By Emika Berry

THE ‘Father of Drag Racing’ Don Garlits has an impressive resume of firsts, wins and records during his career and hopes to add another to the list - the record speed in an electric dragster

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Videographer / director: Austin Burke

Producer: Frazer Randalls

Editor: Ian Phillips

The 87-year-old has retired from competition racing but has been working on Swamp Rat 38 - an electric dragster - for the last five years in hopes of going over 200 miles per hour in what he describes as an ‘experimental car’. Don told Barcroft studios: “The electric car has no rules. I just do whatever I want.” The record speed was first set at 156mph which Don then raised to 174mph, 184mph and then 186mph and it is the latter that he hopes to break. Don said: “It's hard to increase that speed from 175 to 200 because it takes four times as much power to go from 150 to 175 as it does to go from 175 to 200 because of the wind resistance - it squares itself.” He continued: “You know people ask me do I have any pre-race ritual, I do not, I just try to be calm, and I like to sit in the car for a few minutes, I don’t like to just jump right in and run all in it, and feel comfortable with it, because the car becomes an extension of you.” And Don recently managed to set a new record on the track at Palm Beach, Florida, reaching an incredible 189.04mph. Although he was pleased with the result, Don is determined to go even faster next time... He said: “It was always my idea to go as fast as I could.”