Southern California storms cancel PSCA race at Fontana

Jim Barrett was testing at Fontana last weekend. What a difference a few days can make weather-wise.  (James Drew photo)

Jim Barrett was testing at Fontana last weekend. What a difference a few days can make weather-wise. (James Drew photo)

Due to the threat of severe storms in the Southern California area expected to last the entire weekend, the Pacific Street Car Association and the Auto Club Dragway here have canceled this weekend’s Mickey Thompson Tires SoCal Nationals.

Both the track and the sanction hope to reschedule the race. The PSCA’s return to the track will be on April 25-27 for the Mickey Thompson Tires Spring Break Super Show.

The next PSCA race is March 21-23 at Sacramento Raceway Park for the Chris Alston’s Chassisworks NorCal Nationals.

Weather forces weekend schedule changes at Memphis

With every effort to insure safety for racers, spectators and crew, and best track conditions, Memphis International Raceway has announced schedule changes for week of February 27 – March 2.

Thursday, February 27 – Test N Tune has been canceled.
Saturday, March 1 – The Summit Bracket Racing Series presented by COMP Cams schedule changed as follows: Gates Open 1 p.m., Time Trials 2 p.m.
Sunday, March 2 – The Summit Bracket Racing Series presented by COMP Cams – currently no change in schedule. Gates Open 9 a.m., Church Service: 9:30 a.m., Time Trials 11 a.m.

Summit Bracket Series begins at MIR

Super Pro runner-up, Bryan Robinson  (photo courtesy MIR)

Super Pro runner-up, Bryan Robinson (photo courtesy MIR)

Opening day of Memphis International Raceway’s Summit Bracket Racing Series presented by COMP Cams saw over 100 entries among four classes.

See all the results at ****INSERT LINK****

The next MIR points meet for the Summit Bracket Racing Series is a doubleheader scheduled for this weekend Saturday, March 1, and Sunday, March 2. (MIR photo)

Timing glitch disrupts Rockingham’s ‘Racers Appreciation’ opener

It was not the way anyone wanted to start the 2014 racing season, but Rockingham Dragway owner Steve Earwood was trying to stay positive Monday, Feb. 24, after a glitch in his high-dollar timing system and an unrelated crash brought his 2014 Racers Appreciation bracket race to a halt well before the planned finish.

“Just one of those things where the stuff you weren’t even worried about is the stuff that breaks down,” Earwood said. “We’ve got the best CompuLink Timing system you can buy and it just malfunctioned at the worst possible time. I know the racers were frustrated, my people were frustrated, I was frustrated.

“The one thing I told the staff is that it’s better that it happened right now so that we can address it and get everything back up to speed,” he said. “The really disappointing thing was that we had great weather and everybody was excited.

“We tried to make up the time we lost with the timing system but then we had a crash that was totally beyond our control and, after talking with the racers, we decided that it was best to stop racing, regroup and try again later. It was a tough pill to swallow, I tell you.”

The resolution was to split the money among racers not yet eliminated from both the Saturday and Sunday shows.

Earwood is flying in CompuLink technician Bubba Corzine from Texas this week to completely diagnose the system to assure all glitches have been eliminated.

The track will open for test-and-tune drags the next two Sundays before playing host March 15-16 to the Southern Jr. Dragster Spring Nationals featuring three separate classes for juniors and a $1,500 top prize in Bracket 1.

SATURDAY

Derek Harris, Footbrake

Derek Harris, Footbrake

Top Eliminator round 4 winners – Durant Cottingham, Thomasville; Bobby Hardee, Mullins, S.C., 1973 Chevy Vega; Paul Warwick, Lumberton, 1969 Chevy Nova; Tommy Strickland, Raeford; Art Laselle, Fayetteville; Michael Morton, Jacksonville, 1970 Chevy Nova; Aaron “Hot Rod” Brock, Pageland, S.C., 1985 Chevy S-10; Nickey Miller, Lancaster, S.C.; Jeff Allen, Chadbourn, 1967 Chevy Camaro; Brandon Hutchens, Yadkinville; Timothy Allen, Wallace; Graham Burch, Richlands; Howard Brewer, Bennett, 1985 Ford Mustang; Jerry Martin, Raynor, S.C., 1981 Chevy Camaro; Marty Dabney, Troy, Va.; Eric Aman, Mt. Oliver; Chad Duke, Wilmington, 1970 Chevy Nova; John Bridges, Shelby; Lee Desist, Fayetteville, 1967 Chevy Camaro.

Footbrake round 4 winners – Ricky Bullock, Sanford; Tim Davis, Fayetteville; Tim Cowick, Mooresville; Hannah Blevins, Jefferson, S.C., 1968 Chevy; Kenny Roberts, Galivants Ferry, S.C., 1978 Chevy Nova; Jonathan Surrat, Charlotte; Art Laselle, Fayetteville; Derek Harris, McLeansville; Terry Rucker, Benson; Erica Aman, Mt. Olive; Bill Clardy, Loris, S.C.

