West decided to come out to play in the "Plan A" in
the popular AA/FA class and did what he's used to doing, winning.
West and steady campaigner Tom Padilla in his Red Dragon. West
left first by a bunch (0.166 to a 0.282) and never looked back.
His 6.064 at 217 was more than enough to best Padilla's 6.705
at 150.08. It was West's first win in the class: old guys rule.
FUNNY CAR CHAMPION
The funny car final was a dandy.
Not a favorite in sight. Two first time finalists at a major
meet. Billy Morris and Tony Jurado clawed their way through a
tough 16 car field to meet in the final.
On paper it was a slight tip
to Morris and it played out that way. He left first (0.108 to
a 0.153) then covered the quarter mile in 5.589 at 251.29 for
his first win. Jurado ran a game 5.662 at 262.18.
Congrats to both for a great
FUNNY CAR CHAMPION
Sharing the funny car winners
circle was the team of Austin & O'Brien and their franchise
driver, Bobby Cottrell. They lost the battle here but did win
the war. For an unprecedented fifth time the team wins the Heritage
Series Funny Car Championship.
TOP FUEL CHAMPION
Those who stayed for the nitro
finals got their monies worth. After a close FC final the top
fuel final was even better. The two biggest dogs on the property
landed where they belonged, in opposite lanes for CHRR gold.
One or the other, mostly Hilton,
had the top numbers every session/round. We had a new car debut
and a tuner returning to the drivers seat after a six year hiatus.
A little controversy, a lot of excitement. Early hemi or late
model hemi? Either would be a popular win.
The hype was over, time to race.
Kaiser got the jump (0.069 to a 0.118) leaving Hilton to play
a little catch-up.
Catch him he did, Hilton took
the win with a 5.645 at 238.22 to Kaiser who was right there
with a 5.704 at 251.95. Factor in the RTs and Hilton's MOV: 0.0100
seconds (approximately 4 feet).
Father Bob is no stranger to
top fuel or the drivers seat. He drove the "Great Expectations
II" RED for his in-laws, Jim and Alison Lee. Handing him
a hemi was no far stretch.
Son Tyler, has proven to be an
accomplished shoe in his own right and deserves a medal for sitting
behind a BBC test bed for the last five years. Fires, oil downs
and parts tossing is hopefully behind this dynamic duo as they
look forward to the 2023 Heritage season.
On to the Winners Circle where
the team accepted a dualie - 2022
Heritage Series Top Fuel Champion and CHRR winner. Rewards for
a long, devoted season.
OTHER CLASS WINNERS
We simply cannot cover every other
class but I can honor the winners, hope its enough.
Once again an A/Fuel final featured
Kin Bates Sr. this time matched with Wayne Ramay who got a big
jump at the gate (0.117 to a 0.234). This could have been Bates
At the other end it was all Bates
with a stunning 6.085 at 233.48! The fives are so close. Ramay
clicked it to a 7.154 at 183.42.
The win was another double for
team Bates, 2022 Heritage Series A-Fuel Champion and CHRR winner.
What a roll.
Call him "Double-Up Dustin"
Lee who scored the event win capped with the 2022 Heritage Jr.
I love this class, the 7.0 PRO
winner was Joacim Ljungberg who survived the 32 car show beating
Danny Schrokosch in the final with a 7.158 at 133.13 to a 7.146
at 168.03 on the 7.0PRO Index: 7.00. Obviously it was done on
The AA-GAS crown went to Mike
O'Connor who got the best of Scott White with a 6.730 at 196.90
to a 6.766 at 209.92.
Dale Taros waded through 5 rounds
of racing to capture the NE-1 trophy. He got past Dan Martin
with a 7.612 at 166.48 to a losing 7.645 at 178.73. (NE1 Index:
The NE-2 title went to Wes Anderson
who defeated Sam Tucker in a close one with a 8.627 at 154.10
to a losing 8.605 at153.44. (NE2 Index: 8.60).
NE-3 was captured by Cameron
Webb who defeated Rich Harrison with a 9.571 at 131.99 to a 9.557
at 139.78, another incredibly close race in a class that demands
them. (NE3 Index: 9.60).
The wild and wacky Pro Mod title
went to Justin Wake who got the better of a red lighting Bret
Williamson carding a 5.779 at 250.64.
The A/GAS class saw another double
champ. Mike Mossi topped a 32 car field to capture another CHRR
win and more so, the 2022 Heritage Series A-Gas Championship.
In the final he got the best of Ray Padgett with a 7.602 at 178.73
to a breakout 7.564 at 176.33.(AG Index: 7.60).
B-GAS went to Mike Rabener (another
32 car show) with a win over Randy Armstrong. A 8.600 at 153.56
to a losing 8.582 at 157.06 got the job done. (BG Index: 8.60)
Lee Roberts Jr. went home another
double double. His CHRR C-GAS win capped a 2022 Heritage Series
C/Gas Championship. His meet win was over Tom Christian running
a 9.593 at 135.17 to beat a -0.125 red light.
