Major league drag racing hit the dragstrip for the first time this season when the fabled Auto Club Raceway at the Pomona Fairplex played host to the legendary, 58th annual Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals presented by ProtectTheHarvest.com.
Chevrolet-powered and Chevrolet-configured cars were front and center at the event while scoring titles and clocking impressive performances.
The Super Stock eliminator featured a huge win by Kyle Rizzoli (San Luis Obispo, California) driving his SS/CA big-block-powered 1969 Camaro. This was Rizzoli’s sixth career win at the NHRA national event level and came over a 65-car field and from the 50th qualifying position. Rizzoli was a picture of consistency throughout the grueling eliminator, defeating fellow GM-brand racer Adam Emmer in the final round.
Defending NHRA Pro Stock World Champion Bo Butner got his 2018 title defense season off to a great start when he won Pomona behind the wheel of his Chevy Camaro. Butner defeated his racing stable mate Jason Line in the final round when he combined a 0.015 reaction time with a run of 6.549 e.t. to beat Line and his Camaro, which ran a 6.568 e.t. In the Camaro-dominated field, Butner’s victory included round wins over Tanner Gray, Greg Anderson, and Erica Enders.
Pro Stock racing at Pomona was paced by New York’s Vincent Nobile who has realigned himself with team owner Nick Mitsos’ California-based Mountain View Tire company for a season title pursuit. Nobile qualified his new ’18 Camaro No. 1 with a 6.529 at 210.41 mph.
NHRA Sportsman racer and Chevrolet proponent Dan Fletcher continued his mastery with his amazing 103rd career NHRA win. The western New York-based driver wheeled Rick Braun’s potent C/EA 2008 Cobalt to the Competition Eliminator title at the event. That was Fletcher’s 18th career win in the category.
Defending 2017 NHRA Top Alcohol Funny Car World Champion Shane Westerfield also got his new season off to a positive start winning his seventh career title with his Camaro-bodied car. Westerfield (Anaheim, California) topped Swedish star driver Ulf Leanders in the final winning with a 5.425 at 269.69 mph to a 5.508 at 268.33 mph.
Oregon’s Chris Marshall ran a career-quick time and fast speed in his ever-improving Camaro TAFC to qualify No. 1 and set low elapsed time and top speed in with a 5.365 at 272.78 mph.
Enjoy this Chevrolet drag car image gallery from the 2018 Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals presented by ProtectTheHarvest.com. CHP
Photos by Bruce Bielger