Evan J. Smith
Freelancer
June 10, 2016

Ford enthusiasts converged on the famous Maple Grove Raceway for the 16th Annual NMRA Ford Motorsport Nationals for a weekend of horsepower, chrome and some of the quickest and fastest street-legal racing in the land. The Motorsport Nationals was one of the original “must-attend” events for Fordnatics, and the NMRA has returned to not only capture the energy and emotion, but to grow the venue with new, exciting classes and plenty of wheels-up action.

The Maple Grove staff was welcoming and the NMRA racers came with serious business in mind. There are points to be earned in the championship classes and every run counted. Rain shortened the test and tune on Friday, so the heads-up competitors went right into qualifying. We saw lots of big mph and some records fell.

Some of the top qualifiers were Manny Buginga in VP Racing Street Outlaw with a 4.43 at166 mph effort; Alton Clements topped the chart in Edelbrock Renegade running 7.49 at 183; ProCharger Coyote Modified had Joe Guertin in the top spot with a 7.80 at 173; Teddy Weaver was Number 1 in G-Force Pure Street at 6.61 at 139; Race Pages Coyote Stock saw Shane Stymiest run 10.23 at 127; and James Meredith had the pole in American Racing Headers Factory Stock at 10.62 at 122 mph.

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Other top qualifiers in the specialty classes were Ronnie Reynolds Jr. who ran 7.64 in JPC Turbo Coyote; Harold Horton in a GT500 ran 8.09 at 170 in VMP Superchargers GT500 vs. Terminator and Mike Jovanis took yet another True Street title in his trusty Baer Brakes-backed LX. The runner-up in True Street was Jason Kahles, who averaged 9.0 in the former MM&FF Hot Rod Hooligan.

Unfortunately, due to rain on Sunday, the NMRA event staff has cancelled racing for the 16th Annual WyoTech NMRA Ford Motorsport Nationals presented by Juggernaut Power. “Due to the impending weather, we shortened qualifying sessions, and as a result several classes were completed on Saturday night,” said Steve Wolcott of the NMRA. “This included Pure Street, the 1-day bracket race, Stock/Super Stock combo, All-Female Shootout, Turbo Coyote Shootout and of course, True Street. The Terminator/GT500 Shootout final was not completed and will be contested in Bowling Green, KY at the NMRA World Finals in October. All NMRA index and heads up class eliminations are down to less than eight cars each. Those eliminations will take place during qualifying at NMRA SuperNationals in Columbus, Ohio in June.”

“We would like to thank the entire Maple Grove Raceway staff and racers for all of their efforts through the rain and long days,” said Rollie Miller, NMRA General Manager. “It was a great return of the NMRA to Maple Grove and we’re looking forward to 2017.”

Team MM&FF had a great time at “The Grove” and we can’t wait to return next year. Maple Grove has always been a great track for Mustang racing and despite the weather, the energy level was high and all the enthusiasts were really having a great time.

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