Saturday, March 31, 2012

Spencer Hyde to drive new car in Quick 32 Sportsman Series

Top Sportsman racer will compete with a 1968 Camaro in popular drag race series

STRATFORD, ONTARIO (March 30, 2012) – Spencer Hyde will be racing a new car in the Quick 32 Sportsman Series presented by NAPA Auto Parts this year, and he will be concentrating on more consistency. 

And with the new car, the driver of the Hyde Racing Top Sportsman added this car will not use nitrous.

We were having trouble with the nitrous setup, said the full-time college student. We wanted to get rid of it completely as we found it finicky.

And without the nitrous, we think it will be one more positive step to help us get down the track.

Hyde will be driving the former Keeling Motorsports 1968 Camaro, a Jerry Bickel Race Cars product which will be powered by a 762-cubic inch engine running carburetors, built by Engine Research & Development (ERD). A Coan Engineering transmission sits behind the big-block, which also utilizes and ERD-inspired fuel system.
Hyde said he anticipates no big issues getting into the Camaro this season. He raced a Top Sportsman Cobalt last year, and the engine in that car went into his sister Sydnie's Top Dragster for 2012.

I don't think I'll notice any difference between the Cobalt and the Camaro, he said. The Camaro has a 113-inch wheelbase like a Pro Modified and it should handle better. Also the new car is set up inside identical to the Cobalt.

Hyde qualified the Cobalt well last year, including a couple of number one spots, but the team had problems going rounds, and Hyde believes the team will have more success and will be more consistent with the new set-up. The Cobalt would run the quarter-mile in the 6.77-second range at speeds over 200 mph, and he is expecting this performance from the new car.

Crew chief for the Camaro is Ron Hyde, with help coming from Jack Hyde, Murray Hyde, Peter Hyde, and Dominique Bushfield. He also wanted to thank Carl Spiering, Rob, and Terry at ERD for their help with the effort.

Sponsorship for the Hyde Racing Team, which is owned and operated by Peter and Lisa Hyde, comes from NAPA Auto Parts, Ideal Supply, Hyde Construction, Transit Petroleum, Hyde Electric, Dordan Mechanical, Raedon Excavating, Ronnoco Sales, NA Engineering Associates, Wilhelm Concrete, Steve Smith Construction, Sutton Group (Paul Graham) and Orr Insurance, Coors Light (Jeff Carr), Ramseyer Earthworks, Schultz Plumbing, Remex Trucking, iLOOKABOUT and the Tim Horton's  at Ontario and Erie in Stratford.
Hyde believes with the new car and a new focus, the team will be a player in the upcoming Quick 32 Sportsman Series, but he does realize the competition will be tougher than ever.

The racing gets tougher each year, he noted. The competition is getting stiff and the cars are now going real fast.

Hyde is thankful to his Dad and Mom, Peter and Lisa Hyde and his sister Sydnie.

The Quick 32 Sportsman Series presented by NAPA Auto Parts kicks off its 2012 season with the Victoria Day Weekend Challenge May 18-20 at the Cayuga Dragway of Toronto Motorsports Park, the first of six events. 

The Quick 32 Sportsman Series, will race six times in 2012. The series also competes with its two companion series, the Pro Modified Racing Association, and the Pro Bike & Sled Series, offering a solid and full package of drag racing action.

For more information contact Bruce F. Mehlenbacher at

Photo Credit: Dave Erauw Photography ~



LAS VEGAS – Robert Hight will attempt to earn his third consecutive Funny Car victory of the season Sunday from the No. 1 qualifying position at the NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Morgan Lucas (Top Fuel) and Jason Line (Pro Stock) also will lead their categories into tomorrow’s 11 a.m. eliminations as the No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series event.

Hight, the defending winner of this event, raced to his second No. 1 of the season and  41st of his career with a performance of 4.132 seconds at 310.41 mph in his Auto Club Ford Mustang. Hight, who earned victories at Phoenix and Gainesville, Fla. in the last two events, will face veteran independent racer Terry Haddock in the first round.

“Terry Haddock, he’s been a spoiler before,” Hight said. “He’d like nothing more than to knock us out first round, so we’ve got to be on our game tomorrow. I think it’s supposed to be a little cooler tomorrow. It’s going to be exciting. You’re going to see a lot of runs at the finish line that you’re going to need that instant-replay camera to tell who won.”

Hight claimed the top spot on the day’s final qualifying run when he outran fellow Ford driver Bob Tasca, who moved to second in the lineup with an impressive 4.134 at 307.86. Hight tied his top performance of 4.132 in his Mustang. The thrilling side-by-side race gave fans a preview of what to expect tomorrow.

“The last qualifying run, if you were a fan in the stands, that was something to see,” Hight said. “I saw Courtney [Force] run the first .14 out there, and then the .14s just kept coming and coming. I knew some of those cars in front of me were capable [of going to No. 1]. Jimmy [Prock, crew chief] was hoping for more than the .13, and it blew up right in the lights, too. I don’t know, maybe it was starting to hurt itself a little bit. That’s how close this class is: two-thousandths ahead of No. 2. If you look at the top five, it’s less than a hundredth of a second. That is Pro Stock racing there.”

Some intriguing matchups will highlight the first round of action in Funny Car. Veterans and former teammates John Force and Gary Densham will meet, as will brothers Cruz and Tony Pedregon. Current points leader Mike Neff and defending world champ Matt Hagan also will square off in a titan battle. Ron Capps, who won the fall race here last year, failed to qualify in his NAPA Dodge Charger.  

In Top Fuel, Lucas earned his third No. 1 of the season and seventh of his career with his run from Friday, a performance of 3.817 at 321.96 in his GEICO/Lucas Oil dragster. Lucas, who won three weeks ago in Gainesville, Fla., will face Steve Faria in the opening round.

