NDRC Allstars: Glenn Henley – On A Roll

When you’re hot you’re hot, and that can indeed be applied to NDRC racer Glenn Henley right now, the NDRC Top Sportsman points leader for the Western Conference is indeed on roll with four straight NDRC event victories.

If you include a local Dragway At The Bend track championship event his win streak is stretched to five. The current crop of back-to-back wins has been a highlight of Henley’s drag racing career that includes now a total of twelve Christman Tree trophies since 2017, yet Henley is still modest in the reason for his success.

“To win five events in a row, including four national events in a row with some real milestone events, it is just unbelievable,” Henley said. “I am on a roll! The car is consistent, and I am being pretty consistent too.”

Henley’s wife Tracey gave more insight to his racing demeanour.

“As Glenn’s wife I can tell you he has the calmest nature and does not seem to get stressed,” she said. “He shows great sportsmanship as a lot of people witnessed in Portland in the final at the last event. After Glenn completed his burnout, he reversed back and noticed Dean Cleary was having car issues, he turned his car off and waited for Dean to hopefully fix the issue. While all this was going on the officials told Glenn he didn’t have to wait he could stage whenever he wanted too. Glenn chose to wait until Dean said he couldn’t get his car going. Glenn received so many compliments on his sportsmanship. I think that meant more than win. He doesn’t let a lot rattle him.

Henley has been drag racing since 2014, but has competed in motorsport – namely Karts and Quad Bikes – since the 70s. Motorsport is a family sport for Henley, his sons are into burnout competitions and his brother Brett raced in Super Sedan and Top Sportsman prior to him taking to the black top. After giving Karting away in 2012, Henley took his own shot at drag racing, and as what is great about sportsman drag racing, you can race just about anything, and Henley landed one of the more unique rides around.

“I race a Datsun 1200 Ute with a naturally aspirated LS 427. I race top sportsman, but initially the car was brought for the boys for a burnout car, but it kept blowing the guards off. So, the Datsun turned into a drag car and the boys then built up a Mercedes Benz and a HQ Ute for the burnouts. We then all had a car each,” he said.

“I bought the car from Louis Younis, it had a nitrous six-cylinder motor in it. When bringing it home we basically put a chassis under it, four-link and 9 inch diff. Craig Carrison my engine builder built me a full aftermarket LS 458 motor which has been out of the car for the last 2 years getting some upgrades to give us a touch over 1000hp. Presently, and for the last two years I’ve run the LS 427 which was built by THR Engine Developments making 865hp.”

Drag racing and running NDRC events is all about family for Henley irrespective if they are not blood relations or not, and his drive and reasons to compete are familiar ones.

“My race team are my family, they back me 100% plus a few close friends who we also call family. The South Coast Club are always there backing and supporting me, my two little grandsons love coming to the drags and being in amongst it all. We’ve definitely made a lot of new friends along the way,” he said.

“The social atmosphere, the road trips together, Darwin is the absolute best road trip.

The support from the spectators, the way we all help and support each other in our class from solving each other’s car issues, passing on information, to lending parts.

“I enjoy the watching, thinking, listening, learning, testing, and thinking out of the square. I race because I enjoy it. I love the family and friends time; it gives me an out from thinking about my business all the time. 

The winning streak aside, Henley has unfinished business in this year’s NDRC series.

“We go to Mildura in March and then to Dragway at The Bend in April for the finals – I have been runner-up the last two seasons, so I try not to have hope! It is going to be the last man standing when you get to that grand final, but hopefully, my engine builder is right when he just said to me that the moons are lining up for me!” he laughed.

Henley also wants to encourage new participants into sportsman drag racing through his local track, as a stepping stone to NDRC Sportsman racing.

“Come and try the Real Street or Super Street class at a small meeting to see if you get the bug, South Coast Raceway are super inviting and friendly, it’s a great club to start with,” Henley concluded.

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