READY, SET…: A Kenworth dragster puts the pedal to the metal. A wide variety of trucks took to the drag strip in anger.
YOUNG FAN: Gord Cooper, driver of the Smokin’ Gun signs an autograph for a young fan at the track.
PACKED HOUSE: A huge crowd was on-hand to soak in the sunshine and watch the big rigs tear up the strip.
GRAND BEND, Ont. – This year’s Earl Hardy’s Big Rig Nationals were held at the Grand Bend Motorplex Sept. 11 and featured a wide variety of racey big rigs.
This year’s champion was Lance Riley who drove his 2003 Peterbilt to the checkered flag. He completed the quarter-mile strip in 22.252 seconds (64.97 mph) with a reaction time of just .330 seconds.
The runner-up award went to Rob Bennett, whose 2000 Kenworth completed the quarter-mile in 20.276 seconds (70.03 mph) with a reaction time of 1.093.
While Bennett’s truck was faster, the results are based on a truck’s dial-in time (it’s projected pace) as well as the driver’s reaction time.
“This helps level the playing field between the haves and the have-nots,” says Ron Biekx, general manager of Grand Bend Motorplex.
Fans were also treated to performances by the Smokin’ Gun, one of North America’s fastest diesel-powered big rigs, owned and operated by Calgary, Alta.’s Gord Cooper. A new sponsorship deal with Shell Canada enabled Cooper to race in Eastern Canada for the first time in the truck’s history.
Cooper said the crowd was phenomenal and the racing was fantastic and he already looks forward to returning in the future.
The Big Rig Nationals were accompanied by a Show’n’Shine.
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