August 12-14-Columbus, OH: 25th Annual Mopar Nationals featuring the Plymouth Road Runner. Car show, swap meet, car corral, and racing-the largest all-Mopar gathering in the country. Info: www.moparnats.org.
Nhra E.T. EliteThe grass roots of the Mopar racing brand was well represented during NHRA's '04 season ending event at Pomona, when some of the top-ranked Mopar bracket racers from across North America participated in the Summit Racing Equipment National E.T. Championships. The race-within-a-race featured the top-rated Super Pro, Pro, Sportsman, and Super Pro motorcycle racers from each of NHRA's seven geographical divisions
The list of Mopar racing participants included Ray Block (Columbus, Ohio), Angelo Phillips (Scottsdale, Arizona), Jason Novacek (Wichita, Kansas), Kyle Saucy (Beaver Creek, Oregon), Tony Marconi (Wittman, Arizona), Marcus Wessels (Santa Rosa, California), and Larry Thomason (Port Arthur, Texas).
Two of those racers advanced to the final rounds of competition. Larry Thomason, driving his low slung '62 Fury, had a heart-breaking .001 foul start in the Summit Super Pro final and lost out to the dragster driven by Mark Griffith. Jason Novacek, driving his classic '64 Barracuda, narrowly fell to the '90 Jeep driven by Kelly King.
Challenger Cha-ChinIndiana's John Hochstedler claimed the ultimate prize in 2004 for e.t. Bracket racers in IHRA racing. Hochstedler, driving his Dodge Challenger, amassed an amazing 37-3 win/loss record at his home track, Osceola Dragway (Osceola, Indiana), to capture the overall national Summit Racing Equipment Super Series for Box e.t. racers. Hochstedler's win-after a two-year layoff from drag racing-came driving a car that had not been run since the '91 season. Hochstedler's payday from Summit Racing for his season accomplishment was truly impressive: a brand-new '05 Pontiac G6, a $25,000 cash prize, and a complete new racing engine from Huntsville Engines -MM