Friends from two continents connect at Hotrodding Hullabaloo

By: Allison Harris Email
By: Allison Harris Email

DENISON, TEXAS -- Among the loud engines and strong smell of ethanol is a friendship, spanning two continents, and more than 20 years.

Lars Hellgren from Sweden and David Guymon from Cartwright met at the Bonneville Salt Flats races in Utah in 1992, and have been burning rubber ever since.

"He's like family now. He comes here and stays with us and we've built seven or eight cars together," Guymon said.

Hellgren first encountered American cars when American soldiers, stationed in Germany, drove them down his street.

"I think it was Dodges or Chryslers. Three color cars: black, white and red. Gigantic cars. I know I'm not going to buy a Swedish car," Hellgren said.

That sparked a lifelong fascination with American cars and the American lifestyle.

"The first time I traveled to the United States, '79, I bought my first car, my dream car, a '57 Bel Air," Hellgren said.

Since then, Hellgren has traveled to 45 U.S. states and has purchased and restored many more cars with his friend Guymon.

"It's a real race car. They made a few for drag racing," Hellgren said.

"Here he is in Sweden, and we have the same interests, you know, when he comes here. We can build a car together and agree on everything," Guymon said.

An interest that built an unlikely friendship, that will go for miles.


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