PURE AND SIM­PLE

FIRE PUNK DIESEL KEEP SIT CLAS­SIC WITH THEIR 8TH AN­NUAL DIRT DRAG EVENT

Ultimate Diesel Builder's Guide - - Contents -

Firepunk Diesel keeps it clas­sic with their 8th an­nual dirt drags

Rac­ing on the dirt has been in our blood since the days of horse-drawn char­i­ots. It's pure and sim­ple fun, and Firepunk Diesel has got this clas­sic form of rac­ing with a modern diesel twist down to a science. On Septem­ber 4, 2017 (the end of the three-day La­bor Day week­end), the Miller fam­ily and their Firepunk Diesel crew, along with plenty of vol­un­teer help, put on their 8th an­nual Dirt Drag event at the Union County Fair­grounds in Plain City, Ohio. With six loaded classes of rac­ers, a con­crete pad for burnouts, a snow­mo­bile at­tempt­ing a speed record, plenty of good eats and even a foot race, 2017 was meant to be some­thing spe­cial.

Soon af­ter the fair­grounds opened up and the track was thor­oughly prepped by the KH Ex­ca­vat­ing crew, KOI Drag Rac­ing and Firepunk got the open test-and-tune passes fly­ing. These test ses­sions give ev­ery­one a chance to feel the rush of rac­ing and the Ohio motorsport fans were able to see ve­hi­cles from front-wheel-drive sedans, lifted 4x4 trucks and cus­tom­ized rat rods all the way to dirt bikes rid­ing wheel­ies the whole way down the track! But of course the coal-rolling diesels had the spot­light, many of which are driven by lo­cals who’ve fre­quented this event for the bet­ter part of a decade. Be­tween the rac­ing ex­cite­ment, G-tacos and Miller’s Olde Fash­ioned Ice Cream pro­vided the grow­ing crowd plenty of grub and re­fresh­ment.

By early af­ter­noon, the fam­ily friendly event was ready to get the rac­ers to the lines. Orig­i­nally they planned to run five classes, but with racer in­put the Firepunk team opted to add an In­dex class to the mix as well. With Firepunk’s typ­i­cal run-who-you-draw race or­ders, the ac­tion

be­gan. Pass af­ter pass pounded the dirt as the rac­ers clam­ored to­wards the fi­nals and the ea­ger fans piled into the stands and truck beds along the track. With the sun still hov­er­ing a bit over the hori­zon, some of the class fi­nals be­gan to line up.

The first class to de­cide its cham­pion was the 2Wd/man­ual class, which came down to Caleb Wal­lace in an old Civic against John Moore in his blue ex­tended cab Dodge Dakota. By half­way down the track, Moore had pulled a length on the Honda and con­tin­ued on by for the class win. Soon af­ter, the Open class wrapped up, end­ing with Mike Near and his rat rod of an old or­ange pickup tak­ing a bye run for the class over­all.

In be­tween runs and cool downs, the Firepunk crew didn’t let a lull set in. With ven­dors donat­ing great prizes like a Snap-on bi­cy­cle, the raf­fle had the crowd’s at­ten­tion. Early in the day a group signed up for an­other dirt drag race…but this time on foot. In be­tween some of the truck classes were oo­dles of young quad rac­ers as well. And of course an event that be­came a solid tra­di­tion last year is the burnout com­pe­ti­tion held on a small slab of con­crete nearby the drag strip. With tire smoke, diesel smoke, and plumes of dirt in the air, what more could you ask for to close out the La­bor Day week­end?

Just as the sun started creep­ing in be­neath the hori­zon, the last four classes were lined up for back-to-back class fi­nals. First up was the Mod­i­fied Diesel class with James Mckee and Adam Orewiler in their 3rd gen Cum­mins-pow­ered Dodge Rams

bat­tling it out. Their race ended up as one of the clos­est of the event’s, be­ing de­cided by just one­tenth of a sec­ond. Mckee mus­cled his way to the top of the podium with his sil­ver Ram to take the Mod­i­fied class win. Gath­ered from the av­er­age speeds of the group, the In­dex class was set in the high fives for the dirt drag track. Ryan Hostetler and Tony Johnson cut great lights and kept just in­side the ET cap to make their way into the fi­nal. Johnson took the win for the class, beat­ing his ri­val by just over a tenth of a sec­ond.

The Stock and Street Diesel classes were all that re­mained to re­veal who would be cham­pion. Up first was Sam Gable’s stan­dard cab Ford Power Stroke ver­sus Tim Robin­son’s crew cab Chevy Du­ra­max to fight for the Stock class over­all. Gable mo­tored by with two-tenths of a sec­ond and 4 mph on Robin­son for the win. In the Street class, Adam Orewiler fought his way into an­other class fi­nal and was hop­ing to take his black Dodge Ram to the top this time as he lined up against Kevin Frey in his ma­roon 3rd gen Ram. Rac­ing for redemp­tion, Orewiler took the win and came away as the Street Diesel champ.

Af­ter a solid day filled with tear­ing down the dirt and the oc­ca­sional rub­ber roast on the con­crete, the 2017 Dirt Drags came to a suc­cess­ful close. Year af­ter year the Firepunk crew and many will­ing vol­un­teers work hard to de­liver a modern clas­sic with the grass­roots dirt drags and fam­ily friendly en­vi­ron­ment. As if the promise of diesel smoke and dirt fly­ing high wasn’t enough to ex­cite your per­for­mance diesel senses, all the crew’s hard work is done to sup­port a char­ity. Be­tween the nearly 1,000 spec­ta­tors, the race en­tries and the raf­fle, the drags were able to raise $12,000 for the Hope Cen­ter. UDBG

The first of the fi­nals came down to John Moore and Caleb Wal­lace, with Moore’s blue Dodge Dakota tak­ing the class over­all.

Be­tween G-tacos’ food and Miller’s Ice Cream’s dessert, the lines never died down and the crowds never went hun­gry.

is­the­way race,this in­adrag thedirtrun­way. tofin­ish­sec­ond lengthof Ifyou’re­go­ing down­the ridin­gawheelie todoit—

The cus­tom tro­phies were on dis­play for five of the six classes (there was not an In­dex class tro­phy since it was added on race day) as an added in­cen­tive to win. Some were fab­ri­cated from ex­tra sets of mounts ma­chined for Lavon Miller’s Ucc-win­ning...

This mod­i­fied dirt-ready snow­mo­bile put on a show with some high-speed ex­hi­bi­tion passes in be­tween test-and-tune runs, com­ing close to his goal of beat­ing a world record.

Even dur­ing the morn­ing test-and-tune ses­sion the ac­tion was in­tense right away with trucks putting the power to the dirt and fly­ing down the track.

Adam Orewiler took his black Dodge Ram into both the Mod­i­fied Diesel and Street Diesel class fi­nals, com­ing away with the Street Diesel win in this fi­nal race.

As the In­dex classes of­ten end up, this fi­nal was a close call be­tween Tony Johnson and Ryan Hostetler, where Johnson came out on top of the Du­ra­max bat­tle by less than a tenth of a sec­ond.

Sam Gable nosed his Power Stroke ahead of Tim Robin­sons Chevy to take the class vic­tory for the Stock Diesel group.

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