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The latest update as of April 15, 2018

Coverage from the first UNITED NITRO FUNNY CARS event of the 2018 season

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This report and photos are provided courtesy of Bob Snyder, our correspondent and ace photographer in the Southwestern U.S.A. Check out more of his work on his Bob Snyder Drag Photos website.

The two-day event started with a single qualifying session on Friday evening. Just a coincidence that it happened to fall on Friday the 13th. With eleven cars on hand the fireworks under the night sky promised to be intense.

Mark Sanders 'Mr. Explosive' --- Tim Boychuk 'Happy Hour'

Mark Sanders (far lane) vs Tim Boychuk (near lane)

Leading off were Mark "Mr. Explosive" Sanders (far lane) against Canada's Tim Boychuk (near lane) in his "Happy Hour" entry. Breaking out of the gate first was Boychuk with an early shut-off 5.810 at only 224.10 mph to take the stripe ahead of a solid but slower 5.904 coupled with a 207.91 mph trap speed for Sanders. Mr. Explosive upped the ante on Saturday with a much better 5.844 - 240.21 to take the #4 spot on the final qualifying list.

Steven Densham 'Teachers Pet' --- Steven Densham 'Teachers Pet' (far lane) vs Wally Giavia 'G-Men' (near lane)

Next up was a bit of a "David vs Goliath" (or, if you prefer, Steven vs Wally) battle, with the would-be giant killer Wally Giavia in the "G-Men" Dodge Omni (near lane) against the very fast "Teachers Pet" Camaro of Steven Densham. It was no contest as Giavia's 7.162 -132.11 was train-lengthed by Densham's strong 5.851 at a relatively big speed of 241.67 mph. On Saturday, Giavia improved to a 6.317 - 170.23 but was still well behind the pack, finishing up last on the 10-car list.

Billy Morris 'Problem Child' (near lane) vs Bobby Cottrell 'Bardahl Special' (far lane)

This year's March Meet champion in the Bucky Austin owned and tuned "Bardahl Special" (far lane), blasted out low e.t. of the night with a very strong 5.698 at 247.34 mph to easily outdistance Billy Morris in his "Shakedown" Camaro which came up well short at 6.502 - 151.07. Morris sorted out his problems (somewhat) on Saturday with a decent 6.047 - 220.37 to take the #9 position in the qualifying order.

Jason Rupert 'Rolling Thunder' --- Jason Rupert 'Rolling Thunder' (far lane) vs Matt Bynum 'Nitro Nick' (near lane)

Multi-time series champion (NHRA Heritage and IHRA Nitro Jam) Jason Rupert in the "Littlefield & Rupert" "Rolling Thunder" Camaro put up the best speed of the night at 250.27 mph, coupled with a 5.845 e.t. to outrun Matt Bynum in the "Nitro Nick" Camaro, which cleared the traps at an early shutoff 5.970 - 209.92. Bynum did come back on Saturday afternoon with an excellent 5.825 - 249.49 pass to move ahead of Rupert on the qualifying sheet and take the #3 spot.

Bill Windham 'Shakedown' --- Bill Windham 'Shakedown' (near lane) vs Geoff Monise 'Quarter Pounder' (far lane)

The final pairing of the evening saw Bill Windham in the "Shakedown" Camaro run strong until the 1000 ft mark, before shutting off to a 6.172 - 183.84 to fall behind Geoff Monise in the Van Gundy & Clark "Quarter Pounder" Monza's solid 5.929 - 242.19 pass. It was a close matchup until Windham gave up the chase, letting Monise turn on the winlight.

After all the smoke cleared on Saturday afternoon, this was the final qualifying list.

1736Bobby CottrellWhittier CA69 Camaro5.698247.34247.34
2666Tim BoychukScottsdale AZ69 Camaro5.810224.10241.07
3707Matt BynumYpsilanti MI70 Camaro5.825249.49249.49
46006Mark SandersMaple Valley WA70 Mustang5.844240.21240.21
5766Jason RupertAnaheim CA69 Camaro5.845250.37250.37
6700Steven DenshamOceanside CA69 Camaro5.851241.67244.34
77787Geoff MoniseAnaheim CA77 Monza5.929242.19242.19
87111Bill WindhamEl Dorado Hills CA69 Camaro5.932231.56231.56
97000William MorrisLa Quinta CA69 Camaro6.047220.37220.37
10743Wally GiaviaKlamath Falls OR79 Omni6.317170.23170.23