CHAMPIONS CROWNED SUNDAY AT THE 25TH ANNUAL CALIFORNIA HOT ROD REUNION PRESENTED BY AUTOMOBILE CLUB OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. – The final day of the 25th annual California Hot Rod Reunion presented by Automobile Club of Southern California concluded with intense quarter-mile drag strip racing on Sunday. Event and category champions were crowned as the sun set over Auto Club Famoso Raceway.
The Nostalgia Top Fuel world championship in the NHRA Hot Rod Heritage Series came down to the event’s final round. Tony Bartone, of Long Island City, N.Y., and Jim Murphy, of Santa Rosa, Calif., met in the winner-take-all final. Bartone came out on top by powering to a 5.600-second pass at 247.25 mph to defeat Murphy’s 9.519 at 74.74. Bartone, the No. 1 qualifier, was the only racer to double up with a world championship title and California Hot Rod Reunion event victory on Sunday.
“We struggled a little bit this season,” said Bartone, who claimed his third consecutive Nostalgia Top Fuel world championship. “We didn’t win any races until the third and fourth races of the season. We had some handling issues here at the Bakersfield March Meet and we had a major fuel leak and shut the car off in Bowling Green, but somehow we just squeaked out the championship.”
In Nostalgia Funny Car, Jason Rupert of Yorba Linda, Calif., powered to the event victory with a 5.592 at 250.32 in his ’69 Camaro over world champion Kris Krabill’s 7.494 at 116.19 in his ’78 Firebird. Rupert was the event’s No. 1 qualifier and also posted the category’s lowest E.T.
Krabill, of Tacoma, Wash., entered the California Hot Rod Reunion as the 2016 Nostalgia Funny Car world champion. He clinched at the most recent NHRA Hot Rod Heritage Series event at Bakersfield in September.
Winners were also crowned in nine other categories on Sunday. Drew Austin won in A/Fuel, Alan Hull claimed the Junior Fuel victory, Allen Taylor took the 7.0 Pro event title, Hans Jakob took the win in Nostalgia Eliminator 1, Keith Morovich secured the A/Gas crown, Bret Williamson was victorious in Nostalgia Pro Mod, Mike Molea raced to the win in AA/Supercharged, Bob Moreland won in A/FX and Greg Porter came out on top in Geezer Gasser.
The California Hot Rod Reunion presented by Automobile Club of Southern California is produced by the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum and benefits the facility located in Pomona, Calif. The Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum is a 501c(3) non-profit institution and collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets the vehicles, stories, and artifacts that represent the influence of automotive speed and style in all its forms. For more information on the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum, please visit www.NHRAMUSEUM.org.
The following are Sunday’s final round results from the NHRA Motorsports Museum 25th annual California Hot Rod Reunion, presented by the Automobile Club of Southern California:
NOSTALGIA TOP FUEL
Tony Bartone, McKinney, 5.600, 247.25 def. Jim Murphy, Neil & Parks, 9.519, 74.74
NOSTALGIA FUNNY CAR
Jason Rupert, Camaro, 5.592, 250.32 def. Kris Krabill, Firebird, 7.494, 116.19
Drew Austin, Parker, 6.198, 219.47 def. Kin Bates, Tuttle, 6.204, 217.63
Alan Hull, Farr, 7.123, 185.84 def. J.D. Zink, Uyehara, 7.014, 186.56
Allen Taylor, Ford, 7.071, 183.72 def. Dave Rosenberg, DRE, 7.060, 194.97
NOSTALGIA ELIMINATOR 1
Hans Jakob, Hansen, 7.742, 149.71 def. Scott Corbett, FED, 7.747, 171.71
Keith Morovich, Nova, 7.609, 179.14 def. Brendon Frye, Chevrolet, 7.611, 178.73
NOSTALGIA PRO MOD
Bret Williamson, Corvette, 6.673, 155.20 def. Jay Diedrich, Camaro, 6.018, 242.32
Mike Molea, Willys, 13.008, 70.66 def. Howard Anderson, Chevy Coupe, Broke
Bob Moreland, Chevelle, 10.996, 97.71 def. Ken Godsey, Comet, 12.595, 97.22
Greg Porter, Chevy, 9.241, 120.33 def. Kirk Dupre, Willys, 16.829, 41.67