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Drag Racing Legends' Story Revealed in New SAE International Book

WARRENDALE, Pa., Aug. 5, 2009 - The exclusive story behind the Ramchargers – a team of young engineers who forever changed the course of drag racing – is told for the first time in SAE International’s latest book.

Authored by original team member Dave Rockwell, “We Were the Ramchargers: Inside Drag Racing’s Legendary Team,” follows a group of Chrysler engineers who, from the 1950s to 1970s, became one of the most influential drag racing teams in history.  The only team of engineers from an automobile manufacturer to drag race successfully, the Ramchargers broke a record number of time barriers and earned more National Hot Rod Association Super Stock titles than any other team.

In this first-hand account, Rockwell chronicles the Ramchargers’ racing victories and ground-breaking vehicle designs, while revealing the personalities of the men who made it all happen.  In addition to interviewing 40 team members, competitors and track operators, Rockwell opens corporate and personal files to take readers behind the doors at Chrysler.  The book also features full-color, never-before-published photos that offer a rare glimpse into the team members’ experiences and vehicle innovations.

“Dave Rockwell digests the facts and details about the engines and the cars themselves, as well as behind-the-scenes shenanigans.  He then thoughtfully arranges them in a manuscript that tells it like it is.  Thankfully, he also laces it all with never-before-published photographs from vast personal collections that are invaluable in their own right," John Dianna, former editor and publisher of Hot Rod, Car Craft and Motor Trend magazines, said in the book’s foreword. 

Rockwell is an adjunct professor of clinical psychology at Michigan State University, a practicing psychoanalytic psychotherapist, and a member of the Viper Club of America. 

The list price of this hardbound, 302-page book is $39.95; SAE International members can purchase it for $31.96.  The book and its chapters will be available in eBook format Aug. 13. For more information on the book, visit

To request a media review copy, or to set up an interview with the author, please contact 

SAE International is a global association of more than 121,000 engineers and related technical experts in the automotive, aerospace and commercial-vehicle industries. SAE International's core competencies are life-long learning and standards development. SAE International's charitable arm is the SAE Foundation, which supports many programs, including A World In Motion® and the Collegiate Design Series.