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'ONE O'CLOCK THUNDER' ADDS NEW ELEMENT TO NITRO REVIVAL
100 Nitro Burners Expected to Participate in Inaugural 'Spontaneous Reverberation'

IRWINDALE, Calif. - Nitro Revival, which on Nov. 6-7 returns to the Irwindale Dragstrip, is no cacklefest. It's much bigger than that. It's an event of cackle-clismic proportion, a sensual smorgasbord of sight, sound and smell created of racing people, by racing people, for racing people.

Here a cackle, there a cackle; everywhere a cackle, cackle.

In its fourth iteration, Nitro Revival again will stretch the boundaries of the imagination by adding another element that redefines the cackle genre. Gearheads get ready to gasp in wonder at the coming out party for "One O'Clock Thunder."

On Sunday, Nov. 7, when the siren sounds sharply at 1 p.m., every nitro car on the grounds at Irwindale Dragstrip will participate in a group cackle sure to deliver an awesome, albeit unofficial, intergalactic record for "Spontaneous Reverberation."

In the '70s, there were 64 Funny Cars all a-cackle at Orange County International Raceway. Now, almost 50 years later and 40 miles away, Steve Gibbs and his Nitro Revivalists think there may be as many as 100 nitro burners participating in "One O'Clock Thunder." Top Fuel dragsters, nostalgia Funny Cars, fuel altereds, maybe even a fuel-burning margarita mixer or two.

It promises to be the ultimate in cacophonic competition and a fitting climax to two days of fuel and fun that offer up the opportunity for racers and fans to once again revel in the glory that was drag racing in the 1960s and '70s, an era in which the sport was pure and so was the nitro.

Although formal activities don't begin until Saturday, a social gathering for Friday's early arrivals will feature bench racing and food from long-time patron of the sport, In-N-Out Burgers.

Time trials, fun runs, burnouts, push starts and the "Hot Rod Hangout" street rod corral are Saturday morning attractions followed by cackle car push starts at 12 noon, nitro exhibitions and wheelstand exhibitions at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m., an All-Star autograph session at 2 p.m. and introduction of Nitro Revival honorees at 4 p.m. before "Nitro Overdose" brings the day to a conclusion with the annual "Line of Fire" cackle.

Sunday's program begins with burnouts, push starts and fun runs at 9 a.m., nitro exhibition runs and wheelstand exhibitions at 12:15 p.m. and eliminations for guest category racers including Gassers and A/FXers in advance of the debut of "One O'Clock Thunder." There'll be more special guest category eliminations thereafter, more exhibition runs at 3 p.m. and more burnouts and fun runs before the event concludes at 5 p.m.



Drag Racing’s Golden Age Back in Spotlight November 6-7 at Irwindale Drag Strip

IRWINDALE, Calif. – Because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ramifications thereof, it’s been almost two years since drag racing fans last enjoyed the simultaneous cackle of upwards of 50 flame-belching, nitromethane-burning vintage race cars that has become one of the cornerstones of Nitro Revival, the nostalgic celebration of drag racing’s golden age created and nurtured by former NHRA Competition Director Steve Gibbs.

While the long wait is not quite over, anticipation is already building for the Nov. 6-7 production of Nitro Revival 2021 presented at Irwindale Drag Strip on the grounds of the Irwindale Speedway complex.

“We opted for a fall date simply because we thought that gave us the best chance of avoiding the uncertainty of a year ago,” Gibbs said. “We didn’t want to put ourselves back in the situation of not knowing from week-to-week if we are going to be allowed to move forward. Hopefully, we will have turned the corner with regard to COVID-19, but I think it will be mid-year before we see a return to some degree of normality.”

The fourth edition of Nitro Revival promises to be the biggest yet with more than 70 nitro-burners already committed to the two-day event that also will recognize a host of San Gabriel Valley racing pioneers including Ron Rivero, Phil Lukens, Mike Hoag and Sherm Gunn, Jack and Will Tice, Tom Tucker and the Snyder family, whose burger chain will host the In-N-Out Cookout, a Friday night social gathering for early arrivals.

“Nitro Revival brings back the sights and sounds of the early days of hot rodding,” Gibbs enthused, “and it lets fans experience a drag racing museum come to life, not only through the vehicles themselves, but through the presence of many of those who built, maintained and drove those cars at tracks like the original Irwindale Raceway and two San Gabriel Drag Strips.”

For some, the assemblage of nitro powered race cars, such as “Pure Hell,” the name of the legendary fuel altered owned by Rich Guasco, the Fitzgerald Family “Pure Heaven,” Ron Hope's “Rat Trap,” and Randy Bradfords's Fiat, will rekindle an image of the golden era of drag racing. Throw in the Hough family’s “Nanook,” the “Winged Express” made famous by the late Willie Borsch and Troy Glenn’s “Over the Hill Gang” entry, and you might believe you’re back in the ‘60s.