“After the way the car has run, I’m just happy to get in the thing and hit the gas,” Lucas said. “That last run today, it was just a good example of consistency. That’s what we were trying to do, just go up there and a low 3.9 just in case we get track conditions similar to that we know what the car is capable of. We keep trying new things to see exactly what the car is going to do, and it seems to be responding real well.”

Lucas, who advanced to his first career final at this track in 2004, says his team is in a groove and hitting on all cylinders. He didn’t win that race here eight years ago, but hopes to keep his current hot streak going tomorrow and notch his first win at The Strip.

“It’s such a great group of guys; It’s like a fraternity around there,” Lucas said of his GEICO team. “It’s probably the best group of people I’ve had to work with as a whole. Aaron [Brooks, crew chief] and I have an easy rapport with each other. We grew up a half an hour from each other, so we kind of understand the Southern California thing, I guess. It’s just made for a good fit.”

Spencer Massey was second with a 3.817 at 322.88 in the FRAM dragster, while Clay Millican was third overall in his Parts Plus dragster with a 3.844 at 318.77. Series leader Tony Schumacher will start fourth in his U.S. Army dragster (3.849, 318.09) and will face Troy Buff in the first round.

In Pro Stock, Line’s Friday run of 6.659 at 207.34 in his Summit Racing Equipment Pontiac GXP secured his 26th career No. 1 position and the second of the season. Line will meet V Gaines in the first round.

“The guys on the team did a great job, and that’s good because I have really gotten a lot of pressure from [NHRA announcer] Bob Frey lately [laughing],” Line said. “I was shocked that Mike Edwards didn’t end up as No. 1, because he always runs well here. He told me after the last round, ‘This is the one place where I can beat you, and now you’ve taken that away from me.’ We’re struggling with Greg [Anderson’s] car right now, but we hope to have it straightened out by tomorrow. We can’t get the new Camaro soon enough for him.”

Edwards, who won both races here last year and holds both ends of the Pro Stock track record in his Penhall/Interstate Batteries Pontiac, will start in the second spot and face Lucas Oil Ford Mustang driver Larry Morgan in the opening round. Points leader Anderson, who posted a 6.697 at 206.35 in his Summit Racing Pontiac, will start sixth and face Chris McGaha in the first round.

LAS VEGAS -- Sunday's first-round pairings for professional eliminations for the 13th annual NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the fourth of 23 events in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series.  Pairings based on results in qualifying, which ended Saturday. DNQs listed below pairings.

Top Fuel -- 1. Morgan Lucas, 3.817 seconds, 321.96 mph  vs. 16. Steve Faria, 4.400, 229.08; 2. Spencer Massey, 3.825, 322.88  vs. 15. Steven Chrisman, 4.214, 279.96; 3. Clay Millican, 3.844, 318.77  vs. 14. David Grubnic, 3.992, 308.50; 4. Tony Schumacher, 3.849, 318.09  vs. 13. Troy Buff, 3.981, 299.20; 5. Shawn Langdon, 3.851, 321.81  vs. 12. Antron Brown, 3.966, 311.34; 6. Bob Vandergriff, 3.871, 322.81  vs. 11. Steve Torrence, 3.960, 308.99; 7. Khalid alBalooshi, 3.889, 316.45  vs. 10. Terry McMillen, 3.959, 280.66; 8. Doug Kalitta, 3.894, 315.78  vs. 9. Brandon Bernstein, 3.933, 311.56. Did Not Qualify: 17. Damien Harris, 4.417, 231.28; 18. Cory McClenathan, 4.866, 152.11.

Funny Car -- 1. Robert Hight, Ford Mustang, 4.132, 310.98  vs. 16. Terry Haddock, Chevy Impala, 4.282, 292.01; 2. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 4.134, 307.86  vs. 15. Jeff Arend, Toyota Solara, 4.273, 299.46; 3. Jack Beckman, Dodge Charger, 4.146, 302.82  vs. 14. Alexis DeJoria, Toyota Camary, 4.247, 296.96; 4. Courtney Force, Mustang, 4.147, 309.91  vs. 13. Johnny Gray, Charger, 4.244, 304.39; 5. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 4.147, 302.35  vs. 12. Bob Bode, Impala, 4.242, 295.40; 6. Cruz Pedregon, Solara, 4.148, 306.19  vs. 11. Tony Pedregon, Impala, 4.212, 293.73; 7. Mike Neff, Mustang, 4.153, 303.78  vs. 10. Matt Hagan, Charger, 4.196, 299.06; 8. Gary Densham, Charger, 4.181, 300.00  vs. 9. John Force, Mustang, 4.196, 305.77. Did Not Qualify: 17. Jon Capps, 4.335, 287.60; 18. Todd Lesenko, 4.462, 295.53; 19. Jim Head, 4.733, 265.59; 20. Jeff Diehl, 5.957, 125.03; 21. Ron Capps, 6.024, 114.16; 22. James Day, 6.980, 173.29.

Pro Stock -- 1. Jason Line, Pontiac GXP, 6.659, 207.34  vs. 16. V. Gaines, Dodge Avenger, 6.786, 204.60; 2. Mike Edwards, GXP, 6.669, 207.37  vs. 15. Larry Morgan, Ford Mustang, 6.753, 205.19; 3. Allen Johnson, Avenger, 6.678, 206.92  vs. 14. Shane Gray, GXP, 6.742, 205.38; 4. Ron Krisher, GXP, 6.690, 206.54  vs. 13. Kurt Johnson, GXP, 6.731, 205.38; 5. Rodger Brogdon, GXP, 6.693, 206.39  vs. 12. Greg Stanfield, Chevy Camaro, 6.727, 205.10; 6. Greg Anderson, GXP, 6.697, 206.35  vs. 11. Chris McGaha, Avenger, 6.721, 205.60; 7. Ronnie Humphrey, GXP, 6.706, 206.45  vs. 10. Erica Enders, Chevy Cobalt, 6.721, 205.88; 8. Vincent Nobile, Avenger, 6.706, 205.98  vs. 9.Jeg Coughlin, Avenger, 6.713, 205.66. Did Not Qualify: 17. Steve Kent, 6.790, 205.04; 18. Gordie Rivera, 6.835, 201.28.

