29th Annual Nitto Tire NMRA Ford Expo - Capital Punishment
The NMRA Descends On Ohio's Capital, And Complete Mayhem Ensues.
From the January, 2008 issue of Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords
By Steve Baur
Mustang Ownership can be rewarding, but one of the coolest parts has to be sharing your enthusiasm with other Mustang owners. If you've never been to one of the numerous Ford races that are held throughout the year, you owe it to yourself to check one out. This year's 29th Annual Nitto Tire NMRA Ford Expo at National Trail Raceway in Columbus, Ohio, was a hot one and is consistently one of the best to attend, as it offers a plethora of both late-model and vintage Ford iron.
The Columbus meet is the sixth stop on the NMRA Keystone Automotive championship tour, and it offers something for every Ford owner to enjoy. Drag racing is the largest part of the show, and the NMRA offers both heads-up and bracket style classes. In addition to the heads-up, index, and bracket categories, the Columbus stop plays host to the annual Y-Block shootout-this year being its 12th season-as well as the annual Ford Capri Swarm, which is put on by the Capri Club of North America. Yes, that's the Ford Capri, not the Mercury version. If you haven't seen one before, this is the event to go to.
Our beloved MM&FF True Street class offered up 55 cars in Columbus. Only 51 were able to hack it and make the road trip as well as all three back-to-back runs. In the end, it was high-nine-second performances that took the big trophy, the crown, and the cash. It was also a four-cylinder Mustang that showed the V-8 cars how it was done. You can read more about that later on in the story.
While there was plenty of racing to watch, the Laurel Mountain Mustang All-Ford Auto Show & Shine filled the grounds with more than 200 cars, while the swap meet offered parts for late-model cars and vintage rides as well.
Be sure to check out the photos and captions to see who the winners were, along with all of the other fun that was to be had at the '07 Nitto Tire NMRA Ford Expo.
Three, two, one-liftoff. Perry...
Three, two, one-liftoff. Perry Santini's modular-powered Super Street Outlaw entry produced more smoke during its launch than its burnout. In the Second round of qualifying, it wasn't the smoke but a slight straying out of the groove that had the four-eyed filly swerving from wall to wall at the top end. A mere scrape on the corner of the rear bumper cover was the result, and Santini was back at it Sunday in eliminations.
Winner True Street was fast...
True Street was fast and furious in more ways than one. Jon Huber put a hurtin' on the competition with his turbocharged four-cylinder Mustang, and he took the crown and the goods home thanks to his Pony's 9.90 average over his three runs. Huber has been trading low four-cylinder e.t.'s with Michigander Dave Flanders for years now, but he recently put the gray hatchback down in the 8s to take the record. Since then, he has dialed the combo back a bit and installed a large-frame 80mm turbo, since they kept chucking turbine wheels out the exhaust. You can check out Huber's full-on feature article back in the Aug. '07 issue of MM&FF.
Tim Casto of Mason, West Virginia,...
Tim Casto of Mason, West Virginia, gave Jon Huber a run for his money, as his average was just 0.04 second behind him. The '95 Cobra took the runner-up spot with a 9.94 average.
Winner Coming off a successful...
Coming off a successful weekend at the NMRA Atco race, Stephen Posenau made the mod-motor contingent proud, taking the low-10-second average with a 10.09 effort.
Winner Fairview Park, Ohio's...
Fairview Park, Ohio's Will Carroll had one of the stealthiest rides in attendance. Sporting widened stock wheels and a super-quiet exhaust note, the turbocharged, stroker Three-Valve steed charged to the low-11-second average.
Winner Throwing his warranty...
Throwing his warranty to the wind, Granger, Indiana's Randy Soper worked his brand-new Shelby GT500 hard in True Street. His effort paid off as the car ran 11.94, 11.99, and 12.15 for the low-12-second prize. The GT500 has a few bolt-ons like a cold-air kit, a pulley, a Bassani exhaust, and no doubt a bit more horsepower than when it left the factory. Soper put it all down using the stock Goodyear Supercar tires.
