It was a beautiful night to be at a racetrack. As I drove down to Route 66 Raceway for the O'Reilly Auto Parts Test & Tune , the weather couldn't have been more perfect for photography, low 80's, slight breeze and high overcast for even lighting. Soon after arriving, I wandered around the pits to see who was going to be running tonight. There were some really nice cars, at least three nitro-burners.
Tim Cullinan, in his front engine nitro burning dragster, had an adventurous first pass, when he got sideways at least three times. And if my eyes didn't deceive me, he appeared to almost roll it, Here is a highly cropped image of what it looked like.
As we started to get into the racing, the high overcast burned off and the dreaded sun glare hit again forcing a change in shooting plans. Back to shooting down the track from behind the cars!
The entire night was sort of herky jerky with a lot of testing (hence, Test & Tune) and single car runs. Bob Malloy's driver, Bob Houlihan was testing his car. The car had not been running since a blown engine caused it to be sidelined.
Miranda Lawson finally got her car back to the track. It had been suffering from torque converter/transmission issues since late last year. They had been thrashing on the car all week to get it ready! However, her Dad ran the car all night to ensure it was ready for next week's racing. He did get a 9.96 pass in, so it appears ready to go.
All told, it was a very good night and I had a great time!
To see all the images from the night's racing, please click here.
I will be going on vacation next week, so I will see everyone the weekend after NMRA/NMCA.
We knew the day was going to be hot and sticky, however, as long as the sun stayed behind the high clouds, it wasn't too bad. About half way through the event, a localized thunder storm popped up and rained on us causing about a 90 minute delay. The staff, with help from some of the drivers/parents/owners, quickly dried the track and racing resumed. Considering all the weather factors, it was a very good day for racing. The final tally was Raceway 1, Mother Nature 0! We finally won one!!
In the Rockett Brand Racing Fuel ET Bracket race #6, it was literally hot and heavy. It was some of the best bracket racing I had witnessed this year. It seems the hot weather brought out the best! Our winners were:
Super Pro: Jeff Zaletel
Pro: Frank Valencia
Pro Bike: Bob Foster Jr.
Sportsman: Paul O'Keefe
High School: Morgan Hixon
It was another great day for Troy Bogner, who finished runner-up to Frank Valencia in Pro. In the five races completed, Troy has three wins and two runner-up positions.
The NHRA Summit Racing Equipment Jr. Drag Racing Racing League had a great turnout of racers this weekend. The kids did a great job. It was good to see Liz Manaseri back at the track in a new car. Liz had a mishap last race as she exited the track damaging her, now, previous car. Unfortunately, the car had a hiccup at the starting line with a brake hose and she was unable to compete. She did a test run later in the day.
Our winners today were:
Modified: Andy Rubker
Sportsman: Bobby Churchill (also Best Reaction Time)
Modified Best Reaction Time: Sydney Senko
Sportsman Runner-Up: Madison Drafke
Here are some images from the entire day of racing:
Route 66 Test & Tune
This was the first Test & Tune in over a month. As I approached the track, I noticed clouds directly overhead. My thought was that would be great light to shoot in. Unfortunately, the clouds blew out and a blasting sun hit the track. The angle of the sun at the start of the racing nearly prohibited shooting towards the Tower. If you look at the images, you will see many more shots from behind the cars looking down the track. As the sun set the lighting got better and I was able to shoot towards the tower. It started out very hot, but as the sun started to set, it became quite pleasant. Here are some images from today.