Castellana’s Qualifying Lead In Two Classes Highlights CarSafe Dragpalooza VIII, 2012 ADRL Tour Kick-Off

BAYTOWN, TEXAS (March 30, 2012) – Mike Castellana's 2012 season in the American Drag Racing League (ADRL) is picking up right where his 2011 left off.

Last year's world champion in Pro Nitrous started off the 2012 ADRL Tour in fine fashion, taking the top qualifying spot in both Pro Nitrous and Pro Modified after two rounds of qualifying on Friday at ADRL CarSafe Dragpalooza VIII at Royal Purple Raceway in Houston.

Driving a pair of 2012 RJ Race Cars Camaros and competing in two classes at once for the first time in his storied career, Castellana and his Al-Anabi Racing team were incredible out of the gates, running 3.841 at 195.68 miles per hour in Pro Nitrous and 3.884 at 194.27 mph in Aeromotive Fuel Systems Pro Modified.

"Actually, we just picked up the (Pro Nitrous) car not even a week ago, so that's all Shannon (Jenkins) and the crew," Castellana said. "Shannon and the rest of the team make it a lot easier on me. I've got the easy part."

It is already a record-setting event in one respect, as the car count for the 2012 rendition of Dragpalooza is the most ever in the eight-year history of the ADRL's season-opening race.

Other No. 1 qualifiers through two rounds of qualifying include Alex Hossler (Pro Extreme), Billy Glidden (Mickey Thompson Extreme 10.5), Casey Stemper (Pro Extreme Motorcycle), Cary Goforth (Extreme Pro Stock), Chuck Mohn (Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman).

Chris Holbrook jumped to the top spot during the debut of the revolutionary new SuperCar Showdown, running an impressive 5.756 at 120.21 mph at the wheel of his 2012 Mustang.

Joseph Teuton, driving a 2011 Challenger, is right behind with a 5.885 at 118.74 mph as the class made a strong immediate impression at Royal Purple Raceway.

The final round of qualifying begins at 12 p.m. on Saturday, with eliminations of CarSafe Dragpalooza VIII to follow.

Castellana will be the favorite in two classes, but he has plenty of company at the top. Jeff Naiser is right behind in Aeromotive Pro Modified with a 3.895, while John Decerbo (3.881), Bob Rahaim (3.882) and Rickie Jones (3.888), sponsored by Summit Racing Equipment, are all within striking distance.

"This feels good. We had a good day, but Saturday can be totally different," Castellana said. "There's a lot of guys in both of these classes who are capable of running well."

It was Von Smith who impressed off the bat in Pro Extreme, running a 3.685, but Hossler topped him with a brilliant performance under the lights, running 3.658 at 206.26 mph.

Driving a Tim McAmis Race Cars '68 Camaro tuned by the legendary Frank Manzo, Hossler is quickly taking advantage of an opportunity he is relishing.

"Frank is the man and you can't argue with his success," Hossler said. "I can't begin to tell you how grateful I am to be in this position. What a dream. (KH Al-Thani) did a phenomenal job when he was driving this car, and I'm just going to do what Frank tells me to do."

Todd Tutterow is the only other driver in the 24-car field to run in the 3.60s, going 3.694 to join Hossler and Smith in the top three. Hossler struggled on his first pass, but delivered later with a run that he hopes is a sign of things to come.

"I made a driver error in the first session and was able to come back and not hit anything, and I managed to go to low elapsed time," Hossler said. "Hopefully it will hold and we can build on it from there."

Castellana wasn't the only 2011 world champion off to a hot start in the new season, as Cary Goforth, the 2011 ADRL Driver of the Year, quickly grabbed the reigns again in Extreme Pro Stock.

Looking to repeat his victory at Royal Purple Raceway that kick-started his 2011 championship season, Goforth and his Jerry Haas Race Cars GXP was remarkable right off the trailer, running a 4.069 to lead the way.

"That's nice to do that and certainly not something we were expecting," Goforth said. "We were working hard all winter, but I'm worrying about what everyone else is doing, too. I felt like a 4.08 would have been stout, so we didn't expect that."

It was another close field in the highly-competitive XPS class, with Pete Berner and his Summit Racing team right behind at 4.084. Cale Aronson is currently third with a career-best 4.088, but Goforth, who cut a strong light on his second pass, feels confident heading into eliminations.

"If we keep running like that and cutting good lights, someone's going to have to work to get it," Goforth said.

Billy Glidden is back to the top spot in Mickey Thompson Extreme 10.5, blowing away the field on his first pass of the day. His 3.921 at 190.14 mph, nearly a career-best speed, gave him a huge advantage after the first round.

Alan Pittman caught up with a strong 3.931 in the evening, but Glidden remained optimistic with his start.

"I'm very happy with that. I intentionally had it safe to get down the track and I'm really pleased with how we did," Glidden said. "We ran into some things after Ennis (in October of 2011) that we weren't going to incorporate and three weeks ago, we decided to do it."

Todd Moyer is currently third at 4.020. Glidden, who hit a career-best of 3.882 last October, thinks it will be possible to match that number on Saturday.

"That was the first run with the changes I've made, and I think it ran really, really nice. For sure, I think it can run a 3.88 and maybe a 3.87," Glidden said. "I feel like if I can stay up with everything tune-up wise, I should be able to run better."

