There have been plenty of huge names in all kinds of sports over the years. Serena Willaims. Usain Bolt. David Beckham. Ronda Rousey. It feels as though the list could go on and on. While they have set some incredible records and made a huge name for themselves in the sporting world, that’s not the end of the story. There is plenty that goes on behind the scenes that all help to build these stars up to the legends they have become.
Although there have been plenty of dynamic duos over the years, Jungle Jim and Jungle Pam are two people that have secured their place in motorsport history as one of the most iconic pairings the sport will ever see. Many years have passed since Jungle Pam was at the side of the race track, but her legacy is something that the world will never forget.
Plenty of choices
Motorsport is a huge sport that many of us have fallen for over the years. There are so many different types of racing all the way from monster truck driving to drift car racing and just about everything in between. People across the planet often come together to witness some of the defining moments of the sport as the professionals take their place behind the wheel.
However, there is another motorsport legend that has caught many people’s eye: Jungle Pam. Funny Car racing is one of the lesser-known motorsports, but it has grown to become a huge hit all on its own. One of the main differences between Funny Cars and drag racing cars is the fact that the car’s engine is found at the front.
Creating a legacy
Funny Car racing isn’t usually the first genre of motorsport that people think of. However, there have still been some huge names in the sport over the years. The likes of Tony Predegon. Ron Capps, John Force, and Don Prudhomme had all made their name from the sport and found themselves up on the podium as a result.
During the 1970s, another name was on everyone’s mind: Jim Liberman. The National Hot Rod Association has placed Jim as the 17th best driver of all time. He tragically lost his life in a motor car accident at 31 years old. However, his talents and legacy have lived through others ever since. No one has ever forgotten the incredible shows that Jim Liberman could perform.
His own fan
Throughout his career on the track, Jim built his reputation as someone that knew how to put on a show and fully embrace the spirit of Funny Car racing. Jim wanted to make sure that people got value for money when they saw him race, and it wasn’t long before his antics earned the legendary driver the nickname “Jungle Jim.”
It wasn’t just his fans that were cheering Jim’s name from the sidelines. The racer always had someone by his side, and she came in the form of Pamela Hardy. It wasn’t long before people noticed the new addition at the races and wanted to know more. All of Pamela’s time with Jim meant that people quickly started to refer to her as “Jungle Pam.”
A joint career
It all started as Jungle Jim’s career. However, the addition of Pamela meant that it was now about the pair of them instead. They shared everything. Their success, the attention. Jim and Pam even shared their own spot on the racetrack, even if Jungle Pam never sat behind the wheel of a car. People couldn’t get enough of Pam as she acted as the best cheerleader, girlfriend, and sidekick that anyone had ever seen at the track.
The drag race world had always been male-dominated until Pam stepped onto the scene. She was a huge icon of the ‘70s as Pam would often perform alongside her partner in magazine spreads, drag races, and public appearances. Although Jungle Pam lived her life in the spotlight, no one ever got to know the woman behind it all.
A break from work
There were plenty of questions that people wanted answered, but there was one that came up time and time again. How did the pair actually meet? It was an incredible moment in time as Pam and Jim met totally by accident. The couple just so happened to be in the right place at the right time. Pam says that she was 18 years old when she first locked eyes with Jim.
She was in Pennsylvania walking along a street in West Chester when someone caught her eye. Pam was two weeks away from graduating from college and decided to take a break from work. She headed to a local mall to stretch her legs and get some fresh air when Pam suddenly saw a car pulling up next to her.
Struck by beauty
The car screeched as it tried to stop next to Pam, and she instantly knew that someone had been traveling at great speed before they pulled up next to her. She looked over to see what they could want. After all, it’s not every day that a stranger pulls up in their car like that. It was at that moment that Jim and Pam locked eyes for the first time.
It’s thought that Jim was driving around town when he spotted Pam and knew that he had to stop. According to Jim, she was the most beautiful woman that he had ever seen. He wanted to stop to see what Pam was doing and find out who she was. Jim introduced himself and quickly invited Pam to hang out later in the day.