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Diamond Pistons is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. Take a look back at the company’s humble roots, and rich, racing heritage. In the early days of hot rodding, those who sought optimum performance became innovators, pushing the envelope of speed in the quest for racing glory. Diamond Pistons, founded in 1968–the heyday of muscle cars and drag racing– was born of that innovation and continues today to be a driving force in performance and racing piston design.

Its original founders, “Diamond” Jim Cavallaro, Nick Plantas and Butch Eldkins, were a group of racers and entrepreneurs who combined resources to form the company’s first iteration. It didn’t take long for them to carve a niche in the high-performance game, with Diamond quickly becoming involved with Super Stock and Pro Stock in the early ‘70s. Like many companies of that ilk and era, Diamond wasn’t focused on doing just one thing. Instead, they did it all. Cylinder head porting, engine building, and all other manner of performance took place under Diamond’s roof.