After two finals appearances in 2011, including one at the season-ending World Finals in Dallas, Casey Stemper continued to have momentum in Texas, running a 4.123 at 171.34 mph. Joining him in the 4.10s are David Norris (4.164), Dave Vantine (4.179), Eric McKinney (4.189) and Charlie Prophit (4.195).

"Texas has definitely had some good luck for us, but there's a lot of strong contenders out there," Stemper said. "We're going into race mode (on Saturday), but we definitely want to keep improving.

"We've got something to work with and now we want to get it into the 4.00s."

Racing for the first time as part of Dragpalooza VIII and starting its first full season in the ADRL, the Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman class delivered strong results with a talent-filled 18-car field.

Taking the top spot after two rounds of qualifying was Chuck Mohn, who ran a 4.113 at 175.89 mph.

It's enough to put him just ahead of Ronnie Davis and his 4.139 at 177.67 mph.

Joining them as the only drivers to reach the 4.10s in Summit Racing Top Sportsman was Jerry Holt, who is currently in third with a 4.152 at 175.25 mph.

In Pro Junior Dragster, Corey Tankersley has the current No. 1 spot in qualifying, running a 7.907, a class-best .007 difference from his 7.90 index.

Wild night of racing concludes Friday San Antonio Nitro Jam

SAN ANTONIO -- Friday's final results from the IHRA San Antonio Nitro Jam Day One at San Antonio Raceway. The race is the second of eight in the 2012 Nitro Jam Series:

John Hale, Addison, Texas, '69 Mustang, 10.863, 78.95 def. Peter Gallen, Broomall, Pa., '76 Monza, broke.

Bill Evans, Miramar, Fla., dragster, 5.539, 250.28 def. Kristen Dennis, Magnolia, Texas, dragster, 6.024, 208.53.

Ron Maroney, Gilbert, Ariz., '32 Bantam, 6.531, 191.65 def. Kyle Hough, Las Vegas, Nev., '23 roadster, 6.816, 206.42.

Jay Turner, Julian, N.C., 6.526, 208.53 def. Jake Stordeur, Loveland, Ohio, 7.605, 155.82.

SAN ANTONIO -- Final round-by-round results from the IHRA San Antonio Nitro Jam Day One at San Antonio Raceway, the second of eight events in the 2012 Nitro Jam Series:


ROUND ONE -- Jay Turner, 6.470, 198.59 def. Steve Dorn, 9.266, 103.28; Jake Stordeur, 7.358, 170.07 def. Mike Scott, 11.150, 91.28;
CONSOLATION -- S. Dorn, 9.308, 96.75 def. M. Scott, 10.975, 86.03;
FINAL -- J. Turner, 6.526, 208.53 def. J. Stordeur, 7.605, 155.82.


ROUND ONE -- Tim Boychuk, Pontiac Firebird, 6.065, 231.48 def. James Day, Pontiac Trans Am, 6.588, 158.06; Brad Thompson, Chevy Nova, 6.152, 204.45 was unopposed; Peter Gallen, Chevy Monza, 5.731, 240.64 def. Mitch King, Plymouth Cuda, 5.992, 220.16; John Hale, Ford Mustang, 5.872, 235.60 def. Mike Savage, Plymouth Barracuda, 8.592, 107.89;
CONSOLATION -- D. Pulde, 5.933, 224.22 def. M. Savage, 6.026, 236.59; M. King, 6.204, 185.03 def. B. Thompson, 6.710, 157.40; T. Boychuk, 5.924, 235.60 was unopposed;
FINAL -- J. Hale, 10.863, 78.95 def. P. Gallen, broke.


ROUND ONE -- Cherissa Smallwood, Innovative, broke def. Robin Samsel, Dragster, broke; Kristen Dennis, Monden, 5.926, 232.44 def. Bill Evans, Spitzer, 5.523, 246.04;
CONSOLATION -- C. Smallwood, 5.851, 246.44 def. R. Samsel, broke;
FINAL -- B. Evans, 5.539, 250.28 def. K. Dennis, 6.024, 208.53.


ROUND ONE -- Ron Maroney, Bantam, 6.525, 213.78 def. Jason Richey, Bantam, foul; Kyle Hough, '-T Ford, 11.804, 79.72 def. Randy Bradford, Fiat Topolino, foul;
CONSOLATION -- J. Richey, 6.282, 244.43 def. R. Bradford, 7.269, 197.98;
FINAL -- R. Maroney, 6.531, 191.65 def. K. Hough, 6.816, 206.42.

Turner dominates on 'big pig' Nitro Harley

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (March 28, 2012) – They said it was too heavy. They said it was too different.

But it is Jay Turner who is having the last laugh now.

Turner, who spent a majority of the offseason working on a brand new and very unique Nitro Harley, debuted what his team calls the "big pig" in front of a large Friday crowd at the San Antonio Nitro Jam at San Antonio Raceway and drove the bike to a victory over friend and rival Jake Stordeur on opening night.

Jay Turner had a big night atop his 'big pig' Nitro Harley in picking up the win

The new Nitro Harley, which is quite a bit longer than the other bikes with some added weight, blasted down the quarter-mile with dual flames kissing the ground as he drove to a 6.526, 208.53 to storm past Stordeur who ran a 7.605, 155.82 in his seventh career Nitro Jam win.

"Everyone had doubts about this bike, but we knew what it was capable of," Turner said. "We heard it all, but mostly people thought it was just too heavy to go fast. But with the way this thing is made, it gives us a few advantages over others that I think we can turn into some consistently fast passes throughout the season."

Other pro winners from Friday's San Antonio Nitro Jam included Texas native and fan favorite John Hale in the "Nitro Boss" AMSOIL Prostalgia Nitro Funny Car, Bill Evans in the "Black Pearl" Pro Fuel Dragster and Ron Maroney in the "Blind Faith" Fuel Altered.

