Drag racing in the desert

Don Hodges/submitted photo  Pat McGinnis (Nelson, BC) and Wade Lahaise (Ladysmith, BC) get the green light at Richter Pass Motorplex in Osoyoos, BC. These two were part of the Nostalgia Gasser special event.

Dan Hodges/submitted photo
Pat McGinnis (Nelson, BC) and Wade Lahaise (Ladysmith, BC) get the green light at Richter Pass Motorplex in Osoyoos, BC. These two were part of the Nostalgia Gasser special event.

OSOYOOS, BC – Last weekend brought with it (finally!) weather that suits the slogan “Osoyoos, BC – Canada’s pocket desert.” Mother Nature let up with her rain storms, and the drag racers didn’t waste one second of the gorgeous weather.

Richter Pass Motorplex was packed to its boundaries with racers and fans alike. Wine Country Racing Association (WCRA) played host to nearly 80 drag racers and over 500 fans at the second event of their spring racing segment.

Pat McInnis from Nelson, BC organized a special events class, called Nostalgia Gassers, and the good-looking, high-wheeling group was added to the already bursting program.These drag cars styled after the 1960’s era gasser cars gave the youngsters a glimpse of drag racing’s roots, and took some of the more seasoned fans back to days-gone-by.

WCRA had a second special treat last weekend. Rookie announcer 13 year-old Lukas Doggett, from Osoyoos, picked up the mic and wowed the fans. This lad has attended almost every race that WCRA has put on, since he was 3 years old. And, let me be the first to tell you that it shows. Doggett’s knowledge of the sport and of the cars made his time behind the mic really stellar.

Here’s a peek at who came out on top:

Sportsman Bracket

Osoyoos’ Glen Taylor cruised his 1990 Mustang to victory over Joel Medeiros’ (Surrey, BC) 1967 Chevrolet Nova.

Pro Bracket

The Pro Bracket was owned by the gentlemen from Enderby, BC this weekend. Jason Lutz, with his 1966 Ford Fairlane, took the victory over Rob Roell and his 1969 Plymouth Valient.

Super Pro

Oliver, BC’s team known as DDK, with its three alternating drivers David Sabyan, Don Cachola and Ken Brown took the trophy for Super Pro in their 1978 Monte Carlo. Opponent Ron Peterson from Oroville, WA had his 1971 El Camino running great for driver Pete Shaw. Shaw is from Penticton, BC.

Bike/Sled

Dan Ofunkany might have zipped away with the bike/sled trophy with his 1999 Arctic Cat snowmobile, but rumours were flying that he’d spend Sunday night on the couch, beating Brenda Ofunkany and her 2005 Harley Davidson sportster. West Kelowna, BC’s husband/wife drag racing duo both had huge smiles as they left Richter Pass Motorplex.

Reaction Time

Two reaction time trophies were handed out at the end of the day, Sunday. Penticton’s Pete Shaw (1971 El Camino) cut a nice .504 starting light.

Oliver’s Clint Peterman (1979 Chevrolet Camaro) out-did the entire bunch with a perfect .500 light. Peterman is one of the hard working volunteers that did double time this past weekend, working for both the Cactus Jalopies car club, as well as WCRA. Great job!

WCRA has one more race this spring, racing on Father’s Day, June 18. Grab Dad (and Mom too) and enjoy a day at the track. Gates open at 9 a.m. Racing starts around 11 a.m. Elimination round begins at 1 p.m. Concessions are available on site.

Visit www.winecountryracing.ca for more information

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