Highland Lakes Timing Association -Est. 1956
The Highland Lakes Timing Association (HLTA) was established in the central Texas area in 1956. Common for the era, most of the racing was held in World War II-constructed training airfield grounds. In general, the regional associations would be constructed primarily of local car clubs and individuals looking to get organized to promote the new sport of drag racing and to create a safe place to race. In magazine publications and club subscriptions, all regional timing associations and car clubs were to be structured closely with the association founded by Wally Parks in 1951 -the NHRA. Stop watch timers and flag man starters were the common tools of the trade. The idea was for all regional winners to move on into the semifinals and have a chance to race all the semifinalist from across the state. The regional semifinals were held at Caddo Mills where the NHRA safari team also hosted a meet and greet with the contestants. The finalists moved on to the NHRA nationals. The HLTA’s history was short-lived like many others but the racers and the drag racing sport moved on to the new era of established drag strips. Today, as a non-profit assoc. based on a group of people built by friendship along with Texas car clubs the new ‘HLTA’ carries on the tradition of rolling back time to 1956. We tell a story of how it was done.
ROLLING BACK TIME!
March, 2 1956 -Austin Jaycees played a “big brother role” for the cities hotrodders. The club’s safety and youth activities committees also helped in organizing the Highland Lakes Timing Association, an organization for hot rod enthusiasts. The next project was to obtain a dragstrip for the new club a paved area of 1320ft in length for various car classes. A similar hot rod control effort in San Antonio had also been supported by the Bexar County Commissioners Court, safety organizations and the city police department according to the Jaycees spokesman, Tom Baley. Officers of the new timing association listed were listed as: Bob Beaubien, Bob Davis, treasurer, and Joe Pearson, Sergeant-at-arms.
March 17, 1956 – Announced: The following corporate charters approved by Secretary of State Tom Reavely, Highland Lakes Timing Association Inc.