Turner showed just what his new bike could do right from the start on Friday with an opening round shot of 6.470/198.59 to drive around defending champion Steve Dorn to reach to final. In the main event Turner left first and never looked back, lighting up the night sky with a flame show not often seen on a motorcycle straight through the trap. In the consolation round Dorn defeated Mike Scott.

John Hale was another driver making a statement on Friday, winning in his very first passes in Nitro Jam competition. Hale, going against one of the toughest AMSOIL Prostalgia Nitro Funny Car fields of the season, bested last weekend's winner Mike Savage in "Candies & Hughes" in round one before meeting defending series champion Peter Gallen in the "Poverty Stricken" machine in the final.

Texas native John Hale won in AMSOIL Prostalgia Nitro Funny Car

Despite such a thrilling final round pairing, the show turned anticlimactic when Gallen broke and Hale took an easy stroll down the quarter-mile in a makeshift victory lap. With the loss, Gallen fell short again in what is the worst stretch of his young nitro career.

In the consolation rounds Dale Pulde put a check in the win column in his big return behind the wheel of the "War Eagle" in a win over Savage, Mitch King drove the "Brand X" Mustang to a win over Brad Thompson and Tim Boychuk rounded out the list with a solo pass in the "Troy Lee Designs" Pontiac.

Of all the classes running at Nitro Jam, the driver making it look the easiest is defending Fuel Altered champion Ron Maroney who drove to his third consecutive win Friday night at SAR. Maroney, behind the wheel of the "Blind Faith" machine, took out Jason Richey in round one and then put down a solid 6.531/191.65 to defeat rookie Kyle Hough's 6.816/206.42 in the final.

Rounding out the pro rounds on Friday was Bill Evans' big win in Pro Fuel Dragster. Evans had two very consistent laps on Friday on his way to a victory, ending the night with a win over Kristen Dennis for his ninth career Ironman. Evans ran a 5.539/250.28 in the final to Denis' 6.024/208.53. In the consolation pairing Cherissa Smallwood defeated Robin Samsel.

Even thought he didn't get the win, Kyle Hough has been very exciting to watch as of late

One of the most anticipated matchups of the evening ended with a split between Grave Digger and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle as Randy Brown drove Digger to a victory in round one and drag racing newbie Joey Parnell claimed the second matchup.

The wild evening concluded with a few unexpected long runs into the nets when the Chattanooga Choo-Choo jet train went long, but the remaining jet dragster, jet funny cars and jet truck put on a tremendous show.

The San Antonio Nitro Jam will continue on Saturday with day two at San Antonio Raceway. Gates open at 11 a.m. with FanFest set to being at 6:30 p.m. and two rounds of Nitro Jam at 8 p.m.

Today's Drag Racing News

Drag Racing Leaves Los Angeles
Drag racing was born in Southern California – and now, there's no place close by to run a hot rod. At the Barona Drag Strip in San Diego County, cars painted colors right out of a gumball machine line up in lanes, revving to go. Two at a time, ...
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Drag-racing legend dies
Philadelphia Inquirer (blog)
Jenkins, who grew up in Malvern, founded Jenkins Engineering and was widely regarded as an innovator who was responsible for numerous advances in drag-racing technology. He reportedly earned his nickname for his no-nonsense approach to the sport.
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Philadelphia Inquirer (blog)
Drag racing grandma
Tidewater News
He noted that many people don't understand drag racing. It is an acceleration contest from a standing-start between two vehicles over a measured distance at a specifically designed drag race facility, Collis Bryant said. "These contests are started by ...
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Valencia Fire Captain Wins IHRA Drag Racing Event
KHTS Radio
Newhall's Johnny Ahten won the IHRA Pro Fuel Dragster final at the Nitro Jam drag races at Southwestern International Raceway in Arizona over the weekend. Ahten, the captain at Fire Station 76 in Valencia, won his second Ironman trophy in his fourth ...
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KHTS Radio
NHRA legend Bill Jenkins dies
San Bernardino Sun
8 among NHRA Drag Racing's greatest racers during the association's 50th anniversary in 2001. He was selected, in part, as an individual who had contributed more to the advancement of normally aspirated engines in drag racing.
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ESPN's Vegas TV show should be packed with drama
The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series returns to the west with the 13th annual NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, March 30-April 1. Fans following the series on ESPN2/ESPN2HD in anticipation of their hometown ...
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Line, Lucas, Hight lead after opening day in Las Vegas
Robert Hight (Funny Car) and Jason Line (Pro Stock) also were qualifying leaders at the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series event. Lucas, who won two weeks ago in Gainesville with a dominating performance, rallied from a 10th place effort in the ...
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Much-Improved Pro Stock Veteran Morgan Ready to Tackle Sin City
by Rob Geiger, Lucas Oil Ford Racing LAS VEGAS -- Through three races of the 2012 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series season, Lucas Oil Ford driver Larry Morgan has shown marked improvement over each of his starts in the last two seasons.
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Friday, March 30, 2012



LAS VEGAS – Morgan Lucas continued to make Top Fuel headlines Friday as he raced to the qualifying lead at the NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Robert Hight (Funny Car) and Jason Line (Pro Stock) also were qualifying leaders at the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series event.

Lucas, who won two weeks ago in Gainesville, Fla. with a dominating performance, rallied from a 10th place effort in the opening round of qualifying to vault to the No. 1 spot during the day’s final session with a leading run of 3.817 seconds at 321.96 mph in his GEICO/Lucas Oil dragster.

“The first session we were a little overcenter, and Aaron [Brooks, crew chief] just went back and was going to back it down, but we went back up there with generally the same setup,” Lucas said. “We just made a couple of small tweaks, and it went right down there. I’m really proud of the whole team, and it’s been a lot of fun to drive this car.

