Very Worthy Focus for Top Fuel Team

By:       Bruce Biegler

The now Eastern-Canadian based Nitro Express Top Fuel racing team has added a very special and very worthy focus to its 2011 racing season….

Now 100% owned by Bowmanville’s John LaPorte, the team which features long time and wily Canadian-born driver Fred Farndon at the controls, is helping to showcase an important cause this year – offering high vision for is a website intended to help remind the public about some of the sacrifices that have been made by our Canadian military within the Middle East conflict theatre.

John Laporte and driver Fred Farndon are behind an important cause

“In my business (Fabricating Technics Inc.) we build products for our military,” revealed  LaPorte who is FTI owner/operator.  “I was in the Army when I was a youth.  Around last Remembrance Day I got this idea out of concern that the focus for our serving military falls off soon after that day.  I wanted to use our racing platform to help give some more publicity so that maybe people don’t forget.  Even though it seems that activities in Iraq and Afghanistan are winding down somewhat – it’s important that the men and women that are coming back with injures from there are not forgotten.  That is a lifetime deal for them.” is a website intended to bring awareness for the social cause and it does accept donations.

LaPorte and Farndon are flying the new support logo on their Top Fuel dragster which received a major overall and new look over this past racing off-season.  The car made its season debut at NHRA Gainesville a couple of weeks back.  It did not qualify despite a rather decent run of 4.23 secs.

“On that run at Gainesville the blower belt broke at 800 feet – so that was some tough luck,” John admitted.   “But that run was inspiring for us.  We overcame a lot at that race (electrical gremlins) and made some good strides with our tuner John “Bodie” Smith and his father in law Virgil Hartman.  It’s a pleasure having them along – they are both very knowledgeable and great teachers.”

LaPorte has announced that his 2011season will afford racing fans chances to see his car much more frequently.   The team will attend at least six more NHRA Full Throttle Series events including Atlanta and Englishtown next.   A big focus will however be for the 2nd Annual Canadian Nitro Nationals at Cayuga Dragway (July 1-2-3) when they will be part of a 4-car Top Fuel shootout (8 car total nitro show!) scheduled there and then.

John Laporte’s Canadian-based TF car showed early season promise

(Bruce Biegler Photos)