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After skipping two races, mainly due to the travelling distances and high gas prices, our ever-intrepid photographer, BIG Bob Snyder made the relatively short (664 miles) drive from his home base near Phoenix to the West Texas town of Odessa. The fourth race on the 2022 Funny Car Chaos tour, at Penwell Knights Raceway ran on the usual Friday qualifying and Saturday eliminations schedule. We start with pictures from Friday night's two qualifying sessions. With 25 cars getting down the track, including two in the 3-second zone, it promised to be another good race from a group that always puts on a great show for the fans.


Aaron Morrow - 'Nitro Relapse' --- Aaron Morrow - 'Nitro Relapse' (near lane) 
vs Chuck Loftin - 'Motivation'

Danny Smith - 'Snafu' --- Jordan Ballew - 'Ballew Thunder'

Scott Pareso -'Turbonator' --- Scott Pareso -'Turbonator' (near lane) vs 
Steve Vang - 'Wicked Weekender' (far lane)

Dustin Bradford - 'American Dream' --- Steve Griboski - 'Prairie Fire'

Matt Bynum - 'Nitro Nick' --- Matt Bynum - 'Nitro Nick' (near lane) vs 
Smiley Cordero - 'Maximum Overdrive' (far lane)

Charles Ware - 'Juggling Rubies' --- Kirk Williams - '200 Proof'

Mary Reep - 'Grim Reeper' --- Clay Cunningham - 'Still Crazy'

Jeff Cameron - 'Jake's Speed Shop' (near lane) 
vs Don Knoblauch - 'Atomic Punk' (far lane) --- Jeff Cameron - 'Jake's Speed Shop' (near lane) 
vs Don Knoblauch - 'Atomic Punk' (far lane)

Horny Toad --- Horny Toad

A short interruption to the photo-ops on the track was the appearance of this little character. Even though it's called a Horny Toad, it's actually a member of the lizard family. Nasty looking to be sure. Now back to the racing.

Chance Biffle - 'Bad Intentions' --- Chance Biffle - 'Bad Intentions'

Nancy Matter - 'The Guardian' --- Nancy Matter - 'The Guardian'

Alan Bradshaw - 'Back Attack' --- Jody Austin - 'Bushwhacker

Jade Cook - 'Nemesis' --- Jade Cook - 'Nemesis'

That's all for the first qualifying session. The 2nd - and hopefully - 3rd sessions, plus eliminations tomorrow... morning-ish. Stay tuned. Much more to come, complete with captions.

Bob Snyder & Morgan Bratcher

Our photographer, BIG Bob Snyder took a break from the action to grab this selfie of himself posing with Morgan Bratcher, the woman behind the High Risk Marketing & Media company. She's a daughter of three-time defending Funny Car Chaos champion Ken Singleton, who's just been released from hospital to recuperate at home from the severe burns he suffered at the season opening event at the Texas Motorplex in late March.

Qualifying Session #2

Since the FCC crew don't post the results of the first qualifying session, we can only report times, speeds and qualifying positions based on their best runs of the first day's two sessions. With 25 cars on hand, and everyone making at least one qualifying attempt, the standard - or what has become the standard - setup of three 8-car fields guaranteed almost everyone a spot in eliminations.

Danny Smith - 'Snafu'

Leading off the evening qualifying session was Danny Smith in his "Snafu" entry, seen here doing a tire heating burnout.

Chuck Loftin - 'Motivation' --- Chuck Loftin - 'Motivation' (near lane) vs 
Danny Smith - 'Snafu' (far lane)

(LEFT) Facing Smith in the first pair was long-time series regular Chuck Loftin in his ultra-familiar Mustang-bodied "Motivation".

(RIGHT) Barely seen in the far lane is the left-way-too-soon (note the red light) Danny Smith who ended the day with a best of 4.297 - 165.93, placing him in the #8 spot on the qualifying list and at the bottom of the "A" field. A more patient Chuck Loftin, in the near lane, had trouble early and failed to improve on his 4.841 - 142.72, leaving him in the "C" field and #18 on the list going into Saturday's final qualifier.

