30th Annual Night of Thunder

Photo by Jerry Ohmer

Saturday, July 7th (National Trail Raceway) -- Out with the old and in with the new.  The management staff at National Trail Raceway worked all winter to revamp their schedules and put a new twist on many of their old shows with the Night of Thunder receiving a whole new look.

As is the trend with these types of shows the bracket racing was finished before the show started so that the spectators would get an action packed nonstop evening of entertainment.

The deck was stacked toward the spectators as the show had just about everything to offer. There was Jet Dragsters, Jet Funny Cars, Fuel Altered, Fuel Funny Cars, Injected Nitro Front Engine Dragsters, Wheel Standers, Golf Cart Wheel Standers, Super Charged Thunder and the GLNFCC. Plus, before the show they had an autograph session that included all the drivers.

The GLNFCC brought 8 cars to run at this show, we had not run at this track for many years and were happy to be a part of a show of this caliber.

First pair out was the Solid Rock Mustang driven by Rocky Ausec taking on Drew Sweetman in the Sweetman Brothers Citation. Drew had recently been on a run and it seem like it would continue as the Citation beat the Mustang with a 7.06 at 194.02.

Next up was Total Insanity Monza driven by Chris Massarella next to the NitroFlier II Omni driven by Bill Walls. Chris came out with a thundering East Coast-style burnout. Bill was late off the line and this allowed the Monza to take the win.

Jim and James Maher brought their Junior Vibes Tempo all the way from Whittier, CA to be a part of this event and they lined up against the always tough small block Chevy powered Pol Cal Corvette driven by Johnny K. James left on a big hole shot, the Corvette tried to run down the Tempo but ran out of real estate.  James ran a 7.10 190 to Johnny K’s 7.18 187.

Last pair was the Generation X Corvette driven by Robin Stambaugh and tuned by her brother Matt. They were up against another family team, the Horvaths. This was Marks first event this season with the Kay’s Mopar Missile Challenger. Both cars stunned the crowd with long, smoky burnouts. Mark moved first, and Robin hunted him down, but all was for naught as the zoomies just touch the 1,000-foot cone giving the win to the Challenger.

After more spectacular racing it was time for the funny cars to make their final appearance of the evening. The Nitro Flier II Omni was up against the Total Insanity Monza, both drivers were working on their tune-up for the upcoming Good Vibrations Motorsports Funny Car Nationals at Keystone Raceway Park. Chris was out first and held off the Omni with a 7.00 194 to Bills 7.09

Next was the Solid Rock Mustang against the Generation X Corvette. Robin was out first but Rocky was able to get in front of the heavily favored Corvette and pull off the win with a 7.32 187.7

Third pair was the Pol Cal Corvette taking on the Kay’s Mopar Missile Challenger. Johnny K turned on the red light giving Mark the win.

The final for the evening was the Junior Vibes Tempo taking on the Sweetman Brothers Citation. This was Drews third final in a row for the 2018 season. There was a little drama as the Citation seem to have trouble backing up but finally did get staged. James moved first but seemed to be out of the groove by half track. Drew thundered by with a 7.17 and his first win of the season.

Thanks to all the staff at National Trail Raceway, they have a great facility and ran a flawless event. We sure look forward to future shows at this track.

The Peak Products winner trophy went to the Sweetman Brothers.

The Good Vibrations Motorsports Reaction Time Award went to James Maher with a .068 light.

The S & W Race Products Contingency award went to Drew Sweetman (Winner) & James Maher (Runner Up)

Thanks to all our sponsors that help us stay on track. Good Vibrations Motorsports, Peak Products, S & W Race Cars, Blue Def, and Lightning Racing Oil.