Monday morning phone calls from Hardy became know as the "Monday Morning Death Report". Hardy was in touch with the whole racing world it seems and he would invariably be one of the first ones to know of a friend's passing. He would say, "Well there is another one going up to the 'Big Speedway in the Sky'". We would then talk about that friend and their endeavors.
Ironically, today I got the Monday Morning Death Report, only this time it wasn't from Hardy, but from his son Danny. Hardy Allen is up at the "Big Speedway in the Sky".
We often joked that he was going to out live us all. He never wanted to tell his age to anyone, but we knew he was the same age as our dad. Hardy almost made it to 84.
So for a long time to come, we will mourn the loss our our great friend and family member Hardy Allen. For those of you who knew Hardy, well consider yourselves lucky. Of course you know that because he was one of the kindest souls ever to have graced this planet.
He was my dad's best friend, but I know there are hundreds of people out there that could make that claim as Hardy was friends with everyone that knew him. Pat and I grew up calling him Uncle Hardy, because that is what he wanted to be called.
We had the great pleasure to have Hardy work with us for many years. We have dozens of pictures with Hardy always in there helping, usually doing the hardest labor, or the ones that required the greatest strength, yet he was humble enough to always be the one helping clean up the messes we made after our mad thrashes.
Hardy is helping Pat and Pablo Romera with our 5 Speed Semi-Automatic Quickshift ATV.
Hardy making Pablo smile with his infectious smile.
1989, Hardy escaping the heat and the sun in Bonneville while he was crewing for Tony Piner and his modified roadster. Pat, who took the picture, was crewing for Al Teague.
Hardy and Pat just after testing our Weismatic in a trophy truck around the block last year.
Dr. Hardy Allen and Chris Wakula teamed up to bring Chris a National Championship in dirt track racing.
Circa 2001 - Hardy, cradling our WSD Outdrive, with Chris Wakula transporting it down the street to Archer Marine for assembly on the back of our first Inline Engine Vee, Ettore.
Hardy was always interested in being involved with cutting edge technology. He was an integral part of our team.
Here Hardy is posing with the Inline Engine installation in Ettore. Note the "Zummy" exhaust pipes coming up from the engines that are in the bottom of the Vee. The sound was great as well as saving us hundreds of pounds of jacketed water cooled exhaust piping; and by removing all that weight up high, we improved our already extremely low CG.
Hardy and Gordon Murray observe Pat shifting our prototype transaxle for the McLaren F1. Hardy helped us construct the simple test rig we used to test the syncros in the gearbox.
Circa 1991 - Pete Weismann, Gary Knudsen, Hardy Allen, and Gordon Murray shifting our McLaren F1 transaxle.
"Pete's approach to design and development was always an amazing mixture of existing knowledge, lateral thinking and practical experiment. I will never forget the gear-change rig I sat in out behind the Traction Products shop. It consisted of an old car seat and a junkyard engine driving our F1 gearbox - a hilarious but extremely cost-effective test for our sophisticated F1 transmission gearchange!" - Gordon Murray (Tribute to Pete Weismann in RACER Magazine)
Circa 1994 - Pat, Walt Spurgiasz, Hardy, and Chris testing Walt's computer for our semi-automatic transmissions on the F1 test-rig. Over the years we have highly modified the test-rig, and it was usually Hardy who was tasked with the modifications, hence his hands on approach in case anything might go wrong.
Circa 1999, Hardy with our 4 Speed Semi-Automatic Diesel Offshore Transmission on the F1 Dyno.
Circa 1994, Sometimes I wonder why we take pictures, then years later you stumble upon them and then you are glad that you took the picture. I don't remember who or what we are celebrating, but we rarely needed an excuse. Pictured above, Pat, Hardy, Bob Bean of Victory Team, our fantastic lathe operator Tommy Peralta, Pete, Michele, and Chris.
Dec 8th, 1996 - Hardy working on our Jeep Icon engine transmission package. We designed and manufactured a new concept 12 speed Automatic 4WD drivetrain for the 1997 Detroit Auto Show in only 4 1/2 months!
Note the electric motor/transmission that actuated our auto-clutch right in the center of the picture. Below it is the HI-Lo Transfer case and below that is the integrated front Weismann Locker with back to back Tri-Pod CVs
All ready to go, Hardy, Chris, and Rene Weber pose with our masterpiece.
Rene is our wiring guru. When Chrysler refused to help us with their engine controller, Rene, amazingly, found a way to bypass their controller and missing sensors and get the engine fired.
Next day and the Motley Crew was back to assemble the engine/transmission into the subframe and then into the Jeep at MetalCrafters.
Note the green output yoke coming out from the back of the 6 Speed Quickshift nestled next to the crankshaft and sharing the engine oil in the common engine sump tank. The result was a flat firewall and no floor tunnel in the Jeep!
The driveshaft was in the floor, driving back to the rear Locker Differential. The Weismann Locker was cradled in it's own subframe, which also supported the A-Arm rear suspension, and with just 4 bolts, bolted to the uni-body!
Hardy was right to be smiling, everything was going together beautifully.
Patrick Head, chief designer of Williams F1 at the time, had given Hardy the Rothmans hat when we visited the Williams' race factory in England on the way to Pat's wedding in Italy.
Hardy posing under our Jeep Icon after the engine/transmission subframe was bolted in place, with only 4 bolts!
Note the front suspension lower A-Arms are back to back, as was the rear. The Icon was the first SUV to be all A-Arm front and back, and we had 17" of total wheel travel, but the bodywork limited it to 13". We also had one spindle design for all 4 corners!
Pat is holding up 4 fingers, it was 4 in the morning and we were done. In one long day, we assembled the Icon's drivetrain into the Jeep's unique uni-body designed by Aria Group, got it all wired in and running.
Hardy loved pie!
Circa 2005 - Ewen Honeyman and Hardy at Wakula's house.
Hardy fueling for Dan Gurney at Riverside in 1968.
Hardy reacting to the special gift from Oliver Ring, an original copy of Ebony magazine that featured Hardy when he was Dan Gurney's crew chief at Indy in 1968 for Jochen Rindt.
With the great help from Loren Richards and Ted Decker, we threw a party for Hardy on Memorial Day. We invited everyone we could think of, and hundreds of people showed up to see Hardy.
How such a big man can be reduced to a jar... you need one at least that big for his heart! RIP Hardy
Lieutenant Hardy D. Allen had military burial on Friday Sept 8th, 2017. Hardy was a decorated pilot in the Korean War with 5 medals, and not incredibly, a receiver of a Purple Heart.
Hardy's stone cover to his vault will be completed in a few weeks and put in place. His vault is right above the single white rose.
We were honored to be invited by Hardy to attend. There were only a small handful of people, his kids Danny and Mary Ann, his brother Orin's daughter Shula, some old friends, and some people we have never seen before. Hardy touched many people in his life, and everyone had very heavy hearts.
To send your condolences to Danny Allen and his family, his home address is:
12111 Wilsey Way Poway, CA 92064-2805
Danny's email address is: email@example.com
In the weeks to come, we will add more pictures to this page of Hardy and hopefully for some of you they will bring back some fond memories.