Smiley Cordero - 'Maximum Overdrive' --- Smiley Cordero - 'Maximum Overdrive' (near lane) 
vs Randy Meuller - 'Crazy Randy' (far lane)

(LEFT) Since making his Chaos debut at the end of the 2021 season, Smiley Cordero has rapidly moved up the ranks in his "Maximum Overdrive" Camaro. Coming off consecutive runner-up finishes at Baton Rouge and Lufkin (Pine Valley), he was looking for more winlights at Odessa.

(RIGHT) Leaving well in front in the near lane, Cordero ran away from "Crazy Randy" Mueller (far lane), finishing the day with a best of 4.385 - 167.29 to sit #12 on the list, while Mueller trailed with a 4.697 - 149.90 to place #16. Both racers were sitting - provisionally - in the "B" field going into Saturday.

Mitch Bowen - 'Northland Express' --- Mitch Bowen - 'Northland Express' (near lane) 
vs Scott Pareso - 'Turbonator' (far lane)

Seen in the left photo burning out, Mitch Bowen was behind the wheel of the "Northland Express". On the right, he leaves second against Scott Pareso (far lane) in the turbocharged "Turbonator". Neither driver got the result they were looking for, but Pareso finished the day in the #17 spot at 4.769 - 124.76, while Bowen was further back in #19 at 4.898 - 143.31, slotting both of them into the "C" field going into the final qualifying session.

Don Knoblauch - 'Atomic Punk' (near lane) vs 
Jordan Ballew - 'Ballew Thunder' (far lane) --- Steve Vang - 'Weekend Weekender' (near lane) vs 
Steve Griboski - 'Prairie Fire' (far lane)

(LEFT Leaving with the flames up in the near lane is Don Knoblauch in his "Atomic Punk", and he put down a number (4.274 - 166.48) good enough to grab a spot in the "A" field before the final qualifying session. In the far lane, Jordan Ballew in his "Ballew Thunder" was further down the charts, in the #14 position at 4.677 - 150.15, and a spot in the "B" field.


Kirk Williams - '200 Proof' --- Kirk Williams - '200 Proof' (near lane) vs 
Dustin Bradford - 'American Dream' (far lane)

Tom Furches - 'Made in America' --- Tom Furches - 'Made in America'

Jeff Cameron - 'Jake's Speed Shop' (near lane) 
vs Aaron Morrow - 'Nitro Relapse' (far lane) --- Chance Biffle - 'Bad Intentions'



Alan Bradshaw - 'Back Attack' --- Alan Bradshaw - 'Back Attack'

After a #2 qualifying effort in the first session (3.985 - 183.82), things didn't go nearly as well for Alan Bradshaw as the "Back Attack" went on a wild ride and took out the 330' timing blocks, negating his run and leaving him in the second spot on the ladder at the end of the evening.


Qualifying Session #3

Going into the final qualifying session there was only one team sitting outside the Saturday night eliminations "show". Holding down that unenviable spot was the "High Heaven" group, with driver Keith Jackson feeling the pressure to make a pass better than #24 (Jody Austin)'s 6.817 to get into the bottom of the "C" field.

Danny Smith - 'Snafu' --- Chuck Loftin - 'Motivation'

(LEFT) Leading off the session was Danny Smith in his unlettered "Snafu" entry, hoping to hang onto his spot in the "A" field. Unfortunately he wasn't able to improve on his Friday best of 4.297 - 165.93, and saw himself fall into the top of the "B" field in the #9 position. Probably not a bad spot to be, instead of having to face Kirk Williams in aheads-up race in the first round.

(RIGHT) Further down the last was series veteran, Chuck Loftin in the "Motivation" Mustang. Languishing in the #18 position at 4.841, he needed to pick up nearly two tenths to move up into the "B" field and he managed that with a decent 4.679 - 154.53 pass. That left him at the bottom of the "B" field and facing Danny Smith in the first round of eliminations.

Jade Cook - 'Nemesis' --- Scott Pareso - 'Turbonator'

(LEFT) Warming up the tires before her last qualifying attempt, Jade Cook, was sitting in the middle of the "B" field in her bright yellow "Nemesis". She wasn't able to better her previous 4.359 - 156.14, but only dropped one spot from #11 to #12, and having to face Steve Vang in the opening round.

