The heat, percussion, and...
The heat, percussion, and speed were an awesome experience firsthand. Next year, the timing system should be operable to allow all four lanes to be utilized for NMRA and NMCA drag racing categories.
It was a phenomenon that hadn't been seen since the '60s-we're talking about four-wide drag racing, and with jet cars to boot. That was the scene at the inaugural Nitto Tires All-Star Nationals, the fifth stop on the 2009 NMRA-Keystone Drag Racing and Car Show schedule. The event included both NMRA and NMCA programs running together.
ZMax Dragway is the latest in the Bruton Smith empire of world-class racing facilities, and it's located in the heart of NASCAR country near Charlotte, North Carolina. The timing system, unfortunately, wasn't yet set up to run four-lane eliminations, but the jet cars put on a nice, four-wide show for the full house of NMRA and NMCA racers and fans.
The ProMedia officials kept both series separate, unlike the Super Bowl of Street Legal Drag Racing a month earlier at Route 66 Raceway (Joliet, Illinois). But just like the Super Bowl event, the True Street field was paraded around the NASCAR track for its 30-mile cruise. The nearby Lowes Motor Speedway gates had opened up to the 43 True Street entries (31 Fords and 12 Brand-X), so they could make left turns and barrel down the straights like the NASCAR stars. And like the Route 66 True Street cruise, it was fun to watch drag racing-oriented machines humming through steep embankments while rolling on skinny front tires and DOT-slicks and drag radials in the back.
The heads-up and index-racing classes that make up the Keystone Automotive Drag Racing division of the NMRA was full of familiar faces. The extreme heat-over 100 degrees-certainly slowed down the cars and trucks, but it didn't hurt the close competition. Challenging track conditions also threw a curveball to the racers with soaring surface temperatures (140 degrees). Nevertheless, racers adapted and overcame the conditions to snag valuable points in the Nitto-sponsored Race for the Ring championship shootout.
Evolution Performance rolled...
Evolution Performance rolled out its brand-new '10 Shelby GT500 for a special Hot Rod magazine event. The gorgeous '10 features every bolt-on in the Evolution catalog and ran low 11s at 130 mph. Nelson Whitlock Jr. was hampered by a faulty transmission and vowed 10s by the time you read this issue.
Dan Millen of Livernois Motorsports...
Dan Millen of Livernois Motorsports is on a roll and won his second straight event in the Pro Outlaw 10.5 category. The newly built Skinny Kid Race Cars entry ran a best of 6.83 at 211, despite the extreme heat.
The naturally aspirated Pure...
The naturally aspirated Pure Street final round between Ryan Hecox (right) and Mark Anderson (left) was a tight match up. Both racers left with the wheels up, but Anderson got loose and was forced to lift. Hecox won with a 10.27 at 131 mph.
One of the deadliest sleepers...
One of the deadliest sleepers belongs to Mike Rousch of Virginia. The daily-driven coupe features a Four-Valve with a Turbonetics.....
.....88mm turbo and goes mid-9s!...
.....88mm turbo and goes mid-9s! The car wasn't in competition and was parked in the Hellion Power Systems pit all weekend long.
It is easy to smoke the hides...
It is easy to smoke the hides when you have over 1,400 hp on tap. Enzo Pecchini relies on a Panhandle Performance-built 342ci engine with a ProCharger F1R supercharger for his low-8-second Drag Radial racer.
The biggest sleeper in competition...
The biggest sleeper in competition belonged to Scott Brady, who finished as the True Street Overall Runner-Up with a 9.19 average. It is surprisingly silent, with a smooth idle from its nitrous-injected 442ci engine. We would have mistaken it for a car running low 10s; it looks and sounds that sedate.
JPC Racing's Tommy Godfrey...
JPC Racing's Tommy Godfrey showed off his new set of Nitto 555R drag radials on his Factory Stocker. He ran low-11s and Godfrey hopes to compete full-time on the Nitto tires in 2010.
Pete Esput broke his Super...
Pete Esput broke his Super Stang entry on Friday, so he had his wife pick up their brand-new '10 Shelby GT500 from the dealer on Saturday for the True Street competition on Sunday! They hadn't even taken the window sticker off of it yet. He finished with a 13.06 average.
The True Street Overall Winner...
The True Street Overall Winner was Allen Hurley of Bristol, Tennessee, in his '88 coupe. He came to battle with a basic combination: a 400ci Windsor with Roush-Yates NASCAR take-off heads and a single-fogger nitrous system. That was good for an 8.95 average.
Johnny Morris nailed down...
Johnny Morris nailed down a 12.06 average for the 12-second Winner spot in True Street. The '05 Stang features a Fastlane-built 281ci engine with a Vortech V2 blower, JPC intake, and a shot of nitrous. It makes 620 rwhp and has gone 10.60s at 127 mph on slicks-but for this event, his Stang rolled on 20-inch radial tires that spun at the hit of throttle during every run.
Lexington, North carolina's...
Lexington, North carolina's Ryan Leitner was armed with a ProCharger-blown ride that was built by famed Super Street Outlaw racer Chris Tuten. The coupe was the True Street 9-second Winner with a 9.31 average.
A former MM&FF cover car was...
A former MM&FF cover car was spotted on the car show grounds. Since we were in NASCAR country, we weren't surprised to see a plethora of Roush Mustangs in the show as well. Over 100 cars were shined up in the show segment of the event.
