Monthly Archives: January 2013

Back to the Future

Looks Like Drag Racing Has A Promising Future

A quick note on the future of Nostalgia drag racing and a story that reminds us that our future in drag racing is our future.

Novice Division championship, Kaitlin Zietlow

Novice Division championship, Kaitlin Zietlow

A family in Ohio is just one of thousands around the world that works to race as a family affair.  But the Zietlow’s epitomize where we are and where drag racing will continue to thrive as the largest participatory sport on Earth.  You can read more about this families exploits here: ‘Brook Park girl wins drag racing championship‘ but the bigger story is the reminder about how we can and will maintain and carry on with a sport despite the hardship of a bad economy and associations incapable of doing what it takes to help our sport.

LeahPruett-adj

Leah Pruett

Yes, young women like former Nostalgia Funny Car champ Leah Pruett (seen at left) are healthy for our sport as drivers moving up into the big-time but the young people and their families like the Zietlow’s are our real future and we need to keep those people in mind when we try to move forward.  This new lifeblood of enthusiasts hark back to why we love this sport and why we’re all determined to spend every red cent to get to the track.

Kaitlin Zietlow, the youngest of this racing family from just outside Cleveland, Ohio – and who won a Jr. Dragster championship – gave us an aide memoire of why we do it when she said,

“I’m going to race till I physically can’t.”

Makes you smile, huh.  10 year olds such as Kaitlin are our future and we can rest assure that our future looks bright with devotee’s like her.

Home Of Nostalgia Drag

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

55th March Meet

The Hot Rod Heritage series will start off its sixth season with one of the most famous races in motorsports: The March Meet.  Running from March 7-10, this will mark the 55th renewal of the prestigious March Meet at https://i0.wp.com/www.famosoraceway.com/bakersfield-march-meet-2013/small_mm_2013.pngFamoso Raceway in Bakersfield, California.

The March Meet will be the first of 12 races across the country in 2013 under the Hot Rod Heritage series banner with 11 points races out of the 12 events scheduled.  The March Meet is the biggest Nostalgia drag race in the world and this grand event has upwards of 100,000 people visit the venerable drag racing grounds every year.

The main attraction is the Top Fuel and Funny Cars, which will be pounding the ground again in Famoso.  And note: last years champions were Adam Sorokin in Top Fuel (pictured at left) and DSC00634Jason Rupert in Funny Car.  Other classes include A Fuel, Junior Fuel, Nostalgia Eliminator, Hot Rod and A through D Gassers.  Tickets are available here.

The Nostalgia drag racing season ends once again at the revered Bakersfield track with the 22nd rendition of the California Hot Rod Reunion October 18-20.

If per chance you’d like to know more about this one-of-a-kind event, check out this informational e-book – March Meet: Bakersfield’s Love Affair with Speed, Nitro & Good Times.   Even though we still have the Recession, be prepared to come early because parking is atrocious and tens of thousands of other people will be visiting every day during this giant drag racing fest.

Daryle W. Hier

Ron-CrankDrive1958

Home Of Nostalgia Drag

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Poll: Close Battles In NHRA For 2013?

Some battles in the NHRA for 2012 were very close and went down to the last day and even last race.  Will that happen again?

Top-Fuel-Drags 4Wide

Go here for more NHRA stuff.

.

.

Home Of Nostalgia Drag Racing

Leave a comment

Filed under Polls

IHRA Brings Top Fuel Back

The folks at the International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) came to their senses and brought back the fastest racecars in the world: Top Fuel.   The dragsters will be back for the 2013 season at the eight scheduled Nitro Jam events (source – IHRA).https://i2.wp.com/matchbin-assets.s3.amazonaws.com/public/sites/476/assets/501_ihra_Top_Fuel_WEB.jpg

The beautiful sleek yet furious and breathtaking monsters of the quarter-mile (or whatever length they run) will start off with the season opener March 23 in Tucson, Arizona at Southwestern International Raceway.  The series’ season ends at Memphis International Raceway October 11.  Former IHRA champion Bruce Litton will be one the many Top Fuel competitors in 2013.

In a nod toward the IHRA’s circus owners (Feld Entertainment, aka Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus), at certain events, there will be a competition between a File:Barnum & Bailey clowns and geese2.jpghorse and a … no, I’m kidding, they’ll be no horses like Mickey Thompson used to do 50 years ago at Lions.  However, they will have Top Fuelers going up against  jet-powered dragsters.  It should be interesting to watch and something the fans will probably remember.

In any event, the Top Fuelers are back and now fans will beyond a doubt enjoy drag racing’s show-stopping fastest cars on the planet.   Or to borrow from Feld Entertainments other business: Top Fuel is truly, “The Greatest Show on Earth.”

Home Of Nostalgia Drag Racing

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

National Dragster Shrinking – Updated

The magazine business and in fact, the print business as a whole has been shrinking for quite some time and now, National Dragster announced they will be reducing from 48 weekly issues to 25 a year starting now.  To be specific, there will be two issues every month (source – Drag Racing Online). 

I remember years ago  when the internet became a force in information, most thought that eventually the magazine and newspaper would go the way of the dodo bird.  But to be honest, people quit reading in general, long before the internet ever evolved.  I believe National Dragster started their online edition a few years back … time flies, heck, it might have been longer.

