Many of us enjoy watching races, whether it be Lewis Hamilton burning up the opposition in Formula 1 or Mo Farah winning the hearts of the nation at the London Olympics. And even as children this love of the dash between the start and finish line still brought us great joy.
So it was with much delight as a child of the 1980’s that we tuned in to the latest episode of ‘Wacky Races’, never knowing for sure who would come through as the race victor…
Wacky Races originally aired from 1968 until 1969, with only 17 episodes ever produced (although every episode had 2 races). The show was inspired by a 1965 comedy film called ‘The Great Race’, and featured 23 drivers in 11 vehicles taking part in various races across an animated North America.
The question is, how many of the 11 Wacky Races contestants can you name? Put yourself to the test and see if you can make a podium finish…
1) Who were these prehistoric brothers?
They were ‘The Slag Brothers’, going by the names Rock and Gravel, and their vehicle was called ‘The Boulder Mobile’. They finished in 2nd place a whopping 8 times, and the design of the characters was used again for another Hanna-Barbera series you probably watched called ‘Captain Caveman’.
2) What was the name of this scary looking pair and their haunted house vehicle?
They went by the name of ‘The Gruesome Twosome’ (Big Gruesome and Little Gruesome), and their vehicle was called ‘The Creepy Coupe’.
3) The name of this rather clever looking fella?
He was ‘Professor Pat Pending’, who was scientist, driving ‘The Convert-a-Car’.
4) The name of this aeronautical wizard and his flying machine?
This was ‘Red Max’ in a vehicle that could double as both a plane and a car hybrid called ‘The Crimson Haybailer’. Despite being able to fly he only won 3 races.
5) There’s no way you don’t know the name of this beauty…
Yes of course it’s ‘Penelope Pitstop’ who was the only female in the show, driving in her vehicle ‘The Compact Pussycat’. Penelope also starred in her own spin-off show called ‘The Perils of Penelope Pitstop’.
6) Can you remember the name of these army recruits?
The big fierce looking fella at the top is ‘Sergeant Blast’, with ‘Private Meekly’ driving their vehicle ‘The Army Surplus Special’.
7) And who’s this mob?
It’s the ‘Ant Hill Mob’ who were of course gangsters, in their vehicle ‘The Bulletproof Bomb’. The had a successful run in the show of 4 wins and 5 2nd places. The Ant Hill Mob were made up of Clyde, Danny, Kurby, Mac, Ring-A-Ding, Rug Bug Benny and Willy.
8) The name of this hill-billy and his big friendly bear?
‘Luke and Blubber Bear’, driving the ‘Arkansas Chuggabug’.
9) I seem to remember this being my favourite contestant. His name?
Ah yes, it was ‘Peter Perfect’ driving ‘The Turbo Terrific’. He had a crush on Penelope and often stopped to help her out, perhaps explaining why he only ever had 8 podium finishes.
10) We’re almost there, do you remember the name of this lumberjack?
His name was ‘Rufus Roughcut’, with his companion ‘Sawtooth’, driving ‘The Buzzwagon’.
11) Our final contestants, and I know for a fact you’ll all remember these two…
‘Dick Dastardly’ and ‘Muttley’ driving ‘The Mean Machine’. They were of course the villains of the series and would try to win in any low handed way they could. They starred in their own spin-off series, ‘Dastardly & Muttley in their Flying Machines’, which was more widely know by the name of the theme tune; ‘Catch The Pigeon’.
How many did you get right?