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2022 Mod Nationals—A Specialty Race For Modern Ford Racers

2022 Mod Nationals—A Specialty Race For Modern Ford Racers
By ProMedia Staff
Photography by Wayne Stewart
When it comes to Ford-only drag racing, enthusiasts have the NMRA, a few one-off events and the Accufab ModNationals, a special event held each fall that labels itself as the only all-modular race in the world. Promoter Justin Young, wanted to create a race solely for late-model overhead cam Ford V8 engines so 6 years ago he created the Mod Nationals.
His goal was to showcase how truly fast these engines and cars are with limited rules to separate the variety of common modifications between racers. In 2016, the first ModNationals was held at Memphis International Raceway before moving to South Georgia Motorsports Park in 2017.

With steady growth year after year, Justin wanted to reward the racers and he did so by generating $70,000 in total payouts among 19 classes to fit every conceivable combination. “The modular community has shown year after year that they have the quickest stock block/non-billet ‘small-blocks’ in the country,” he said. The 2022 ModNationals saw an incredible turnout and great racing, save for a curveball from Mother Nature. Hurricane Nicole setout on a head-on collision course with the race and caused a lot of concern for race operations at SGMP and ModNationals. Thankfully ModNationals was determined a “Go” on Wednesday leading up to the race.

ModNationals hired one of the best track preppers in the country, TJ Bailey, who spent every second of Thursday and Friday sweeping the track of standing water and getting the surfaced prepared for the onslaught of 1000-plus hp Fords. As seen in Wayne Stewart’s photos, the racing was incredible and the variety endless. Almost every type of “Modular” engine was represented, including Coyote and GT500 Shelby Mustangs. Unfortunately, Hurricane Nicole was not the only threat. Sadly, Sunday’s action was cut short due to several oil downs and a cold-snap that caused the track to be unsafe for racing. In the name of safety, Young decided the best course of action was to payout every racer still in competition with winnings and he offered his sincerest apologies for not finishing the race. He vowed that 2023 will be a year of big changes for ModNationals and that it will be bigger and better than any previous event.

Robert Chuhran ran 9.09 at 139.62 with his 2-Valve SVT Lightning, unfortunately lifted a head at 1000-feet.

Garrett Leach is the man behind the company 2nd Shift Racing Media and puts out a lot of media for manual transmission cars. He spends the majority of his time promoting other amazing stick-shifted racers, but he had quite the week with his Cobra, callsign “Poverty.” Garrett ran 9.99 at 140.47 with a stock 2003 Cobra engine, Eaton supercharger and nitrous. 

ModNationals is a family event, and mother and son, Jenn Fahey and Connor Fahey brought out their cars to run True Street. Jennifer went on to win the 13-second True Street Class! 

The father and son combo of Alex Martinez (yellow Mustang GT) and Alex Martinez Jr. (black Cobra) also had an amazing outing and made memories! Alex ran Driver Mod 8.50 class and Alex Martinez Jr. ran True Street.

Allen Hurley brought out his clean 1967 Fairlane and was running mid-to-high 7s all weekend. This twin-turbo Coyote combination is setup for drag-and-drive style races and weighs over 3,800 lbs. 

Brett LaSala had hopes of dethroning Keith Rhea as King of the 4V Pro class, which is a 6-second quarter-mile class. Brett ran best of 6.75 at 188.57 mph with much more left in the tank, but the race was unfortunately called due to cold temperatures. Brett’s best the week prior at the World Cup finals was 6.55 at 206 mph. 

Sam Warner won the hardship award leading up to this event. Sam fought issue after issue with his car and even fought with his body, as he had an appendectomy just two weeks prior to the race. Not only did he make it, but he clicked off a personal best of 9.105 at 159.80 mph. 

Andrew Lavender has one of the best racing programs we’ve seen. He is incredibly successful in the No Prep scene and recently won $20,000 just weeks before ModNationals. As you know, no prep and prep have vastly different chassis and tune setups. Not only did he make the changes in a week, he ran his first 4-second pass and won the Battle of the Underdog class with a best of 7.767 at 181.76 mph with a 2-Valve engine to boot.

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