ch2no2 fumes within Canada become a bit more prominent……

Some interesting developments involving nitromethane racing from a couple of fronts this summer so far.

Ontario’s Brian Peeters, who has dabbled with both front and rear engined dragsters in the past, has returned to the racing surface with a very significant upgrade — a NHRA legal injected nitro car (A/FD).

Peeters, who is from Windsor, had his machine out for testing for the first time recently — making a couple early stabs at Cayuga Dragway/Toronto Motorsports Park.   Brian’s car is in fact a machine that had been raced previously on a limited basis by Edmonton’s Serge Dion, which Brian acquired approximately 3-years ago.

Canada’s newest A/FD team (owned by Brian Peeters) was out for testing at Cayuga Dragway recently.

“I had always been interested in A/Fuel,” he stated.  “After running a supercharged nostalgia car and then a rear engined T/D — I did see the window of opportunity to step up.  After completing the deal with Serge — and then with COVID hitting –  everything got delayed.  We did go through the car extensively — and there was some major issues for sure — so it took longer to get the car where it needed to be  so I felt comfortable getting into it.”

Brian Peeters

Brian’s machine is a Bowen chassis and has a 421 CID BA engine program – pretty much standard for legal NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series (TAD) racing.

“Our team (including crew Bob Blaine, James Bezaire, and Marco Cerilli) has zero experience with nitro,” he continued.  “So there is a definite learning curve and we are taking it slow and easy to start.  Clif Bakx (from Manitoba) has been our main advisor – he’s been a huge help to our team already.”

Brian confirmed that he plans to ease himself into the category.  His first priority will be to complete his licensing cross grade followed by a local focus.

“My priority is to have fun with my guys with the car,” he affirmed.  “We’re not going to make A/Fuel racing a full time job – and we’re not trying to be a 5.2 secs class hitter.  I need to practice in the car so I’ll run within Canada as much as I can.  Then if all goes to plan we’d like to run some NHRA (Lucas Oil Series) next season — ie: racing at Norwalk.”

Peeters’ initial performance in the car did produce some decent short times — including 3.95 secs at 209 mph (to the 1/8th) and 6.21 secs (1/4 mile) – at Cayuga.  “That was fun — more than I could have hoped for this early!” he winked.

Quebec City is home base for a 2nd Canadian injected nitro car which emerged just recently. Owned by Stephane Bernier and his father Yvon –  the project hit the track for the first time just a week ago or so at Napierville Dragway.   

Stephane Bernier made his debut with a new injected nitro car at Napierville Dragway recently.

Stephane acquired this dragster chassis (built by Dan Page) from fellow Quebec City resident (and Pro Mod racer) Denis Lachance – it is in fact a car that was raced by Claude Beaulieu previously (as a supercharged T/D).   

Since that acquisition Stephane and Yvon have done a number of major upgrades — to ready the car for nitromethane power.

The project truly is a “dream come true” for Stephane who has been involved in drag racing from age 8 with Junior Dragsters and then a Super Pro entry (for 20 years).

“I’m excited to go nitro racing,” Stephane gleemed.  “At first I was thinking supercharger but after I spent some time with Daniel Mercier in NHRA — that had a big effect.  I got hooked — and now all my time and effort is right here.”

While Stephane’s car and chassis is practical and legal for potential NHRA A/FD racing — the motor program is not – and thus he has a different objective for going forward.

“Our motor is a 530 CID – single mag and smaller fuel pump,” he affirmed.  “My goal is to run it locally (in Canada) but the focus is on the Nostalgia Pro Comp program hosted at  New England Dragway (Epping NH).  It’s fits well into their class and we would be the only injected nitro car racing against all of their supercharged cars – which will be kind of cool.”

Stephane’s initial hits in the car have been conservative and as he begins the education process he is optimistic about future performance potential.

“It’s been a dream of mine to run in the 5-secs zone — and we will eventually be fully capable of that.” he added. 

Stephane and Yvon Bernier

Posted by Bruce Biegler

Photos by Blake Farnan – Tony Hayes – Bruce Biegler