ET Dragracing

NHRA Pacific National Open at Fontana, California


Words and photos by Bob Johnson

The weather was excellent and there was a great turnout for the NHRA Pacific National Open at Auto Club Fontana. There were 76 cars entered in the Stock/Super Stock combo race.


Stock/Super Stock: Phil Mandella Jr. (lead photo), has been in the Fontana National Open Stock/Super Stock Combo final for the past three years, winning twice. In Sunday’s race he defeated Chad Langdon’s ’70 Barracuda in the final round, (.027 RT) 11.193 at 116.29 mph to (.050 RT) 11.270/114.05.

Top Comp: Wayne Newman (near lane) won his first event since he had a very bad crash at Las Vegas in November 2016. After spending several months recovering from his injuries, Wayne was back with a ’08 Pontiac GXP in the familiar Newman Racing colors. Newman’s (.078) 7.132/183.89 defeated Rich Okerman’s (.005) 7.294/180.33 in the final round at Fontana.

Super Comp: Former Super Stock national champion Ryan McClanahan defeated Brian Fischle in the Super Comp final (.013) 8.938/179.18 to (.037) 8.924/167.97.

Super Gas: Travis Balough (far lane) drove his ’63 Corvette to a double-breakout win over Kevin McClelland in the final round. McClelland’s loss was by .002, 9.881 to a winning 9.883.

Super Street: Kevin Houmard drove his blown ’70 Camaro to the winner’s circle with a (.031) 10.882, 131.11 mph victory to Fred Murphy’s (.039) 10.860, 134.83 double-breakout final round.

Sportsman Motorcycle: Anthony Vanetti won his second “Wally” of the season when he beat Bill Burkhart in the final round. Burkhart was out first with a .071 RT to Vanetti’s .194, but Vanetti’s 8.313/146.56 beat Burkhart’s 8.536/147.54. Vanetti also won the season-opening Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event at Phoenix.

Super Pro: William Paolino won the Super Pro final with his great-looking ’67 Nova, as Kaitlyn McGee fouled her chances away.

Pro ET: Kelly Davis won her first NHRA “Wally” after taking a final round single for the Pro ET title as Pedro Valzdez broke his Camaro after winning his semifinal race.

Sportsman ET: Charlie Allen drove his ’94 Mustang to victory after defeating Harold Gotts ’73 Roadrunner in the Sportsman ET final. Gotts red-lighted in the final. 



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