hosted his 4th DRAGFEST event at Famoso Drag Strip near Bakersfield
in conjunction with Rod & Kulture Magazine on the weekend
of April 13-14. First held in 2009 and 2010, the event was on
hiatus until 2018 when it came back to the delight of many, and
this year did not disappoint either. Billed as "A party
where a drag race breaks out" sort of fits the event, although
the racing appeared to be well organized with classes using a
unique approach to index racing that I'll explain in a minute.
There were also plenty of test & tune runs including some
nitro cars. All in all, it was a "Run whatcha brung"
deal in a relaxed atmosphere. Lets begin...
Friday afternoon was load-in
day along with tech inspection for incoming cars. First car I
encountered was Joe Higginbotham's "Fowl Play" in the
tech inspection area. Unfortunately, Joe's car suffered a driveline
problem early in the weekend.
and Test & Tune
Saturday morning a wide variety
of cars hit the track. Racing was on an index, but with a twist.
This was an over-and-under deal... no breaking out and whoever
was closest to the number whether above or below would be the
winner. But wait, that failed to take reaction times into account,
so a method was derived to include both ET and RT as a "package"
in determining the actual winner of each pair. The usual win
lights were irrelevant- it was the announcement over the PA after
some quick math in the tower that told who won each pair. Seemed
to work well from what I could see.
Here are some qualifying pics
along with testing by various fuel cars. Ron Anzalone makes a
run starting at the water box.
Class indexes were 7.60, 8.60,
9.60, 10.60, 11.60, A/FX and the catch-all Open Wheel-Hot Rod
9.60-16.00 class which included bikes along with many door cars.
Randy Winkle brought out his Famoso Speed Shop Opel in the OW-HR
Dragster Jeff Crider
launches on an 8.60 index run
Eric Christianson in the potent
Valley Head Service '57 Chevy shuts off during the burnout and
gets backed up while Larry Ofria looks on in concern.
A couple of red A/FX Mustangs
at the launch- Cliff Lozis goes up while Dave Budgett keeps all
four on the ground.
Charlie See launches
in the 7.60 class
Michael Beebe hikes 'em
up in his Beebe & Mulligan injected SBC digger
Doty & Flournoy made
some test runs with their alky altered.
There was plenty of testing that
went on through the weekend. Jim Murphy was one of many who made
several hits over both days.
Tommy Schiffilea was
back at Famoso in his beautiful red 'Vette FC
Tedford & McGee were
testing with Rick's nephew, Tyler Hester in the seat.
This orange Pro Mod made
a number of passes.
Rian Konno was out to
do some testing in the Kazanjian-Lemon & Konno nitro funny
On another pass later
in the day, Rian struck the tires before the tree.
Ernie the Attorney faces
off in his A/FX Ford against Ken Moreland in his Chevy
A fine pair of gassers
Brendan Murry made some
test passes in his Nostalgia Top Fuel car.
Bikes competed in the Open Wheel-
Hot Rod 9.60-16.0 class. Here's a cool example of a rider on
his mount- didn't get the driver's name.
Back in the pits, Alex Miladinovich
cleans the sump pan of his Hot-4-Teacher Big Show car, while
one of his crew works the bottom end to get ready for some licensing
runs. Alex was formerly a regular in the Nostalgia FC ranks,
and has now moved up a notch. Graphics were freshly applied to
the car early in the weekend.
Alex's first Licensing pass was a short hit. Please
excuse the camera work- I was shooting stills with a camera in
one hand while running a video camera on a tripod with the other
Jim Murphy and crew came
out for another testing pass in his NTF dragster.
The run was short lived
though when traction turned into tiresmoke before the tree.
High Speed Motorsports NTF owner
Tom Shelar made a surprise visit (without his racecar) in order
to deliver some parts to Rick McGee and enjoy the day.
Tyler Hester made a second test
pass in the Tedford & McGee digger. Tom Shelar and Brad Thompson
can be seen observing.
A new fuel altered was out for
testing by the name of "Bandito" (little bandit). Driver's
name on the body is Dirty Ernie Harmon.
Randy Winkle made a couple of
afternoon passes in his Strange Brew machine, complete with dry
Billy McDevitt did some
testing in the Borjon Auto Center Nostalgia RED.
Adam Morgan lights 'em
Lucas Nunez and some
other Hot Rods came out to play.
The 9.60 class featured
Jim Hulse in his quick 240-Z and Brian Smith in his Mercury Cougar.
Bruce Boardman reached for the
sky at just about every launch in his 11.60 '55 Chevy called
Tommy Schiffilea winds
up the slicks.
Last pass of the day
was Jim Murphy.
Kleet Norris, Kevin and the boys
take down the tree after a successful, fun-filled Saturday at
the drags. Back tomorrow for more...
Eliminations and Winner's Circle
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