After losing it’s elimination schedule due to the elements back in July – Castrol Raceway has declared it’s 2017 Mopar Rocky Mountain Nationals champions….

When untimely rainstorms washed out the action back on July 16 – Castrol Raceway was forced to hit the reset button and following a long gap, were able to finally conclude that marquee event on September 2-3.

The event’s big winners included all local fan favourites with scores by Ryan Hodgson in Nitro Nostalgia Funny Car, Jimmy Fersch in Pro 6.90 Funny Car and Gary Urlacher in WDRL Pro Mod competition.

Hodgson, who is in fact currently the points overall leader for NHRA’s Hot Rod Heritage Series heading into that circuit’s final rounds at Bakersfield California next month – tuned up nicely for that event with another season win coming at Edmonton.

Ryan drove the very potent Bob Papirnick-tuned Hodgson Racing “Pacemaker” Chevy Camaro to a final round 5.82 secs at 243.57 mph to defeat Jay Mageau’s “Prospector” Corvette.   Ryan had qualified his car #1 back in July at 5.73 secs.

The very formidable Hodgson Racing team was on the mark again while winning the weather deferred conclusion to the 2017 Mopar Rocky Mountain Nationals

Jay Mageau advanced his reconfigured and great looking “Prospector” ’78 Corvette to the FC final round.

In the reschedule for the Rocky Mountain Nostalgia Funny Car class (6.90 indexed) race – car dealer and former Professional steer wrestler Jimmy Fersch emerged victorious for the first time in that circuit’s history.  Jimmy raced his “The Bulldogger” Barracuda (which is tuned by John Evanchuk) to a final round 6.96 secs 199.82 mph to 6.98 secs 199.73 mph decision over the  Mike Reynold’s supercharged ’23 T.

Jim, who is the President of Big West Dodge (Drayton Valley) had defeated Joey Steckler and Cory Kincaid in earlier class competition.

Jimmy Fersch’s immaculate “The Bulldogger” Barracuda was a popular winner in the Pro 6.90 FC class.

Mike Reynolds placed runner-up in Pro 6.90 with his 23 T.

The WDRL Pro Mod cars also returned to Edmonton and that Mopar Rocky Mountain Nationals finals pitted the injected nitrous Corvette driven by Gary Urlacher (Spruce Grove AB) versus the supercharged ’57 Chevy raced by Wade Sjostrom.   Urlacher won that final handily – converting an early lead with a run of 6.17 secs 228.08 mph to Sjostorm’s slowing 8.97 secs 100.54 mph.

Gary Urlacher (top) prevailed in the WDRL Pro Mod final over Wade Sjostrom’s ’57 Chevy (below).

Sportsman racing on Sep. 3rd did include a reboot for the second of the two NHRA National Open races originally scheduled for the event.

That action was highlighted by Mopar-brand proponent Darcy Clarke who won both in Stock and in Super Stock with his great classic cars.

Spruce Grove’s “Mopar Man” Darcy Clarke won two titles for event sponsor Mopar Canada during the Rocky Mountain Nationals conclusion weekend!

Darren Williams also provided a nice score for Mopar — winning in TS with his Dodge Stratus!

Also collecting NHRA Wallys were Trevor Ritchie in Top Dragster, Darren Williams Top Sportsman, Darrel Smith (Super Gas 10.10), Eric Goulden (Super Comp 9.10) and Warren Neitsch’s PT Cruiser scored in Super Street 11.10. That day’s ET Bracket racing titles went to Ed Vanderkooi (Super Pro), Scott Len (Pro), Leith Darrach (Bike/Sled) Ryan O’Connor (Junior Lightning) & Connor Scott (Junior Thunder).

The hard fought Top Dragster title went to Trevor Ritchie’s super consistent machine.

Al Miles (from Edmonton) raced to the Pro Fuel Harley title when he recorded a winning final round time of 7.69 secs at 166.05 mph.

The reschedule event date saw Top Fuel Harley racer Kevin Boyer return for some testing – now with a great new scheme on his Edmonton-based machine – which is supported by Harold Parfett’s Ace Manufacturing.

Posted by Bruce Biegler

Photos by Don Meleshko and Bruce Biegler