The Nostalgia Gassers Racing Association would like to wish all our fans and sponsors a
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On behalf of the Nostalgia Gassers Racing Association, I would like to personally thank all the tracks owners and promoters for including our racing group in your events for the 2012 season and for your confidence in our racing association during it’s inaugural season.
We have enjoyed being a part of your events this past season and are looking forward to working with each of you for the 2013 season.
We would also like to thank all the fans that came out and supported the tracks and events where we raced. Without you, the fans, nostalgia racing events would not exist.
Because of the faith the promoters / owners put in our group and support of all the fans, you have helped us to become one of the premier Nostalgia Racing Associations.
Thank you for your continued support.
Nostalgia Gassers Racing Association.
At 9 am Friday Aug 9th Gramps, Mitchell & the Stortz boys climbed into “Big Blue” which had Barney on in tow. This was just group of the MFRA that was headed to Eddyville, Iowa to be part of the show for the Fuel Altered Nationals that was being held at Eddyville Raceway Park. Ken Kapper was sent a head to scout out parking spaces and get the lay of the land before the rest of the group arrives.
The Nostalgia Gassers were not schedules to make any passes on Friday so we had the whole day to make the 274 miles to the track from the mail MFRA race shop located in Murphy Flats, Mo. Stopped in Troy, Mo for breakfast. Then continues north on Hwy 61,
When we arrived in Mt. Pleasant we stopped and took a tour of Midwest Old Settlers and Threshers Park. They were getting ready for a reunion next weekend. The park is the home of a museum of stationary steam engines, along with steam powered farm equipment. Spent a couple of hours there and then continued on our trip to Eddyville.
Checked into the Super 8 in Oskaloosa, IA which is about 10 miles north of the track in Eddyville. Grabbed a bite to eat at Joe’s across the street then headed to the track.
Kenny met us at the gate and lead us down to our parking space. Did I mention that when we were passing a motor home pulling a trailer the driver gave us an obscene gesture? Not sure what that was about. Kenny got us parked. Unloaded Barney so the people that were there for the Test & Tune and the 1st qualifying round of the Fuel Alterds. By the time we got there Brian & June Huffmann. Hung around the track to 10 pm or so then headed to the motel for a little refreshment and sleep.
Arrived back to the track a little after 10 am on Saturday, Sometime in the middle of the night the Crude Crew appeared on the scene, the renegade section of the MFRA. Around noon a bunch of Rats from Kansas showed up and had the Rat Now Austin & the Trouble Truck Thanes panel truck. About the sametime Outta Control Racing showed up with 2 of their cars, Hairy Hauler & Honkin’ Willys. The field in now complete with all 8 cars on the grounds.
The Fueled Altereds made their 2nd qualifying run at 3 pm with the Nostalgia Gassers warming up the crowd before hand. The guys paired themselves up and off to staging they went. Two by two they pulled through the water box and proceeded to warm the slicks, then off to staging. Pre Stage, Stage, Yellow light drop and on goes the Green. At that point 2 gassers explode off the starting line trying to beat the other to the finish line. This is old school stuff 1st one there wins, no break outs or any of that new style of racing stuff.
Between rounds the guys were out by their cars signing hero cards, letting the kids sit in their cars, no size or age limit on the kids either I saw some pretty old kids in those cars. Heck Barney was even giving rides. Imagine getting to ride in a real gasser, how cool is that?
This went on all afternoon and into the evening. Each time just before the Fuel Altereds ran the Nostalgia Gassers made their passes, with the crowd just loving it.
The Gassers and the Altereds finished their passes just before a light shower set it, you talk about timing, I think there were may 2 or 3 more classes that hadn’t made their final round.
Who would have thought that such a neat drag strip existed in the middle of a corn field in Iowa. Eddyville Raceway Park is on of the nicest facilities I have been to and I saw some of the best racing I have seen all year. Looking forward to next year.
