For drag racers, traction was dependent upon street tires, or tires that had been recapped to feature a slick tread. These recapped tires did not offer much traction, so progression of the hobby resulted in the need for real drag racing tires. Enter Marvin Rifchin, whose father, Harry, had a tire dealership and recap business. Marvin was heavily involved in the dirt track scene, and made a name for himself in the Midget and stock car racing industry by introducing a tire with a special compound, designed to work much better than regular recap rubber.
With a firm grasp on the round track market, Marvin experimented with a drag racing tire, as the sport began to blossom quickly. By 1957, he had created his first drag racing tire, and by the next year, M&H was in the winner’s circle, thanks to a popular racer who took a gamble and tried one of Marvin’s new purpose-built M&H drag racing slicks. That racer was Don Garlits, and he blistered the competition on his first event using M&H Racemaster tires. The original M&H slicks offered less than seven inches of tread width, but it was the structure and compound of the tire that made such a huge difference in performance. Don Garlits’ victory meant a lot to the company, as it sparked an incredible tidal wave of business, which continually increased as the years rolled on.