Among the other iconic vehicles that will cackle for the crowd are Ross Howard’s Custom Body Enterprises Dodge with former U.S. Nationals champion Marvin Graham in the harnesses, John Peters’ fabulous twin-engine “Freight Train,” Don Garlits’ “Swamp Rat 3,” restored by Sonny Messner, Tony Nancy’s “Sizzler” driven for car owner John Neas by “Handgrenade Harry” Hibler, Chris “the Greek” Karamesines’ “ChiZler” owned by Kol Johnson, the Lynn Rose-owned Kuhl and Olson Top Fuel dragster with Bill Tidwell at the wheel, Mike Elsberry’s recreation of “Flamin’ Frank” Pedregon’s AA/Fuel Coupe and “Gentleman Joe” Schubeck’s self-titled dragster.

NITRO REVIVAL is as much about socializing as it is about racing. There will be ample opportunity for fans and racers to interact and trade stories all weekend at the event Hospitality Center, brought to you once again by The Jim McLennan Drag Racing Foundation. In addition, the legendary 'Road Kings' Car Club will be hosting the 'Hot Rod Hangout'…enter your Pre '73 classic car and be a part of the show.

The lineup of special guests includes Top Fuel standouts “The Unsinkable” Kelly Brown, Gary Beck, “King Richard” Tharp, “TV Tommy” Ivo, and Mike Salinas, Funny Car stars Don “the Snake” Prudhomme, Ed “the Ace” McCulloch, Tom Prock, “Fast Jack” Beckman and Al Segrini. Others expected to attend include wheelstanding great “Wild Bill” Shrewsberry, racing icons Ed Iskenderian, Linda Vaughn, Ed Pink, Herman Petersen, Roland Leong, Dave “Big Mac” McClelland and his “Tuna Tank,” “Grandaddy Joe” Smith, Bones Balogh, and “Waterbed Fred” Miller plus Paula Murphy, Shirley Shahan, Mendy Fry, Bob Muravez, Jack Jones, Butch “the California Flash” Leal, Bob Noice, Larry Sutton and Jimmy Scott. More at 2021 ENTRIES

Three Day Event Schedule

 

Champion Hospitality Tent sponsored by:
Jim McLennan Foundation & Champion Speed Shop


Event Sponsor

 

Book your rooms now at our Host Hotel

Courtyard by Marriott Pasadena/Monrovia

It is very convenient…maybe 3 or 4 miles from the Irwindale track. The link above will take you to our special Nitro Revial rate reservation form.

700 West Huntington Drive
Monrovia, CA 91016
626-357-5211

Start Date: Thursday, November 4, 2021
End Date: Monday, November 8, 2021
Last Day to Book: Friday, October 15, 2021

We have been given a rate of $135 a night, which is quite a bit lower
than their “special” track rates on those dates.

There are some very good restaurants nearby. Claim Jumper is walking distance. Others include; Red Lobster, The Derby, Olive Garden, Souplantation, Capital Seafood, Tokyo Wako…and lots of fast food places.

The parking lot is good sized, but we would like you to bring your rigs directly to the track if possible. Would like to get as many Cackle cars in on Friday as
possible. Gonna have the In-N-Out Cookout unit at the track Friday evening.

 

 

Order now, these will be collectors items! Small thru 6X available, shipping included.

GET YOURS NOW: THE EVENT THAT NEVER WAS

 

NR Sunset Hat - Nitro Revival is all about cool...and this new lid is it! Embroidered, adjustable in Black only. GET YOURS NOW

 

 

2019 IRWINDALE EVENT COVERAGE

2019 NR 3 ENTRIES

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2018 LAGUNA SECA COVERAGE

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2017 BARONA COVERAGE

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Steve & Cindy Gibbs


Don Ewald


Ron Johnson

Connie Johnson Braun
This is the original Nitro Revival Team from 2017. It started with some thoughts thrown out by Steve to Ron. Long story short, Don, Cindy and Connie joined the fold and yes, we could do this. But, where and when? Ron came up with the only option, Barona Raceway. And it was Ron who nailed down the deal for the track. Without Steve's vision and experience and Ron's idea for the venue, Nitro Revival would not have happened. We've had a lot of help along the way, not to mention all the legends of the sport who have been there for us. Deepest thanks to all.

 


VIDEO TRIBUTE TO RON JOHSNON

 

Copyright Steve Gibbs Productions 2021