5 Nostalgia Gassers cars were on display
The Honkin Willys
The Airoso Brothers Willys
The Hairy Hauler Willys Pick-up
The Blaseys “Little Engine That Could” ’40 Chevy
Bill & Cathy Wamboldts ’55 Chevy “Nuts and Bolts”
We all arrived at around 8 am. Once the cars were unloaded we headed over to the parking spots. The drive over included a “Pass” through the Rockenbach Chevrolet thru-way between the Showroom and Service Department. There were a few that reved up their engines and shook the windows in the dealership. It was a great way to let everyone know that the Nostalgia Gassers were there! We had prime front row parking.
We passed out a lot of Hero cards, let people sit in the cars to take pictures, and talked to the crowd. There were over 150 cars, some very high quality show cars and race cars.
They had raffle prizes every hour. Everyone received a goodie bag and a free T-shirt. Also included was a ticket for a free lunch.
Who said there is no such thing as a free lunch?
Mark Hagen and his staff really know how to put on a car show. The entry was FREE. Spectators were FREE and Lunch was FREE.
Did I mention that Mark and his staff really know how to put on a show?
For those of you who don’t know who Mark Hagen is. He is the parts manager at Rockenbach Chevy. He also drove my Red Honkin Willys at the Meltdown drags.
Rockenbach Chevrolet sponsored the Nostalgia Gassers hero cards and were their sponsor for the Meltdown Drags.
The entire staff at Rockenbach Chevrolet and Crate Engine Depot are a first class act!
We all had a great time including a mini cackle fest during the show.
I even saw Old Nuts and Bolts Wamboldt smile!
The show ended with a grand prize raffle drawing of a set of custom pin-striped AC Delco cabinets. Lucky Bill and Cathy Wamboldt from the Nostalgia Gassers Racing Association were the winners!
Again,I think I saw Bill smile!
Thanks again to everyone who attended and to Mark and the entire Rockenbach staff.
The irony of calling this event “The Meltdown Drags” is apparent from the moment you enter the raceway. At the end of the strip, which appears to be on a significant downhill slope, you can see great plums of steam rising from a nuclear power plant cooling tower. The 100 plus degree temps were just another ironic bonus.
The Nostalgia Gassers were pitted tailgate to tailgate with the Great Lakes Gassers on the nicest piece of grass in the area. The fact that it was directly behind the staging lanes was an additional perk.
What made this an especially memorable and nostalgic experience was what I called the Sock Hop affect. At first the two groups were cordial but somewhat distant. When the call came for our first run, everyone started pairing up with people from their own group. Wild eyed and red faced I started running around yelling “No, no, no, that’s not how a Shoot Out works folks”. Anyway, after a bit of cajoling and a few thinly veiled threats, people agreed to run the opponent they were paired with and it worked out pretty well.
Before you know it they were calling us out for our second shot. By this time drivers were getting a little more comfortable with this setup and started looking for more suitably matched cars. You can probably see where this is headed. By the end of the event these guys were out for blood, figuratively speaking, and it was not uncommon to hear not so genteel utterings such as “Your mine Johnny Rotten” and “You’re history Normann”. Ah, the good old days were back.
By Sunday afternoon we were starting to act like one big, dysfunctional group with promises of getting even next year and talk about how we could make the experience even more memorable for the racers, fans and promoters. At the end of the day we gathered for a group photo complete with banners, handshakes and smiles. If the smile on the faces of the Great Lakes group seems a bit strained it’s because the traveling trophy was going home with us.
Another successful event under our collective belt, thanks Ron for getting this one booked.
While reflecting on the Meltdown I keep thinking of three F’s; Freedom, Friends & Fun. Grown men and women playing with big, loud, shiny, overpowered, dangerous, fossil fuel guzzling, crowd pleasing works of art which allow us to relive our youth and spotlight a unique portion of our heritage. Only in America can we share the three F’s so brazenly and frequently and often take it all for granted.