(RIGHT) Still working out the bugs on the "Turbonator" since making the switch from an Altered body to a Funny Car, Scott Pareso didn't run quicker than his Friday 4.769 - 124.76 best and dropped one spot from #17 to #18, near the top of the "C" field. That slotted him into a first round match against Clay Cunningham.

Jordan Ballew - 'Ballew Thunder' --- Steve Vang - 'Wicked Weekender'

(LEFT) It was a case of one step forward and one step back for Jordan Ballew, as he improved (from a 4.677) to a 4.590 - 152.44 in his Camaro-bodied "Ballew Thunder", but dropped one spot from #14 to #15, pairing him up with the hard running Tom Furches 'Vette in the opening round of eliminations.

(RIGHT) One racer who didn't improve on his Friday 4.385 - 165.32 numbers, but didn't lose a position was Steve Vang in the "Wicked Weekender" entry. He stayed in the "lucky" #13 spot, pairing him with first round opponent Jade Cook.

Matt Bynum - 'Nitro Nick' --- Matt Bynum - 'Nitro Nick'

Here's two views of the newest car on the Funny Car Chaos circuit, as Matt Bynum lays down a burnout on the left, then launches hard on the right. The latest "Nitro Nick" Firebird ran well on the first day of qualifying with a 4.266 best, but really turned up the wick with a great 3.998 - 190.03 to climb two spots to #4 on the final list and lane choice in the first round against Smiley Cordero.

Keith Jackson - 'High Heaven' --- Keith Jackson - 'High Heaven'

On the left, we've got Keith Jackson burning out with the "windshield washer" on, as a leaking hat nozzle line sprayed quite a bit of fuel even with the throttle only slightly open. It appears that the crew didn't notice it, or Jackson decided to make the pass in an attempt to get into the field, but on the launch (right photo), the leak continued until the blower backfired and sent the hood hatch flying (see below). The team was under pressure to get down the track as they failed to register an e.t. on Friday, and sat at the bottom (#25) of the qualifying list and out of show before this (ill-fated) pass.

Keith Jackson - 'High Heaven'

This is what happens when you try to make a pass with a badly leaking hat nozzle line (or two?). KA-BOOM goes the blower, and the hood burst hatch goes flying to.... "High Heaven". Despite the backfire, the car managed to cross the finish line with a 5.922 - 73.45, "good" enough for #23 on the list and a spot near the bottom of the "C" field.

Steve Griboski - 'Prairie Fire' --- Charles Ware - 'Juggling Rubies'

(LEFT) Coming into the last session with only a mediocre 5.153 - 90.40 on the boards, and a spot near the bottom of the list (#22), series newcomer Steve Griboski knew he had to step up in the Wayne Reinart-owned "Prairie Fire" entry. They picked up a little with a 5.011 - 105.83 clocking that moved them up one spot to #21 and a first round pairing with another FCC newcomer, Chance Biffle in the "Bad Intentions" entry.

(RIGHT) The sharp looking Dodge Omni-bodied "Juggling Rubies" car of Charles Ware hoped to at least hang on to his #10 qualifying position but wasn't able to better his Friday numbers of 4.354 - 159.63 and fell one spot to #11, pitting him against the nitro-burner of Nancy Matter in the opening round of eliminations.

Clay Cunningham - 'Still Crazy' --- Alan Bradshaw - 'Back Attack'

(LEFT) Having a less than successful qualifying day on Friday, Clay Cunningham wanted to move up from the #24 spot on the list in his "Still Crazy" car. It wasn't to be however, as he couldn't muster an improvement on his earlier 6.267 - 81.70 and remained at the bottom of the "C" field. He got a slight reprieve as Mary Reep ("Grim Reeper") was broken and he ended up in the #7 spot in the "C" group.

(RIGHT) Looking good in his blown alky "Back Attack" was Alan Bradshaw in his first appearance on the circuit for 2022. He wasn't able to better his earlier 3.985 - 183.82 pass and dropped to #3 (from #2) on the final qualifying sheet. That gave him lane choice over Aaron Morrow in the first round.

