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June 16/18, 2011 - Bowling Green, KY: Keeping with the trend of incredibly weird weather this year, the NHRR missed the flooding of last year but got several of the brutal storms of 2011. The storms on Friday and Saturday put racing on a temporary hold. By late Saturday evening, 11 racers were crowned and celebrating with family and crews in the winners circle.

Due to the wicked, erratic weather the event schedule went off the tracks big time. Qualifying was cut short in all classes (fuel got one session), expecting another storm the Cacklefest was held on Saturday afternoon rather than closing the show.

By all accounts it was not the best of Cacklefest's but Steve Gibbs, Alan Miller, Gwen McWilliams et al made the best of a bad situation.

Nonetheless, like all Cacklefest's, this one is better seen and just talked about so without further ado - here is Bowling Green 2011 starting from the beginning. Relying basically on one photographer for the whole event there are not the normal abundant number of photos Cacklefest.com in known for.

PS. You can bet the farm that the Cacklefest at the CHRR in October will not disappoint a soul.


With the new schedule this year Honorees Night was Thursday instead of the traditional Friday.Here are a few shots from the event held at the Holiday Inn University Plaza & Sloan Convention Center, the Reunion host hotel.


Before the event some of the usual suspects gathered in the lounge. LtoR: Tom Raley, Jerry Baltes, Ray Godman and Jim Walther.


Fresh off her trip to Maui, Gwen McWilliams with Jerry.


Jerry and Dave Hales


Jerry, Bob and Sharon Muravez and Pat Baltes.


Jerry, Art Marshall, Brian Beattie and Pat.


"Jungle Pam" Hardy and Pat




The Honorees



The evening got off the ground with the traditional presentations of the Kentucky Colonel Awards. The first two went to Greg Sharp and Tony Thacker from the NHRA Motorsports Museum.


Others were Elaine Daniels, Steve Gibbs and Dave MacClelland.


The Justice Brothers Reunion Spotlight honors went to the "Cluster Busters" hot rod club of Indianapolis.


This is an auction item that was not auctioned. Its the Pomona 50th sign with the K.S. Pittman car. The S&S racing team guys got together when they saw it and decided they wanted it.....badly. K.S. was an S&S team member.
So it was sold to them for $12000 without being opened for bids. Picture is Dave Hales, Fred Bear and Gene Altzier.




2011 NHRR Honorees were Dave Boertman, Jack Doyle, Jim Oddy, Bill Pryor, Jim Naramore, Tom Raley and Grand Marshal Bruce Larson. The MC was, as always, the personable Dave McClelland.


Dave Boertman is a household word in the ranks of Sportsman drag racing.


Up first was Jack Doyle who has been actively involved in hot rodding and drag racing in New England since the early 1950s.



Now a legend in the Pro Mod category Jim Oddy has dominated just about every way possible on the drag strip.


Jim Naramore and Bill Pryor were three-time NHRA Division 3 Top Fuel champions in 1975,’76 and ’79 regularly giving fits to drivers such as Dick LaHaie and Shirley Muldowney.


Tom Raley was one of the most skillful and versatile drivers in drag racing history.



Grand Marshal Bruce Larson first gained national prominence in 1965 when he won the NHRA Winternationals, Springnationals and U.S. Nationals driving a Ford Cobra. In 1966 while working at Pennsylvania’s Sutliff Chevrolet he built his first match race Funny Car, an injected ’66 Chevelle. It was the first of his familiar red, white and blue Chevys. In 1969 he won the prestigious Super Stock Nationals in York, Pa. driving a Camaro Funny Car. In 1985 Larson teamed with Joe Amato and raced with his first major sponsor. He won his first NHRA national event in Funny Car at the Cajun Nationals. In 1989 he led the points from beginning to end to become NHRA Funny Car World Champion. From 1992 to 1995 he drove Don Garlits Top Fuel cars. Now retired, Larson enjoys restoring race cars, and has even restored his first ’32 Ford hot rod.

For more on their careers visit: 2011 NHRR Honorees




Another tradition are fire-ups outside the Convention Center. This year it was Wayne Patrick in his John Wiebe car.






The other car was Benny Osborn's with his grandson Ben in the seat. The car is owned by a guy named John Nease of Tulsa.








Ben and Bennie Osborn with a fan.



Tony (Bennie's son), Bennie and Ben


Bennie with Ruth and Bobby Langley




Backing up, Thursday at the track found the cacklecar folks trying to keep cool.


One of the debut cars this year was Tom Barnhill's "Brougher & Reese" AA/FD (aka Swamp Duck).



Geri Tarvin observed as "Terrible Tom" Barnhill mixed some 80% for...


a cooling drink.



After a few swigs TT deemed it OK and they put the rest in the car for a fire-up with Tom Reese (original driver) in the seat.


Always the prankster, Barnhill flanked by Glen Cupit and Dave Maset show off the special cowl he had painted up for Steve Gibbs.


As usual, Gibbs rolled with it.


Jim Rodarmel in Norb Locke's "Grandpas Toy".