The D-GAS trophy was taken home
by Steve Barta who got the best of a red lighting Beau Dyson.
His 10.542 at 125.26 was the number.
Finally the Hot Rod gold went
to Jerry Brabander who survive 6 rounds of racing to defeat a
red lighting Hurschel Ward in the final;
CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL
AMID ALL THE NITRO
THERE WAS ONE ASPECT OF THE "REVIVAL" PART LEFT,
2022 CHRR HONOREES
Presented at the Double Tree Hotel
on Friday at
GRAND MARSHALL - LARRY
Bob Beck was the host for the event.
Beck introduced David
Kennedy, the new Director of the NHRA Motorsports Museum.
The first Honoree was David Leighton
who was practically born into drag racing. His father Gus
Leighton raced the Dragmaster B that finished in the Hot Rod
magazine drag racing Top Ten in 1960. His mother Roberta was
the first woman licensed by NHRA and won the J/Stock class at
the 1962 U.S. Nationals. David started helping his mom with her
race car at the age of seven. His aunt Phyllis was married to
long-time NHRA official Bernie Partridge. A long-time member
of the Dust Devils of Ridgecrest, David helped run the longest
continuously operating drags strip at Inyokern until it was closed
in 2005. He has raced successfully in the Comp, Super Comp and
ET categories as well as serving as an NHRA track official.
We apologize for the lack of
photos of Inductee Roger Lamb of Lamb Components who
since 1971 has been manufacturing top quality front suspension
components and brake systems. It was Lamb who revolutionized
Pro Stock racing when he installed the first Mac Pherson strut
front suspension in the 1974 Grumpys Toy XI. He created
carbon disc brakes in 1987 and his equipment is today used extensively
in Pro Stock, Pro Mod and Comp racing. Since 1971 Roger
Lamb of Lamb Components has been manufacturing top quality
front suspension components and brake systems.
Once Richard Schute announced
his retirement at the beginning of 2022, the year turned into
a cornucopia of well deserved awards including CHRR Honoree.
For more than 50 years Shute recorded
the history of the fastest accelerating cars on the planet. A
long time Southern Californian first shot drag racing with a
simple 126 Instamatic and the hook was set. When he retired from
shooting himself, he was using a state-of-the-art Nikon and his
Auto Imagery studio had amassed a tremendous archive. Throughout
the 1970s CJ Hart hired Rick to be the official Orange County
International Raceway photographer. Together with Dave Kommel
Auto Imagery shot all the National events and their photos appeared
in Popular Hot Rodding, Super Stock & Drag Illustrated, Car
Craft and Hot Rod. Through Leslie Lovett, National Dragsters
first photo editor, and Wally Parks, Rick was able to shoot commercially
as long as he served as the backup for the NHRA photo department.
To this day National Dragsters images are available to
the public through Auto Imagery.
Hot Rod reunion Grand Marshal: Larry
Tores was a long-time successful racer in Super Stock and
Comp Eliminator and was the Buick racing guru in the late 70s
and early 80s. Finding a need in his own cars for dependable
equipment, he came up with shaft mounted rocker arms which he
has manufactured at his T & D Machine Products since founding
the business in 1975 in his home garage. T & D rockers are
used in all forms of competition from drag racing to NASCAR.
On a night that was awkward at
best, they forgot my buddy Settles. With the closing at hand,
someone noted, you forgot sombody. Not one to be forgotten was
one of those legendary Texas fuel racers, Dave Settles has
been a driver in both Top Fuel and Funny Car as well as a crew
chief and engineer for some of the biggest names in the sport.
Driving for Candies and Hughes he won Top Fuel at the 74
Gator Nationals and was runner-up to Don Garlits at the Super
Nationals. He finished #2 in points that year behind champion
Gary Beck and was the Division 4 Top Fuel champion. He drove
for other Texans including the Carroll Brothers and Raymond Beadle.
He was later a tuner for Connie Kalitta and Cruz Pedregon and
is a member of the Arizona Drag Racing Hall of Fame.
Your hero and mine, TV Tom in
a room that only mimicks those of the past. No SRO, no full tables,
even. Sad comes to mind.
Moving on to the bar....
Adam Sorokin, Trevor
Larkin and ????
Mike English, Bill Holland, Don
Ewald, Simon Menzes, Donny Couch and Dave Settles. Only about
500 years of stories.
Champion Speed Shop gang including
Ron Hampshire, Donnie Couch, Bob McLennan, and the Sorokins.
Simon Menzies, Henry
Walther and Dave Settles.
Yes, there was a last minute
mini cackle in front of the Double Tree lobby. The croud used
to be 15 deep. Front row now a given. Thanks to the Ewell, Bell
& Stucker car and Sam Chastain in his "Iron Horse"
for volunteering to do the show.
and Other Cars
Nostalgia Race Coverage like
this and more importantly the drag racing history on WDIFL will
cease sooner than later if racers and fans don't start supporting
WDFIL again. Thanks, Don