Winner A pinto? Yep, and...
A pinto? Yep, and the low-13-second prize. Jackie Flanders' turbocharged 2.3 Pinto comes from a family of fast four-cylinders, as husband Dave was busy stomping on the Open Comp class with his low-9-second four-pot Mustang.
Winner Roseann Powell of...
Roseann Powell of Louisville, Ohio, posted the lowest-15-second average in True Street with her '70 Mustang convertible. She gave the four-speed a good workout in her 351-powered steed, which has over 160,000 miles on the clock.
Winner Mike ReEd of Blacklick,...
Mike ReEd of Blacklick, Ohio, nailed the lowest 14-second average with his '89 LX Mustang.
Winner Your True Street winners...
Your True Street winners from Columbus are (back row, left to right) Will Carroll, Tim Castro, Jon "King" Huber, Stephen Posenau, (front row, left to right) Mike Reid, Randy Soper, and Roseann Powell.
Winner NMRA Columbus had...
NMRA Columbus had tons of high-flying action, especially in the power-enhanced Real Street and naturally aspirated Hot Street and Pure Street classes. Indianapolis, Indiana's Kevin Scott hung the front wheels out all weekend long in Real Street. Looking at the car in the staging lanes, one might guess it to be a 12- or 11-second car-maybe 10s if you had a clue-but high-9s? No way.
Winner Tim "Wheels Up" Matherly...
Tim "Wheels Up" Matherly had the crowd cheering just about every time he made a pass. His modular-powered machine motored past much of the 12-car Real Street contingent to the final, where he faced number-one qualifier Bruce Hemminger and his nitrous-sniffing, pushrod-pounding notchback. When the lights came down, it was Matherly with a slight edge off the Tree, carrying his lead through the traps with a 9.90 victory over Hemminger's top-end-charging 10.04 effort.
Winner Diablosport Pro 5.0...
Diablosport Pro 5.0 had but three competitors in attendance. Brookville, Indiana's Tony Bischoff qualified number one and took the bye in the first round. In the final, he was pitted against Stuart, Iowa's Michael Hauf, who qualified a mere 0.08 second behind him. The Tree flashed, and Hauf sped away with a 0.02-second advantage, but Bischoff's Probe passed Hauf's Mustang before the stripe for the win, a 6.63 to a 6.69.
Winner Heavy Hitters Manny...
Heavy Hitters Manny Buginga, Don Burton, and John Urist showed up for MSD Super Street Outlaw. In fact, 10 of the 12 entries posted 7-second quali-fying times, so the competition was close. But it was Roscoe, Illinois's Jarrett Halfacre who put his turbocharged '93 Mustang at the top of the quali-fying heap with a 7.44 effort and followed up that performance with a trip into the sand trap at the end of the track. Not to be burned by a trip to the beach, Halfacre muscled through Sunday's eliminations to defeat New Mexico's John Urist in the final with a 7.57 to a 7.65 victory.
Winner While Troy Lee was...
While Troy Lee was the guy on Saturday to score the perfect reaction time and thus the number-one qualifying spot, it was Newport, Michigan's Randy Conway on Sunday that battled through five rounds of the intense Crane Cams Open Comp class. In the final, Conway's '94 Cobra squared off against the '95 Mustang of Michael Buczynski. Conway took an 0.057 light, while Buczynski left -0.009 red, giving Conway the win.
The 12tH Annual Y-Block Shootout...
The 12tH Annual Y-Block Shootout was also held at the NMRA Columbus event. Most Fords from 1954 to 1964 featured the Y-Block engines in sizes ranging from 239 ci to 312 ci, and these guys were letting it all hang out on the strip.
Winner Four rounds of Roush...
Four rounds of Roush Modular Muscle pitted Roxanne Shepard's Chrome Yellow '04 Mustang against Tom Motycka's Grey '96 GT. Motycka got the head start with a 0.047 reaction time, and Shepard was right behind him at 0.077 second. At the stripe, it was Motycka's 12.574 on a 12.48 dial-in over Shepard's 10.258 on her 10-flat index.