Jr. Dragster round 4 winners – Kaylee Miller, Lancaster, S.C.; Tucker Creech, Clayton; Dawson Wiggins, Dunn.

SUNDAY

Jr. Dragster driver Noah Johnson

Jr. Dragster driver Noah Johnson

Top Eliminator round 5 winners – Michael Morton, Jacksonville; Michelle Pelo, Jacksonville, 1967 Chevy Camaro; Lee Desist, Fayetteville; Graham Burch, Richlands; David Lowe, Raeford, 1969 Chevy Camaro; Doug Walker, Greensboro; Bobby Hardee, Mullins, S.C., 1969 Chevy Nova.

Footbrake round 4 winners – Tim Davis, Fayetteville; Mallie Pennington, Goldsboro; Buddy Plyler, Pageland; Roy Davis, West Columbia, S.C.; Hannah Blevins, Jefferson; Samantha Thomas, Fairmont; Art Laselle, Fayetteville; Bill Clardy, Loris, S.C.; Rashad Alford, Benson; Tim Cowick, Mooresville; Terry Rucker, Benson; Jonathan Wiggins, Dunn, 1992 Ford Mustang; Edward Freeman, Westville, S.C.

Jr. Dragster round 4 winners – Connor Calder, St. Pauls; Noah Johnson, Fayetteville; Tucker Creech, Clayton. (photos courtesy Rockingham Dragway)

Yellowstone track returns to NHRA sanction

Yellowstone Drag Strip near Billings, Mont., has rejoined the NHRA Member Track Network. Located 15 miles northwest of Billings, Yellowstone Drag Strip was built in 2003 and sits on 15 acres. The facility features paved pit areas, six staging lanes, a large grandstand and a two-story brick tower among other amenities.

As an NHRA sanctioned track, the facility will be eligible to offer racers a variety of NHRA racing opportunities, including the NHRA Summit Racing Series, the NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League and the NHRA Drags: Street Legal Style presented by AAA. Additionally, the track has the opportunity to host NHRA’s specialty events, including the National DRAGSTER Challenge, NHRA Summit King of the Track, and NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League Challenge.

“We are very happy to be back under the NHRA banner,” said C.W. McCarthy, owner/manager of Yellowstone Drag Strip. “We have a lot of exciting events planned this year with ESPN coming for a track spotlight on June 7 and the return of the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series back to Montana in June.”

An NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Regional event will be showcased at Yellowstone on June 20-22, and will feature the Top Alcohol Dragsters and Top Alcohol Funny Cars along with hundreds of sportsman racers in 10 different classes from Comp Eliminator to Super Stock to Super Gas.

New West Coast Blown Alcohol Series Set for 2014

John Evans  (Paul Grant photo)

John Evans (Paul Grant photo)

A new six-race series called the “Dragparts.com Blown Alcohol Thunder Pro Comp Racing Series” sponsored by Good Vibrations Motorsports, Power Punch and NGK Spark Plugs will be competing at four West Coast tracks stretching from the Oregon-California border into Canada.

The new series is designed to include all types of funny cars, altereds and dragsters (rear engine and front engine) that are equipped with any type of Roots blower or injected on nitro. The format will be “Chicago Style” meaning each car will make two passes with the quickest two cars coming back for the final round. In the final, the car that reaches the finish line first wins the event. The cars leave the starting line heads up and there is no index or ET restrictions. Each car gets paid per round at every event and the overall winner of the series will win a $1,000 bonus at the end of the year.

May 10: Season Opener, Champion Raceway, Medford, OR
June 7-8: Old Time Drags, Eagle Motorplex, Ashcroft, BC, Canada
June 27-28: Nitro Nights Under the Lights, Renegade Raceway, Yakima, WA
July 18-20: Fox Hunt Drags, Spokane County Raceway, Spokane, WA
Aug. 15-17: Nitro Night of Fire, Spokane County Raceway
Sept. 27: Fall Canadian Classic, Eagle Motorplex

Race teams are not obligated to race the whole series. Blown Alcohol Thunder is not an association and there are no membership dues but teams must enter each race in advance to get free entry by going to www.capracing.com/blown_alcohol_thunder.html or by calling Rich Bailey at 503-370-9164.

Todd Silvey named new editor of IHRA’s Drag Review

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ToddSilvey-headThe International Hot Rod Association and IRG Sports + Entertainment have announced Todd Silvey as the new managing editor of Drag Review Magazine.

With more than 20 years of publishing experience, Silvey joins the IHRA team as content and creative director for DRM, which unveiled its all-new look and logo in February.

Silvey’s experience in the magazine industry includes more than two decades in motorsports as creator of Drag News Magazine back in 1988. The publication included a distribution to more than 15,000 readers and also spearheaded a racing series and annual drag racing trade shows throughout the United States.

