Gallery: Beaver Springs Dragway 3rd Annual Mopar or No Car Nationals

Placing an asterisk next to a sporting event achievement denotes the occurrence, participant, or team met the requirement for an honor. However, the accomplishment fell short of the accolades bestowed on those who completed the task to its finale. For instance, there have been 23 official perfect games pitched in the Major Leagues, but there are also seven additional exceptions. One of those seven is former Expos pitcher, David Palmer.

As a high schooler enthralled with everything baseball, I witnessed (on TV) Palmer throw a perfect game in 1984, but the game was rain-shortened to five innings, and for his efforts, he earned an in-print asterisk and received zero credit for a “textbook” perfect game. For nearly every sporting event and life in general, 2020 will be accompanied by an asterisk. When Beaver Springs Dragway owners Mike and Mikey McCraken rescheduled the 3rd annual Mopar or No Car Nationals from early June to August 22nd, we figured the event would still be cancelled, or it would be an asterisk-worthy race plagued by a low car count.

While traveling to the drag strip at about 8:15 am, we wheeled around the last turn just before the track, and we were pleasantly surprised to see a line of open and enclosed trailers passing through the entry gates. The two 50-yard-long drive-up lanes were filled, and the line of racers and transporters backed up onto the main road leading to the track.

It appeared that the car count would be outstanding, and the weather predictions showed the chances of rain continuing to drop throughout the day. The expectation was a 95° day with high humidity. Still, because of the limited opportunities to race this year, most racers would have probably run even if the temperature had risen to 120°.

For this year’s Mopar or No Car Nationals, Butch Gummo and Surplus City, Fairfield Dodge, and the Beaver Springs Zoo Crew sponsored four quarter-mile racing classes and a car show. The quick-eight (Pro Mopar) class was once again anchored by Tim Rigglemen running his 1991 small-block Daytona into the 7.80s.

However, after the last qualifying round, he suffered a clutch failure, ending his day. The Mopars that did not qualify for the Pro Mopar class ran the HiPo Mopar eliminator. The class was open to any Mopar running 11.99 seconds or quicker. The stock or lightly modified cars ran in the Cool Mopar class running 12.00 seconds and slower.

With each passing year, the Modern Mopar class continues to grow. The eliminator included all 1992 and newer rides. This year, the class was packed with Chargers and Challengers of all different variations (R/Ts, 1320s, Redeyes, and Demons). For those who wanted to show rather than go, the Mopar car show had plenty of vintage Detroit iron and late-model LX-, LC-, LA-, and LD-platforms for the spectators to view.

Beaver Springs has a full schedule to finish out the 2020 season. Still, as with anything in our current lives, things can change quickly, so check the Beaver Springs website or its Facebook site before making plans to travel to the dragstrip. Nevertheless, please mark your calendar for June 2021 and the 4th annual Beaver Springs Dragway Mopar or No Car Nationals, and let’s all hope 2021 is an asterisk-free year.

Final Round Results
Pro Mopar                                           Dial     RT       ET       MPH
Winner –         Chris Shaffer               9.82     .030     9.852   133.37
R/U –               Michael Sudul            9.60     -.007    12.200 85.36

HiPo Mopar
Winner –         Ray Thurston IV         10.20   .033     10.208 127.95
R/U –               Steve Kaiser                 9.33     .043     9.346   143.18

Cool Mopar
Winner –         Jason Rote                  14.08   .083     14.238 88.62
R/U –               Doug Hamp                12.00   .214     12.080 110.38

Modern Mopar
Winner –         Rachael Kershner       15.85   .280     15.631 89.37
R/U –               Kevin Fahey                 12.73   -.007    12.640 109.86

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Chris Holley

Technical Contributor Chris has been a college professor for 24 years; the last 19 spent at Pennsylvania College of Technology in Williamsport, PA. During the day Chris instructs automotive HVAC and electrical/electronic classes, and high-performance classes, which include the usage of a chassis dyno, flow benches, and various machining equipment. Chris owns a '67 Dart, a '75 Dart, a '06 Charger, a '12 Cummins turbo diesel Ram, and he is a multi-time track champion (drag racing) with his '69 340 Dart, which he has owned 33 years.