Bill Klein from Manassas, Virginia is crew chief and transportation coordinator for the "Lynwood Welding Special". Car owner/driver Bob Bilbow has kept the car, built by his father Pat Bilbow in 1961, in perfect original condition for the cacklefests.


Al Bergler's camp of beautiful iron.





Gibbs getting his smiles in while he could.


Al Bergler and Ken Hirata.



NHRR regular Norb Locke's set-up that gets bigger every year.


Hundley & Boggs AA/FD was on hand for its first NHRR.




Nice gasser...



Our #1 photog Paul Hutchins at work.


Rocky Pirrone's slick "Soul Survivor" fuel coupe.



Wayne Patrick static fired his John Wiebe car.




Bud DeBoer in proper attire, Jerry and Pat Baltes, George Crittenden and former NHRA World Points Champion and CHRR Honoree Jess Van Deventer from San Diego.


Fox & Hulls AA/FD out of Chicago.



The Baltes pit featured this cool artwork by Bob McCoy.



Jim & Alison Lee "Great Expectations" owned by Brain Beattie, restored by Bruce Dyda.


Bennie Osborn warming up with grandson Ben in the seat.



The Hilton family has been a NHRR staple since day one. This year they brought back their Hombre AA/FA.


Another debut car was this entry from Tom Hunt. No clue on its history.



The classic AA/GS car of Prock & Howell.


"Miscalculation" is the Hollish Brothers car that ran at the 1959 NHRA Nationals in Detroit. Restored by Todd Schmidt of Ypslanti, Michigan. The car was displayed in the lobby at the host hotel this year.


Al Bergler's newest restoration is the Chuck Kurzawa driven Bob Farmer's (Bob's Drag Chutes) car. Having never seen a shot of Bob's cars with a tail piece I can't place the years it ran.





No clue but it sure looks like the real deal to me.


Standard 1320 Group hang out.



Brain Beattie and Traci Hrudka who spearheads the Project 1320 "Pioneers of the Quarter Mile" that is producing video history of drag racing pioneers.


Back again was the Paul Candies owned Wale & Candies recreation. One of the last cars Pat Foster did.



Spider Razon and Dale Funk getting the low-down on the car from Paul.




The Croshier-Baltes-Lavato pit.


Unfortunately, Glenn Cupit from Louisiana tossed a rod in the brand new engine in his "Cupit & Cunningham" cacklefest car when he started it for the first time on Tuesday in preparing for Bowling Green. But being the hard core he is, the whole rig came anyway.




Garlits, seen here with gasser legend "Ohio George" Montgomery, had his travling store in the pits.




Brian Beattie and Dave Maset


Dragmaster Dart


Brian Perrenot was back for his third NHRR in the restored Perrenot Family "The Gizzle Hopper" Lincoln powered AA/C.




Thursday and Friday offered chances to do practice push starts.


Art Marshall in the Lee car going up for a test push start.






"Cox & Amos" AA/FD



"Fox & Hulls" car owner Don Fox from Chicago had his son Ken Fox in the car for a practice push start.


Bob's Drag Chute - no ID on driver.


Lyndwood Welding Special with Bill Klein in the seat.


Hundley & Boggs




For reasons cited earlier the Cacklefest rolled out to a sparse fan base on Saturday afternoon. It was deemed that there would be no parade, no push starts and cars such as gassers would be included. Three things that won't happen at the CHRR.


The cars came out in no particular order and lined up ass-end to the guardwall.



 Cox and Amos got set with



The Lyndwood Welding Spec. guys.


Jerry Baltes wheeled his fueler to its spot then put photographer/writer Vic Cooke in the seat for his first cackle.


Hamilton and Cooke


Kevin Cooke with his brother.



Barnes & Gladstone "Michigander" AA/FD owned by Bud Barnes and Bob Gladstone. Original and Cacklefest Driver: Bud Barnes.


Brian Beattie, Art Marshall and crew ready to fire.


Ben Osborn came out suited up so he had a good wait in the heat.



Don Fox's grand daughter Emma was in "Fox & Hulls" for the cacklefest.
Don's son Ken Fox was in the car for the practice push start and he would have been it for a push start cacklefest, but with the static start, they decided to put Emma in the car.


Rocky Pirrone in his "Soul Survivor" fuel coupe.






Steve Gibbs herding cats with George Schriber, Bruce Larson and Dave McClelland.


Bill Klein





The Bronson Special built in the late 40s or early 50s (the actual date is unknown). Original owners grandson, Bill Bronson restored the car and it is a staple at the NHRR. It's the oldest cacklecar there is.





The Barnes & Gladstone "Michigander" AA/FD owned by Bud Barnes and Bob Gladstone. Original and Cacklefest Driver: Bud Barnes.


Ray Godman and Bob "Floyd Lippencotte Jr." Muravez.


The last car to its spot was Big.




Larson and Big Mac before the fire ups.


Vic Cooke enjoyed every second of the ultimate nitro fix.












Normally in the car, original driver Preston Davis did the engine work on Ray Godman's "Tennessee Bo-Weevil" here.





















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