Canada’s furthest east drag racing scene boasts deep roots and impressive regional flavour….

After being first established back in 2010 – the Atlantic Canadian Stock/Super Stock Association continues to beat a strong drum for class legal drag racing within the Maritime provinces.

The ACSSA, which was founded by Jeff Kempton and Mark Howes, provides it’s very devote regional Stock and Super Stock class racers a viable and well organized circuit for racing – much like and in common with Ontario’s Can/Am Stock/SS group.

“The foundation originally came in response to significant racer interest in revitalizing Stock/SS racing in Atlantic Canada,” revealed Jeff Kempton (the series’s President). At that time Mark was a 2nd generation racer, racing in Super Stock with his father Wendell and brother Chris and I had been active in various roles in drag racing for 35 years – including 11 years with NHRA.”

Within it’s history – the Maritimes based ACSSA has included some of the most famous names within Canadian drag racing – including perpetual NHRA national record setter – John Armstrong

Stock and Super Stock class drag racing had actually thrived within the Maritimes in the ’70s-’80s. That included a dedicated nucleus of local racers and rather legendary Canadian drivers – including names like John Armstrong, Bruce Riley, Wendell Howes, Fred Thibeault and Bill Sheppard — all of whom were fierce competitors within the NHRA’s Northeast division. The ACSSA was created from that racing DNA.

“We started out with an initial 3-race series in 2010 (Greenfield Dragway in NS and PEI Dragway in PEI) — we had 18 cars at our first race,” Jeff reflected. “In the years since we have seen car counts in the high 30s and have expanded the number of races. We have a 10-race schedule in 2021 — our most ever.”

Jeff Kempton – President ACSSA

The well choreographed group is managed by Jeff Kempton – President, Scott Sprague – Past President, Gary Keans – Vice President, Chris Chapman – Secretary, Wayne Deveau – Treasurer, Dan Nickerson – Director.

Presently the ACSSA membership features 45+ race-ready Stock or Super Stock class cars and their 10-race season points chase has the following schedule, including their season marquee annual NHRA National Open date (first started in 2016). Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton Dragway will be a new first time track addition to ACSSA racing this summer.

July 3 Greenfield Dragway (Nova Scotia)
July 4 Greenfield Dragway
July 16 Miramichi Dragway, NHRA Open
July 17 Miramichi Dragway, NHRA Open
Aug 14 Miramichi Dragway (New Brunswick)
Aug 15 Miramichi Dragway
Sept 4 Cape Breton Dragway (Nova Scotia)
Sept 5 Cape Breton Dragway
Sept 25 Greenfield Dragway
Sept 26 Greenfield Dragway 

Due to the COVID pandamic, both Miramichi and Greenfield tracks did not operate in 2020 — but ACSSA members still participated in 3 non-points races allowed for and held at Cape Breton Dragway in NS. They crowned Mike Ingram as consolation “ACSSA Covid Cup Champ”. Mike was the defending 2019 series champion racing his SS 396 ’68 Chevelle (from Middle Sackville NS).

Mike Ingram (from Nova Scotia) is the defending ACSSA points champion entering the 2021 season.

“For 2021 we realize that some Covid restrictions may persist and limit spectator attendance,” Jeff admitted. “But we remain confident that only bad weather may prevent our races from proceeding as planned. If due to Covid NHRA cannot hold the National Open at Miramichi — we will still proceed with that race as a regular race.”

The ACSSA had done a terrific job in accumulating some impressive sponsorship and support for it’s racing series calendar.

New for 2021 is it’s title sponsor – Trans-World Distributing and the series will be know as “The Trans-World Distributing Stock/SuperStock Challenge Series”. That company, based from Dartmouth NS, are experts in industrial fasteners and supplies.

Some of the other major associates include A&J Automotive, Cottman Transmissions, Strictly Hydraulics, Chippers Auto Service & Performance, Dairy Queen/Able Foods, A-1 Towing & Recovery, DL Motorsports, The Trailer Store, Atlantic Turbo, Blue Buzzard Performance, Gerard Deveau Carpentry, Kevin Lively Jr. Transportation, BMR Structural Engineering, Frasers PRO Home Centres, and Whynot Performance & Mechanical.

“We feel that the future of the ACSSA is very bright indeed,” Jeff emphasized. “There are several new cars already under construction and unlike maybe now the typical drag racing demographic — we really do have many younger racers in our series and I regularly field questions about how to get into a Stock or Super Stock car. We are very pleased with our run to success to date and look forward to many more years of series growth and racing fun.”

For more information on the ACSSA – link to their FB official: HERE
Visit Trans-World Distributing on-line : HERE

Posted by Bruce Biegler
All Photos by Gerard Bryden