IHRA Mopar Canadian Nitro Jam –  July 16-18th, 2010  Grand Bend, ON

Class Winner E.T. MPH
Nitro Jam Top Fuel (Sat) Bruce Litton 4.748 298.93
Nitro Jam Prostalgia FC (Sat) Steve Nichols 5.998 239.02
Nitro Jam Pro Fuel (Sat) Rich McPhillips 5.587 250.74
Nitro Jam Top Fuel (Sun) Todd Paton 4.812 304.39
Nitro Jam Prostalgia FC (Sun) Peter Gallen 5.959 240.17
Nitro Jam Pro Fuel (Sun) Bill Evans 5.463 261.27
PMRA Pro Mod Mike Stawicki 5.820 253.28
Top Dragster Jeremy McCormick 7.481 172.32
Top Sportsman Steve Corriveau 7.610 179.47
Quick Rod Leo Zynda 8.933 170.86
Super Rod Leo Zynda 9.899 150.01
Hot Rod Lisa Marg 10.92 138.64
Super Stock Michael Lyons 8.811 138.03
Stock Jim Marshall 11.20 110.59
ET Bracket Will Steckly 9.079 148.80
Bikes/Sleds James Miller 10.90 116.46
Junior Dragster (1) Ryan Atkinson 7.981 76.73
Junior Dragster (2) Josh Van Amelsvoort 8.048 73.09


 New Flavor for IHRA Grand Bend

 By:       Bruce Biegler

Following a decade of more traditional “national event” format racing, the IHRA brought it’s new revamped form of drag racing to Grand Bend Motorplex for the first time.   The 2010 Mopar Canadian Nitro Jam was, while not as high impact as in previous years, still a pretty darn entertaining event.

IHRA's "Fan Fest" was very popular

For the three Professional class racing portions of the program winners were determined on both Saturday and Sunday based on what is most commonly known as a “Chicago style” eliminator.  In a nutshell, the two low ET winners from a single round of competition come back for that day’s championship in that class.   That is supplemented by consolation racing for any remaining cars in the class.

While that format does not produce anywhere near the drama or demands associated with more traditional qualifying and elimination ladders, it does make the racing program itself tighter and possibly more palatable for the more casual fan.  It also is far more cost effective for racers during tough economic times like the present. 

Todd Paton with IHRA Ironman

The 2010 event was highlighted by the first ever Top Fuel category win by Canada’s Todd Paton who prevailed over four other entries on Sunday, some record fast speeds within the four car Pro Fuel (nitro-injected) class and some very cool antics by the 8-car Prostalgia Nitro Funny Car category.

As with most IHRA Nitro Jam events this season, the race program was supplemented by local talents and circuits.  This year’s event included round #3 of the PMRA circuit and also a match race between two of Eastern Canada’s top running TAFC’s driven by Larry Dobbs and Robbie Atchison.

While more seasoned drag racing fans may have been frowning, the majority of fans, who packed the place on Saturday in particular, seemed to be well entertained.   The Sunday crowd was much thinner when compared to years gone by at this race.   It’s hard to tell or know if that was any indicator or not.

This year’s litmus test probably came back positive.  But I guess only time will tell if the more exhibition nature of this event was received by the racing public as it was intended to be by IHRA and Grand Bend Motorplex officials.

In general winning an IHRA “Ironman” just doesn’t seem to have the same luster as it did before.  The downscaled level of competition has simply removed some of it’s polish.  Right now the jury is probably still out on what decision fans may or may not make going forward.

To view our event photo gallery click on the photo below:

Bruce Biegler Photos