All Chevy - All the Time!
It was one of the most "heated" editions ever in the now 61-year history of drag racing's most storied single drag racing event: the NHRA Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals. And despite the less-then-ideal atmospheric conditions (corrected altitude was pretty much between 3000-4000 feet most of the weekend) an attending contingent of Chevrolet-brand racers shined.
For NHRA's two premier door slammer categories: Pro Stock and Pro Mod – both of the championship determining rounds featured all Chevrolet racers.
In Pro Stock, defending NHRA Mello Yello Series Champion Erica Enders-Stevens prevailed to win her very first Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals title when she topped budding superstar racer Drew Skillman in the all 2015 Camaro finale.
Erica delivered a slightly better reaction time (.013 to .025) and combined that with a run of 6.611 e.t. at 209.75 mph to hold off Skillman's quicker and faster 6.608 e.e. at 209.98 mph. Prior to that, Enders-Stevens had beaten two other opponents on holeshot starts. The win was her sixth event win so far in 2015, and that number was significant as it tied her with the legendary Shirley Muldowney for the most wins in a season by a female racer, which she was quick to acknowledge.
"Six wins in a single season is huge because I tied Shirley Muldowney," Enders beamed. "Over the years Shirley has became my mentor and my friend and to put my name next to hers for a tie for all-time wins is incredible."
Chevrolet dominance of Pro Stock at Indy was complete. After round one on Monday was finished, all eight remaining cars in competition were Camaros!
The win in Pro Mod by Californian Rick Snavley was equally impressive. The invading Los Angeles-based racer, who was making only his second NHRA national event start in the J&A Service sponsored series, was consistently quick and fast racing his Turbos Direct-sponsored 1969 Camaro. Snavely, who is a recognized regional power within the West Coast's Pro Mod scene, won another all-Chevrolet final round when he defeated the supercharged 2013 Camaro raced by Western New York's Mike Janis.
Snavely sprinted to victory using a 5.890 e.t at 257.53 mph to cover Mike Janis’ 5.945 e.t. at 242.50-mph effort driving the Jan-Cen Racing Engines Camaro. He had entered after qualifying #3 and was also credited with top speed of the meet at 258.07 mph. Rick's win came over the quickest assembly of Pro Mod cars in history, with the bump spot being a record 5.940 e.t.!
Seeing Red in Stock
An all-new 2015 COPO Camaro paced the program in the massively attended Stock Eliminator during the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals.
Indiana's own Clay Arnette drove his supercharged FS/XX classed car to an incredible run of 8.488 e.t., which is a numbing -1.412 under his index to anchor the 128-car field in Stock (which featured 182 entries!).
We Were Intrigued By
There were some new Chevrolet machines fielded by international drag racers at Indy: Australia's Steve Harker and South American Sidnei Frigo.
Harker, who is the defending 2014 NHRA Lucas Oil World Champion for Top Alcohol Funny Car unveiled his all-new modern-style 2015 Camaro at Indy. Harker, who now bases his racing operation from out of Georgia, and who recorded some of the quickest and fastest times in class history last season (in a Chevy Monte Carlo) qualified #2 with a 5.509 e.t. and went to the "final four" in his first national event outing in the car.
Sidnei Frigo, who is from Brazil, and who formally raced in both Top Alcohol Dragster and Top Fuel within NHRA, made his Pro Mod class debut driving a simply jaw-dropping new C7 Corvette. Built by Jerry Bickel and turbo powered by Pro-Line Racing, Frigo also qualified #2 with a brilliant looking and an initially unanticipated 5.851 e.t.
From The Archives
The Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals event always includes an over-the-top car show displaying some of the most famous drag racing machines from bygone eras. We were very impressed by the restored twin "Granny Goose" cars (a ’69 Camaro and a ’62 Corvette) that were part of that popular fan attraction.