After an extended absence due to COVID — nitro & jet car fumes filled the air again at the Canadian Nitro Nationals!….

For drag racing fans a July long weekend within Ontario has always included dates circled for the Canadian Nitro Nationals held at the fabled Cayuga Dragway at Toronto Motorsports Park.

It used to be the Canadian Nitro Nationals were known for bringing in the biggest names from NHRA — but recently it has evolved to include more local names as well.

This year’s event (July 1-3) the weekend included the likes of two car team from Paton Racing with Todd Paton behind the wheel, and for the first time – Cameron Ferre joined in the fun.  He went from runner up at the recent NHRA Charlotte 4-Wide Nationals, to signing autographs and pleasing the crowds at the CanadianNitro Nationals!

The 2022 edition Canadian Nitro Nationals did feature two Paton Racing Team TF dragsters driven by Todd Paton and Cameron Ferre

This years show also included another 2 car top fuel team  which The Ant Hill Mob has been quietly building for their race organization and this was their first outing with both cars. Doug Hearsum was onsite with his new Nitro FC as well rounding out the nitro ranks for the event.

Let talk about the one thing that has been missing over the last few years.. …Crowds!

This years event was packed from one end to the other. With numbers reaching well over 10 thousand, and nearly all camping spots sold out – it was a sight to see! This year had the most ticket pre-sales to date, and had the largest number of campers – ever. They nearly ran out of room to put campers —- which for track owner Uli Bieri — was a great problem to have!

Event report by Brennan Shortall

Event photo highlights courtesy of Blake Farnam & Stacee Richards

Chad Stephens (from Caistor Centre, ON) preformed this jaw dropping wheelstand with his “Dirtybird” NMCA 87 Ford Thunderbird.

Tyler Scott brought out the Larry Dobbs owned Alcohol funny car out for some testing and to show the crowds a type of racing that isn’t too common in these parts. We need more AFC racing!

Jami Russell from New York state thrilled the crowds with this wild wheelstand in his 76 Mustang II Nostalgia Funny Car known as the Iron Outlaw. This was his first time to Toronto Motorsports Park, after the reception from the crowd, the team is making plans to return.

O Canada!!! The front engine dragster of J.C. Goodacre thrills the crowd with an awesome burnout before lining up for a match race with competitor Perry Carrey. Watch for these guys… they put on a great show!!

Canada’s premier Mountain Motor Pro Stock team attended the event with “Johnny K” wheeling the super quick and fast Konigshofer Brothers Mustang

Russ Lethbridge in Hellfire Jet truck (pictured) & Neale Armstrong in Northern Warrior Jet Car finish out the night. (*On a somber note, on Sunday a moment of silence was held for Chris Darnell, driver of the Shockwave Jet Truck who tragically lost his life at an air show in Michigan recently. The Shockwave team had been a fixture at the Canadian Nitro Nationals event for some years prior.

Attending fans got their first look at the new T/D car for local Ontario racer Tony Positano.