Thursday, January 19, 2017

Duncan Team Prepares For Dallas Autorama

Lane Duncan and his Duncan Motorsports LSGTPA tractor pulling team are preparing the 'Texas T-Rex' tractor for an appearance at the 57th Annual O'Reilly Auto Parts Dallas Autorama.  The event will be held at the Dallas Market Hall on February 17th thru 19th. 

High performance machines from all over the country will participate in the World Of Wheels and Cavalcade Of Custom show car series.  Motorsports fans will be treated to high horsepower racing machines, immaculate show cars, restored muscle cars, and even a few pulling tractors. 

The International Show Car Association sanctioned event has been conducted at the Dallas Market Hall since 1961.  The event has an estimated annual attendance of 46,000 motorsports fans. 

For more information on the event, visit the Dallas Autorama webpage at Dallas Autorama

Lane Duncan and his 'Texas T-Rex' will be on display at the Dallas Autorama.

Lane Duncan will be on hand at the Dallas Autorama, to talk a little LSGTPA tractor pulling with the fans.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Legend of the Twisted Kitty

Legend of the Twisted Kitty

My son competes in LSGTPA tractor pulling, and recently made the pulling debut of a new tractor named 'Twisted Kitty'.  Several folks made mention of the name and inquired of the origin, and to save from a long story, I had advised that the name was originally used on one of our drag cars.  I have been asked to elaborate further, so thought I might do so here.

Way back in the 1990's, I was running the streets in my 1968 Chevelle.  The small block powered and nitrous assisted Chevy could hold its own pretty well on the street, and we eventually started running the car more at the dragstrip.  Since parts breakage was always a possibility, we would often haul the Chevelle around on an open trailer, especially if we were headed to the dragstrip. 

On one particular occasion, we had decided to make a Sunday race at the Paris Drag Strip, some twenty plus miles from the shop.  I believe it was the first appearance at the track for the Chevelle during this particular season, so we opted to tow the car with the trailer.  On Saturday, I had loaded up and washed everything, so that on Sunday morning we would be ready to step in the truck and roll. 

As usual, we get to the track that morning and unload the car.  We perform some routine maintenance, like checking the fuel cell for gas, checking the air in the tires, oil and transmission fluid.  Everything was prepped and cleaned and ready to roll, so we sat around and visited until time trials.  Once we were called to the staging lanes, I drove the car up as usual and awaited our turn.  Our first pass was routine, good burn out, staged the car and launched.  At the time, the Chevelle would run low seven second passes on the eighth mile, at about eighty miles per hour.  This was a pretty good time back then, for a street car running DOT tires and mufflers ! 

Once back at the trailer, I would retrieve the time slip and talk about the run.  This particular run was pretty uneventful.....until I opened the trunk to check the fuel in the fuel cell.  We would on occasion enter the car in car shows, and the trunk was pretty nice for an old drag car.  I had a polished aluminum fuel cell, carpeted floor, and crackle paint with metal flake finish on the trunk walls.  I tried to keep it pretty clean, so was shocked at my discovery upon lifting the trunk lid.  First of all, the odor was horrendous.  Inside, splattered on the fuel cell, was some kind of foreign material that looked like chili.  All over the carpet, was what appeared to be a huge pot of gumbo that someone had dumped out !  It looked like different levels of consistency, and was splattered everywhere.  I could not imagine what had happened.  I looked around to see if anyone was laughing, at what was obviously a prank.  No one seemed to look guilty, so I went about retrieving my cleaning products to clean up the mess.  We always had our blue towels and cleaning chemicals, so I went about my business as quickly as possible, and did a pretty good job.  I was extremely mad, though, and found no humor in the prank.

We prepped the car for the next round of time trials, and rolled up to the staging lanes as normal.  I was still mad, and trying to figure out what had happened.  My turn comes up, nice burnout and staged the car, make another good pass.  Returned to the trailer back in good spirits after another successful run down the track.....until I opened the trunk.  Again, I have what looks like gumbo gone bad splattered all in my trunk, all over the fuel cell and nitrous bottle, and the stench is just beyond description.  I had used most all of my cleaning products in the previous cleanup, and now resorted to cleaning and deodorizing the trunk with gas and carburetor cleaner.  I used every chemical I could find, to try and mask the odor.  At this point, a small crowd had gathered, as word got around of the strange situation in our pit.  Various theories were produced and discussed about the assault taking place on my car, and we began a closer examination of the vehicle.  After a few minutes, my sister reported hearing a sound, of a non mechanical nature, emanating from the trunk area.  Our first lead had been discovered.