“If somehow we can make it through tomorrow and stay No. 1, it would be a really cool thing for us to start the season with three out of four races being No. 1 qualifier.”

Spencer Massey was second with a 3.825 at 322.88 in his FRAM dragster and Clay Millican was third in his Parts Plus dragster with a 3.844 at 318.77. Series points leader Tony Schumacher was fourth overall with a 3.849 at 318.09 in his U.S. Army dragster.

In Funny Car, Robert Hight, winner of the last two races, powered his Auto Club Ford Mustang to a leading performance of 4.132 at 310.41.

“Everybody struggled the first run, so I think everybody was erring on the side of caution for the night run,” Hight said. “Based on what everybody ran the first run, you’ve got to be cautious and make sure you get down there. Jimmy [Prock, crew chief] told me he thought it would run a .12 or .13, so it’s really cool right now because he definitely has a handle on this race car. It says a lot when you can go from a place like Gainesville and then we’re here and we’re halfway in elevation to Denver from sea level and make the changes and have it respond and run that close to what you think it will run. Good job to Jimmy Prock, and you can see the confidence in him. He’s just so confident in all the moves he’s making, and it’s a lot of fun to drive this thing right now. The confidence is there when you can see your crew chief and how confident he is. Maybe that 4.13 won’t stick, but for today it was No. 1, and we’re happy.”

Two-time world champ Cruz Pedregon was second in his Snap-on Tools Toyota Camry with a 4.159 at 306.19, while Bob Tasca III was second in his Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Shelby Mustang with a 4.165 at 303.23.

Defending world champion Line raced to the top of the order in Pro Stock, covering the distance in 6.659 at 207.34 in his Summit Racing Equipment Pontiac GXP.

“This is probably the nicest run I’ve made this year,” Line said. “To be able to outrun Mike Edwards, who always runs well here, is an accomplishment. And because it is a Summit-sponsored race and we’re in [team owner] Ken Black’s home town, it makes it all the better. We were a little bit soft in the first round, and I still think there’s at least a hundredth or more left in the car. It was important for us to qualify well today because of the forecasts for winds tomorrow.”

Edwards, who won both races here last season and holds both ends of the track record, was second with a 6.669 at 207.30 in his Penhall/Interstate Batteries Pontiac and Allen Johnson was third in his Team Mopar Dodge Avenger with a 6.679 at 206.92.

Qualifying continues Saturday with sessions at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Sunday’s eliminations begin at 11 a.m.

LAS VEGAS -- Friday's results after the first two of four rounds of qualifying for the 13th annual NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, fourth of 23 events in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series. Qualifying will continue Saturday for Sunday's final eliminations.

Top Fuel -- 1. Morgan Lucas, 3.817 seconds, 321.96 mph; 2. Spencer Massey, 3.825, 322.88; 3. Clay Millican, 3.844, 318.77; 4. Tony Schumacher, 3.849, 318.09; 5. Shawn Langdon, 3.851, 321.81; 6. Bob Vandergriff, 3.871, 322.81; 7. Doug Kalitta, 3.894, 315.78; 8. Khalid alBalooshi, 3.897, 316.45; 9. Brandon Bernstein, 3.933, 311.56; 10. Terry McMillen, 3.959, 280.66; 11. Steve Torrence, 3.960, 308.99; 12. Troy Buff, 3.981, 299.20.

Not Qualified: 13. Antron Brown, 3.994, 309.98; 14. Cory McClenathan, 4.008, 303.23; 15. Damien Harris, 4.232, 270.00; 16. David Grubnic, 4.318, 194.30; 17. Steven Chrisman, 4.333, 279.96; 18. Steve Faria, 4.450, 229.08.

Funny Car -- 1. Robert Hight, Ford Mustang, 4.132, 310.41; 2. Cruz Pedregon, Toyota Solara, 4.159, 306.19; 3. Bob Tasca III, Mustang, 4.165, 303.23; 4. Gary Densham, Dodge Charger, 4.181, 300.00; 5. Mike Neff, Mustang, 4.186, 296.70; 6. John Force, Mustang, 4.196, 305.77; 7. Matt Hagan, Charger, 4.196, 299.06; 8. Jack Beckman, Charger, 4.211, 302.82; 9. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 4.212, 292.20; 10. Johnny Gray, Charger, 4.244, 304.39; 11. Courtney Force, Mustang, 4.274, 291.70; 12. Terry Haddock, Chevy Impala, 4.282, 292.01.

Not Qualified: 13. Tony Pedregon, 4.347, 242.76; 14. Jon Capps, 4.366, 258.07; 15. Alexis DeJoria, 4.382, 253.71; 16. Bob Bode, 4.501, 248.57; 17. James Day, 4.846, 173.29; 18. Todd Lesenko, 5.050, 167.05; 19. Jim Head, 5.953, 118.33; 20. Ron Capps, 6.689, 92.68; 21. Jeff Arend, 7.293, 83.71.

Pro Stock -- 1. Jason Line, Pontiac GXP, 6.659, 207.34; 2. Mike Edwards, GXP, 6.669, 207.30; 3. Allen Johnson, Dodge Avenger, 6.679, 206.92; 4. Rodger Brogdon, GXP, 6.693, 206.10; 5. Greg Anderson, GXP, 6.697, 206.35; 6. Vincent Nobile, Avenger, 6.706, 205.98; 7. Ron Krisher, GXP, 6.713, 206.54; 8. Erica Enders, Chevy Cobalt, 6.721, 205.57; 9. Chris McGaha, Avenger, 6.721, 204.45; 10. Ronnie Humphrey, GXP, 6.722, 206.07; 11. Jeg Coughlin, Avenger, 6.725, 205.66; 12. Greg Stanfield, Chevy Camaro, 6.727, 204.88.