Regardless, print media continues to die a slow and painful death.  Here’s hoping that these 24 issues don’t become less or even worse, not at all.  I guess the Grim Reaper is sharpening his scythe.  File:The death.svg

Home Of Nostalgia Drag Racing

.

Addtional Note: NHRA is expanding their online presence calling the new online format: NationalDRAGSTER.net  It will still have member only access.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Free ‘Bird

No this isn’t a story about one of my favorite groups of all-time, Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Taylor Swift excepting People's Choice Award

Taylor Swift excepting People’s Choice Award

Motorsports news  during the winter months is slow and usually we’re left to be abused by supposed news such as Taylor Swift winning People’s Choice Awards and where in the world is Kim Kardashian’s butt this week.  By the way, did you know she has workout videos for ‘fitting in your jeans’?  Can Kim actually fit her buttocks into a pair of jeans?  Okay, well, anyway, I digress.

So I was panning through some stories from the past week or so and to my surprise, found out that Firebird International Raceway near Chandler, Arizona, was closing after all.  Sure their had been rumors for some time that the lease was up, but these things usually work there way out and though the track has started readying themselves for closing the facility, with the NHRA coming back another season (in less than two months from now), it appeared there was plenty of room for hope.  But apparently I may be wrong in my assumption.

Drag boats at Firebird

Drag boats at Firebird

Firebird always had a soft spot for me because it was also home to drag boats which I love almost as much as drag racing.  Plus the fact it is a track out here in the west, making it accessible for us Californians.  However, it looks like the 30 year old facility is going to close after all.  According to this news story, the Gila River Indian Community has decided against renewing the lease.

Now, there’s still hope as the NHRA is currently fighting to keep the track on their calendar for 2014 and beyond according to Peter Clifford who is EVP and GM at the NHRA saying (source – Ahwatukee Foothill News),

“NHRA continues to have meaningful discussions with the Gila River Indian Community regarding the facility and hopes to finalize the agreement in the coming weeks.”

But with that aside, when you combine the fact that Speed World Drag Strip in Surprise is rumored to be closing after this year; future drag racing in the Valley of the Sun appears dismal at this point.

The drag racing community and its fanbase is one of the largest and most loyal in all of sports but representation in the Southwestern U.S. is continually shrinking.  When you consider how few tracks there are in California, especially of the quarter-mile variety, certainly the sport needs to make a stand for the value that drag racing brings the regions they’re in.  The safety factor is never far away and every time tracks disappear, illegal street racing blossoms.

Paulina Gretsky

Paulina Gretsky

So as winter drags on while you’re being bombarded by who Paulina Gretsky is dating (Wayne must be so proud), here’s hoping Firebird is allowed to run another year or more.  My new mantra is “Free ‘Bird”.

Home Of Nostalgia Drag Racing

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Hot Rod Heritage Series 2013 Calendar

For those of you who may have missed it or get your news by Pony Express, the Hot Rod Heritage Series announced the 2013 schedule.  In short, arguably the Nostalgia drag racing calendar is expanding and going international.  But, like last year, it’s still breaking up the Top Fuel and Funny Car classes.

Cascade Falls near Mission, British Columbia

Cascade Falls near Mission, British Columbia

Among the additions to the series are races in British Columbia, Utah,  New Hampshire and Oklahoma.  The Tulsa, Oklahoma, event will be the same weekend as the New England Reunion in New Hampshire but will not be a points meet.  The season starts and ends – with the March Meet and California Hot Rod Reunion – at the venerable Famoso Raceway in Bakersfield, California (aka the Patch).

The event in Canada will mark the first time the series has operated outside the continental United States.  It will be run at Mission Raceway and is essentially a suburb of Vancouver.  Canadian fans have been very loyal to the Nostalgia scene and it’s great to see this race will offer fans in the Great Northwest another fantastic event.  And don’t worry, the ever-popular Boise races are obviously still on the calendar.

Below is a list of all 12 Hot Rod Heritage Series events. Go here for more details: Hot Rod Heritage Series

March Meet Auto Club Famoso Raceway March 7-10 TF, FC, Groups 1 & 2
Arizona Fuel & Gas Championships Speedworld Dragstrip April 13-14 Groups 1 & 2
NAPA Auto Parts Ignitor Firebird Raceway April 26-28 FC
Holley NHRA National Hot Rod Reunion Beech Bend Raceway Park June 13-15 TF
Nostalgia Reunion Sacramento Raceway July 12-13 Groups 1 & 2
NHRA National Open Mission Raceway July 19-21 FC
Pepsi Nightfire Nationals Firebird Raceway Aug. 8-11 TF, FC
Summer Send-Off Rocky Mtn. Raceways Aug. 23-24 FC, Group 1
New England Hot Rod Reunion New England Dragway Sept. 12-14 TF
Nostalgia Fall Championships Auto Club Famoso Raceway Oct. 5-6 Group 2
California Hot Rod Reunion Auto Club Famoso Raceway Oct. 18-20 TF, FC
*Nostalgia Top Fuel will count their best four of five events for points
*Nostalgia Funny Car will count their best five of six events for points
Affiliate Event
Nostalgia Nitro Nationals Reunion Tulsa Raceway Park Sept. 13-14 FC, A/Fuel, SW Jr. Fuel, Gassers

Home Of Nostalgia Drag Racing

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized