Barbara Roufs – An Iconic Drag Racing Trophy Girl Legend

Barbara Roufs – An Iconic Drag Racing Trophy Girl Legend
Image Source – Instagram

Barbara Roufs, a name etched in the history of drag racing, captivated audiences in the 1970s with her iconic presence as a trophy girl. Let’s delve into the extraordinary life of Barbara, exploring her roots, rise to fame, personal journey, and the lasting legacy she left behind.

Barbara Roufs Early Days in California

Barbara Roufs, born in 1944 in Southern California, had a childhood surrounded by the vibrant energy of the West Coast. Her parents, Thelma Ruby Riles and Wayne Eldon Riley, laid the foundation for her journey, instilling values that would shape her into the woman she became.

Family Roots and Childhood

Growing up with three siblings—Vivian Deaton, James Riley, and Bruce Riley—Barbara’s household was filled with love and camaraderie. An adopted brother, Ben Gube, added to the diverse family dynamics. Barbara’s mother, Thelma, was a respected figure in Clovis, running a beauty salon for five decades and contributing her musical talents to various churches.

Wayne Eldon Riley, Barbara’s father, found joy in motorcycles and racing at the Kearney Bowl. The family’s connection to the world of engines and speed might have planted the seeds of Barbara’s future in drag racing.

Barbara Roufs Journey to Stardom

Barbara’s fascination with drag racing ignited in her post-study years. Instead of taking the driver’s seat, she embraced the role of a trophy girl—a decision that would define her legacy.

The Evolution of Trophy Girls in the 1970s

The 1970s marked a shift in the drag racing scene, with trophy girls becoming an integral part of the competition. Unlike their predecessors, these women, including Barbara, embraced a more daring dress code. Short shorts replaced heavy garments, and free-flowing hair symbolized a departure from tradition.

Barbara’s Unique Style and Impact

Barbara Roufs emerged as a standout figure among drag racing trophy girls. At 29, she brought a mature elegance to the scene. Known for her broad straightened hair and 60s gogo boots, Barbara’s stunning looks made her a favorite among racers, fans, and marketing campaigns.

Barbara’s Personal Life

While Barbara’s professional life in the racing world flourished, her personal life unfolded with its own set of stories.

barbara roufs family
Image Source – Instagram

A Closer Look at Barbara Roufs Family

Barbara’s parents, Thelma and Wayne, were a cherished couple, earning the distinction of being the first inducted into the Clovis Hall of Fame. The family shared a love for motorcycles, fishing, and the arts.

The Mystery Husband and the Birth of Jet Dougherty

Details about Barbara Roufs husband remain elusive, but her marriage bore fruit in the form of a daughter, Jet Dougherty. Jet, born when Barbara was 29, adds a layer of mystery to Barbara’s personal narrative.

The Tragic End: Unraveling the Cause of Barbara Roufs Death

In a poignant turn of events, Barbara met a tragic end in January 1991. The cause of her death was sui*cide, leaving a void in the drag racing community. The reasons behind her decision remain undisclosed.

A Legacy Remembered

Barbara’s impact on drag racing extended beyond her role as a trophy girl. Her contribution to the 1970s drag racing scene and her unique style made her a beloved figure.

barbara roufs net worth
Image Source – Instagram

Unveiling Barbara Roufs Net Worth

While the exact earnings of trophy girls in the 70s remain unknown, Barbara’s net worth is estimated to be around $1.5 million. Iconic photos from that era, featuring Barbara, continue to be sold online.

Barbara’s Contribution to Drag Racing

During the late 1960s and early 1970s, Barbara played a pivotal role in the evolution of drag racing. The transition from the 60s’ golden age to the revamped 70s saw Barbara awarding trophies to winners, bringing glamour to the competition.

Fast Facts: Barbara Roufs Life in a Glance

  • What happened to Barbara Roufs? Unfortunately, she died in January 1991 at the age of 47.
  • Who is Barbara Roufs Daughter? Jet Dougherty is Barbara’s daughter.
  • What is Barbara Roufs measurement? Her height was 5 feet 5 inches or 165 centimeters, and her weight was 55 kilograms or 118 pounds.
  • Where did Barbara live? She lived with her family in Fresno, California, United States.
  • Did Barbara Roufs have siblings? Her siblings are Vivian Deaton, James Riley, Bruce Riley, and Ben Gube.
  • Who was Barbara Roufs photographer? Her photographer was Tom West.
  • What is Barbara’s net worth? She had an approximate worth of about $1.5 million.


In conclusion, Barbara Roufs’ journey from a Californian childhood to the heights of drag racing fame is a testament to her unique spirit and enduring legacy. As fans continue to remember her contributions, Barbara remains an unforgettable icon in the annals of drag racing history.

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