Tracing back the origins for using nitrous-oxide injection within drag racing for Canada does point to the centre of our country….

While we currently have no finite information for which Canadian drag racing team was the very first to use NO2 — we can suggest that Saskatchewan’s Vogt Brothers would be for sure on that short list.

Brother’s Tim and Dan Vogt, who to this day both campaign nitrous-injected Corvettes began to experiment with the laughing gas as early as the later 1970s. Racing what was then a rather outlaw (for it’s time) Chevy Camaro in fast brackets — the brothers began to dive into the technology at local events held at Saskatoon International Raceway (now Saskatchewan International Raceway).

Tim and Dan Vogt (shown with “fat bastard” — LOL!)

“We were one of the first to try it,” confirmed Tim Vogt. “We didn’t invent it – but we sure did experiment with it. It really was a “black art” back then. We tinkered with an under the carb intake plate and it was really just magic back then when you turned it on. We also found out quickly about any weak links in the motor or drive train — especially when you hit it hard. Back then getting nitrous oxide systems certainly wasn’t over the shelf like it is now. We did suck up some knowledge from some other teams – but for the most part (and in our area) it was always uncharted territory for us.”

“We didn’t want a blown car,” Tim continued. “We liked the concept of having two motors in one. You could run naturally aspirated but if you needed the power it was easy to turn it on. That was attractive to us.”

The Vogt Brothers first tinkered with NO2 with this 1967 Camaro back in the later 70’s.

Then over time with the creation of and development of Pro Mod – that class became a natural and probably inevitable destination for both brothers. Beginning in the earlier 1990’s and spanning about 25 years since – they have continued to dabble in the category as independents.

After racing a nitrous injected 1989 IROC Camaro Pro Mod first — the team graduated to a pair of Chevy Corvettes which they still campaign. Tim drives a ’94 ZR1 Corvette (originally the “Fridge” car raced by Maryland’s Tommy Gray) while Dan races a 1963 Corvette acquired from North Carolina’s Rickie Smith. With those cars the Vogt Brothers have remained fixtures within Western Canadian and also within Pacific West Coast racing scenes.

Tim Vogt in action at SIR last summer.

“We used to be highly active within the West Coast Pro Mod Association – back when that existed,” he added. “But to be honest over time the expense of the running in the class has become restrictive. So now we don’t travel as much as we used to.  We still like to get out and race when we can — but we try to do that at a pace that keeps it enjoyable.”

Regina Saskatchewan remains home for Dan Vogt who continues as owner and operator of Vogt Automotive there. Dan remains active within the WDRL (Western Drag Racing League) and in fact prevailed to win that’s circuit’s Pro Nitrous points championship – during it’s second season – last season. In 2012, Tim Vogt relocated out to and is now based from Kelowna BC from where he does focus his Corvette mostly within Mission Raceway’s very popular “Doorslammers” class.

Dan Vogt wheeled his ’63 split to the WDRL’s Pro Nitrous points title in 2016

Both Tim and Dan did compete together again during last summer’s milestone 50th Anniversary race celebration at SIR where they were important components to that very successful event. “SIR is were we cut our teeth and then raced for years,” Tim added. “So we were both proud to participate in that great event.”

Historically, the team has some other nice notches within their career racing belts too. That includes being credited with province of Saskatchewan’s first ever “six” by a door slammer car – coming at Saskatchewan International in early 1997. Together they also earned back-to-back Pro Modified championship titles at Spokane’s AHRA World Finals events (1997-98). Deservingly, the team was inducted into the Saskatchewan Motorsports Hall of Fame at the end of 1998.

…some “dragon’s breath” at IHRA Edmonton in 2015…

…Check out Tim’s very vintage SIR jacket…!

Post and photos by Bruce Biegler