Drag racing returning to full flight with back-to-back NHRA National Opens in Wild Rose Country….

The summer got very busy for drag racing in the province of Alberta during July – with both Edmonton’s Castrol Raceway and Medicine Hat’s MHDRA hosting NHRA Pacific Northwest “National Open” events on consecutive weekends.

With support from Spider Electric — both races were double header affairs with both Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series class racers and Summit Racing Series ET Bracket drivers chasing coveted “Wallys” — as well as some lucrative cash prizes.  With the USA/Canada border still being closed during this time period — the 2021 edition events featured 100% Canadian content — as well as solid racer response.

At Edmonton’s National Open (July 10-11th) – the highly successful Top Eliminator Club was a ferocious part of that weekend’s program with 40 cars entered each day.   Highlights included current TE points leader Jenna Michaud (from Edmonton) who advanced to the final round both days with her dragster.  On Saturday she topped Chris Krozer in the final but on Sunday lost out to Scott Hearn in the championship round.

Jenna Michaud went to both TD/TS Combo finals at Edmonton – winning one.

Saturday’s Lucas Oil level NHRA class car contingent features wins in the Stock/Super Stock Combo by James Quan’s vintage Ford Fairlane and in the index classes wins by Len Mayer (Super Comp), Darrel Smith (Super Gas) and Warren Neitsch (Super Street).

James Quan’s won Saturday’s Stock/SS Combo with his vintage Ford Fairlane
Len Mayer won Super Comp titles 2X at Edmonton’s National Open.

Summit Racing ET titles went to Ed Vanderkool (Super Pro) and Bryan Hawryluk (Pro) – and the Junior Dragster winners were Morgan Caron (Lightning) and Cole Blagdon (Thunder).

Sunday’s winning roundup saw the NHRA class titles go Daryl Hoffos’s Firebird in Stock/Super Stock Combo, Daren Keller (Super Gas) and James Pahl (Super Street).  Len Mayer (from Vegreville AB) repeated as the Super Comp winner driving his dragster.

Daryl Hoffos’s Firebird – from Assiniboia SK won in Stock/Super Stock Combo on Sunday.

ET racing titles were claimed by Rob Harrison (form Calgary) in Super Pro and Monty Beagle (from High River AB) in Pro ET.

Monty Beagle (from High River AB) won in Pro ET with his cool entry.

The Junior Dragster winners on Sunday were a brother and sister team — Jacob and Kloey Mills (from Sherwood Park).

The NHRA National Open series relocated south to the Medicine Hat Drag Strip (July 17-18th).

Braydon Ochitwa won the Super Quick (TD/TS) 1/8th mile shootout event feature on Saturday when he defeated Mark Simmons in the championship round.  

Braydon Ochitwa was the Super Quick winner at Medicine Hat during Saturday’s event portion.

NHRA Lucas Oil class car competition saw two wins go to Ken Mostowich’s Calgary-based team — Ken won with his Camaro in Super Comp and then his Corvette in Super Gas.  The Super Street (11.10) winner was Darren Pearce’s cool ’67 Mercury Truck from Brandon Manitoba.

Calgary-based NHRA index class hitter Ken Mostowich had two title wins at Medicine Hat’s event.
Darren Pearce’s cool ’67 Mercury Truck from Brandon MB was a popular winner in S/ST

Saskatoon’s Sheldon Erfle, who dominated Stock/SS Combo racing last year within the Spider Electric-presented NHRA Canadian series was the days winner.  Sheldon rolled his ’92 Oldsmobile past Darrell Stobbe in the final.

ET racing featured wins by two Medicine Hat-based local racers – Tanner Gaetz (Super Pro) and Randy Stowe (Sportsman).  The Pro ET title went to Rich Harder (from Saskatoon) and the Junior Dragster titles for Saturday were claimed by Daniel O’Connor (Thunder) and Kiandra Gaetz (Lightning).

Sunday’s racing schedule concluded with a final round win light for Ed Van Der Kool’s dragster – who defeated (Gambler’s Race Winner) Chevy Reeves for the Super Quick TD/TS title.

Alberta’s Norm Lapointe raced BC’s Darrel Stobbe for the Stock/SS Combo title with Norm winning in his ’67 Camaro.  Robert Schultz scored the Super Comp class win in his Manitoba-based dragster and it was Jeff Crooks (Brandon MB) and Jason Kendel (Brooks AB) winning in Super Gas and Super Street respectively. 

Norm Lapointe was a winner in Stock/SS Combo with is immaculate ’67 Camaro

ET racing featured a nice win by Shawn Loblick in Super Pro with his ’71 Demon.  MHDRA regulars and defending track points champs Tyler Zeller and Dean Adie dominated Pro and Sportsman ET racing with victories.  

Alberta’s “first family” for Motorcycle drag racing (Toth Family) showed the way again for that category with Riley Toth defeating his brother Zack in the final round battle of Kawasakis. 

Riley Toth won the Motorcycle/Sled bracket at the MHDRA National Open date.

Junior Street racing saw Dale Figley emerge a winner and Junior Dragster winners for Sunday were both young lady racers – Faith Loblick (Thunder) and Kiandra Gaetz (Lightning).

Faith Loblick (Junior winner) joined her Dad Shawn (Super Pro) in victory lane at Medicine Hat.

Posted by Bruce Biegler

All Photos by Don Meleshko and Bernie Frey