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Jerry Lee 06-16-2009 11:15 AM

GREG HIGGINS - The Two Minute Interview
Figure 8 multi-champion Greg Higgins had a style all his own on the 8, and on the oval in a Late Model stock car at Englewood Speedway. Higgins was always known to wear a drag racing mask while driving to protect his boyish good looks that most ladies in the stands were squealing about at the time.

This dusty ol' interview cassette from 1997 reveals the 'Master of the 8'.....


JL: "Hot lap day at Englewood in 1969 was not a good day for you as you not only totaled Kent Moore's Figure 8 at the pit entrance, but also wrecked your Late Model in the same place about 15 minutes later."

GH: "After that hot lap incident, all I remember seeing was our team jackets flying through the air! (laughs) The whole team was quitting!"

JL: "Didn't you get a nickname out of it?"

GH: "Ol' Crash Mullins started calling me 'Crunch' Higgins."

JL: "Have you ever been hurt real bad being drilled in the X?"

GH: "I've got the driver's door a few times, but, uh.....not bad. I never had any broken bones."

JL: "Didn't you break a leg driving for George Harper in '72?"

GH: "It was a motorcycle accident. I had everyone over to a new house I'd bought for a spaghetti dinner. I was giving them rides and it happened. I still ended up 6th place at the end of the season. There wasn't a year out there that I didn't finish in the top ten."

JL: "You also made a couple trips to New York for the World Figure 8 Championships. How did you do up there?"

GH: "Ah.....we had a third. In fact, I was within 3 laps of the win and they red-flagged the race. When I pulled in we were steaming, so the guys tore out the radiator, filled the block, and hooked the hoses together. Tried to finish the race and I melted the pistons."

JL: "Did you have any tricks to driving the 8?"

GH: "What I did that most guys didn't do was drive harder into the corners. I just pounded it in there harder. You're taking a big chance at slamming the wall but it might gain you a car length. I think the trick is you just got to get in hard on the corner and screw the consequences. You never look at the X like there's any traffic in it."

JL: "You didn't count the cars and try and time it?"

GH: "Aw, I used to do that and got sick to my stomache. Once you establish your dominance, only an idiot's going to try you 'cause they know you're going through. When you become number one, then everybody wants to beat you."


Olen McGuire 06-16-2009 11:34 AM

Re: GREG HIGGINS - The Two Minute Interview
Here's some pics and comments from Jerry Lee:
(Kent Moore coll.) Greg Higgins bent the front end of this Eighter on the corner of the
East pit entrance at Englewood on hot lap day 1969. Check out the gnarly bend in that front end!
About 15 minutes later Greg then totaled his Late Model in the same place on the track.
Tommy Darrow (#67 background) would go on to win his third championship in a row in 1969. ---Jerry Lee
(Kent Moore coll.) Greg Higgins (middle blue shirt) won three Figure 8 championships
with owner Kent Moore (standing on the right). Looks like a storm brewing in the
background of this color shot from 1969 at Englewood Speedway. ---Jerry Lee
(George Harper coll.) In 1972 Greg Higgins (blue shirt) jumped ship from Kent Moore’s #29 (background)
to drive for George Harper (second from left). ---Jerry Lee
(J. L. McGuire coll.) Higgins piloted this beautiful Figure 8 in 1974 for ‘Cowboy’ Bob Warner.
Note: Every car pictured here was lettered and numbered by Pete Brandenburg. Recognize those #1’s?
The only thing missing is the “flame guy”!Check out the John Pierce 1960’s Modified by clicking HERE ---Jerry Lee

Jerry Lee 08-05-2009 03:47 PM

Re: GREG HIGGINS - The Two Minute Interview
Here's another pic of Greg Higgins:
(Photo by Mel Keller / Irwin Fogel coll.) Greg Higgins (right) and owner Kent Moore
with their 55 Ford championship Figure Eighter from 1970. J.L.

Jerry Lee 03-02-2010 02:29 PM

Re: GREG HIGGINS - The Two Minute Interview
(George Harper collection) Greg Higgins timing in the George Harper #1 Figure 8 on a warm
Englewood afternoon in 1972.

Jerry Lee 07-01-2011 05:14 PM

Re: GREG HIGGINS - The Two Minute Interview
(Pete Brandenburg collection) In 1968 Bob Olson had twin Figure Eighters with
Pete Brandenburg in the #80 and Greg Higgins in the #90. If you look close you can see
the drag racing mask that Greg wore while driving.
(Pete Brandenburg collection) Here's the #90 on display at a car show just before
the 1968 season began. Higgins name is misspelled as "Gregg" on the door.
(Kent Moore collection) One of the many beautiful Eighters that Kent Moore owned
and Greg Higgins drove at Englewood. This one from 1971.
(Kent Moore collection) Dig this Jim Young built Late Model Chevelle that Greg wheeled,
complete with a 'groovy' vinyl top! The "Olson Twins" can be seen in the background to the right.

Spooky 03-26-2012 11:17 PM

Re: GREG HIGGINS - The Two Minute Interview
OH man!

Greg was my HERO!! I remember going to his house as a kid and my parents playing cards with him, his misses and Gene Parker and his wife.

Mostly I remember the #1 Ford.

Man, what a car.

Jerry Lee 07-11-2015 12:18 AM

Re: GREG HIGGINS - The Two Minute Interview
I just heard the news from a pretty reliable source that unfortunately, Mr. Higgins passed away this morning (7-10-15).....
I know of no other details....
R.I.P. Greg Higgins, your legend lives on.

You can read all about his great career here on ARM.

parrot 07-20-2015 03:24 PM

Re: GREG HIGGINS - The Two Minute Interview
Thanks Jerry, always enjoy your figure 8 stuff. Sorry to hear about Mr. Higgins.

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