Winner The ProCharger EFI...
The ProCharger EFI Renegade class featured 18 tough competitors, and Brian Tuten was on top Saturday with a healthy 8.56 effort. After dropping in two fresh pistons after his first-round bye, he redlit in Round 3, which allowed Brian Mitchell and George Seeger to advance to the finals. Mitchell's lightning-struck hatchback took the early lead at the Tree with a 0.015-second advantage, and while both cars qualified at 8.69, Mitchell was the one who could find the most traction and took the win with a 9.22 to Seeger's 9.59.
|Hedman HeDders true Street Presented by MM&FF Top 25|
| ||Name||Home Town||Run 1||Run 2||Run 3||Avg.||Notes|
|1.||Jon Huber||St Louis, MO|| 9.442|| 9.828||10.431|| 9.900||Winner|
|2.||Tim Casto||Mason, WV|| 9.860||10.138|| 9.826|| 9.941||Runner-up|
|3.||Stephen Posenau||Amelia VA|| 9.976||10.248||10.050||10.091||10 Sec|
|4.||Josh Short||Baltimore, OH||10.608||10.649||10.769||10.675|| |
|5.||Neal Alder||Orient, OH||10.736||10.724||10.712||10.724|| |
|6.||Brad Albert||Bethel Park, PA||10.742||10.869||11.091||10.901|| |
|7.||Matt Stanford||Plymouth, MI||10.829||10.851||11.103||10.928|| |
|8.||Will Carroll||Fair View Park, OH||10.944||10.940||11.243||11.042||11 Sec|
|9.||Eric McNutt||Sulphur Springs, OH||11.062||11.119||11.178||11.120|| |
|10.||Jeremy Hedlund||Lima, OH||10.886||11.542||11.248||11.225|| |
|11.||Shane Sherwood||Clarksville, OH||11.178||11.164||11.579||11.307|| |
|12.||Cody Williams||Greenwood, IN||11.132||11.175||11.855||11.387|| |
|13.||Eddie Edwards||Ashville, OH||11.311||11.662||11.205||11.393|| |
|14.||Kathy Powell||Milford, OH||11.528||11.354||11.419||11.434|| |
|15.||Paul Dappenbrook||Beaver, PA||11.160||11.449||11.727||11.445|| |
|16.||Randy Soper||Granger, IN||11.943||11.993||12.156||12.031||12 Sec|
|17.||Jonathan Insley||Marietta, OH||12.067||12.132||11.957||12.052|| |
|18||Mike Charles||Grove City, OH||12.115||11.924||12.485||12.175|| |
|19.||Rick Terry||Vandalia, OH||12.166||12.188||12.248||12.201|| |
|20.||Mark Shank||Columbus, OH||12.728||12.356||12.741||12.608|| |
|21.||Jason Cartwright||Groveport, OH||12.600||12.691||13.095||12.795|| |
|22.||Jackie Flanders||Zeeland, MI||12.833||12.907||13.454||13.065||13 Sec|
|23.||Brian Delong||Lancaster, OH||13.194||13.305||13.511||13.337|| |
|24.||Tony Castillo Jr.||Brunswick, OH||14.325||12.941||12.953||13.406|| |
|25.||Jim Harty||Bay Village, OH||13.772||13.862||12.901||13.512|| |
| ||Mike Reed||Blacklick, OH||13.705||14.106||14.303||14.038||14 Sec|
|Roseann Powell||Louisville, OH||15.104||15.177||15.102||15.128||15 Sec|
Winner In K&N Filters factory...
In K&N Filters factory stock, it was Bennington, Indiana's Steve Gifford all the way. His modular-powered '97 Mustang GT qualified number one on Saturday with an 11.32, and while number-two qualifier Jeff Schmell took the holeshot lead with his '03 Mach 1 in the final round, it wasn't enough, as Gifford drove around him with an 11.40 to Schmell's 11.74.
