The Night of Fire Jet Spectacular is Great Lakes Dragaway’s newest event. Besides being an exciting prelude to Independence Day, it’s also a fitting event for this track as jet cars and GLD have a lengthy history together. And like the fire breathers, Pro Stock cars do as well. From the inception of the class in 1970 when icons like Dyno Don Nicholson raced in competition, to the present with the Midwest Nostalgia Pro Stock Association. We are honored to be part of this exciting event
Recalling the positive reception Midwest Nostalgia Pro Stock Association received at the Inaugural event in 2016, ten of our drivers and their crews prepared for action. On hand were Bob Cattalino, Kelly Dill, Hannah Fleischman, Mike Morrill, Jim Parks, Josh Parks, Tyler Shenuk, Rusty Sternal, Bob Unger and Arlee Williams III.
Before the show opened, several members took part in the Test & Tune session. Reports were that the track was in great shape, and the anticipation was we’d be fast in the later of the three scheduled sessions.
In the meantime, it was time to visit with our fans.
The show began with Parade of Stars, where all that participated were introduced to the fans. That was followed up with a performance of the National Anthem by the country band Forgotten Highway courtesy of the Gobbler Theater.
With racing now under way, trackside observers at the top end quickly concluded those chopping down the tree also had a finish line advantage, even over drivers posting quicker ET’s on the board. Perhaps this was due to the still warm weather. Perhaps it was the nervous anticipation of waiting for the show to begin. In any case, drivers and crews refocused for Round 2.
Round 2 comes at dusk with cooling temperatures and the promise of better performance. After getting his pocket picked in Round 1 by Rusty Sternal in Jesse Branham’s “Hillbilly Racing” Camaro, Bob Cattelino & “Night Moves” pushed the tree a little too hard and turned on the red bulb. Kelly Dill made a big performance jump from the previous round. Jim Parks, on a single, demonstrated that Lyle and crew now have a handle on getting the “Red Rat” down the track straight and true. And after coming up on the losing end in Round 1, Josh Parks extracted some revenge upon Tyler Shenuk, beating him at both ends of the track.
Going fully under the lights for Round 3, Kelly ran a best of the day ET of 8.249 against Tyler’s very respectable 8.782, Hannah Fleischman drove to her best ET of the day over Bob Unger. Cattelino carded his best ET over a red lighting Sternal. Mike Morrill further acclimated himself to his new racecar. And Josh and Jim Parks closed the night with an exciting finale, with Jim overcoming a .084 starting line deficit to go around his son just before the stripe.
Thanks again to Marcel, Randy, Clare, the entire GLD staff, the other great groups that participated, and of course you, our fans.
Visit the Midwest Nostalgia Pro Stock Association webpage to view our full schedule, news, driver profiles, galleries and more. And please visit and “Like” our Facebook Page for the very the latest information and discussion.