An S197 Foose Special Edition...
An S197 Foose Special Edition Mustang is very rare; this could be the first privately owned Foose ride we have seen at an NMRA event. It not only looks sweet, but the two-tone Stang packs nearly 450 rwhp courtesy of an FRPP supercharger.
Johnny Lightning is closing...
Johnny Lightning is closing in on his first NMRA Truck and Lightning championship. The Gen 2 ride features a fully-built 5.4L engine with a Kenne Bell 2.8H blower and goes mid-10s. He won the Charlotte event, his first NMRA win in 2009.
Joseph Marini went to the...
Joseph Marini went to the semifinals in Modular Muscle with his turbocharged S197. The car was racing on a 10.40 index but we've watched this JPC Racing-built car go 9.90s during an MM&FF S197 Shootout. It sports a 322ci Three-Valve that is pumped up by a Hellion 76mm turbo system.
Super Street Outlaw has seen...
Super Street Outlaw has seen some wild final rounds with tight racing and jaw-dropping performances. The final in Charlotte was neither. John MacDonald (left) won his first NMRA event, but it was an interesting victory. The engine snapped a wrist pin, which in turn completely wiped out a piston, rod, and sleeve. The car rolled to a 10.41. He actually won because his competitor, Don Burton (right), shook the 28x10.5-inch slicks so hard that the power cut-off lever was thrown-thus shutting off the car.
Conrad Scarry and the Ken...
Conrad Scarry and the Ken Seeger Motorsports team put some blue paint on their new Pro Outlaw 10.5 entry. The car replaced their previous ride, which looked identical but had been destroyed at the NMRA season opener in Bradenton, Florida. Scarry scored a runner-up finish with his twin-turbocharged big-block combination.
It was back-to-back Open Comp...
It was back-to-back Open Comp wins for Paul Lehman in his '31 Model A Ford, a crowd favorite. It mixes rat-rod looks with 10-second performances.
Crossbreeding is becoming...
Crossbreeding is becoming more popular. Here is Alton Clements Jr. hanging the wheels with his Mod Motor-powered Fox coupe. The Sutton High Performance-sponsored car is entered in the EFI-Renegade ranks and is constantly in the top half of the field. On this outing, the Vortech supercharged Four-Valve engine helped push Clements to a best of 8.77 at 160 mph.
Longtime (and successful)...
Longtime (and successful) FFW racer, Gary Parker, dusted off his Modular Muscle racecar for some fun. Parker showed he is still competitive, as he took home the winner's check by beating Randy Mounce with an 11.03 on an 11.02 index.
Bruce Hemminger looks to be...
Bruce Hemminger looks to be the only competitor who can beat MV Performance's Tim Matherly in the highly restrictive Real Street class. The nitrous-injected coupe won the event with a 9.52 at 142 mph blast-a run that has the supercharger contingent heading back to the chassis dyno to find more power.
The 30-mile cruise for the...
The 30-mile cruise for the TTC Tremec True Street category took place on famed 1.5-mile Lowes Motor Speedway.
|2009 Inaugural Nitto Tires|
|NMRA-Keystone Drag Racing Event Winners & Runners-Up|
|Turbonetics Pro Outlaw 10.5|
|Winner: ||Dan Millen||7.04/179 mph|
|Runner-Up: ||Conrad Scarry||8.03/127 mph|
|ProCharger Super Street Outlaw|
|Winner: ||John MacDonald||10.41/86 mph|
|Runner-Up:||Don Burton||18.13/49 mph|
|BFGoodrich Drag Radial|
|Winner:||Dave Guy||8.20/167 mph|
|Winner:||Brian Tuten||11.38/92 mph|
|Runner-Up:||Larry Hourcle||8.60/159 (red)|
|Edelbrock Hot Street|
|Winner:||Robbie Blankenship||8.88/154 mph|
|Runner-Up:||Don Bowles||8.86/153 mph|
|Winner:||Bruce Hemminger||9.52/142 mph|
|Eibach Pure Street|
|ACT Factory Stock|
|Roush Modular Muscle|
|Winner:||Gary Parker||11.03 on 11.02 Index|
|Runner-Up:||Randy Mounce||11.27 on 11.16 Index|
|Steeda Open Comp|
|Winner:||Paul Lehman||10.72 on 10.72 Index|
|Runner-Up:||Bobby McMasters||9.21 on 9.23 Index |
|Detroit Locker Truck & Lightning|
|Winner: ||Johnny Lightning ||10.43 on 10.42 Index|
|Runner-Up: ||Dave Cole||10.84 on 10.77 Index |
|JDM Engineering Super Stang|
|Winner: ||Chris Parisi||5.45 on 15.33 Dial-In|
|Runner-Up: ||David Bachota ||10.95 on 10.75 Dial-In|
|MMFF's Tremec True Street|
|Allen Hurley ||8.95||Overall Winner|
|Scott Brady||9.19||Overall Runner-Up|
|Ryan Leitner||9.31||9-second Winner|
|Stevie Vaughan||10.17||10-second Winner|
|Tony Leitner||11.32||11-second Winner|
|Johnny Morris||12.06||12-second Winner|
|Ray Williams||13.01||13-second Winner|
|Billy Zimmerie||14.48||14-second Winner|
|Dawn Stowers||15.15||15-second Winner|