Nancy Matter - 'Guardian --- Nancy Matter - 'Guardian

Still running her NHRA-legal Nostalgia Funny Car, even with a recently acquired "Big Show" car at home, Nancy Matter came into the final qualifer well down the list in her "Guardian" entry. She was able to knock more than two tenths off her best e.t. from first two sessions (4.681 - 143.08), moving up to the #14 position with a 4.468 - 158.67 to face Charles Ware in the first round of eliminations.

Dustin Bradford - 'American Dream' --- Tom Furches - 'Made in America'

(LEFT) Putting down a hard burnout in the "American Dream" 'Cuda was Dustin Bradford. He came into the final session holding the #5 spot in the order with a 4.204 - 170.00, but couldn't better that time and fell two spots to #7 as qualifying ended. That paired him with a tough competitor in Jeff Cameron for the first round.

(RIGHT) Falling one spot also was Tom Furches in his "Made in America" entry, as despite a slightly improved 4.304- 150.70 effort (from an earlier best of 4.318 - 170.97), he dropped to #10 and having to face Jordan Ballew to start eliminations. However, he was holding lane choice.

Don Knoblauch - 'Atomic Punk'

Making his fourth consecutive race on the FCC circuit, Washington state's Don "The Atomic Punk" Knoblauch was already in the "A" field, but wanted to knock some e.t. off his Friday best of 4.274 - 166.48. Even with help from NHRA nitro racer Jeff Diehl, he wasn't able to improve and fell one spot in the final order to #8 and a first round pairing with the quickest car in the field, Kirk Williams.

Jeff Cameron - 'Jake's Speed Shop' --- Jeff Cameron - 'Jake's Speed Shop'

After a light tire-hazing burnout, Jeff Cameron blitzed the timers with a great 3.932 - 179.50 in the "Jake's Speed Shop" entry. His Friday best time of 4.170 - 147.93 showed lots of promise - with an early shutoff - but no one really expected to see that 3-second pass come up on the scoreboard. It only moved him up one notch to #2 however, but kept him on the opposite side of the ladder from low qualifier Kirk Williams.

Jeff Cameron - 'Back Up Boy'

Looking like a victim at a stag party, or someone who lost a very embarassing bet is the "Back-Up BOY" for Jeff Cameron. It was reported that he was leaving the team after this event and wanted to go out "with a bang". Looks like he managed to do just that. And that was a wrap for qualifying, with eliminations scheduled to begin in the late afternoon.

"A" Field - Round One Eliminations

With the fields set, and just one substitution made at the bottom of the "C" field, (Mary Reep) broke in the "Grim Reeper" and was replaced by Jody Austin in the "Bushwhacker") the first round of eliminations started in the late afternoon.

Aaron Morrow - 'Nitro Relapse' --- Aaron Morrow - 'Nitro Relapse' (near lane) 
vs Alan Bradshaw - 'Back Attack' (far lane)

Laying down a hard burnout in the Darby & Morrow "Nitro Relapse" car was Aaron Morrow (left) as he prepared to face #3 qualifier Alan Bradshaw in his slick new "Back Attack" blown alcohol entry. When the ambers flashed, Bradshaw was long gone in the far lane with an .027 to .191 holeshot, while Morrow tried to play catch-up . It was to no avail as Bradshaw won at both ends of the track, stopping the timers at 4.066 - 183.15 to trainlength Morrow's trailing 4.615 - 116.22 losing effort.

Matt Bynum - 'Nitro Nick' --- Matt Bynum - 'Nitro Nick' (near lane) vs 
Smiley Cordero - 'Maximum Overdrive' (far lane)

Debuting a shiny new '77 Firebird, Matt Bynum burned out in the Bynum & (Randy) Lucchetti "Nitro Nick". With tuning assistance from Del Worsham they were competitive right off the trailer and took out first round opponent Smiley Cordero (far lane) in the "Maximum Overdrive" Camaro. Cordero left first with an almost psychic .003 light to Bynum's very good .065. We don't have the incrementals, but Cordero's ?4.135 - 173.28 must have held the lead for at least 300' before Bynum's better 4.014 - 191.73 took a car length victory at the stripe.

