Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Drag Race Season Always Gets off to Thrilling Start with March Meet

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Drag Race Season Always Gets off to Thrilling Start with March Meet

Article excerpt

To drag racers and fans, the words "March Meet" stir the same reaction that "March Madness" does to basketball fans.

Usually held in the beginning of March, hence its name, the March Meet is the first event of the season for purpose-built drag race cars. The event is at Auto Club Famoso Raceway near Bakersfield, Calif.

First held in 1959 by the Smokers Inc. (formerly the Bakersfield Coupe and Roadster Club), the March Meet has grown into a must-see event in the sport.

"It's a destination," said Famoso Raceway spokesman Rob Gibson. "People across the United States have been making the March Meet a weeklong vacation and now, we have folks from New Zealand, Australia, Germany, England and other European countries making the trip, and sometimes it's the only trip they'll make to the U.S. that year."

"It's like going to Woodstock," said NHRA announcer Mike English. "I get to come to Bakersfield twice a year for the March Meet and the Heritage Series California Hot Rod Reunion, and it's special."

Local racers making the trip from Pittsburgh for the March Meet this year were Ted Brine, Mark Becker and Ed Tysarczyk.

Brine and Becker had been to Famoso Raceway for the California Hot Rod Reunion (CHRR).

"We brought our '34 Ford Fuel Coupe to Bakersfield for the CHRR at the request of [former NHRA competition director] Steve Gibbs," Brine said. "We ran our car at the New England Hot Rod Reunion and Steve Gibbs liked it so much, he invited us to the CHRR.

"Bakersfield is hallowed ground to drag racers. That's why we came out here."

Held in October, the CHRR is a combination of racing, meeting the sports icons and taking in the infamous Cackle Fest. The Cackle Fest is a display of restored drag race cars - mostly Top Fuel Dragsters being push-started on the track, allowed to idle, showing off the flames from the Nitromethane-fueled machines. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.