Veteran crankshaft manufacturer Sonny Bryant passed away on Sunday, August 9, 2020, due to Covid-19 related complications.
“Sonny took great pride in producing the best damn crankshafts possible and helping builders, teams and individuals achieve success,” a statement from Bryant Racing, Inc. read. “He will be greatly missed, but the experienced team and family we have here at Bryant Racing are ready and determined to continue Sonny’s legacy of producing Top Quality Crankshafts.”
Bryant started out as a fan who eventually became a drag racer, who excelled in the Stock, Super Stock and Pro Stock divisions. He won national events and established both speed and elapsed time records along the way.
Bryant was never a fan of the sponsor game, though nothing pleased him more than making his car run better with each pass.
“Because I didn’t like trying to get sponsors; I just wanted to find ways to make my car go faster,” Bryant said.
Bryant became motivated to create Bryant Racing, a race and automotive machine shop in 1973. He soon began building record-setting and race-winning engines for others.
Bryant, as some have described as a perfectionist, was inspired to create his own product line. In 1983, his custom crankshafts became a must-have in racing.
Bryant’s lifelong motto was to give his customers the best possible service and do it all for a fair price.
All over social media, engine builders and fellow manufacturers remembered Bryant as being a friend.
“When I met him we were both racing 56 Chevys back in the ’60s,” said Wayne Jesel. “His crankshaft business became a huge success and he will be missed by the racing community.”
“Sonny and I go back to the 1980s when I used to buy crankshafts from him for Mountain Motor Pro Stock engines we used to build for Rickie Smith,” added engine builder Sonny Leonard. “I used to visit him over the years, and we’d stay together. He was a very smart guy, and I truly loved him like a brother.
Brad Anderson believed Bryant’s quality of work spoke volumes.
“Sonny built the finest cranks in all of motorsports,” Anderson said.
The Bryant Family have asked in lieu of flowers that you make a charitable contribution to the Racers for Christ organization, https://teamrfc.org/ or the ASPCA www.ASPCA.org. The two things Sonny was passionate about, racing and his dog.