Talk about a cool car collection!  This Ontario-based husband and wife drag racing team is doing it right!….

While the world of drag racing can quickly consume you based on excessive associated cost and competitive demands — there can also often be a “kind & gentler” aspect too — and Larry and Tamara Kerrigan, from Oshawa very much do fit that mold.

Now we’re not saying that they are not competitive by instinct, but their pursuit of the win light is secondary to just enjoying the drag racing experience itself and the comradely of fellow participants.

Over the years, at Ontario area drag strips, Larry Kerrigan has mixed it up.  But in more recent times his wife Tamara has become even a larger part of a team equation as a driver for the multi-car racing operation.

Larry & Tamara (Gray) Kerrigan

“I’ve been racing on and off over the years – since driving to Cayuga (in 1979) with my street car and racing for the weekend for the first time,”  revealed Larry Kerrigan.  “Then about five years ago I brought home for Tamara a true vin # 1967 Nova SS (Super Stock class car).  She started racing that and I saw soon that she was a natural.   We ran it for a couple of seasons.  We then got her into both a ’69 Camaro and also a front engine dragster.  In fact Tamara got her Sportsman licence during her first day at the track ever.  She did that in the FED — running all required 6 passes.”

“Over the years I have realized fully that racing (and hot rodding) is the best hobby for couples to do by far,” Larry winked.  “And right now I enjoy watching Tamara race even more than being a driver myself.   It’s actually can be pretty sexy watching your wife race a car a high speed!” 

While the Kerrigan race car stable has evolved over a few seasons — their present day line-up going into 2022 is pretty impressive – featuring a number of very meticulous and well-prepped machines.

That includes a show stopping ’33 Willys (“Sinister Minister”), which Larry drives primarily within the ONDR/Ontario Gassers Club circuit and two Chevy “Bowtie” cars where Tamara is a designated driver.  Her “Voodoo Vixon” ’69 model Camaro, is a low 10-secs capable runner with a focus to RCSS bracket racing level, and a newly debuted 2000 model Corvette (just late last year) will enter into some 1/8th mile Canada Heads Up circuit fold racing this season.

Larry Kerrigan has a riot driving his “Sinister Minister” ’33 Willys Gasser. It features John Rossitter-built 427 SBC power and has gone as quick as 9.09 secs (1/4 mile).

Tamara’s “Voodoo Vixen” Camaro features stunning House of Colors paint.  The car has run a best of 10.01 secs at 136 mph.

“The Corvette was a 5-year (on and off) project by Frank Van De Peer in London Ontario,” Larry revealed.  “I actually bought the car in December 2020 but then had Dave Stevenson (Stevenson Speciality Cars – Port Perry) finish it off and check out every nut and bolt.  It has a 565 Merlin BBC rated at 900+ HP.  The C5 body is a Suncoast Fibreglass kit.  The car is fully legal and capable for Top Sportsman level racing.  I made our first runs with the Corvette last September at Toronto Motorsports Park.”

The newest team entry — “Sinister Mistress” C5 Corvette — will target Ontario provincial “Heads Up” class car racing. Driver TBA (LOL)…

Larry added that there are some initial plans to share the driving for the new Corvette (dubbed now “Sinister Mistress”) but that might become debatable?  “I’ve only driven it so far but I’ve also learned that when Tamara starts to drive something — I won’t necessarily get it back,” he laughed.

And oh — we would be remiss to not mention that the Kerrigan’s passion for hot cars also does rather naturally include summer drive street cars too — specifically a 1969 Z28 Camaro (with a 383 CID stroker motor) for Tamara and a 1968 (468 CID BBC) Camaro for Larry.

Post by Bruce Biegler

DragRaceCanada File Photos