Not Qualified: 13. Kurt Johnson, 6.728, 205.10; 14. Steve Kent, 6.741, 205.04; 15. Shane Gray, 6.766, 204.73; 16. Gordie Rivera, 6.874, 200.83; 17. Larry Morgan, 6.968, 176.95; 18. V. Gaines, 8.413, 116.59.

Today's Drag Racing News

SAN JACINTO: Sand drag racing returns to Soboba
Al McKinney lifted off as the 'Christmas tree' turned green at the Southern California Sand Drag Association races held at Soboba Casino in San Jacinto in April 2011. BY GAIL WESSON Soboba Sand Drags are returning today for a three-day run, ...
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Bill "Grumpy" Jenkins 1930-2012: The »
Inside Line
A native of Malvern, Pennsylvania, Jenkins had been a ferocious drag racing competitor since the early '50s and was still occasionally active as an advisor in the sport at the time of his death. During his heyday, which stretched through the '60s and ...
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NHRA: Bill "Grumpy" Jenkins Dies At 81
8 among NHRA Drag Racing's greatest racers in a 2001 experts poll, scored just 13 NHRA national event wins but earned his well-deserved spot in drag racing's top 10 because no other individual has contributed more to the advancement of normally ...
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Fan's View: Who to Watch at the SummitRacing.Com NHRA Nationals
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Contributor Network 3 hours, 21 minutes ago This weekend, March 30 through April 1, the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series heads to The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the NHRA Nationals, the fourth event on this year's ...
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Jenkins, NHRA legend, dies at 81
Reading Eagle
8 among NHRA Drag Racing's greatest racers in a 2001 poll. He won just 13 NHRA national events but earned his spot in drag racing's top 10 because no other individual has contributed more to the advancement of normally aspirated engines for the sport.
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Cayco brothers shine in drag racing
Philippine Star
MANILA, Philippines - Brothers Edwin and Edison Cayco of H3 Autoworks humbled their fancied rivals as they scored separate victories in the second leg of the 2012 Philippine Drag Racing Championships Northern Series at the Clark International Speedway ...
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Medford drag racer recruited for full NHRA circuit
Mail Tribune
After 27 years in drag racing, local Scotty Pollacheck is embarking on a full National Hot Rod Association circuit this season as a member of the Sovereign-Star Racing team. Pollacheck joined the pro stock motorcycle drag racing team as one of two ...
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NHRA Legend Bill "Grumpy" Jenkins Dies At 81
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He won only 13 national event Wally trophies, but earned his place in drag racing's top 10 because of his masterful understanding and advancement of normally aspirated engines for drag racing competition. "Everyone at NHRA is saddened by the passing of ...
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Drag Racing: Bike Edition video, Android videos, Pocket Gamer
ANDROID VIDEO. 29 March 2012 | Send to a friend. Two wheels fast. Game name: Drag Racing: Bike Edition | Video type: Embedded | Format: Android | Genre: Racing. You tune, upgrade, and race 17 bikes online. Available on Google Play ...
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Thursday, March 29, 2012


NHRA Pro Stock icon Bill "Grumpy" Jenkins, a master of the internal combustion engine and a legend among the Chevrolet faithful, died March 29. He was 81.

Jenkins, voted No. 8 among NHRA Drag Racing's greatest racers in a 2001 experts poll, scored just 13 NHRA national event wins but earned his well-deserved spot in drag racing's top 10 because no other individual has contributed more to the advancement of normally aspirated engines for drag racing competition than the legendary "Grump."

“Everyone at NHRA is saddened by the passing of Bill ‘Grumpy’ Jenkins, not only a pioneer in the sport, but also an iconic figure in NHRA Pro Stock racing,” said Tom Compton, president, NHRA.  “He was there from the beginning, playing an integral role in the formation of Pro Stock and remained involved in NHRA for decades.  His presence and trademark gruff exterior and cigar will be missed but never forgotten at the starting line at NHRA Full Throttle events.”

Jenkins always took greater pride in his mechanical achievements than in his driving. Among his innovations are drag racing's first dry-sump oiling system, the first kickout oil pans and Pro Stock strut-style front suspension, and gas port pistons, slick-shift manual transmissions, cool cans, and the electric water-pump fan.

Jenkins earned many honors, including induction into the Don Garlits International Drag Racing Hall of Fame in 1993, the Motorsports Hall of Fame in Novi, Mich., in 1996, and the  International Motorsports Hall of Fame in 2008. He was one of the more prolific honorees in Car Craft Magazine All-star Drag Racing Team balloting since winning three individual titles at the inaugural banquet in 1967.

On making NHRA's top 10, Jenkins briefly shed his gruff exterior in 2001 to say, "Since it seemed that the balloting was heavily weighted toward the more contemporary drivers and I haven't driven in 20 years, I was gratified to make it high on the list. Having so many of the people I've worked with show up at my [70th birthday] party in January meant a lot to me. I've always had a lot of personal satisfaction from the mechanical end of the sport." 


GLENDORA, Calif. (March 28, 2012) – NHRA continues to have discussions with officials at Auto Club Dragway at Auto Club Speedway regarding the 2012 NHRA JEGS Pacific SPORTSnationals event, scheduled Oct. 12-14.   Recognizing the facility’s situation, the world’s largest motorsports sanctioning body also has begun discussions with several other NHRA Member Tracks in Division 7 regarding taking over as host of the event.
“NHRA is evaluating all possible options regarding the JEGS Pacific SPORTSnationals,” said Mike Rice, NHRA Pacific Division Director. “With that said, and for planning purposes, the event will take place on that same weekend, Oct. 12-14.”   NHRA hopes to have a resolution on the location in the coming weeks.
The event is the last of three NHRA JEGS SPORTSnationals held across the country in conjunction with the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series.  Earlier this month, the JEGS Cajun SPORTSnationals was held at No Problem Raceway in Belle Rose, La. with more than 500 racers in attendance.  The next NHRA JEGS SPORTSnationals is scheduled for Sept. 21-23 at National Trails Raceway outside Columbus, Ohio.

