Ric Flair Recalls First Hearing About Harley Race

Aug 27, 2019 - by James Walsh

During the latest Talk is Jericho, Ric Flair shared his memories of meeting Harley Race in the wake of the legend’s passing. Flair talked about meeting Race for the first time after hearing about him in a newspaper article about Race getting stabbed in a bar fight and coming back for revenge a few months later.

Flair also recalled Harley’s antics at the time, and his competitive nature that required him to be the best at anything he did. Some highlights from the discussion are below:

On the first time he heard of Race: “Here’s the deal. So I’m a kid growing up in Minneapolis. Harley is there with the AWA, and I have been sent away to private school, and I’d come home for Christmas break or whatever it was, and the front page of the Charlotte paper — back then, everybody read the paper, it’s not like now. There was a front page article about this wrestler named Harley Race who got stabbed at a bar or a restaurant called The Chestnut Tree in a fight. And Harley just went to the hospital with the knife still in him and they took it out when he got there, right? And then, about maybe three months later, he shot out all the windows of a barbecue place called Cal’s Barbecue, and got arrested for shooting out the windows. And I guess that was — I mean he’ll tell you, I won’t use the language — but that was his retaliation. He went after the guys that stabbed him. But that made the papers, and that’s how I met him.”

On Race’s antics : “Then of course, Harley went in and out of the AWA, but there were all these stories about him driving a speed boat up on the beach at Lake Minnetonka, which is the biggest lake in Minneapolis, a very luxurious area. Driving a speed boat up onto the beach at 80 miles [an hour]. And because he was trying to get Larry Hennig to come out of the — Larry was out with Irene, and trying to get him to come out and get in the boat with him, so he thought he’d make a spectacular entrance. And as you’ve heard, everything that Harley did, he had to be better at. He had to have the fastest car, he had to drink a beer the fastest, you’ve got arm wrestling, fingerlocks. Especially the fingerlock stuff.”

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