Drag Illustrated Issue 177, July / August 2022 | Page 84

will welcome its return .
Another celebrated event is the King of Nahunta race , which happens once a year . To be eligible to enter , you must be a past winner or runner-up at Nahunta . “ We currently have about 40 drivers who are eligible to enter . It costs $ 100 to enter and I pay all the money back , so it ’ s a $ 4,000 race if everyone who ’ s eligible enters , and the trophy company I use really goes overboard with the King of Nahunta trophy ,” smiles Radford .
Veteran racer William “ Jaws ” Alston is the reigning King of Nahunta after he drove his classy 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner to the victory in 2021 . Alston , who ’ s been racing for 40 years and has
Lorenzo Martin collected literally hundreds of trophies over his career , counts his King of Nahunta victory as among the sweetest wins to date . The Goldsboro resident is eager to enter the event again and defend his title in 2022 .
Among the newest eligible drivers who will be invited to participate in the King of Nahunta event is Lorenzo Martin , who picked up his first career victory at Nahunta in April 2022 , driving his familiar “ Red Baron ” Chevy S-10 . Martin is much more than a racer , though , being well-known in bracket racing circles as a newsman , photographer , promoter , and producer of live videos of racing around eastern North Carolina . Martin is possibly best known for his popular Facebook page called North Carolina Bracket Racing .
Martin dedicated his first win to his mother and fiancée , both of whom passed away unexpectedly last year . “ I was happy for Lorenzo getting his first win here at Nahunta ,” Radford says . “ He deserves it , and there ’ s nobody who loves bracket racing more than that guy !”
As the season gets hotter with every passing month , Radford enjoys seeing both sides of the dragstrip filling up .
“ It reminds me of our teenage strip through the middle of Goldsboro ,” Radford smiles . “ We would park on both sides of Williams Street and cruise up and down . This was where you came on weekends , and I ’ ve driven every kind of muscle car you can think of up and down Williams Street . When I look out and see both sides of the dragstrip full of cars and people , it reminds me of how we used to cruise through town all those years ago . It ’ s why I love drag racing so much , because it takes me back to those days and all the great memories .” DI

History in the Making

After substantial upgrades , historic SRCA Dragstrip is ready for another 60-plus years
By Van Abernethy

When it comes to dragstrips with historical significance , SRCA Dragstrip in Great Bend , Kansas , is pretty much a national treasure , having the incredible distinction of hosting the first-ever NHRA National meet in 1955 .

Originally constructed over top of a 1940s-era landing strip for bombers during World War II , the dragstrip was launched in 1954 by efforts of a car club known as the Sunflower Rod and Custom Association , which is where the track gets its name . The following year saw the newly formed National Hot Rod Association gather in Great Bend for the first national meet in the sanctioning body ’ s history .
The town of Great Bend still celebrates that momentous occasion , especially since the track was deemed a Kansas Historic Site , in which the
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