Working on cars and racing them aren’t the only things Barry Davis can do. It’s just that there’s nothing he‘d rather do. He doesn’t deny that he gets it honest. Years before he entered his teens, he spent many hours with his father in his shop and, according to Davis, learned everything he needed to know about cars.
Davis is now crew chief at Rampy Racing Inc. He and David Rampy are a two-member team. Davis, with Rampy’s help, keeps the cars running, and Rampy drives them.
“We have to make sure everything is ready when we go to the starting line,” Davis said. “Sometimes, in between qualifying runs, you have to change transmissions or torque converters just to make them go faster.”
This month is the fourth time Davis has won the Wrench of the Year at the National Hot Rod Association awards convention at Jekyll Island, Ga. The award goes to the mechanic who has been deemed best of the best in hot rod racing.
“I’m pretty proud of that,” he said.
He gives all the credit for his knowledge and talent to his late father.
“All my life basically, my dad raced,” he said. “I grew up in drag racing and fooling with cars. Dad raced super stock and in the NHRA Division II.”
Davis began working with his dad in his shop when he was about 8 years old. He did it all. He helped build cars and put motors together.
Davis races Ole Blue, a 1991 Z28 Camero bracket car, at Baileyton Goodtime Drag Strip near Cullman, Paradise Drag Strip in Calhoun, Ga., and Brainerd Motor Sports Park in Georgia near Chattanooga.
“I’ve always had a passion for cars, for going fast and racing,” Davis said. “I like to take old cars apart, redo them and put them back together.”
He’s proud of the fact that he still has his first car, a 1965 Chevelle SS. He drove it to school. His father restored it.
“It’s a pretty neat car now,” Davis said. “I’m really proud of it.”
Davis said he will always have a love for cars, but what he’s doing now might not be something he’ll be doing years from now.
“I probably won’t do this for the rest of my life,” he said. “It just depends. I’ll do it as long as I can and go from there.” His parents are the late Clark and Betty (Mallows) Davis. His brother, Keithe, died in an accident in 1998. His daughter and son-in-law, Amanda and Tyson Kiser have given him grandchildren, Davis, 5, and Harper, 1.
Probably his biggest fan is his girlfriend, Missie Weatherbee. They’ve been dating four years.
Davis graduated from Spring Garden High. He worked at Lawtex. Later, after Lawtex became Springs Global, he worked there. He drove a fork lift, worked in shipping and receiving and supervised the receiving department for about six years.
He doesn’t hunt or fish. After thinking a few seconds, he admitted, “I might fish a little every now and then.”
He enjoys the worship services when he races. Racers for Christ are present at all the national and division races.
Contact Margaret at firstname.lastname@example.org