When it comes to real “Ironman” credentials for Canadian drag racing — Saskatchewan’s Abe Loewen qualifies at the highest echelon…

The owner and operator of Regina’s Queen City Performance — has very literally been at the sport of drag racing for many more years then most. And since first coming on the drag racing scene (in the mid 1970’s) his name has become known synonymously with successful Sportsman drag racing.

Canadian Drag Racing Hall of Fame Member – Abe Loewen – has been at it in drag racing for 40 years.

During his career, which has for the majority of time been within the ranks of Super Stock class racing, Abe has racked up multiple NHRA event wins. And those accomplishments in part helped earn Abe a most deserving induction into the Canadian Drag Racing Hall of Fame – last fall.

“I got started with my very first race car (a Chevy II) back in 1976,” Loewen revealed. “Then I entered my first national event in 1983. I’ve been going at this every year since — I’ve never taken a year off from racing.”

That enduring effort to keep his involvement in drag racing should by no means be taken lightly. While he is never one to complain about it – the truth is he endures much more of a geographical barrier to drag racing then most racers would ever face (being home based from central Saskatchewan.)

“The travel is for sure is a lot more then most,” he admitted. “There is never a race I can go to that’s really close. But I’ve always liked the cars, and the excitement and I’ve made a lot of friends over the years in this sport. It’s that comradery that keeps my interest.”

Abe Loewen’s favourite place to go drag racing is in truth a very long way — down in SoCal — at the fabled Auto Club Raceway at Pomona Fairplex.  Over the years he had enjoyed his biggest successes there — winning no less then four times (twice at the World Finals and twice at the Winternationals).

For sure Pomona’s Fairgrounds have been good to Abe Loewen — he has won their 4X in his career so far.

“Racing at Pomona has been special for me sure,” he affirmed. “To be honest I’ve lost count as to how many times I’ve made the trip there. I starting coming in the mid 1980’s and haven’t missed many of the events since.”

“My biggest career highlights have come at Pomona too,” he added. “I got my first NHRA national event win there in 1989 – so that will always be special. That win really affected me too — it is what inspires you to keep coming back in the sport — it’s all about winning a Wally.”

One of the most amazing aspects of Abe’s racing career is his actual and current race car itself – a SS/DM-classed 1998 Pontiac Grand-Am built by FJ Smith. While over a span of two decades of racing most racers will evolve though a number of different cars, incredibly Abe is now closing in on 20 years of racing with that very same race car!

Abe is now closing in on the 20 year mark running this super reliable FJ Smith-built Pontiac Grand Am!

“After racing it all this time needless to say I’m pretty familiar with all it’s workings,” he laughed. “It’s a great race car that I heavily maintain and do some upgrades to each season. And to be honest I think it will be my very last race car too.”

Abe continues to fund his drag racing program as a 100% independent. He admits that balancing his drag racing schedule with his Speed Shop priorities is sometimes a challenge.

“Drag racing has been a good match for promoting Queen City Performance,” he revealed. “But our busy season at the store is mostly in the spring and summer — so that’s why I do a majority of my drag racing earlier and later each season.”

Loewen’s Queen City Performance which was first established in 1973, it specializes in retail sales for most high performance after market brands and is the destination of choice for many within the Saskatchewan provincial drag racing community.

Earlier in his career Abe Loewen campaigned a C/SM Chevy II and then a Oldsmobile Achieva (top) with which he won his first NHRA national event with.

Post and photos by Bruce Biegler