Born: December 30, 1934
Home: Elmhurst, IL
International Motorsports Hall of Fame
Loving to drive cars at an early age, Fred built himself a car from scrap parts, including a washing machine motor as its power supply, at thirteen years old. He won a demolition derby in high school…and his racing career was off and running.
Named “The Golden Boy,” Fred was the first driver in NASCAR to win over $100,000 in a single season…winning $113,570 driving for the legendary Holman Moody race team in 1963. He did this while competing in only 29 of the scheduled 61 races that season.
From 1961-1967, Lorenzen drove the famous white with blue trim #28 Holman Moody Ford. Under the guidance of iconic co-owner Ralph Moody, Lorenzen became one of NASCAR’s all time best drivers. The highlight of his career was winning the 1965 Daytona 500 driving the beautiful and powerful #28 Holman Moody Galaxie Ford.
Lorenzen raced in only 158 races over his twelve year career before his surprise retirement in 1967, at the young age of 33 years old. He came back in 1970 and raced until 1972 before he retired for good.
THINK! WHM? Ralph Moody explains the meaning of this message…”A.J. (Foyt) and Freddie were racing at Charlotte, and Lorenzen let Foyt get by him. So I put on the pit board: THINK! WHAT THE HELL’S THE MATTER?
Moody shortened it and painted it on the dashboard of every car Lorenzen drove.
From then on, when the race started to get the best of Lorenzen, Moody would just point to his own head and Lorenzen would refer to the message on his dashboard.
Fred Lorenzen made his NASCAR debut in 1956, compiling a career record of 26 wins, 84 top 10’s and 32 poles while running in only 158 of the larger “big event” NASCAR races, a staggering winning percentage. Admired and respected by everyone, Lorenzen’s most loyal fans were kids who idolized the cool driver of the #28 Holman Moody Ford. Fred always went out of his way to give autographs to any and all kids.