I had been running some Hoosier DOT tires on the street, and loved these tires.  They were Hoosier Dirt Bozz, designed for dirt track racing, and would hook up anywhere.  To make them fit, however, I had to clearance the inner wheel tubs just a little, and ended up with a small opening through which a little smoke would make its way into the trunk area.  It was in this area, that we finally traced the sound to, and could observe a small ball of fur.  Upon further examination, I began to recognize the object. 

I had parked our open trailer with the car, next to our woodpile out in Gadston, Texas.  This would be the same woodpile, within which a momma cat had a litter of kittens hiding.  The little critter in my trunk, and no doubt the artist responsible for redecorating the trunk interior, had apparently boarded the Chevelle on Saturday night.  The little kitty had hitched a ride with us all the way to the track, chilled in the car in the staging lanes, and had been riding shotgun with me on our time trial passes.  I guess the only problem was, either the burnout or the pass downtrack, seemed to upset the little kittys stomach.  I don't know what all he had eaten, but he seemed to have been well fed. 

After a short trial, we convicted the little kitty and decided that he should be removed and confined.  My sister had retrieved a cardboard beverage carton, and we planned the extraction.  I would wear my welding gloves, to safely latch onto the little kitty, and my sister would hold the box while I relocated our friend.  We intended to duct tape the box shut, with air holes, and would then reassess the situation.  On my first attempt at retrieval by way of the trunk, the little kitty managed to crawl back through the wheel well opening, and perched upon top of the rear tire.  I then moved outside, and was able to latch onto the kitty, with both hands, reaching up into the area above the rear tire.  Once I had secured the little kitty, I discovered that the welding gloves were not as thick as I had initially thought.  As I began to retrieve the kitty, and he was approaching the open air, he switched into attack mode.  As I realized that the welding gloves were failing their intended purpose, I began just trying to get my hand out.  Both the little kitty and I, had become pretty animated, and apparently the sights and sounds of the situation had spooked my sister.  As I turned with the attacking kitty, hoping to quickly install the ball of fur into the box, I would find my sister making her way in the opposite direction, with the box bouncing along behind her in the dust. 

I couldn't hold onto the little kitty, and quickly realized that I couldn't let him go either.  He had latched onto and through the welding gloves and into my hands.  I didn't want this thing back in my car, so I took a few steps and threw the gloves, with the kitty still attached.  Little kitty bounced a time or two, and then on about the third bounce, was pointed towards some woods on the west side of the track.  The last time I saw the little kitty, he was entering the woods at a high rate of speed.

As time went by, the occasional sighting would be reported, and the tale would be told about the little kitty that hitched a ride down the track.   More than one witness had remarked about how the little kitty 'left out of there twisted'.   We eventually began construction of another Chevelle, and while working on the wheel tubs and trunk area, the story always comes up about the little 'twisted kitty'.  And so, in the little furballs honor, we decided to call this one 'Twisted Kitty'.  The name stuck and while building our second pulling tractor, we decided to further acknowledge the little critter by applying the name to our dirt version, which is also a 1968. 

So, as the saying goes, now you know the rest of story. 

1968 Chevelle and origin of the Twisted Kitty, from around 1993.

1968 Chevelle as current day, at the birth place of the 'Twisted Kitty' namesake.

Lane Duncan at the wheel of the 'Twisted Kitty' dirt version, LSGTPA Youth Class pulling tractor, 1968 Sears Suburban.

Friday, January 6, 2017


Lane Duncan and his Duncan Motorsports Team celebrated an LSGTPA Championship season at the conclusion of the 2016 season finale.  Lane was crowned the LSGTPA Youth Class Champion, in a points battle that would come down to the very last event, and the very final pull aboard his 'Twisted Kitty' tractor. 

For Lane and his team, the season started during the offseason of 2015.  Construction of a new tractor had been completed by the team, with plans to campaign two tractors at some of the LSGTPA events.  Engine woes would force the team to resort to a backup engine, before the season even began, but by early 2016, both the 'Twisted Kitty' and the 'Texas T-Rex' machines were ready to roll.

The team started off on a great note, with a double award winning appearance at the Dallas Autorama Car Show.  During the 56th Annual O'Reilly Auto Parts Autorama, held at Dallas Market Hall, the team was awarded a Pulling Class show award, as well as a Rising Star award for the 'Texas T-Rex'  The team was on hand, as part of an LSGTPA club display of eight pulling tractors.