Winner Jacksonville, Florida's...
Jacksonville, Florida's Kevin Fiscus has been hacking away at the Drag Radial contingent this year with his new machine. Throughout the year, he made numerous low-eight-second hits. With a little help from his fellow Drag Radial competitors, he was able to put it all together in Columbus and take home the win. After spinning out at the top end during his first qualifying pass on Friday, Fiscus got things together and stepped up to take the top qualifying spot in the 13-car Drag Radial field. Upon finding metal in the transmission pan, fellow DR racer Tony Akins went through the transmission for Fiscus before the first round. After defeating current points leader John Kolivas in the final, Fiscus almost gave away the win when his car wouldn't restart in the shutdown area. Apparently, the wire on the starter solenoid had fallen off and the hot headers weren't aiding the repair. In a true show of sportsmanship, Kolivas came back to fetch Fiscus and made sure to tell him not to tow the car, otherwise he could be disqualified. Fiscus finagled the wire's return to the terminal and the car fired right up, ensuring his win status.
Winner After a Saturday morning...
After a Saturday morning trip to the nearby Jegs retail outlet, Kevin Fiscus was able to get another pair of BFGoodrich drag radials to replace the one's he flat-spotted with his on-track donuts at the top end. Fellow DR competitor Pete Johnson stopped by to show Fiscus the quick way to change tires in the pits. Without having a tire machine handy, the car trailer's hydraulic leg knocked the bead off the rims in no time flat. That'll be $19.95 per tire, please.
Winner While John Kolivas...
While John Kolivas may have come up short in the Drag Radial final against Kevin Fiscus, he did come away with the TCI Shootout win and a fat bundle of cash.
Justin Curry had put the SAM-built...
Justin Curry had put the SAM-built '95 Cobra at the top of Edelbrock Hot Street qualifying with an 8.79 performance, but it was Mike DeMayo who took him down to square off against Tim Eichhorn in the finals. DeMayo left first and never looked back as Eichhorn fell off the pace, 8.91 to 12.86.
SevenTH-qualified Ron Anderson of Lexington, Illinois, proved victorious in Tremec Pure Street after using a holeshot start to take the win over Jimmy Wilson with a 10.368 to Wilson's slightly better 10.366.
Winner Detroit Locker Truck...
Detroit Locker Truck and Lightning brought out 12 tough competitors. In the finals, Columbus native Bob Cochran gave the win to Mike Motycka due to his -0.018 red light.
Rocky Mason of Goshen, Ohio,...
Rocky Mason of Goshen, Ohio, took his former street car and placed it on top of the Tremec Pure Street qualifying sheet on Saturday with a 10.34 elapsed time. The '89 Mustang features a BES short-block with Trick Flow heads, a Holley intake manifold, and a Pro Motion T5 trans.
The car show was kickin' all...
The car show was kickin' all weekend long, with more than 200 cars on hand. Columbus really brings in the old iron, all of which were looking their best.
The Capri Club of North America...
The Capri Club of North America calls Columbus its home for the club's annual get-together. Members from New York to Kansas came for the event. The Ford Capri was manufactured by Ford of Europe, and some were eventually sold over here in the early '70s. Eventually it was phased out and replaced with the Fox-based Mercury Capri.
When we spotted Chris Jackson's...
When we spotted Chris Jackson's "Eleanor" Mustang II, we didn't know what to make of it. Not being Mustang II fans ourselves, we have to admit that the workmanship is beautiful and the execution spot-on.
Young Mustang owners such...
Young Mustang owners such as Kettering, Ohio's Amanda Crossley are keeping the hobby alive and new. We caught up with her at the car show where she had her Chrome Yellow '99 GT. Seeing as how Amanda works full-time and carries a full college schedule, she doesn't have much time to enjoy the Saleen supercharger and built Two-Valve engine that her Pony is equipped with, but she and her parents do hit the occasional car show from time to time.
In the words of AC/DC's Brian...
In the words of AC/DC's Brian Johnson, "F-I-R-E!"