Silvey has spent the past few years working as publication director for the Illinois Parks Association and at his own advertising agency, GoFast Communications Group.

Silvey will work alongside the staff at the Norwalk, Ohio, offices and a new satellite office in Athens, Ill., where he will head the creative team.

“I look forward to ramping up this increased effort for Drag Review Magazine as the IHRA kicks off fresh ideas and renewed energy in the 2014 season,” Silvey said.

Quick Fuel Technology Posts NHRA Contingency for Carbs and Fuel Pumps

QuickFuel-logoQuick Fuel Technology has been very involved with NHRA in getting its replacement-style carburetors accepted for Stock and Super Stock racing as the 30-year-old plus O.E. units are no longer available or viable.

QFT has been leading the charge with its new large-bore QFX™ Black Diamond® carburetors for the Super Comp, Top Sportsman and Top Dragster classes. Its recent introduction of a full line of racing fuel pumps that fulfill virtually all racing applications has prompted QFT™ to expand its racer support program with a substantial contingency payout for the 2014 NHRA race season.

To qualify, the racer must use the posted products and proper decals per NHRA requirements. The contingency program includes the NHRA Mello Yellow Drag Racing Series, the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series including the Jeg’s SPORTSnationals events and the Summit ET Series. Total postings for carburetors and fuel pumps total $418,400.

For a complete list of NHRA-accepted carburetors contact the QFT sales department. For Super Class carburetors and all other racing applications and QFT’s new racing fuel pumps go to www.QuickFuelTechnology.com.

Quick Fuel will also be providing racer technical support and services at all NHRA events at the Hyatt Racing Services trailer on the NHRA Midway.

Summit Bracket Racing Series at Memphis

Summit Bracket Racing Series at Memphis

The sound of engines filled the air on the opening day of the Summit Bracket Racing Series presented by COMP Cams with over 100 entries on the day among four classes. Cars testing added to the full day of racing. The skies were blue and the sun was shining, making great condition for the kick-off to the 14-race series.

Paul Cartwright, Director of Race & Facility Operations said, "It was great to see all the racers back at the facility after what seemed to be such a long winter. It's been just over three months since we've run a race; it felt good today."

R.T. Turbines Junior Dragster

With a full field of R.T. Turbines Junior Dragsters on hand for the opening event, the competition was close and the outcome was exciting. The first round saw defending 2013 Track Champion, Justin Poindexter, paired against older brother, Tyler, and you could tell Tyler wasn't having any of Justin taking the win light in the first pairing of the season. As the day went on these two brothers would find their way back to one another and in the final, the results would stay the same.

Tyler Poindexter took the win with a .046 reaction time, 8.013 ET at 78.08 mph off his 8.00 dial-in over younger brother, Justin, who had a .138 reaction time, 8.028 ET at 79.33 mph breaking out with his 8.07 dial-in.

Clay Combs from Bells, TN, rounded out the top three on the day.

B&B Towing Footbrake

The B&B Towing Footbrake class saw many drivers doing double duty - running a combination of the Footbrake and D.O.T. Street as well as Super Pro.  

The day capped off with Richard Sanders of Henning, TN, with a .065 reaction time, 7.609 ET at 89.03 mph off his 7.63 dial-in taking the win over Tim Pace of Booneville, MS, with a .020 reaction time, 10.584 ET at 64.75 mph off his 10.62 dial-in with a double breakout victory. Tim was going for the daily double after taking the win in D.O.T. Street, but came up a little short.

Semifinalists in the class were Michael Crass of Murray, KY, and Morgaen Crass of Murray, KY. Rounding out the money earners with the quarterfinalists were David Ciarloni, Greg Rushing and John Castellaw III.

NHRA sportsman at Phoenix

NHRA sportsman at Phoenix

OLPIN, TORRES LEAD WINNERS AT WILD HORSE

Ed Olpin and Val Torres Jr. each scored victories at the CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Nationals at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park on Feb. 9th as Olpin grabbed his fourth NHRA national event win and Torres his third.

Olpin, Pleasant Grove, Utah, was off the line first in his ’68 Camaro and won a close double break out Top Sportsman final against Paul Mitsos, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. Olpin crossed the finish line in 7.366 seconds at 187.13 mph to Mitsos’ quicker 7.355, 185.08.

Torres (near lane), Chino Hills, Calif., took the Top Dragster trophy in 6.694 seconds at 198.55 mph as he held off Phil Unruh, McPherson, Kan., 6.548, 210.77.  Torres took the early lead and was better at the finish line for the win.

Dan Fletcher continued to add wins to his resume picking up his 88th national event trophy out of Churchville, N.Y. His familiar ’69 Camaro faced off with Scott Pearson, Stewartville, Minn., and his ’70 AMX.  Pearson left early with a foul start handing the win to Fletcher.