Don Knoblauch - 'Atomic Punk' --- Kirk Williams - '200 Proof'

It's a pair of burnout shots next, as #8 qualifier Don Knoblauch hazed the hides in the "Atomic Punk" Camaro (left), while top qualifier Kirk Williams in the "200 Proof" entry lit up the tires on the right.

Kirk Williams - '200 Proof' (near lane) 
vs Don Knoblauch - 'Atomic Punk' (far lane) --- Jeff Cameron - 'Jake's Speed Shop'

(LEFT) It didn't take long for Williams (near lane) to put some distance between himself and Knoblauch (far lane) as he left on the "Punk" by a bunch (.110 to .263 r.t.'s) and ran away to a very convincing first round win with low e.t. of the round (and top speed of the meet) at 3.861 - 196.34 over Knobluach's 4.531 - 127.15, and a matchup with Bynum in the semi-final.

(RIGHT The final pairing of the round saw Jeff Cameron in the "Jake's Speed Shop" car burning out in the near lane, while his scheduled opponent, Dustin Bradford in the "American Dream" (not shown) is presumably doing the same in the far lane. Bradford left first by a .038 to .112 margin, but Cameron turned on the power with a 4.322 - 160.43 to easily cover Bradford's fading 4.623 - 107.73 effort.

"B" Field - Round One Eliminations

--- Chris Graves - Founder of Funny Car Chaos --- Steve Vang - 'Wicked Weekender'

(LEFT) This is the guy who has made it all happen in FUNNY CAR CHAOS, Chris Graves, who, with his wife Tera, has turned an idea into a successful enterprise. In the process, they've helped dozens of racers find venues that allow them to compete without the pressure of racing against the professional teams on the NHRA "Big Show" and Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series circuits. That's not to say that the FCC teams are anything less than professional in appearance and performance, but they've managed to keep the fun factor at a high level and put on very entertaining shows for the spectators. What it boils down to is keeping to the age-old "run what ya brung" adage, which still works in 2022.

(RIGHT) Series regular Steve Vang in the "Wicked Weekender" entry burns out before his first round match to start the "B" field eliminations.

Jade Cook - 'Nemesis' --- Jade Cook - 'Nemesis' (near lane) vs 
Steve Vang - 'Wicked Weekender' (far lane)

Vang's opponent was last year's Rookie of The Year, Jade Cook, in her very familiar "Nemesis" nitrous entry. As she did so many times last year, it was another winlight for her as she dispatched Vang and moved on to the second round. She left first with a brilliant .005 reaction time, against Vang's very good .039 light, and from there to the finish line they ran nearly side-by-side with Cook's 4.340 - 158.84 just edging out Vang's nearly identical 4.341 - 162.81 losing effort. It was her third first round win in four races this year as she moved back into the Top Ten with the win.

Chuck Loftin - 'Motivation' --- Chuck Loftin - 'Motivation' (near lane) 
vs Danny Smith - 'Snafu' (far lane)

Still running his tried-and-true Billy Meyer tribute car, "Motivation", nitro-burning Texan Chuck Loftin, laid down a hard burnout before facing Danny Smith (far lane). After appearing in two events last season, Smith brought out a new-look "SNAFU" to start his 2022 campaign. In this match he took his first round win on the FCC circuit with a solid and consistent 4.304 - 159.52 to easily cover Loftin's 4.842 - 132.28, and move on to the semi-final round to face Jade Cook.

Tom Furches - 'Made in America' (near lane) 
vs Jordan Ballew - 'Ballew Thunder' (far lane) --- Charles Ware - 'Juggling Rubies' (near lane) 
vs Nancy Matter - 'Guardian' (far lane)

(LEFT) As the round continued, last year's #5 finisher in the FCC points standings, Tom Furches brought the "Made in America" Corvette (near lane) up against the early Camaro ("Ballew Thunder"), driven by Jordan Ballew (far lane). Ballew cut a great .008 light to take an early lead over Furches' .068 reaction, but at the finish line it was Furches turning on the winlight with a 4.181 - 169.11 over Ballew's 4.526 - 152.91, advancing him to the next round to face the winner of the final pair of the round.

