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s we head in to the summer racing season, things seem a little, how do you say... dead? We are missing the usual pre-race hype for a lot of the big events that are coming up in the Midwest.
I can’t speak for the tracks in that locale, but I have some good friends who work for a few of our west coast strips and they say the gates look good but ad revenue is down and of course operating costs are up. Maybe this is killing the pre-race hype machine?
I have said it before and I will say it again! Get out there and support your local tracks! Now more than ever, they need us!
I just read the first report on the 2009 St. Louis Muscle Car Reunion, here on DRO, of course. At first glance at the photos, the spectator turnout seemed a little light. I remembered when we raced there in '04 (Mike Adams is the one who ran the 6.08, Burkster) that the St. Louis area is like any big metro area with a national event track. That is, even if you draw five thousand plus spectators, it’s going to look like a ghost town when the place seats forty thousand. And it’s tough to get the folks out to watch slow cars when the big show comes to town once or twice a year. Ask the Goodguys about that.
Speaking of the Goodguys, June has always been their month to shine, at least after they left the racing to someone else. It is the month for Indy. I must say, I went in '05 with Dale Pulde and Zak Hawthorne, running Jeff Gaynor’s Funny Car and was impressed. We fought the weather that year and the car count for the drags seemed down, but the car show car count was off the hook! Five thousand is the number I remember. This year hopefully the weather will cooperate and the 21st running of this event will go off without a hitch. They are running lots of classes including both Top Fuel and Funny Car as open eight car shows. Correct me here… they say "VRA rules apply."
Um, there is no VRA. We run under NHRA Nostalgia Supplement rules. Sorry to nitpick. Unless the Goodguys are thinking of coming back into the fray? Marc Meadors seems to be having a lot of fun lately with his scary-fast race car....
June is really busy this year with not only Indy, but the seventh annual Holley National Hot Rod Reunion held at Beech Bend Raceway Park, in beautiful Bowling Green, Kentucky. Also, we have the Arizona Fuel and Gas Nationals being held at Speedworld Dragstrip. This event is part of the NHRA Heritage series featuring a vast array of the sportsman classes.
Another longtime friend of Getting Nostalgic, the poor fellow who witnessed me getting -- at least a decade apart mind you -- both Alcohol Dragster and Nitro Funny Car licenses, Bernie Longjohn. This was when he managed LACR in the California high desert. He now manages the race plant in Arizona. If you can make it to this event, please attend!