Today's Drag Racing News

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John Force Racing looks for improvement at Las Vegas
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Day to Drive Plueger Racing Funny Car in Las Vegas
by James Day, Plueger Racing LAS VEGAS -- Whether in application to the big casinos in the city of Las Vegas or the unpredictable, high-octane sport of NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing, a little luck can go a long way. Funny Car driver James Day already ...
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Motorsport: Drag Racing: New Hal Far track record for Chris Polidano
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Jon Capps to compete in Vegas with Worsham Racing
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KYMCO USA Teams with Kalitta Motorsports
Side x Side News
Owned by drag racing legend Connie "the Bounty Hunter" Kalitta, Kalitta Motorsports contests the NHRA with a four-car team that includes the DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car driven by Jeff Arend, Tequila PatrĂ³n Toyota Camry Funny Car driven by Alexis DeJoria ...
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Web4 new results for "drag racing"
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Kids ages 8 to 17 will be racing half-scale versions of Top Fuel dragsters as part of the National Hot Rod Association's Jr. Drag Racing League series.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Texas natives ready to rock Lone Star State this weekend

Kristen Dennis, John Hale ready for Nitro Jam spotlight

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (March 28, 2012) – You just don't mess with Texas.

Or its drivers.

While this weekend's San Antonio Nitro Jam will feature talented racers from across North America all vying for victory, for two drivers the race this Friday and Saturday at San Antonio Raceway means more. Much more.

John Hale will bring his Texas themed "Nitro Boss" Funny Car to Nitro Jam debut in San Antonio

"This is a hometown race for us," said Kristen Dennis, driver of the "Ladies First" Pro Fuel Dragster. "I have family, friends and even high school classmates coming out who have never seen me race. They have seen videos, but never in person.

"I love interacting with the fans. It is an all day event since we race at night so this is a great way for everyone to see the car, meet the crew and learn about what I do. The women are really excited to hear all about it and the men are amazed as well. I don't want to be called a woman driver, just a good driver. It doesn't matter who is in the other lane."

Dennis, from Magnolia, will join John Hale from Dallas who will be making his Nitro Jam debut behind the wheel of the "Nitro Boss" Camaro in the AMSOIL Prostalgia Nitro Funny Car class. Both drivers call the Lone Star State home and both will be looking to make a good impression at one of the biggest stops on the Nitro Jam tour.

Dennis is no stranger to the Nitro Jam stage. In her debut last year at the season finale in Martin, Mich. Dennis drove the "Ladies First" dragster to a huge victory over the 2011 series champion to pick up her first career Ironman. Now she returns to Nitro Jam looking to make it two in a row against the likes of fellow female competitor and last weeks winner Cherissa Smallwood in the "Nitro and Lace" dragster, Bill Evans in the "Black Pearl" and Robin Samsel in "Predator."

Pro Fuel racer Kristen Dennis won in her first career Nitro Jam start last season

"I want to do this Texas style. We don't want to go big, we want to go huge," Dennis said. "I have high expectations. We are going to Nitro Jam to win both nights. I have overcome so many obstacles to get here and I am going to make sure the job gets done. I have new tires, a bunch of new parts, a seasoned crew and we worked our tails off to get here. Now it is time."

Fellow Texas native John Hale will share the spotlight in San Antonio when he brings out his "Nitro Boss" Funny Car to compete in the biggest Prostalgia race of the season.

"We knew we wanted to do our own Texas theme and came up with the 'Nitro Boss.' The paint job was already spectacular and with the skulls, Texas Ranger badges, Texas flag and the special message on the back it has become a huge hit," Hale said. "We won our first race with this car in Kansas City and we are looking forward to running it at Nitro Jam."

As the 2011 DRO Funny Car champion, Hale is no stranger to tough fields. But even with one of the toughest fields he will see all season staring him in the face this weekend, as a defending champion, Hale is certainly not intimidated.

"We love racing against the best of the best and we wouldn't have it any other way," Hale said. "All of the cars at Nitro Jam are top notch and capable of getting the job done so we will have to be on top of our game to be competitive."

Dennis (left) will join fellow racer Cherissa Smallwood and more at the San Antonio Nitro Jam

But more than anything, Hale is thrilled to able to compete in his home state and bring his "don't mess with Texas" attitude to the San Antonio strip.

"Everyone on the team is excited about having a Nitro Jam in our great state of Texas. I have raced with some of these cars before and I am looking forward to racing with the ones that I haven't. They are all a great bunch of racers.

"Nitro Jam really puts on a good show for the fans and we look forward to being a part of it."

Hale will be joined at the San Antonio Nitro Jam by the last two Nitro Jam World Champions Peter Gallen in "Poverty Stricken" and Steve Nichols in "Mill Road Boys" in addition to Dale Pulde in "War Eagle", Tim Boychuk in "Troy Lee Designs", Mike Savage in "Candies & Hughes", the "Jungle Jim" Camaro and Brad Thompson.

In addition to the Pro Fuel and Prostalgia Nitro Funny Car classes, Nitro Jam will also feature professional competition in Fuel Altered and Nitro Harley in addition to exhibition acts including the Super Shockwave jet semi, jet dragsters, jet funny cars, wheelstanders, the monster truck drag race between Grave Digger and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle and hundreds of local sportsman racers.

The San Antonio Nitro Jam is this Friday and Saturday at San Antonio Raceway. For ticket information visit