Danville, CA – Justin Walsh grew up in Danville, California surrounded on all sides by hot rodders and hell raisers. His father Tom, former top fuel racer turned street rodder and one of the three founding members of the infamous Danville Dukes, passed on the speed gene to Justin and his younger brother Brandon at a very young age. The Walsh boys grew up going to drag races, rod runs and eventually out to the enchanting white expanse of the Bonneville Salt Flats. Once a month, their home garage on Como Way in Danville served as the “Duke’s Club House” – a sacred shrine where club members cut loose and cut each other zero slack.
It was here in Danville, at the Duke’s Club House that Justin realized his dream of racing at Bonneville. Together with his dad and uncle, team Walsh built a bright red blown gas roadster which Justin eventually drove to speeds over 220mph (as well as a few hi- speed donuts!).
Now 36, Walsh has mastered the art the art of finessing a land speed car through the traps as well as his other passion – fine foods. The proprietor of Norm’s Grille on Hartz Ave in downtown Danville, Walsh will embark on a new mission next week as he’s set to drive not one but two hot rods in the 62nd annual SCTA Speed Week, scheduled for August 14-20 on the hallowed grounds of the Bonneville Salt Flats.
Looking for new records in A Fuel Roadster as well as the Blown Fuel Coupe class, Walsh will pilot the Mariani Farms A/FR ’34 Ford Roadster then strap into George Poteet’s “Blowfish” ’69 Plymouth Barracuda.
Dennis Mariani spotted Walsh’s driving talents in 2008, commissioning him to drive his Mariani Farms ’34 Ford roadster. At last year’s Speed Week, Walsh went 253 mph (on a 235mph class record) with carburetors and race gas. This year the team has switched to an electronic fuel injected big block Chevy opting to run the A Fuel Roadster class with sights on 270mph. The current class record for A/FR is 257mph.