CA - March 09-11, 2007: The 49th edition of the March Meet was
everything you could expect from the premier drag race of the
nostalgia season. John and Blake Bowser - with a lot of help
from the Famoso Raceway staff - put on a drag race for the ages.
From the full pits on Thursday to the Winners Circle shots on
Sunday this was an event blessed with Chamber of Commerce weather,
an accommodating facility, incredible racing surface, friendly
staff, full bore fans and upbeat attitudes throughout.
The 35,000+ fans
that packed the facility over the three-day event were treated
to over 500 race cars including 20 of the countries best Top
Fuel dragsters including Troy Green and the Highspeed Motorsports
team. Unfortunately the guys got behind the 8-ball early on when
they lost the first two qualifying runs do to mechanical problems.
Green did get into the show on the last attempt but the team
lacked the data to tune the engine to its potential and lost
a very close race in round one.
and full story below
Under sunny skies and
ideal track conditions the first session of Top Fuel qualifying
went off at 2:30 p.m. Friday afternoon. Ironically Troy Green
was paired with Jason Richey who he would end up meeting for
the first round of eliminations on Sunday.
As usual, Walt Sevens
backs Green up while Roger McMartin observes the engine functions.
Crew Chief Brett Johansen
brings Green up to the staging beams.
The car left good and
appeared to be on a decent run.
Then before half track
the car inexplicably nosed over and Green wisely shut it off
coasting to a 9.204 at 98.41.
After getting back to
the pits the crew went to work full bore to find out why the
car literally stopped running under power.
Debris was found in
the supercharger raising more concern.
They worked into the night checking and testing everything
that could have caused the problem. The magneto was checked and
replaced, the fuel pump was flowed and the blower replaced. By
the time the car was back together they were confident (or at
least hopeful) that the car would do what it was suppose to the
The car comes out of
the trailer at 8:00 a.m. to be readied for the second session
scheduled for 11:00 a.m.
The car is filled with
nitro prior go heading for the staging lanes.
As usual Johansen checked
out the track and its temperature before the session started.
On the other hand, Brian Kono practiced for his role in Swan
Saturday - Qualifying Session
1:41 p.m. Weather conditions:
air temperature 68 degrees, relative humidity 33 percent, barometer
30.14 inches, track temperature 84 degrees. Very nice racing
For his second shot at the superb Famoso track. In
the other lane was Pete Kaiser.
The burnout was an omen
for the run - the engine didn't sound right and Green cut the
The car was soft at
the leave - only running on 7 cylinders.
Once again the engine
quit running and Green had to coast through with a 8.592 at 127.69.
This left the car on the outside looking in with just one more
chance to qualify.
Back at the pits the
crew focused on anything that could cause the engine to seemingly
run out of fuel early in a run. Process of elimination pointed
a finger at the fuel shut off valve. They were pretty sure that
it was vibrating shut thus cloaking off the fuel delivery to
the engine. The valve was fixed and the car was prepped for session
Saturday - Qualifying
Running 2 hours behind
schedule, the final session got underway at 5:46 PM.
the sun falling in the West and the track cooling off Green was
paired with Brendan Murry for this do or die effort.
pulls the idle plug just before Green puts on the first light.
time the car sounded better and left harder. Fingers crossed.
under power at the 900 foot mark Green knew he would qualify.
The only question was where.
some pistons to card a nice 5.927 at 244.10 which would land
him in the # 8 spot for Sunday's eliminations.
Needless to say the entire crew was elated.
After qualifying the
crew worked into the night to overhaul the engine, change the
clutch and get the car ready for Sunday. This is the part of
drag racing that most fans never see and what makes it not quite
as fun as it looks.
On any give day at a
race, the last person to usually leave is Tom Shelar who's life
away from his business, MasterCam, seems consumed doing cylinder
head repair and maintenance. Shelar, who machines the teams heads
from billet aluminum, makes sure the car has a fresh set every
is spent making sure the car is 100%.
an hour before round one the engine is warmed up and checked
for any leaks or potential problems.
first step is to use methanol to get some heat in the cylinders
before switching over to 92% nitromethane.
At the change
over most of the crew puts on gas masks and the air fills with
the yellow "nitro haze".
When all is good,
the fuel shut off is pulled and Brett Johansen squirts methanol
into the injector as the stops running.
Round One of Eliminations
10:59 a.m. Weather conditions:
air temperature 67 degrees, relative humidity 38 percent, barometer
30.18 inches, track temperature 78 degrees. It's time to race.
By virtue of being the
# 8 qualifier Green would race the # 9 car, Jason Richey, and
were the first pair to run Sunday morning. Both cars were staged
behind the water box during the pre race ceremonies so the could
start at the end of our National Anthem.
High Speed Motorsports
CEO Dale Singh with Players Network Chairman Mark Bradley and
Michael Berk who is President of Programming for Players Network.
Bradley and Berk were at the race all weekend gathering material
for a new website they are going to launch in conjunction with
High Speed Motorsports that revolves around nostalgia drag racing.
Richey, who does extremely
long burnouts went first, Green followed.
At the flick of the
starter switch Green did his job strapping a 0.058 to 0.105 holeshot
Early on Green had a
palpable lead and Richey was left to play catch-up for the next
1317 feet but right before the ET light Richey literally nosed
ahead for the closest win of the event... his 5.864 at 247.25
denied Green with a 5.917 at 245.03. His margin of victory was
a mere 0.0061 seconds (approximately 2 feet). This was a text
book drag race and unfortunately the High Speed car came up a
March Meet Video Clips