Racer/Weed Dealer Randy Lanier Recounts His Wild Ride in New Book


Randy Lanier needed to be a race automotive driver from a really younger age, with desires of competing in top-tier occasions such because the Indianapolis 500. However for a South Florida hippy, and small-time weed seller, within the Nineteen Sixties, this objective was out of attain.

“To essentially be an up-front runner in racing, it takes not solely a crew, however a crew with fairly a little bit of funds,” Lanier informed Automobile and Driver on the event of the publication of his new memoir Survival of the Quickest: Weed, Velocity, and the Eighties Drug Scandal that Shocked the Sports activities World, which he wrote with automotive journalist and creator A.J. Baime (Go Like Hell, The Arsenal of Democracy).

In an effort to purchase the cash he wanted to be aggressive on the monitor, Lanier got here up with a novel plan. He would turn into head of one of many largest marijuana smuggling operations in American historical past, increasing his enterprise till he was delivery in tons of of 1000’s of kilos of weed from South America in a single haul.

Courtesy of Randy Lanier

Courtesy of Randy Lanier

The impartial racing crew he based with the income, Blue Thunder, was fairly profitable. In its first 12 months, the crew received the IMSA Camel GT sequence. In 1986, Lanier raced within the Indy 500 and was named Rookie of the Yr. However the glory was short-lived. His rising efforts coincided with the rising efforts of the so-called Warfare on Medicine. Dwelling like a real-life Miami Vice unhealthy man caught up with him. In 1987, Lanier was arrested and given a sentence of life in jail with out parole.

Courtesy of Randy Lanier

The detailed tales of South American drug lords, large-scale weed cultivation, quick boats, even quicker vehicles (on and off the monitor), wild partying, and Miami actual property are fascinating. As is the practically schematic consideration to element Lanier dropped at his smuggling operation, which featured transportable weed-bale transporting shifting walkways; unsuspecting delivery crews; dummy cargo (together with a zillion tons of cement); large cargo vessels with secret compartments; and CIA-level stakeouts, surveillance, and gadgetry.

Much more attention-grabbing, maybe, is the story of Lanier’s reformation in jail, and (spoiler alert) his eventual launch. This appeared significantly compelling, because it labored in direct distinction to the extraordinarily punitive nature of the up to date legal justice system.

“Jail shouldn’t be arrange in any respect for reflection and self-growth in any respect,” Lanier mentioned. “It’s arrange for recidivism.” Lanier credited his eventual parole, after 27 years of incarceration—seven of them in solitary confinement—to his spirituality. Youthful work with a guru taught him the power to vary his expertise by altering his notion. He parlayed this attitudinal positivity into studying, learning, and considering. Ultimately, he turned a mentor, a yoga teacher, and a suicide watch volunteer—skilled to take a seat and speak with individuals who tried to take their life—in jail.

Now on the skin, Lanier has devoted his life to offering companies, consolation, and finally freedom to different non-violent hashish offenders. He presently accomplishes these campaigns and actions by his not-for-profit, Freedom Develop. “These individuals shouldn’t be presently incarcerated when there are 38 states, and all these companies, making hundreds of thousands of {dollars} promoting 1000’s of kilos of hashish, legally, each week,” Lanier mentioned. “These individuals want to return residence.”

To fund his initiative, he now has a license from the state of New Jersey to legally domesticate weed.

Courtesy of Randy Lanier

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