Southland Dragway – Houma, LA

Located in Houma, LA, on West Park Avenue on a bayou, the track opened on July 1, 1969. It was built on land which previously was a golf driving range, and the track office was the former pro shop.
Ralph Baker was a racer who worked for Luke Grezzafi in the interstate pipeline business. Luke agreed to fund the track, which was modeled after Orange County (CA) Raceway, with covered grandstands, an octagonal-shaped tower, and a scoreboard to display the E.T. and mph on each run.
It operated on the second and fourth Sundays of the month, and featured class racing along with booked in Top Fuel and Funny Car shows, Division 4 WCS points meets, and even a Soap Box Derby. Division 4 Pro racers included hometown Candies and Hughes, Gene Snow, Mike Burkhart, Don Prudhomme, Tom McEwen, the Blue Max and many more. Sportsman stand outs like Charlie Kruse and Sammy Cunningham, and local favorites like Jimmy Faul, Frank Carmena, and Earlis Alleman helped make Southland a jewel in the Division 4 crown.
Glenn Menard opened the facility in the summer of 1969, then returned to college. Dave McClelland was lured from the television studio in Shreveport to manage the track from 1969 until he moved to Dallas International in the spring of 1971, when Menard returned to the track.
In 1972 Baker bought the track from Grezaffi, and operated it with his sons. Mr. Pate bought the track and operated it for two years. Norman “Moose” Pearah, the Hall of Fame track operator, leased it from Pate for three seasons. Later in the 70’s a group of Houma racers headed by Joe Teuton revived the track, installed lights for night racing and operated it for one rain-filled season.

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