Bakersfield, CA - 10/24/12: The 21st edition of the California Hot Rod Reunion disappointed no one. It lived up to its rock star billing and then some. The weekend featured Chamber of Commerce weather and a race track second to none. There was no doubt that Auto Club Famoso Raceway operators Blake and John Bowser had their facility ready for what was the largest CHRR ever. The smooth as glass concrete quarter mile yielded incredible times in both Top Fuel and Funny Car.

Add to that the hard working folks from the NHRA Wally Parks Motorsports Museum and the crew at Famoso insured those in attendance enjoyed 3 full days of great racing, tons of cacklecars and the reason the reunion started in the first place, tons of friends getting together while we still can.

A special factor was added in this year in the form of a silent auction to benefit the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum. Nearly 100 unique and rare items went on the block and the end result was over $26,000 to benefit a great cause.

On the racing side the victors were Rick Williamson (Nostalgia Top Fuel), Mike Lewis (Nostalgia Funny Car), Marc Meadors (Nostalgia Pro Mod), Ronnie Lennon (7.0 Pro), Bud Hammer (Junior Fuel), Les Davenport (A/Fuel), Rob Patten (A/Gas), Don Taros (Nostalgia Eliminator I), Dewayne Sanders (7.0 Pro Group 2) and Doug Hampton (AFX) were all crowned winners at the event.

The 2012 NHRA Hot Rod Heritage Racing Series champs were also crowned at the Hot Rod Reunion. Adam Sorokin won his second Series championship in Nostalgia Top Fuel and Jason Rupert took home his second consecutive win in Nostalgia Funny Car at Famoso.

This year I'm going to forego my normal lengthily lead-in because people come here for the photos so without further ado we'll go right into Top Fuel.

For the full event story visit: 2011 CHRR on the NHRA Museum News




Top Fuel First Qualifying Session

Friday 2:45 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 86 degrees, relative humidity 40 percent, barometer 29.31 inches, adjusted altitude 2,762 feet.


The first session was led off by John Rasmussen on a single in Bob Richardson's "Circuit Breaker".







John carded a solid 6.002 at 241.63.





Next out for another single was Rick White in the Neal & White entry.


White carded a strong 1.043 sixty foot time.








White threw down the gauntlet on this one, a picture perfect 5.787 at 249.67.





The first pair out was Rick McGee in the Tedford & McGee "Overtime Special" and Dan Horan Jr. in Dan Sr.'s car.





McGee left really hard clocking a stout 1.022 60' foot time.


Horan was way soft and made it to half track before a big boom ended the run.




McGee was on a monster run but clicked it at the 1000' mark slowing to a 5.945 at just 187.16. His 1/8 mile time was 3.762 at 216.20 which was the fastest 660' speed ever for a NTF car.








Next out was Bill Dunlap in the seat of the High Speed Motorsports car and Jim Murphy in his WW2 Racing entry.




Both cars had decent leaves with Murphy being the quickest to the 60' mark.












Murphy made a great baseline pass of 5.792 at 226.01. Dunlap clicked it early, as planned, to a 6.134 at 200.08.








Third pair was Rick Williamson in the Craig Racing car and Brendan Murry in his late model hemi powered "Running Wild Racing". Rick was the only driver with even a remote chance of overtaking Sorokin for the TF title.





Williamson left like a rocket while Murry's car struggled.









Williamson carded a stout 5.750 with a big speed, 261.02. Murry gave up early and coasted through.








Next up was new Crop Duster driver Paul Romine, and Adam Sorokin in the Champion Speed Shop SBC car,





The big yellow car jumped out of the gate and hauled ass. Sorokin smoked the tires at the hit.






Romine's potentially low ET run didn't have a long enough fuse and he was done by the 1000' mark but still ran a 5.883 at 207.69. However, there was a lot of bleeding which shut the track down for a major clean up.









The next to last pair pitted Mendy Fry in Mike Fuller's Forever Young and Howard Haight in the Mr. Boston car.



Fry had a better 60' time but Haight passed her by the 330' mark.




Haight's engine was finished by the 1000 foot mark necessitating another lengthy clean up.





Oiled in, Haight did a nice job of keeping the car in its lane.





The last pair was Tony Bartone and Terry Cox in the Cheetah IV.





Not sure what happened to Bartone but his engine went silent right after the hit.





Cox made it to the other end with a 5.900 at 249.72 but it would cost them an engine thus ending their weekend.





And so ended a very long TF qualifying session.




Top Fuel Qualifying - Session Two

Top Fuel - Round One

Top Fuel - Round Two - Final

Funny Car - Semis, Final & Misc.

Other Winners & Cars

Pits 'n People


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