Questions and story by Dwight Drum. HTML by Gary Larsen
A guy born in Indy has a racing advantage. This guy, Dick Boxell was born in Indianapolis and grew up on an eighty acre Indiana farm where he tore apart motors at an early age, and learned a good work ethic. He caught the racing bug at a race at a local track called the Indy 500 in 1964 (a big mistake his dad always said) Dick's brother is also afflicted with the same racing disease. He and his brother started racing karts, but Dick got straighten out by a thing called 'drag racing' when he saw his first Nationals on ABC. The noise and tire smoke captured Dick's racing heart. He says his brother still goes round and round looking for the finish line racing Legend cars. Although he is a technical advisor to his brother, Dick has applied his work ethic and experience to motorcycle drag racing. Enjoy his skillful application as he answers my questions.
DICK BOXELL (CYBER) CHATS WITH DWIGHT:
DOB: 9/22/55 Birth Town: Indianapolis, Indiana
Home Town: Huntington, Indiana
Do you have a nickname?
"My crew man calls me 'Gizmo'."
Who would you most like to be like?
"My dad (When he was still with us.)"
Who are your heroes?
"In my life my dad. In racing: Bob Glidden, Dave Schultz, George Bryce."
What are (or have been) your scariest moments?
" Again: In my life when I lost my dad. In racing: After I came to…after my crash in 1996 on my second bike."
What's your biggest fear?
"My biggest fear is my children will make the same mistakes I did."
Do you work out?
"Yes, I work out(side) mowing grass, painting, landscaping, and restoring an old farm house."
Do you have a special diet?
"I try to eat one meal a day, and not a bunch of junk before bedtime."
What mental routine prepares you for each run?
"With the new bike, after a burnout I look down track at my focus point, and then say to myself…Go There."
Do you have other hobbies?
"In the winter I mess around with "Open" Slotcars. Winter time is when I work on my junk and do some outside bike work."
What do you do to unwind?
"Listen to music. (No elevator or country music for me)."
What personal quality (one trait) would you want to be admired for the most?
"Even though I can be full of crap. I am generally truthful."
What’s most important?
1.Fame 2.Money 3.Thrill/fun 4.Winning
"It has to be for the thrill and fun, because I have been racing for all these years and have never won a drag racing event."
Are you happy?
What could make you happier?
"Taking the number one plate in Funny Bike or ProMod. The I would just want another, so it's relative. Also being involved with a fuel bike."
If you could change one thing about motorcycle drag racing, what would it be?
When driving a car, do you always wear a seatbelt?
- Yes. 2. No. 3. Sometimes
"No I should with all the idiots I see day to day in my commute to work."
What does 185 (or faster) miles an hour on a motorcycle feel like?
"Don't know yet. Ask me after Chicago. I hope."
Where do you find the most peace in your life?
"At home (the one we are restoring) listening to critter sounds at night."
Other than racing do you have a full-time occupation?
"I am a hack-n-whack machinist/robot PLC programmer."
You’re a skilled racer…What skills separate you from the fast traffic on public highways?
"I 'm not really a skilled racer, but I tend to drive 3 to 4 mph faster than the other cars. This way I am coming up on them and can see them better. (Maybe that makes me an idiot too)."
What got you started in Motorcycle drag racing?
"I go to INDY NHRA, and have gone for a long time. I remember seeing the fuel bikes, and in 85 the PSB bikes amazed me. I said some day I'll have a Fuel bike, so I SKIPPED PSB."
What do you worry about the most?
"My kids not becoming me in their teens."
Is your career path a chosen road to the professional level?
"Kind of. After ten years in the making I'm racing like I am in my thirties."
How do you find the cash to race?
"Steal it from my wife."
"The Top Fuel V-twins have found their niche in the IHRA. Pro Stock Bike has the NHRA. The Funny Bikes, ProMods, and the huge amount of sportsman bikes have basically no coverage in any print media outside of our industry. What the answer for outside coverage is, I don't know, but there are a lot of talented racers waiting to advertise for serious sponsors. The current rules situation in import bike drag racing could stand some consolidation, but what would be a good compromise…I'm not sure. Maybe combine Pro Mod and Funny Bike, and expand the fields."
Born in Indy, born to race. Dick Boxell is a sportsman racer who is dedicated to the fun and thrill of the 'noise and smoke' of drag racing. The sportsman ranks of motorcycle drag racers mirror admirable qualities like those that Dick possesses. They race out-of-pocket for the gusto. Dick is one of the first sportsman to step forward and answer my questions. His answers show he is a genuine and respectable racer who applies his ethics to speed. It's not easy finding a final word for all these qualities, but I found one that Gary and agreed was suitable… Dick Boxell is…