March 16-20, 2011
Thursday tesing is here
(Bob Wilson and Bob Snyder photos)
A few hits from a handful of tests on Thursday produced decent runs from a couple teams. The new all-concrete track and cooler than usual temperatures should net absolutely stellar times. Is this a precursor to the NHRA return to Bakersfield for the big show.
Rookie Will Martin - 6.36 - 220.83 early shut off. He made one more hit right at the end of the day. The first weekend for the dominating 7.0 team from the last few years. How long will it take them to be one of the hitters?
Better be fast or else!
In AA/FD, Brad Thompson smoked the tires 20.35 then came back right away for another try.
Pre-entries for AA/FC and AA/FD include 29 floppers and 17 Dragsters. Also there will be 2 - 6 Rear Engine Dragster Top Fuel cars.
Preview by Rob Gibson
During the past 53 years, the March Meet has drawn the greatest racers in drag racing history: Big Daddy Don Garlits, Shirley Cha-Cha Muldowney, John Force, Don The Snake Prudhomme and Tom The Mongoose McEwen, to name a few.
A new group of racers will be looking to add their names to that illustrious list as the March Meet, part of the NHRAs Hot Rod Heritage Series, revs up again this week, Mar, 18-20 at legendary Auto Club Famoso.
According to Blake Bowser, vice president and general manager of the Kern County Racing Association, operators of Auto Club Famoso Raceway and producers of the March Meet, nostalgia drag racings elite will compete in 10 classes. Fans will get to see over 400 cars race this weekend, Bowser said. Drag racers from around the world will be here. And this year, for the first time, were having two nitro qualifying rounds on Friday. Its going to be a great show dont miss it.
Bowser said Bakersfield is where the racers want to be. The March Meet is the biggest and the one race you want to win, he said All the racers will be geared up; they want to win here in Bakersfield. This is their Super Bowl.
Drag racing royalty Shirley Muldowney, who is serving as this years Grand Marshal, agreed. The March Meet was always the biggest race and still is, she said. They always had the most cars and anyone who was anyone was there.
Muldowney knows: She made three straight March Meet Top Fuel finals (1980-82), winning it all 1981. It (The March Meet) was the top win in and around the NHRA national events, she said. If you won Bakersfield, you were competitive to go and run the other big races. It was just like winning a national event, but it was even better because there were always a mega number of Top Fuel cars there more than any other race. It made you believe you could go there and put down some numbers that are well within the pack. You knew that you had found your way, were competitive and good enough to win.
Competitive is the key word tossed around this years race. Reading through the list of entries, Bowser said the competition will be especially fierce in classes such as Nostalgia Funny Car and Nostalgia Top Fuel.
For example, in Nostalgia Top Fuel, defending champ Adam Sorokin, the feel-good story of 2010, will have his hands full. Everyone remembers the touching scene last year when Sorokin won the March Meet and honored his father, Mike, who won the event in 1966 but tragically died racing a year later, before Adam was born. Sorokin used the March Meet win to propel him to win the Hot Rod Heritage championship.
To win back-to-back March Meet titles, Sorokin will have to go through another stellar field, including 4-time winner Jim Murphy, local favorite Brad Thompson, as well as Brett Harris, Rick McGee, Rick White, Denver Schutz, Brendan Murray and Howard Haight.
And theres nothing funny about the stiff competition in this years Funny Car class, said Bowser. The field includes veterans Kris Krabil, Nathan Bugg, Dennis LaCharite, Mike Halstead, Dan Horan and NHRA star Ron Capps.
Cars are a real blast from the past and nostalgia drag racing fans love em,
said Bowser. This year we will run a 16-car field. On Sunday we are also going
to do a Chicago-style shootout, where we will take the non-qualified Funny Cars
and give them a timed run. We will then bring back the quickest cars throughout
Sundays eliminations. Itll be a chance for them to run their car rather
than packing up and going home.
a field of cars and competitors, said Bowser. All I can say is lets
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
12:00 - 5:00 Parking for Racer, Vendor, and Motor Home
March 17, 2011
March 18, 2011
March 19, 2011
March 20, 2011
Now celebrating 53 years of racing, the March Meet is a three-day speedfest and spectators from around the world and also includes a hot rod car show, swap meet and a vendors midway. The 2011 March Meet will be held March 18-20 at historic Auto Club Famoso Raceway.
Drag racing legend Shirley Muldowney is this years Grand Marshal.
The 2011 March Meet is also the second race of the Hot Rod Heritage Series, the NHRAs 11-race nostalgia racing series.
December 29, 2010
A new NFC team in the NW and it is from... no surprise, Alberta.
AB - The Sitko Family Racing team and Ace Manufacturing have
patriarch, George Sitko has been drag racing for 50 years. He has
'77 Arrow body will be painted in the very recognizable Team Ace red
Family Racing would also like to welcome back Hyperion Laser
Ken Sitko is preparing the team's spare motor, George Sitko