilly won the 1975 NHRA Gatornationals and the 1975 NHRA Fallnationals with this car.​

    Photo from: Super Stock & Drag Illustrated 07/76, Photo by: Neil Britt​

    judy_14.jpg

    judy_15.jpg

    This is the 1976 paint-job version of the Judy Lilly Duster. Notice that the Duster now had "JUDY" prominently lettered down the side, with a "reduced size" "MISS MIGHTY MoPAR" relocated to the rear quarter-panel. I always wondered if this was a sign that the relationship with Chrysler was, shall we say, "goin' thru some changes". Dunno. As far as I've been able to determine, the Duster wasn't a special "factory tweeked" car like the Hurst-built '68 Cuda. Although, would anyone really be surprised to find out that the little Duster's body spent some time in an acid dipping tank at one point? The engine/body combo apparently just happened to hit an NHRA class break just right. However, to be honest with ya, even though Judy Lilly was still successful with the car, it just wasn't the same as watching her drive a storming Hemi-powered MoPar. I suspect that the MoPar folks wanted their factory drivers to be racing one of the products they had available on the showroom floor. However, I got the impression from reading interviews that Judy gave that she wasn't too happy about driving a slower-car...who would be?​
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2011
  4. bremereric

    bremereric FMJ Body Moderator

    Messages:
    3,555
    Likes Received:
    218
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Location:
    Jackson Missouri
    This is the one to pay attention to

    Photo from Super Stock & Drag Illustrated 05/78, Photograph by "J K" Kelly & Jim Joyce
    judy_16.jpg
    This is Judy Lilly "showin' a little daylight" under the front tires on the starting line during the debut of her new "JUDY" Volare Roadrunner SS/LA Super/Stocker at the 1978 NHRA Winternationals. Smile, kid, ya never looked better! This "may" have been the only Volare on the planet worthy of respect.
    Photo from: Popular Hot Rodding Magazine 02/79, Photo by: Mike Parris
    judy_17.jpg
    In 1978, the last sponsored-car that Judy Lilly drove was a 1977 Plymouth Volare (Roadrunner), again powered by a 360-wedge engine. This car ran in the NHRA SS/LA class...her slowest car to-date. Notice the MISS MIGHTY MoPAR sponsorship was still on the car at the time these photographs were taken in 1979. By 1980-ish, Judy Lilly was still drag racing NHRA Super/Stocks. But, you could just tell the end was near. NHRA re-factored the 360 Volare up into a tough-class. And, Dennis Maurer was racing his own B/SM Plymouth Duster to Division V wins and didn't seem to be at the strip with Judy's Volare lotsa times. I did see Judy Lilly driving an unlettered '65 Plymouth A-990 Hemi SS/CA one day at a NHRA points meet at Bandimere Speedway in this time-period for reasons that were never fully understood. Perhaps, the two had sold the Volare by then, or were trying to get some extra points with a new car (???). Dunno. But, apparently, the NHRA Super/Stock "thing" was apparently just about over for the two Colorado Drag Racing Legends.
    Photo Used With Permission © 1979 Mike Spenner, AutoGraph Productions
    judy_18.jpg
    Mike Spenner snapped this photograph of Judy's SS/LA Volare parked in the staging lanes at Bandimere Speedway at an NHRA Division-V points meet in 1979 or 1980. Wonder if the reason Judy is sitting on the left fender is to keep the super-light "dipped" front end of the Volare from blowing away in case a gust of wind should flash-up? Just kidding. Then again, maybe not! Notice Judy's Volare has the Roadrunner spoiler package and quarter-window slats installed. Maybe the car was required to carry all of these add-on's in order for the Volare to hit the SS/LA class, or perhaps MoPar wanted them installed. Notice the upper-level parking lot at Bandimere Speedway in this era, which became the pits when the track was completely reconfigured in the 1990's. This is a kool photo of the "first lady" of Colorado Super/Stock racing having a casual moment at the race track, probably before winning the Super/Stock eliminator. Thanks, Mike!​
     
  5. bremereric

    bremereric FMJ Body Moderator

    Messages:
    3,555
    Likes Received:
    218
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Location:
    Jackson Missouri
    continued...

    Photo Used With Permission © 1982 Mike Spenner, AutoGraph Productions
    judy_19.jpg
    Mike Spenner snapped this fabulous photograph of Judy's last race car, a HEMI-powered Plymouth Horizon PRO/Stocker. Not sure who owned car. Mike took this photograph at Bandimere Speedway in 1982 or 1983. Notice the complete lack of sponsorship on the car, only Judy's name is lettered "very modestly" on the side window. This was a first-class and pretty race car, and was probably the "fastest-ride" Judy Lilly ever drove. But, in their infinite wisdom, NHRA was in the process of factoring the Chrysler-HEMI engine completely out of PRO/Stock racing in this era. So, even with the tuning expertise of Dennis Maurer, Judy's Horizon just couldn't seem to run with National PRO/Stock competition. It was an odd, odd sight for Colorado racing fans to witness Judy Lilly not dominate her class. Even though it is fun to see a photo of this car again. It is also somewhat bittersweet, too, because this was the last car we saw Judy Lilly race. And, more often than not, it failed to qualify for big meets and actually "lost" match-races. Thanks for sharing the photograph with us, Mike. Beautiful photo.
    Photo from Super Stock & Drag Illustrated 05/84, Photo by Tim Marshall
    judy_20.jpg
    This is Judy Lilly "pullin' the Lenco Handles" in the MUSSO RACING Dodge Omni Charger at the 1984 AHRA Winternationals. Notice the "508" number on the car. Again, not sure who owned car. Mike Musso, perhaps? Shortly after this, in the early-to-mid 1980's, Judy Lilly retired from driving. This is Judy Lilly "pullin' the Lenco Handles" in the MUSSO RACING Dodge Omni Charger at the 1984 AHRA Winternationals. Notice the "508" number on the car. Again, not sure who owned car. Mike Musso, perhaps?

