Friday Coverage—14th annual NMRA Super Nationals, presented by WyoTech

There have been two big talking points heading into the 14th annual NMRA Super Nationals, presented by WyoTech. The first has been the big news regarding the ownership of National Trail Raceway. A new management group has taken over the facility and instantly spent over $500,000 in improvements with new racing surface, staging lanes, improved pits, new fencing, and many other projects. The other story is the intense Friday schedule that will include both the rain-delayed elimination rounds from the WyoTech NMRA Ford Motorsport Nationals and the opening round of qualifying for the Ohio race. Below is the schedule for today’s festivities.

Testing is underway at NMRA Super Nationals, presented by WyoTech, and Frank Varela sent a warning shot over the bow of the Edelbrock Renegade field. He dropped a 7.60 at 177 mph to kickoff the weekend’s festivities. The car is powered by a turbocharged Coyote, which was built by MMR, and he has been the top qualifier at two of the three NMRA events in 2017. Eliminations will begin later this afternoon and checkout for live video coverage.

It has been a highly-anticipated debut of the new Russell Stone/Dwayne Barbaree VP Racing Fuels Street Outlaw entry. The 1994 SVT Cobra has quite a storied history in NMRA/NMCA drag racing as John Kolivas first used it to dominate the defunct Drag Radial category in the early 2000s. Then it was sold, updated with a double frame-rail chassis, and put to use in the wild Radial vs. the World category by Daniel Pharris. Stone purchased the car this past winter and had Kuntz and Company build a stout small-block Ford for NMRA competition. The team was silent about the car’s recent testing performances but we suspect it has gone sub-4.40s.

There was a bizarre on-track incident when a heim joint snapped on the right side A-arm of the JLP Racing mid-8 second truck. Johnny “Lightning” Wiker got the Gen-2 Lightning stopped safely before any additional damage could happen. With the assistance of the Bowles/Roush team, the front-end was disassembled and Cameron Bowles welded the A-arm as the team is thrashing to get the truck ready for competition.

Brandon Alsept recently converted to a G-Force Racing Transmission G101A transmission and will be letting the clutch out on the new setup for the first time this weekend. Last time we saw Alsept’s hot rod, he was power-shifting through the first three gears while dragging the bumper at the NMRA World Finals last year. We are fully expecting him to have a repeat performance this time around so we get some more photos of his undercarriage.

9X NMRA champion John Urist has his Turn 14 Mustang ready for action and his first test hit showed progress. Urist unleashed an easy 4.54 at 164 mph as he prepares to go into eliminations from the rain-delayed WyoTech NMRA Ford Motorsport Nationals.

The Island Racing team patriarch, Mike Alwardt, was a staple in the small-tire wars of VP Racing Fuels Street Outlaw and now his son, Josh, is carrying the family back into NMRA drag racing with a brand-new G-Force Racing Transmissions Coyote Stock entry. He debuted the car a month ago during the WyoTech NMRA Ford Motorsport Nationals, but could only make one run before the rain came. He went out first round of eliminations for the rain-delayed Ford Motorsports Nationals, however, he did score his first 10-second run with a 10.79 at 125 mph.

He might have left the meatball sandwiches on the workbench in the garage, but Vinnie Telesco isn’t at National Trail Raceway to eat. The New Jersey racer is here to race his notorious truck and the opening rounds have been good to him. Telesco advanced two rounds thus far in the rain-delayed Ford Motorsport Nationals elimination run-off and he has a bye-run to the finals! Last year, Telesco walked away with the Detroit Locker Truck & Lightning class victory. Last month, Telesco competed with his Pro Street Gen-2 Lightning but he fixed his Ranger and decided to bring it to Ohio. So far, it has been a good move as he looks to score his first class win in 2017.

Jeff Polivka is on his way to the final round of ProCharger Coyote Modified as El Jefe 2.0 dropped into the 7s during round two of eliminations. He took down Tommy Annunziata with a 7.94 at 172 mph, the quickest run in the class thus far.