As the pulling season approached, the team participated in a testing session at the Bonham Powder Creek Park pulling track, where on the very first pull for the new 'Twisted Kitty', the team suffered a transmission failure.  The team quickly sourced a replacement transmission, and had the TK ready for the first event, at the season opener in Cooper Texas.  The repaired 'TK' tractor would roll onto the track at its very first pull in competition and record a Full Pull with Lane at the wheel !  Lane would hold onto the lead, and score his first victory of the season aboard the 'Twisted Kitty', and score a fourth place finish aboard the 'Texas T-Rex'.

The team would return to Bonham, Texas for the Heritage Day pull, and would continue the great start of the season with a one-two finish.  Lane would take the win aboard his 'Texas T-Rex', and score the runnerup aboard the 'Twisted Kitty'.  Both tractors seemed to be sorting out well at this point, and Lane was learning the differences in the way the tractors drove.  Lane would return to the Powder Creek Park track, for the Battle At Bonham event, and take a second place aboard the 'Texas T-Rex' in July, and placing the 'Twisted Kitty' in fourth. 

The team would enter the Lindsay Truck & Tractor Pull with both tractors in fine shape, with Lane piloting the 'Texas T-Rex' to a victory on the Friday night session of the double header event.  Lane would ride the 'Twisted Kitty' to a fourth place finish.  On Saturday, the team was able to make some minor adjustments to both tractors, and come back to compete on the same track.  Lane and crew made the proper corrections this time out, scoring a one-two finish for the team.  Lane drove the 'Twisted Kitty' to the top spot with a 393.00 foot total, while placing the 'Texas T-Rex' in the runnerup spot with a 392.58 foot total, just inches apart !

The team would roll into Blue Ridge, Texas to compete in the Bill Halter Memorial Pull in August.  Rains had postponed the event, and the blackland track was very sticky from the recent moisture.  Lane would power his way to a win aboard his 'Twisted Kitty' tractor, while scoring a sixth place finish aboard his 'Texas T-Rex' tractor, which had found a wet spot on the track during his second pull of the night.  The team would struggle at the next event in Bartlett, Texas, scoring fourth and seventh place finishes.  Upon the return to camp, the tractors were serviced and tuned up, to prepare for the final stretch of the 2016 season.

Lane would hit the ground running again in Farmersville, Texas, scoring a runnerup finish aboard his 'Twisted Kitty' tractor, during the Old Time Saturday pull.  A fourth place finish aboard his 'Texas T-Rex' tractor, would keep both tractors within striking distance, and either machine capable of taking the season championship headed into the last event. 

The season finale in Sulphur Springs, Texas, at the Help-A-Child Benefit, would see four tractors with a chance to take the championship title in the Youth Class.  Lane would need to place both tractors in the top three, to secure the season title.  The possibility existed, for the 'Texas T-Rex' to knock the 'Twisted Kitty' out of the top spot.  In a case where the 'Texas T-Rex' finished ahead of the 'Twisted Kitty', the team would need to make sure the 'Texas T-Rex' would win the event.  Several scenarios existed, to where the team could lose the championship on the very last event.  In a very clutch performance on a new track, with very loose and tricky surface conditions, under enormous pressure, Lane would turn in his best driving performance of the year.  Lane would pilot his points leading 'Twisted Kitty' into the runnerup spot, and would perfectly place his 'Texas T-Rex' tractor in third place to secure the positions of both tractors.  Placing both tractors on the podium, would secure a one-two finish for the tractors in the 2016 LSGTPA Championship points chase.  Lane would take the 2016 Youth Class Championship title aboard his #88 'Twisted Kitty' tractor, and would finish as runnerup aboard his #83 'Texas T-Rex' tractor !

The success of Lane and his team in 2016, is the result of efforts from many people, over the course of several years.  The team would like to thank everyone involved in our pulling effort, along with all who support LSGTPA tractor pulling and the hosting events.  Special thanks go to some, including Richard 'PawPaw' Duncan and Nancy 'Nannie' Duncan.  Richard and Nancy Duncan provide the support, for our team to be able to travel to the events.  Each road trip, is more like a mini-vacation, as we travel and make museum and site seeing stops along the way.  Also, we would like to thank Larry and Donna King, from who we obtained the original 'Texas T-Rex', to began Lane's pulling efforts. 

