This coming weekend at Bristol will include a third of four scheduled NHRA “demonstration” events for 2019….

For purist fans of Pro Stock racing — NHRA’s decision to include some “Mountain Motor” Pro Stockers within their national event equation this season – has been a welcome initiative.  Right or wrong, there are some fans with opinion that NHRA’s traditional 500 CID Pro Stock class (which fully converted to EFI a couple years back and which this season had its schedule cut back to 18 events from 24) has lost both some of its direction and also it’s appeal.  

While the jury is still certainly out on what will ultimately happen for Mountain Motor cars within NHRA — I think we can safely say that the trend is in a positive direction.   While speculation continues to run rampant — the notion of two types of Pro Stock racing being offered permanently within NHRA for the future is now a real possibility.  Envisioning both a further condensed 500 CID and an expanded 800+ CID class — split schedule of some sort — does hold merit and appeal. 

That notion does open up a particular opportunity for Canadian-based Pro Stock racers.  We can speculate about the reasons why to this point there are four Mountain Motor Pro Stock cars from Canada — and exactly zero NHRA legal 500 CID Pro Stockers.  So adding in something that will give NHRA Pro Stock racing more of an international aspect as well as increased brand diversity too — is anything but negative.

Leading that forefront from Canada are two prominent teams — operated by what undoubtably will be future Canadian drag racing hall of fame member racers.   

Both the Ontario-based Konigshofer Brothers (John – Joe – Frank — from Otterville) and Windsor’s Larry O’Brien, have been at the helm for this for a very long period of time.   Both teams are adamant that they like what they are seeing from NHRA and are highly optimistic about what may be coming.

Future Canadian Drag Racing Hall of Famers – the Konigshofer Brothers — are both positive about and well poised for NHRA ‘s potential new Pro Stock class product.

“Our team is pretty excited,” stated John Konigshofer — driver of Canada’s all time fastest Ford (6.225 secs!).  “We did race at NHRA’s first experiment at Indy last season and we’re glad they carried things forward to four events this season.  There has been lots of dialogue — but right now for us (Mountain Motor race teams) — it’s all about showing up and showing them the goods.  But we think there also needs to be a place for 500 CID cars — how cool would be be if NHRA made it all fit?”

Larry O’Brien, who Bear’s Performance Products Dodge is and has remained the world’s fastest Mopar Pro Stocker,  has equal sentiments.

“For us (and for a lot of Mountain Motor teams) running competition at NHRA national events has been a dream for a very long time,” said Larry.  “The way that NHRA itself, the racing fans and the racing media is embracing this idea — that’s all a very positive sign.   The key right now in my mind is however landing some sponsorship for it  (much like the way E3 Spark Plugs stepped in for NHRA Pro Mod).  Those negotiations will be a tipping point — for this to happen or not.”

Windsor’s Larry O’Brien – who has been a long time and steadfast supporter for Canadian racing — campaigns what is drag racing’s all time quickest and fastest Dodge Pro Stocker.

So this coming weekend and again soon thereafter — there will be a lot of eyes on the Mountain Motor class— when these 225+ mph capable cars race at Bristol International Dragway and then also again at New England Dragway (July 5-7).  

Posted by Bruce Biegler

Photos by Bruce Biegler & Steve Embling

*PS: Link to our previous recent post — more Canadian Pro Stock racing : HERE