(RIGHT) Closing the round was the cool looking "Juggling Rubies" Dodge Omni of Charles Ware (near lane), matched up against veteran Nancy Matter in her "Guardian" Firebird (far lane). Neither driver cut a great light but it was Matter's nitro burner lighting up the scoreboard first with a 4.243 - 142.95 over Ware's early shutoff 5.583 - 89.34, moving her into the semi-final to face Furches.

"C" Field - Round One Eliminations

Randy Mueller - 'Crazy Randy' --- Steve Griboski - 'Prairie Fire' (near lane) 
vs Chance Biffle - 'Bad Intentions' (far lane)

(LEFT) Making his first appearance at an FCC event since the 2021 season opener, "Crazy Randy" Mueller ended up at the top of the "C" field in the #17 position, after being bumped down from the bottom of the "B" field in the final qualifying session. His luck got even better in the first round when his scheduled opponent (Clay Cunningham) got moved up in the order due to Mary Reep's broken race car. He was then paired up with Jody "Bushwhacker" Austin, who also turned up broken, leaving Randy to take an early shutoff pass of 4.756 - 126.80 and move into the second round.

(RIGHT) The first actual race of the round featured series newcomer Chance Biffle in his unlettered "Bad Intentions" entry (far lane) against the new driver for 2022 in the familiar "Prairie Fire" car of Wayne Reinart in the near lane. Formerly driving his own NHRA Top Alcohol Dragster, Steve Griboski switched over to Funny Cars and took an automatic win in his first elimination round when Biffle redlighted by less than a thousandth of a second (ouch!) and shut off to a 6-second clocking. Griboski took it easy with a 4.795 - 145.,58 to move into the semi-final against Mueller.

Clay Cunningham - 'Still Crazy' (near lane) 
vs Scott Pareso - 'Turbonator' (far lane) --- Keith Jackson - 'High Heaven'

(LEFT) Leaving first in the near lane, but only by two hundredths, was Clay Cunninbgham in his "Still Crazy" entry against the turbocharged "Turbonator" of Scott Pareso. It was relatively close at the finish line but Cunningham took the win with a 4.522 - 125.21 over Pareso's game effort of 4.635 - 136.99.

(RIGHT) After a dismal qualifying performance, with a "best" time of 5.922 on a blower banging pass, Keith Jackson was looking to turn things around in the first round of eliminations. Matched up against Mitch Bowen, it became a bye run when Bowen was unable to appear, and Jackson made the best of it with an index-busting 4.094 - 171.49 pass in the "High Heaven". Fortunately for Jackson, breakouts are allowed on bye runs, so he advanced to the second round to face Cunningham.

NOTE: In Funny Car Chaos races, the "A" field is always heads-up, but the "B" and "C" fields have an index assigned. It is set for two tenths of a second quicker than the top qualifier in each of those fields. The lowest e.t. in "B" qualifying was a 4.29 so the index was set at 4.09, and the quickest in "C" was a 4.69, setting that index at 4.49.


Matt Bynum - 'Nitro Nick' --- Matt Bynum - 'Nitro Nick' (near lane) 
vs Kirk Williams - '200 Proof' (far lane)

First out of the lanes to start the semi-finals was the "Nitro Nick" of Matt Bynum, seen burning out in the left photo, then lining up in the near lane against the series points leader Kirk Williams in the Williams Brothers Racing "200 Proof" Top Alcohol car. It was a close race off the line with Williams gaining three hundredths on the launch, but he soon turned that it into a runaway, stopping the clocks with another great pass at 3.871 - 194.38 to advance to the finals for the third consecutive event. Bynum ran into trouble and shut off to a 4.983- 101.37 for the loss.

Alan Bradshaw - 'Back Attack'

The other race of the round turned into a single, as Alan Bradshaw (shown here staging) took the free pass to the final when scheduled opponent, Jeff Cameron was unable to make the call. Bradshaw simply took the green and idled down track to an 11-second time, obviously ceding lane choice to Williams in the final.