    judy_21.jpg

    Patrick Glenn took this photograph at Bandimere Speedway, during the recently held 2005 NHRA Mile High Nationals. Here, legendary Colorado drag racer, Judy Lilly, is being inducted into the Colorado Motorsports Hall of Fame. Judy Lilly couldn't be more deserving of this honor. Presenting the award to Judy, is C-M-H-O-F President, Jerry Van Dyke.

    judy23.jpg

    judy24.jpg

    judy25.jpg
    Judy Lilly and Don Garlits celebrate the 50 the anniversary of the 1968 Super Stock program by exhibition racing.​
    This year is the 40th anniversary of the original factory-built drag race package cars from Dodge and Plymouth --- the 1968 Hemi Darts and Barracudas. These were limited-edition cars that represented a significant point in Mopar and drag racing history.
    To celebrate, Mopar launched new hemi powered Dodge Challenger Drag Race Package Cars at the NHRA’s 29th annual Mopar Mile High Nationals with Grand Marshal "Big Daddy" Don Garlits and honorary starter Judy Lilly --- one of the female pioneers in drag racing --- matched together in an 11-second duel. Big Daddy got beat off the line, but eventually took the win. Judy is seen here with track owner John Bandimere, who was also celebrating the track’s 50th anniversary, and Don, in the Mopar cap.
    Credit: http://www.moparmax.com/events/2008/iii_3-mats-2.htm
    After the above event I had a conversation with Judy Lilly concerning the big event debuting the new Challenger race car and her experience going up against "Big Daddy" Don Garlits. Judy told me about the run in detail, her account of the events leading up to the run were amusing as well. Judy said that she was not allowed to even test run the car before the race! She and Don had a conversation concerning how to play the deal and it was mutually agreed that they would stage and launch the cars but let off around the 1,000 foot mark as it was only an exhibition run afterall. Well, Judy did just as promised, she launched the car hard and tree'd Mr. Garlits pretty well, and as agreed, she lifted at the 1,000 foot cone, but Don didn't lift and as noted in the above NHRA article, was awarded the "Win".
     
  6. MeMike

    MeMike Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    56
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Location:
    The Natural State
    Another great and well deserved Motorsports Hall of Fame Mopar lady.
    It's good to see this thread I have forgotten about Judy and her car's she raced.
    I seen her race at a track in Ill. back when Shirley M. and Big Daddy Don was racing against each other all the time it seemed , Judy was in her Barracuda in the February/1973 magazine article you showed us.
    I think the track was called Alswago "how ever you spell it"

    Thank you for sharing and waking my brain up this morning bremereric.:icon_cheers:
     
  7. Badasspen

    Badasspen Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    97
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2011
    Location:
    Kent,WA
    Nice Job

    Thanks for the down low on a worthy subject. Posts like this one get us more members. :happy7:
     
  8. Alleyoop2

    Alleyoop2 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    171
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2011
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    She comes up here for Mopars In The Park every year, and signs autographs. And the dude who owns this car now lives up in Minnesota somewhere

    IMG_2439.JPG
     
  9. Shorty Thompson

    Shorty Thompson Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    627
    Likes Received:
    30
    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2011
    Location:
    Taylorville, Illinois
    nice tribute
     
  10. bremereric

    bremereric FMJ Body Moderator

    Messages:
    3,555
    Likes Received:
    218
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Location:
    Jackson Missouri
    It's my job guys:sunny:
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2011
  11. Eastyorker

    Eastyorker Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    138
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2012
    Great story!
     
  12. Captain Caravelle

    Captain Caravelle Moderator--Mopar Maniac

    Messages:
    10,789
    Likes Received:
    1121
    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2012
    Location:
    Hogtown, Ontario
    Great tribute! Keeping the legends alive. Thanks.
     
  13. Jonno

    Jonno Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    204
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Location:
    Eastern Ontario
    Thanks bremereric, very informative!
     
  14. 80 Aspen RT

    80 Aspen RT Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    594
    Likes Received:
    37
    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2012
    Location:
    Kansas
    Since I'm new here I just got to read this. Very good story bremereric! The wife and I were at Denver for that "race" between Big Daddy and Judy. The last few years Judy has also been at The Mopar Big Block Party in Golden, CO. the Thursday before the Mopar Parts Mile High Nationals. She seems like a great gal.