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Wild and strange times at the 58th March Meet

Pics and Words by Kleet Norris

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The 58th running of the March Meet at Famoso Raceway, just outside of Bakersfield California, was full of excitement this year.  From record setting races to bizarre accidents on and off the track.  There was also the ever changing weather, that made it a little difficult for the racers.  Even with the threat of rain, the event had a good amount of attendance from spectators and over 500 drag cars competing.  During the two quick rain delays the fans would go wait in their cars or in the pit and midway area for the rain to stop and the racing to resume.  The rain did cause the finals on Sunday to run a little late in the evening, but the entire event managed to be completed.

There were fifteen different classes of competition, so the fans had all different types of race action to enjoy.  From dragsters and door slammers to the fire breathing nitro cars. The racetrack had a lot of bite and was serving up a lot of wheel stands and fast times from the racers.  With the event running long into the night on Saturday, due to light rain, the diehard fans who stayed until the end were treated to the Fuel Altereds under the lights at Famoso.  The cold temperature of the night played a factor in the traction of the dragstrip, causing the Altereds to go “every which way but straight” down the track, to the delight of the fans.

The quickest ever pass in a Nostalgia Funny Car also happened during the 58th March Meet.  The pass went to Kris Krabill, who ran a 5.55et at 261.62 mph. Krabill went on to also win the event in the Funny Car class.  One of the most bizarre accidents happened to Chris Morel in his Cuda Funny Car, which rolled almost immediately after the “Christmas tree.”   The accident was caused by a broken fuel line, spraying fuel onto the slicks.

For anyone who hasn’t attended the March Meet, they should start making plans for next year’s Meet.  The Famoso raceway is one of the oldest operating racetracks, that has still kept to the grassroots feel of drag racing.  The track has a lot of history, and there is a lot of history that has yet to be made there.

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