Efforts from many to support our team and events, are appreciated and often go unseen.  We would like to recognize and thank some of those, including Cindy Roller with the Cooper Review.  Roller has been very supportive of our team and the LSGTPA, providing awesome media coverage.  Not only do her awesome photos and news articles make their way around the country, but her radio spots on the 'Blacklands Cafe' radio show, broadcast on KETR 88.9, have included our team and LSGTPA updates.  Roller's contributions to Delta County events and happenings in the area, have been enormous over the past years, and we appreciate everything that she does. 

Along those lines, we would also like to thank Allen Rich for his coverages of the LSGTPA events, through his North Texas e-News (  His internet based news channel provides an incredible amount of area news, every day.  From entertaining historical articles, to sports coverage, to local news, Allen Rich and his team provide awesome coverage of area topics.  We are proud to be a part of the North Texas e-News channel, each and every time we are able to have the event coverage included. 

The past couple of seasons, we have been fortunate to be able to enjoy the presence of the Racers For Christ organization at our LSGTPA events.  RFC Chaplains, including Arlen Foulks, Steve Mack and Clint Parker have been a very welcome addition to the events, and our team especially appreciates the RFC team.  Special thanks to RFC Region 4 Director, Joey Keith, for his continued support of LSGTPA. 

Lane and the Duncan Motorsports team would like to also thank, and congratulate all of our National Anthem performers for the 2016 LSGTPA season, and those who have been able to perform for the show in previous years.  As usual, we were blessed to have some amazing performers to start the events with the National Anthem performance.  Among those this season, was Shawna Spangler, who started the show at the season opener at the Delta County Fair event.  Spangler did an amazing job, and we hope to have her back in 2017.  Grace Johnson would be a repeat performer, with her presentation at the Bonham Heritage Day event.  Grace is a member of the award winning Bonham High School Choir, and has done an amazing job for multiple LSGTPA events.  The award winning Bailey Melvin would also return for a National Anthem performance, at the Battle At Bonham event, and as always, Baily did and incredible job.  Bailey has been a regular performer for the LSGGPA for several years, and has been an awesome addition to each event that we are fortunate enough to have her appear.   Rebecca Beam would perform at the Bartlett Old Town Festival pull, and presented an excellent performance for the fans.  The super talented Victoria Leigh would turn in one of the best performances of the year, with her amazing presentation at the Farmersville Old Time Saturday show.  Victoria is a regular performer at the Wylie Opry, and stopped in for the LSGTPA event on the afternoon before one of her shows.  We hope to be able to have Victoria back in 2017 !  Sadie Evans would deliver the Anthem at the season finale, as part of her band performance prior to the event start.  Sadie performs great on stage, and the National Anthem was a great cap to her concert and an awesome way to start the LSGTPA event in the Sulphur Springs.   We thank each and every performer, and will no doubt see many as they continue their musical careers. 

We would also like to thank all of the fans and supporters of the LSGTPA events.  Without the fans, no one would work to bring the events to your towns and communities.  Thank you so much for supporting the events, and being a part of the show !

That would be some of the highlights of our 2016 season.  Stay tuned for more info on the upcoming 2017 LSGTPA season, some sponsor and supporter highlights, and more team news !

Tuesday, January 3, 2017


Lane Duncan and his Duncan Motorsports Team crew continue to celebrate their 2016 LSGTPA Youth Class Championship, but the group is also planning and preparing for the 2017 pulling season.  A new shop location for the off season has been prepared in Wylie, Texas, where the team will dismantle both the 'Texas T-Rex' and 'Twisted Kitty' Youth Class tractors.  Both tractors will undergo changes during the offseason, but no major changes in setup are planned.

Lane piloted the tractors to a one-two finish in 2016, scoring the LSGTPA Youth Class Championship aboard his 'Twisted Kitty' entry.  The team plans to perform off season preventative maintenance, and upgrade a few components on the TK, but will not change the tractor baseline setup.  Also, a few cosmetic changes are planned for the black tractor.

Lane's popular and long running 'Texas T-Rex' machine will undergo a cosmetic makeover, with a fresh paint and wrap planned for the tractor.  A few car show appearances are scheduled, to represent the team and the LSGTPA, during the off season.  Prior to the start of the 2017 pulling season, the roll cage will be modified to allow for the ever growing driver some extra interior room. 

Lane and the Duncan Motorsports Team are also working on an internet broadcast program, titled 'Spinning Our Wheels' !  Lane plans to provide team updates, motorsports news and LSGTPA event coverage, along with driver interviews and local celebrity appearances.  The show will be a mix of motorsports fun with some random entertainment and comedy.   Stay tuned for more on 'Spinning Our Wheels' !