Tue, 2017-10-24 23:00
It is with very heavy hearts that we report Brett Henry passed away after a racing accident that occurred Saturday at the California Hot Rod Reunion. NHRA, the NHRA Motorsports Museum, Auto Club Famoso Raceway and the entire racing community extend their deepest condolences and their prayers to the participant’s family and friends. We also ask that everyone respect the family’s privacy during this difficult time.
by Bobby Bennett Tue, 2017-10-24 20:43
Nostalgia Top Fuel champion Jim Murphy loves the Starfish story.
The veteran drag racer had just captured his sixth drag racing series championship (five in the Heritage Series and one in AHRA) yet, he couldn't seem to get the fictional, but inspirational tale out of his head.
For those unfamiliar with the story by Loren Eiseley, an elderly man happens upon a young man on the beach partaking in what appeared to be a futile act. The kid was surrounded by thousands of starfish, which has washed ashore and were in imminent danger of drying out in the sun before high tide could rescue them. One at a time, the kid was tossing them in the ocean.
by Bobby Bennett Mon, 2017-10-23 23:10
Brant Inglis knew a long time ago he was born with an old soul. Understand, your typical 17-year old doesn't usually restore a flathead-powered, front-engine dragster, a car likely built before his parents were of driving age.
Inglis turned 26 on October 21, the second day of the 2017 NHRA California Hot Rod Reunion, and to see the smile on his face, there was nowhere else he would have rather been; even if it meant traveling 2,500 miles to participate.
"This is where I belong," Inglis said. Before 2002 I was in a rear engine dragster, I ran Jr. Dragsters. Carbon fiber was all the rage; we got to have this, we’ve got to have a computer. All I wanted to do was put a brake handle in the race car.
by Bobby Bennett Mon, 2017-10-23 21:20
AA/FC racer Rob Markworth hoped one day his big opportunity would come, and it did. It wasn't quite what he envisioned.
Markworth returned as the driver of the War Horse at the California Hot Rod Reunion, the first official race for the storied race car back in action for the first time at the track where its original driver died following an accident while racing at Auto Club Famoso Raceway on June 28, 2015.
Markworth, once a crewmember on the famed Mustang Funny Car, was given the opportunity to drive earlier this year.
by Bobby Bennett Mon, 2017-10-23 16:22
Matt Bynum, who works his 9-5 as the supercharger and ignition specialist for the DHL Funny Car driven by J.R. Todd, has a second home over in the NHRA's Heritage Series driving the Matthews Motorsports-owned Nitro Nick Camaro AA/FC. Sunday in Bakersfield at the California Hot Rod Hot Rod Reunion, he not only established a new speed record for the class at 263.05 miles per hour, but also drove his way to a runner-up finish, losing a tight race to Bobby Cottrell.
As impressive as Bynum's performances were in the series of yesteryear, he might have something bigger in the land of the here and now.
Recently, Bynum made some laps in the Lucas Oil-sponsored Toyota Funny Car for Del Worsham. He began the licensing process for the Big Show.
by Bobby Bennett Mon, 2017-10-23 11:12
Jim Young admits he lurked in the shadows, perfectly content to let championship combatants Jim Murphy and Mendy Fry snag all the headlines during the California Hot Rod Reunion. In the end, the only headline he wanted was the event championship.
In an anticlimactic final round, Young match raced Adama Sorokin in a guaranteed victory when Murphy was unable to make the semi-final call following a dust-up with the retaining wall in the shutdown area following a semi-final round win.
Mon, 2017-10-23 10:23
Lizzy Musi and Brad McCoy raced to victory Sunday for the second consecutive race at the Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) World Finals at Virginia Motorsports Park, winning in Switzer Dynamics Pro Nitrous presented by MoTeC and Drag 965 Pro Extreme Motorcycle, respectively. John Montecalvo won in Extreme Pro Stock during the postponed eliminations.
Pro Extreme low qualifier Terry Leggett earned the event win Saturday night when he defeated world championship runner-up Mattias Wulcan. The Andy McCoy Race Cars Pro Boost event win was awarded to 2017 world champion Jose Gonzales, who was set to face El General Racing teammate Eric Dillard in the final round. Gonzales and Dillard were unable to return for the postponed eliminations Sunday morning.
by Bobby Bennett Mon, 2017-10-23 00:52
Nostalgia Funny Car driver, and newly christened 7.0 Pro champion Bobby Cottrell couldn't help but wonder.
What if he had a full season under his belt?
Cottrell finished third in the championship points on the strength of a totally dominating AA/FC win at the California Hot Rod Reunion behind the wheel of Bucky Austin's Funny Car beating an upset-minded Matt Bynum in the final round.
by Bobby Bennett; Photo by Chris Graves Sun, 2017-10-22 14:48
The look on Jason Rupert's face told the story. His oil soaked-shirt and the molten pieces of aluminum on the rag in his hand provided the gory details.
On this day, Rupert, the six-time AA/FC champion had scored a pyrrhic victory; a victory at too high of a cost.
Rupert ran a 5.654 elapsed time, 248.43, a pass which secured victory at the rain-delayed Heritage Series event from Boise, Idaho, over Ryan Hodgson. The run would also have been second quickest in the field, but because his wounded engine laid oil down on the racing surface, it was disallowed leaving him with no qualifying run despite three consecutive top three performances.
Sun, 2017-10-22 09:23
Pro Extreme driver Terry Leggett backed up his No. 1 qualifying effort when he won the Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) World Finals at Virginia Motorsports Park Saturday night. All other professional-class final rounds and sportsman eliminations were postponed until Sunday morning.
In addition to deciding the Pro Extreme event winner, the PDRA crowned world champions in four of the five professional classes during the completed rounds of elimination.