Longtime Bakersfield drag racer, engine builder and engine tuner Tony Waters, 84, died Saturday in Bakersfield after an extended illness.
Waters was an original member of the Smokers Car Club, which staged the first U.S Fuel and Gas Championships at Famoso Drag Strip in 1959.
Waters drove his A/Modified Roadster to a runner-up finish in that inaugural race, losing to Art Chrisman's dragster in the finals. Waters also drove the roadster on dry late beds.
Waters remained active in racing throughout his life and in recent years he owned and turned a and A/Fuel dragster driven by his son, Darrell.
Services are pending.