Stock Classes Return at NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals


Stock Classes Return at NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals

Located close to the famed Bristol Motor Speedway, Bristol Dragway was built in 1965 and today boasts a 30,000 seating capacity with premium suites. The historic track is called Thunder Valley due to the awesome acoustics created by its unique location between two mountains. With access to the Moonshine Lounge, guests can sample Tennessee’s finest in a suite behind the burnout area.

With both Stock classes absent from the NHRA New England Nationals last weekend at Epping, New Hampshire, teams found themselves in the middle of previous event’s elimination rounds for Top Fuel and Funny Car as well as the FuelTech NHRA Pro Mod series presented by Type A Motorsports and powered by PGT Trucking.

Teams and drivers were greeted by near perfect summer racing weather with sunny skies and temperatures in the low 70s. Teams were busy making adjustments for the adjusted altitude of 3,291 feet and constant changes to the track’s temperatures. In final Top Fuel run at the 22nd annual NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals on Sunday, Justin Ashley would set a track speed record of 336.49 mph in his Phillips Connect/Toyota dragster.


Erica Enders Wins First Wally of Pro Stock Season

In his semifinal round, Deric Kramer grabbed the starting line advantage and Cristian Cuadra developed a severe tire shake that led to shutting it down. Kramer would advance to his third consecutive Pro Stock Final. Erica Enders didn’t have a perfect run as her Melling Performance Camaro moved toward the centerline but Greg Anderson had problems and never left the starting box.

With a slower elapsed time in her semifinal run, Enders lost lane advantage to Kramer in the Final. But the multi-time Pro Stock champion put her early-season struggles to rest with a starting line advantage. She never trailed and went straight down the groove. Kramer chutes were out early and Enders claimed her first Wally this season and the 44th of her career.


Steve Johnson Gets Redlight Win Over Herrera

Hector Arana nailed the holeshot but his engine bogged off the gate and his semifinal elimination run was done. Steve Johnson made a good pass to advance to the PSM Final. On the other side of the bracket, Gaige Herrera entered the championship round 14-0 and nailed the tree for a holeshot win. Herrera will have lane choice over Johnson in the Pro Stock Motorcycle final round at Thunder Valley.

For the first time in NHRA Camping World Drag Series history, Herrera and Johnson faced off in an elimination round. Up to this point in his pro stock motorcycle career, Herrera has been near perfect aboard the Vance&Hines Suzuki. Nonetheless, it was bound to happen at some point. Leaving the gate in the Final Herrera tripped the redlight with a -.011 reaction time and handed Johnson the twelfth win of his career.

Artwork courtesy of NHRA


UP COMING:

Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals

Nitro, Stock and Pro Mod teams head north for the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park on June 22-25 at Norwalk, OH. The #2Fast2Tasty Mission NHRA Challenge will run during Saturday’s qualifying rounds, as pro racers duel for bonus money and valuable Countdown to the Championship points.