As I have written in past reports this year, the east coast has been plagued with rainy weekends practically the whole summer. The event before this one was postponed 3 times because of rain. However, this was not the case the Saturday of this event. It was postcard weather all day with bright sunshine and blue skies and warm temps that cooled just enough for the assembled group of hardcore alky cars to achieve their personal bests almost all around.
This would be the second event that I attended put on by Denny Salzwimmer of the GLFCC. Earlier in July I attended the Funny Car Nationals at Keystone Raceway Park in New Alexandria Pa and that was quite an event with almost 30 cars in attendance (come to think of it, the weather was great that day too-you might be on to something Denny). Now, I’ve heard about some of the other shows he puts on most notably at ATCO but they were either 4/6/or 8 car shows, certainly nothing to sneeze at but this one for some reason was under my radar. There were actually 3 major events going on at the same time all within driving distance; this one, the Jalopy Showdown at Beaver Springs, and an Old Time event at Keystone that featured “Big Daddy” Don Garlits. After my report on the F/C Brawl at Island last month, Denny asked me if I was going to be at ATCO.
(L) Denny Salzwimmer puts on yet another stellar event.
(R) NHRA Top Fuel shoe Leah Pritchett was helping her husband Gary with Bunny Burkett’s other F/C that was on hand
but took time to pose with fans including N/FC pilot John Cerchio.
And as it happened I wasn’t going to be there as I had committed to the Jalopy Showdown at Beaver Springs. Then I got to thinking that if he’s asking me about this F/C event it must be big. Then I started seeing the flyer make its way around the various groups I’m in on Facebook. Then I started seeing just how many cars would be there and other exhibition cars as well so I made a last minute decision to switch gears (so to speak) and head out to ATCO. I wasn’t disappointed with my decision.
There were 16 blown alcohol funny cars and 4 injected alcohol funny cars, a big show T/AD, 2 BB/FAs, 2 jet funny cars, and a wheelstanding backhoe! The event was another “Chicago Style” one where the low ET of each category would be declared the winner. So in no particular order, these are the cars that were there; in the injected portion we had Willie Johnson’s NO Money No Funny Nova, Krista Massarella’s Temporary Insanity Monza, Frank Barnard’s red hot Poison Arrow, and Bob Daley’s War Horse Mustang II. When it was all said and done, Frank took the win with a 7.89/169mph charge. This is his year to be sure. Congratulations Frank!
Frank Barnard and crew in yet another winners circle this year.
In the blown part of the event, we had; the Excalibur Corvette, Blair Smith in the Boston Challenger, Robin Stambaugh in the Generation X Corvette, John Cerchio’s Warpath Somerset, the Sweetman Brothers Citation, Jami Russell’s Iron Outlaw Mustang II, Cody Helger in the Boston Strangler Mustang II repop, Jon Wall’s blistering Fireball Monza, Scott Ringwood’s Mistress Camaro, the Dazed & Confused Camaro, Rocky Pirrone’s Super Camaro and his Frantic Ford as well with Joe Morrison at the wheel, the Agent Orange Duster, Chris Massarella’s Total Insanity Monza and Bunny Burkett’s Corvette N/FC and TA/FC driven by Matt Stambaugh and Gary “LIL Bear” Pritchett. Papa John’s Pizza fuel dragster pilot Leah Pritchett was on hand as well guiding her husband back from his massive burnouts.
Fireball Monza at it again.
Oh, did I say massive burnouts? Well the flyer did say “It’s all about the burnouts”. So almost everyone put down fogbanks coupled up with their personal bests on each run. And, there wasn’t a burnout contest this time. But when the smoke cleared (it did take a while) the overall alky winner for the second event in a row, was Rocky Pirrone wheeling the Super Camaro to a 6.22/229 mph pass. If I may, I’d like to add that for the second event in a row, Bobby Toth in the Time Bomb Vega once again didn’t like the lane he was in and decided to change at mid-track as did Joe Morrison in the Frantic Ford Mustang. He was paired with Chris Maserella’s Monza. I’m beginning to think Chris has some sort of fiberglass magnet on his car as his competitors all want to be in his lane. Fortunately nothing happened except for some underwear changes.
Rocky Pirrone blasts off in the Super Camaro to a personal best low E T 6.22 at 229 mph.
The two BB/FAs were Mike Geroni in his Fiat and the N Y Earthshaker T roadster with the Earthshaker taking both rounds with a 6.48/213 mph second round blast. Karen Stalba had her big show T/AD on hand and made two pretty impressive passes as did the JCB Backhoe wheelstander. It also recorded a personal best high speed of 90 mph. That's mighty impressive considering the size and weight of the vehicle. The show was rounded out with the Hanna Motorsports Top Secret and First Strike Jet F/Cs with Rich Hanna and Ken Hall doing the driving chores.
Mike Geroni heats the tires in his Fiat altered.
I would also like to say thanks to the staff of ATCO Dragway as they put on a well-run event.
All I can say is “Denny, put me down for next year!”