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The latest update as of January 21, 2018

Happy New Year! - 20th Anniversary Edition

As the year goes on we'll dig through the Northern Thunder archives and post a few tidbits of "What's New" rants and other bits from the early days of this website. It's been a long ride and I've mellowed quite a bit over the years, but it will be interesting, and at times embarassing, to look back at the beginning of the website. Stay tuned!

For now, you can just click on the January 27th 1998 edition of "What's New" to see what we were reporting about at that time. Please note that none of the links on that page are currently working and you'll have to hit the back button to return to this page.

NHRA season kicks off in less than two weeks

Yes, it's almost that time again, and we'll be watching with interest to see who shows up at Phoenix in preparation for the season-opening Winternationals. A quick check of the NHRA website this morning revealed that there are still ZERO official entries in Top Fuel and just FOUR in Funny Car. The best entry numbers in the blown/injected classes were Top Alcohol Funny with 11 cars, and Pro Stock with 10 contestants.

Obviously these numbers will swell considerably before the gates open at Pomona on February 6th, but it is more than a little odd that there are so few cars/drivers entered this close to the event date. A quick look at the two following events shows a similar entry shortage in the pro and semi-pro classes. The only exception is the first Pro Mod race of the season at Gainesville, which is fully subscribed with the maximum 28 entries.

An even stranger development is the very sudden announcement that the Old Bridge Township dragstrip at Englishtown is shutting down it's drag racing programs after more than 50 years in the straight-line business. There has to be more, a lot more, to this story than the media releases by the track owners, and the response from NHRA. Let's wait and see how it all turns out. At this point it appears to be a done deal, but we've seen so many times over the years how things have turned around very quickly in the fastest moving sport on earth. As always, stay tuned for new developments over the coming weeks. The epitaphs for Raceway Park may be just a tad premature.

LATE Update

Entries for the NHRA Winternationals are literally "flooding" in with Top Fuel "leading" the way with TWO cars entered. That's a bazillion percent more than the ZERO entries that have been showing on NHRA.com for the past two weeks. If this is the sign of a developing trend, we might even see a full 16-car field by the time eliminations start on February 11th.