Hot VW's - January 2007 - CSCDRA's Volksbash @ Indy
This 2nd annual 1/4-mile race/car show event, hosted by Central States Compact Drag Racing Association, drew-in many VW enthusiasts to visit the legendary drag strip, now called O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis
Volksbash @ Indy
In 2005, when we covered the 1st Annual CSCDRA Volksbash event at IRP (Indianapolis Raceway Park), in Indiana, even though its car count was rather small in numbers, we had a feeling it would grow, mainly because of IRP's historic relevance, and legendary status, thanks to the long-running NHRA U.S. Nationals. Some may say, "it's only a VW event," but being at INDY, well, you just have to be there in person, to not only see the mega-facility, but better yet, race on the world renown 1/4-mile dragstrip!
After talking with Eric Stiner, event promoter and president of CDCDRA (Central States Compact Drag Racing Association), shortly after his first race at Indy, we suggested he contact Huntington Beach, California's Jack Sacchette, who's been organizing the CB Performance Pro Stock Nationals, and that 2006 could work out with two races at one awesome facility. With help from Volksbash Radio's live internet Tuesday night shows, as well as support from vwracingnews.com, the word got out about Volksbash joining forces with the CB Performance Pro Stock Nationals.
On these two pages, we'll focus on what went on at the recenly renamed O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis, featuring the car sow, and 1/4-mile drag racing, plus a bonus look at attempts by Sam Marcos, California's VW Paradise (the Lauffer family and crew) turbo dragster, driven by Kris Lauffer, trying to set a "new world e.t/mph record at Indy." For the CB Performance Pro Stock Nationals coverage, simply turn the page.
With the show on Saturday, and forecast for rain, many car show owners decided to stay home, but they missed out as only a five-minute, off-and-on, wanna-be drizzle took place way late in the afternoon. By that time, the judging was over, and show awards were already being handed out. For those who did make the trip in to Indy, either as a spectator or participant, everyone got to thouroughly check out all the show entries and race cars early on, mainly because of the race delay due to morning track re-prep. Oakville, Ontario, Canada's Greg Strogren came to race at Indy and also wanted his freshly done, turbocharged '56 Oval street Looker entered in the car show. He made a few passes throughout the day, his best being 12/28 @ 105.22 mph, and when it came for car show awards, he won Best of Show! Other Best of's include Best Paint to Nick Schiro's '63 Bug from Channahon, Illinois, while Best Engine was awarded to Ron Domeck's wildy painted '73 Thing based in Louisville, Kentucky. See the results box for all class winners.
On the track, at 1:15 pm, Kris Lauffer, made his first attempt at wowing the crowd with the VW Paradise dragster, only to discover turbo boost problems after the burnout and aborted the run. Then at 2:15, Scott Lauffer and crew brought-up Kris again, and the engine would not boost-up again, so they went back to the pits to trouble-shoot the gremlin(s). Then another try at 4:50 pm, and Kris got the attention of VW, truck, and import watchers, as he laid down an 800-foot burnout, backed-up to the starting line, launched hard on the green, and rac a blistering 6.88 E.t. at 199.02! Close to the 6.60 e.t. and 203.98 mph records, but the Paradise crew had to step-it-up a bit more to run record numbers, so they brainstormed at their pit camp. Out on the strip again, it was 7:20. Kris put down another impressive burnout, encountered a slight problem at the starting line, Scott made some quick adjustments, then it was on - Lauffer made a strong pass, but the dragster got sideways, and he shut it down so it would not kiss the gaurdwall. Their last attempt was at 8:20, and Kris made a nice run, but did not break the existing Hot VWs Magazine A/D e.t. and mph records, which are currenly both held by Team VW Paradise.
Meanwhile, the three bracket classes, Super Pro (11.90 & quicker), Pro (11.91-15.00) and Super Street (15.01-18.19), all ran time trials, as drivers dialed-in their rides for the eliminations. In the Super Street final, London, Kentucky's Darrel Kemp ('74 Super Beetle) dialed-in 17.33, ran 17.37/72.81 and won, as Collinsville, Illinois' Chuck Wescoat (in a Bug) dialed-in 16.79 and "broke out" with a too-quick 16.75/70.45. Pro's final pair consisted of two Illinois competitors, Rob Rideout in his '56 Oval from Evansville, and Marty Salerno driving the MAS Motorsports (Marty, along with Lance McDonald) '73 Fastback homed in Carol Stream. They both had identical dial-ins of 12.78, and when the tree went from yellow to green, Marty caught the "big red eye" (-.012 RT). Rob cut an .047 RT, and got the automatic win light as he ran 12.82/102.81, and Marty turned-in a 13.83/76.79 because he saw the win light in the other lane and knew what he did. In the Super Pro final, another red light start (-.063), this time by Gilman City, Missouri's Dennis Burrows ('68 Bug), who handed the win to London, Kentucky's Clayton Hollingsworth driving his "mountain buggy with slicks" and clicking off an 11.31/120.13 on 11.15 dial-in, with .047 RT, compared to Dennis' 11.26 on 11.24 DI, @ 116.39.
Overall, even though the day was very long and bracket (and Pro Stock) finals weren't until 9:15, there was plenty of good racing, the car show sparkled, and participants and spectators had a great time. According to event promoter Eric Stiner, the Truck & Import Show staff sold tickets to 25,000 spectators, and relayed to Eric that they figured at least 10% of that number were there for the VWs. Eric also informed us that 80 race cars, and 50 show cars made it to his 2nd Annual CSCDRA Volksbash. But most of all, Eric told us, "First off, I would like to thank all those who came out from great distances to Indiana for this event; we had racers from Canada, down to Texas, and from Maryland over to California (some by plane). A big thank you to VW Paradise, crew, and family, for coming to Indy and impressing everyone with their major horsepowered turbo dragster; maybe next year they can break their own records, back at Indy of course. And let's not forget my wife, Jaime, for her understanding of my obsession, and putting up with me, as well as my family for helping out at all my events. Also, many thanks go out to the Circle City VW Club for their assistance at O-Reilly that crazy day, and to Daryl Hope (CSCDRA Race Director) and family for always being there. Hot VWs Magazine is the first thing that started my VW obession years ago and I am grateful; I also thank R.K. Smith for covering our Volksbash show/race in person, not to mention Jeff Monks (Monks Media) for live audio Volksbash Radio coverage that Saturday at Indy, and VRN's Stephen Nats. Additionally, I would like to thank Jack Sacchette, Rick Tomlinson and his company CB Performance, Pat Downs, and others for letting us host their Pro Stock Nationals. I'd also like to thank David Figg of Family Events, and lastly O'Reilly Raceway Part at Indianapolis for allowing us to have our event there."
Volksbash Indy in 2007! You bet, so plan to be there.