Weissenfluh Scores King of the Valley at 35th Running of the Lucas Oil Thunder Truck Drags
Great times were had August 3rd at the 35th Annual Lucas Oil Thunder Truck Drags. There were big trucks, little trucks, gas powered and diesel trucks, slammin’ those gears and making their way down the all-concrete ¼ mile of Woodburn Dragstrip. At the end of the day, Big Rig Bill Weissenfluh was the King of the Valley after defeating John Goodell in the final round. Todd Choat was the other Winner: in the Big Rig category. For the ‘little trucks’, Winner:s were crowned by the names of Pat James (Hot Trucks), Jerry Durant Jr (Pick-Up), Larry Hofendbredl (4×4 Diesel) and Travis Hilton (4×4 Gas). All in all, it was a great weather day with no smokeys around, leading to everyone having a grand ol’ time.
For the Big Rigs, of which we had 36 in attendance, it came down to distinct Winner:s in three separate categories: John Goodell over Aaron Meeuwsen in Big Rig A, Bill Weissenfluh over Brent Boehringer in Big Rig B, and Todd Choat over Larry Brown in Big Rig C. These three gentleman were then entered into the King of the Valley race-off, in which Goodell defeated Choat, and Weissenfluh advanced with the single. In the final round, Weissenfluh had a supersonic .041 reaction time start to get the big advantage over Goodell, but ran slow enough off his dial-in time that Goodell was able to get to the finish line first. However, despite getting there first, Goodell broke out by just eighteen thousandths of a second, giving the win to Weissenfluh.
In the Hot Truck category, selected for pickups that run faster than 12.99, the final round showdown was between Pat James and John Poublon. James’ trip into the final round was through a single for being number one qualifier, George Churilla and Jeff Poleski. For Poublon: Dennis George Jr, Steve Sherman and Mike Powell were the opposing racers. In the final round the race was over before it even began when Poublon turned on the red light start, sending the Break the Chain ’84 S-10 of James into the Winner:’s Circle.
The Pick-Up class, part of our regularly competing points earning series, the final round was between Jerry Durant Jr and Jamy Bland. Durant Jr, the incoming point’s leader, defeated Josh Patterson, Paul Wattenbarger, and Martha Brett to reach the final round. Bland won his way into the final by downing David Trivelpiece, Dell King, and Greg Brault. In the final round, Durant Jr used a starting line advantage and running closer to his number to get the win, and further increase his points lead.
The biggest categories by far were the two 4×4 classes, with Diesel and Gas separated. In the Diesel category, it was a battle of the Hofenbredl’s with Larry and Jake advancing into the final round. Both drivers had watched the other race all day long, but they knew in the final round a major part of the race would reside on who could get off the starting line first. Jake left with a .299, but Larry with an inhuman .009 reaction time rocketed off the start and was able to get the win when he ran 16.506 on his 16.28 dial. In the Gas category, the team of Travis Hilton and Mark Dawson advanced their way into the final round to face off with David Trivelpiece, as a pair of Chevrolets did battle. Trivelpiece was off first in the classic ’70 Chevy, but the team of Hilton/Dawson were close in chase to the top end. At the finish line, Trivelpiece ran closer to his dial-in but was unable to get the win due to him having the worse reaction time of the two competitors.
Listed are final rounds results, in order of driver’s name, city/state, (vehicle year/model), [reaction time], elapsed time, miles per hour, and (dial-in).
Big Rig King of the Valley
WINNER: Bill Weissenfluh, Canyon City OR (’00 Kenworth) [.041] 16.733, 82.83 (16.51 dial).
R/U: John Goodell, Philomath OR (’14 Kenworth) [.237] 20.462, 68.33 (20.48 dial).
Semi’s: Todd Choat, Toledo OR.
Big Rig ’A’
WINNER: John Goodell, Philomath OR (’14 Kenworth) [.109] 20.672, 65.25 (20.48 dial).
R/U: Aaron Meeuwsen, Forest Grove OR (’13 Peterbuilt) – foul.
Semi’s: Frank Merrill, Eugene OR.
Big Rig ’B’
WINNER: Bill Weissenfluh, Canyon City OR (’00 Kenworth) [.021] 17.699, 88.46 (16.51 dial).
R/U: Brent Boehringer, Eugene OR (’76 Kenworth) [.022] 20.043, 59.11 (20.20 dial).
Semi’s: Eric Anderson, Port Angeles WA.
Big Rig ’C’
WINNER: Todd Choat, Toledo OR (’01 Kenworth) [.137] 19.698, 70.92 (19.50 dial).
R/U: Larry Brown, Harrisburg OR (’00 Kenworth) – foul.
Semi’s: Lee Hofenbredl, Dallas OR.
WINNER: Pat James, Boring OR (’84 S-10) [.042] 10.686, 127.31 (10.46 dial).
R/U: John Poublon, Canby OR (’41 Ford) [-.063] 11.114, 122.58 (10.98 dial).
Semi’s: Mike Powell, Oakridge OR; Jeff Poleski, Springfield OR.
WINNER: Jerry Durant Jr, Oregon City OR (’05 Ram) [.075] 13.961, 88.86 (13.92 dial).
R/U: Jamy Bland, White Salmon WA (’72 El Camino) [.138] 13.175, 101.64 (13.12 dial).
Semi’s: Greg Brault, Aurora OR; Martha Brett, Brush Praire WA.
WINNER: Larry Hofendbredl, Willamina OR (’11 Chevy) [.009] 16.506, 83.05 (16.28 dial).
R/U: Jake Hofendbredl, Willamina OR (’02 Chevy) [.299] 15.449, 89.98 (15.35 dial).
Semi’s: Grant Cribbs, Dallas OR.
WINNER: Travis Hilton, Woodburn OR (’11 Silverado) [.133] 16.919, 70.31 (16.70 dial).
R/U: David Trivelpiece, Carlton OR (’70 Chevy) [.188] 17.892, 73.23 (17.70 dial).
Semi’s: Jeremy Leesacker, McMinnville OR.