1965 Pontiac GTO "Jolly Green Giant" Arnie Beswick (SunStar) 1/18
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Rick Holladay had no idea what kind of history would be made when he special-ordered a four-speed Tri-Power 389 GTO, painted dark green metallic, in 1965. Rick, a local racer from the Norfolk, Virginia area just knew he wanted to race it in B/Stock class. Following production, the green machine was shipped directly to Arnie "The Farmer" Beswick in Morrison, Illinois for special modifications. Arnie installed a set of Doug's headers, a heavy-duty clutch and traction bars. The car undoubtedly received a few undisclosed Beswick enhancements as well. At York US 30 Dragway, in its very first race, Arnie Beswick took home a trophy with the GTO. This was just the beginning of the "Jolly Green Ginat's" crushing of the competition. Holladay went on to campaign the car in the east and southeast US. It set numerous track records on the east coast, a testament to Arnie's ability to set up an engine.
In the summer of '65 Holladay took the car to the Maryland State Championship run at Capital Raceway. Numerous fast class cars were there but the Giant turned 12.76 at 109.22 for the championship win. Through the course of its racing life, the "Jolly Green Giant" scorched and blazed its way over enough track to earn more than 50 trophies. Holladay said, "The car was rarely beaten in class in the two years I ran it." He added, "That is more a tribute to Arnie Beswick's excellence and knowledge than anything I did." So here's to Arnie Beswick and his unique creations, with a special appreciation for his hand in the success of the "Jolly Green Giant."
Arnie's ability to make a race car perform is still evident today, as he pilots his Pro Stock GTO, making low 7 second passes at almost 200 mph. His name is legend not only in the Pontiac world, but the drag racing arena as well. He appears at many tracks across the country each year, including an event named for him at the Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Illinois in September. Watching his near-mile burnouts and blistering runs in his unique tiger-striped GTO is a delightful experience that will be long remembered!
SunStar Diecast Model No. 1810