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June 10-12, Indianapolis Raceway Park, Indianapolis, IN-The 17th Hot Rod Nationals returned to IRP with a dismal weekend weather forecast looming.  While all qualifying sessions were completed during Friday and Saturday, Tropical Storm Arlene had other plans for the set fields on Sunday.  For the second consecutive year, eliminations were rained out but not before fans got to take in a great show. The following photo highlights are just a portion of the excitement that happened during this event. Enjoy! Dawn & Mark

Scott Parks has never lost a round of competition at Indy since his Junior Fuel debut in 2000.  Titles in ‘00, ‘01, ‘02, and ’03 have been dampened by two straight Sunday washouts, but none-the-less his record remains in tact.
Brian Blasey knocked out some impressive 9.70 time slips in his dad's 1940 Chevy.  Built in 1959 and retired in 1973, this sbc-powered beast was resurrected in 2000 as the popularity of nostalgia racing grew.
This ’33 Ford Coupe of Dave Shaffer has a great vintage look. Shaffer qualified sixth in the popular Nostalgia Eliminator class.

Brendan Murry made the long haul from San Jose, CA to Indy and qualified number one with low e.t. and top speed of the meet, a 6.25 at 227.84.  Murry was the odds-on favorite to take the Top Fuel trophy this year.
Mike Litzau squeaked into the B/Gas field on the bump spot in this squeaky clean ’48 Anglia that he calls the “English Invasion.”  Great burnouts, Mike!

West Coast Series competitor Jeff “Killah” Utterback wheeled Jeff Gaynor’s ‘Cuda through some long smoky burnouts during exhibition Funny Car action.  Traction issues yielded some disappointing time slips, but the crowd loved the classic look of this plastic bodied ground-pounder none-the-less. 
Bumper-scraping launches were Brad Cashel's specialty in his blown, bbc-powered '55 Chevy.  Cashel qualified second in the A/Gas field with a 7.700.
A pungent nitro bouquet was abundantly thick in the air, as were copious amounts of tire smoke, whenever Steve Nichols brought the Mill Road Boys Funny Car to the line.
The long trip from San Bernardino, CA was particularly rewarding for Nostalgia Eliminator racer James Sloan.  Sloan was able to have a mini family reunion with mid-western relatives who came to Indy to see him race his restored ’23 T for the first time in 30 years.  The bonus that caught them all by surprise was that the “Soul Train” was presented the Best Appearing Race Car Award.
Bob Rosetty’s immaculate restoration of Joe Jacono’s “Rollin’ Stoned” ‘Cuda is so extraordinary that it actually lured Joltin’ Joe out of a 27-year retirement.  The 71-year-old (born again) F/C pilot remains as colorful and comical as he was during the halcyon days of flopper barnstorming, some 30 years ago.
Ken Kapper competes regularly with the Geezer Gassers in this spotless Rat-motored ’52 Henry J.
David Morris qualified fifth in his ’29 Coupe, which meant he would have faced the number one car in A/Gas eliminations.  As luck would have it, his best friend and fellow Mustang, OK resident, Todd Martin, held that spot.
Troy and Mike Coker came to Indy with their great looking new digger, the “Greenskeeper.” They’re still sorting out fuel system issues with their nitro combination but they still mowed their way into the Nostalgia Eliminator field with a 7.86.
Tracy Klingerman is a welder by trade and he sure scorched the Goodyears at Indy in his ’77 Monza Funny Car.
Tony Feil led the B/Gas pack with a near-perfect 8.601 qualifying effort. The savvy New Jersey engine wizard won this event in this ’61 Vette in 2001 & 2003.
The Most Nostalgic Race Car Award at the Hot Rod Nationals went to this patriotic entry in Street Machine I.Originally campaigned in the 60s and 70s, the “Gallopin’ Ghia” was restored by the English brothers to its 1972 condition, after a 30 year retirement. The vintage tilt-up Ghia body is draped over ’31 Chevy frame rails, coupling a ’40 Ford front axle and a ’59 Ford 9” rear. Motivation comes from a Hilborn injected, destroked ’66 327 Corvette engine.
Ed Kurth sure took the long way through the water box on this burnout during A/Gas qualifying. The flamed, black ’57 ran straight as a string and looked sharp as a tack, otherwise.
Rick Lawrence’s “Minnesota Maniac” ’70 Cuda looks about as period correct as you can get these days. Thanks for the nostalgia, Rick.
Craig Pfohl's re-popped Sox & Martin '67 Cuda is a favorite amongst the Nostalgia Super Stock admirers, with its smoky burnouts and wheels-up launches to complete the authentic look.
Jess “Mr. Pontiac” Tyree, who is best known for his A/FX and F/C antics some 4 decades ago, is a fierce competitor in the Goodguys West Coast Series. Jess brought the family, and his ’63 Tempest to the Hot Rod Nationals where he qualified third in B/Gas with a fine 8.612.
Bob “Hellacious” Sarkisian and his chopped ’48 Anglia are perennial favorites at the Hot Rod Nationals. The retired Ford Marketing VP blazed into the fifth position in B/Gas at 8.619 in this Rat-motored gasser that was originally built in 1964 by the legendary Chuck Finders.
Jim Wilkens qualified his '40 Willys in the ninth spot of the Geezer Gasser show with a 10.877 on the B/GG 10.70 index.
Oh yeah, baby. Stuff a (set back) big motor behind a straight axle, drop on a glass tilt nose with no grill or bumper and it’s easy to see why Mike Bilina’s ’56 Belair hangs the hoops at the hit. Mike runs the car in Street Machine II and informs us that it was originally campaigned as an A/Gasser from ’65 to ’69.
We dig the look of Matt Stambaugh’s entry because of its rounded cage and lack of wings or canards.  Despite various engine gremlins, Stambaugh was able to sneak the car into the Top Fuel show.
2003 A/Gas Champ Nick Jackson launches to a 7.73 during the final session of qualifying, which held for the fourth spot of field.

Lou Sgro’s tribute to DA Santucci’s “Black Magic” legacy is manifest in this superbly detailed Dodge Demon.  Sgro was the quickest of the alky-fueled floppers with a best of 6.92.

Always a consistent performer, Ron Doran blazes the hides of his ’40 Willys during Geezer Gasser qualifying.

A Moon fuel tank, flamed paint job, 12 spoke front mags…  They don’t get much more nostalgic than Dale Fidler’s wheel standing ’32 Bantam in Hot Rod I.

The Dietz & Ward “Dinosaur” roared in from California and clawed its way to the head of the class, the Nostalgia Eliminator class that is.  Dave Ward pushed the ferocious Fiat to a 7.608 and secured the top spot in the 7.60-indexed field.

The Hot Rod II class was populated with several great cars but Mark Schoonover’s stood out, literally!  We fell in love with the fact that it was a stick car and Mark must love it too.  He’s owned this car since 1966!

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