Jade Cook - 'Nemesis' (near lane) vs 
Danny Smith - 'Snaufu' (far lane) --- Tom Furches - 'Made in America' (near lane) 
vs Nancy Matter - 'Guardian' (far lane)

(LEFT) It looked like a runaway for Jade Cook in the near lane, as she left the line with another incredible reaction time - .007 - over Danny Smith's sleepy .249 r.t. She had to abort the run early though and limped through the lights at 9.968 - 46.53, as Smith put down another solid effort at 4.307 - 161.75 to move into his first FCC final round.

(RIGHT) The other semi-final saw Tom Furches (near lane) leave well ahead of Nancy Matter (far lane), despite a less than stellar .178 launch, but it was far better than Matter' nearly comatose .357 reaction. Furches kept the pedal down all the way to the finish line, carding a 4.184 - 170.71 as Matter clicked it early to a 5.623 - 85.32 losing time.


Clay Cunningham - 'Still Crazy' (near lane) 
vs Keith Jackson - 'High Heaven' (far lane) --- Clay Cunningham - 'Still Crazy' (near lane) 
vs Keith Jackson - 'High Heaven' (far lane)

"If ya can't be good, at least be spectacular!" is a saying that is usally attributed to John Force, who spent most of his early years in the sport blowing up, oiling the track, or being on fire and that pretty much sums up Keith Jackson (far lane) in this race. He launched hard, banging the blower almost instantly, flames shooting out everywhere, then lifting the body as the latches failed. Both cars left together with Clay Cunningham (near lane) leaving first by a few thousandths, then taking the more-or-less uncontested win with a 5.055 - 103.12 as Jackson's ailing mount managed to cross the finish line at 9.956 - 49.47.

Steve Griboski - 'Prairie Fire' (near lane) 
vs Randy Meueller - 'Crazy Randy' (far lane)

It looks like "Crazy Randy" Mueller (far lane) left first, and he certainly did, by a .161 to .369 margin, then stretched the lead to several bus-lengths by the finish line, clocking in at 4.697 - 142.50 to erase Steve Griboksi's (far lane) losing effort of 5.292 - 95.36. Mueller's e.t. was good enough to earn lane choice over Cunningham for the final round.

"A" Field FINAL

Kirk Williams - '200 Proof' (near lane) 
vs Alan Bradshaw - 'Back Attack' (far lane)

With the clock nearing midnight it was time for the final rounds after a long day of racing. First up was the "A" final, with Kirk Williams (near lane), holding a decided advantage over Alan Bradshaw in the far lane. Williams was a tenth quicker than Bradshaw in qualifying and two tenths quicker during eliminations. Bradshaw did all he could with the "Back Attack", clocking a nearly perfect .0003 reaction time, to take an early lead over Williams' very good .034 r.t.

From there to the finish line it was a close race with the margin at the 660' mark being less than a car length, as Williams turned on the winlight with a great 3.923 - 188.76, and Bradshaw barely trailing with a 4.000 - 180.65 losing time. A great race to finish off the "A" field and give the fans more than their money's worth. Time to fire the next pair!

"B" Field FINAL

Tom Furches - 'Made in America' (near lane) 
vs Danny Smith - 'Snafu' (far lane)

With all the final rounds being heads-up (a Funny Car Chaos rule), Tom Furches (near lane) held a tenth of a second advantage over opponent Danny Smith (far lane) with a pair of 4.18 passes in eliminations, while Smith held a pair of 4.30's. But races are run on the track, not paper, and when the ambers flashed, Smith left first by half a tenth, then turned a solid 4.346 - 151.92 for the win, while Furches had to pedal early and could only manage a 5.263 at a much bigger speed of 167.04 for the loss. Smith's win in his first race of the season was a great way to start his 2022 campaign.

"C" Field FINAL

Clay Cunningham - 'Still Crazy' (near lane) 
vs Randy Meueller - 'Crazy Randy' (far lane)

This final race of the year was tailor-made for script writers, with "Crazy Randy" Mueller (far lane) paired up with the "Still Crazy" entry of Clay Cunningham (near lane). Unfortunately for the fans, it was all over on the starting line, as Mueller lit the red light, giving Cunningham the automatic win. Clay didn't take it easy though, laying down his best run of the weekend at 4.355 - 162.69 to finish on a high note. Mueller trailed with an early shutoff 5.171 - 103.28 clocking for the runner-up spot in the "C" field.

Winners Circle