In its brief three-year history, California Speedway has already built a reputation as one of the fastest super speedways in the country. The state-of-the-art $120 million facility is home to the CART FedEx Championship Series and NASCAR Winston Cup Series. More than 100,000 race fans gather at the California Speedway several times a year to watch intense side-by-side race action. Although the Speedway is known for its high-speed banked turns, in September it was invaded by import drag racers.
The world-famous Jackson Racing Battle Of The Imports made its mark at the California Speedway by putting on a terrific show for racers and spectators alike. Jackson Racing dazzled the crowds with not only intense drag racing but also a free concert and unreal karting action. Even though the drag racing was limited to a 1/8th mile, it still brought out the big names in the scene. Lisa Kubo, Jeremy Lookofsky, James West, Manny Jaramillo, Jason Mulroney, Jojo Callos, Russ Matusevich, Charles Madrid, Roger Sangco, Ed Bergenholtz, Adrian Sabori, Leevon Eisele, Kurt Gordon, Joe Morgan, Ray Lochhead and Adam Saruwatari were just a few of the hot shoes present at the Battle.
Vendor row was also bustling with excitement. Title sponsor Jackson Racing showed its support for the event by bringing out a whole line-up of vehicles for display along with a frenzy of help to answer tech questions. Nippon Denso also had an impressive booth with lots of displays and give-aways-always popular with the crowds. HKS came prepared with its signature yellow tent and lots of help for people who were interested in their product line. The vendor that really caught our eyes was BOMEX. It had not one but two MA70 Supras equipped with Japan-spec 2JZ engines. The original single-turbo engine was torn out and replaced with a 2.5-liter, sequential-turbo engine. We bet those puppies really move. Also Spearco Racing Intercoolers had an impressive chart of timeslips from racers who utilize their products. When we talked with Spearco's Patricia Spears, she said, "The chart keeps on changing because the racers keep on getting faster. I have to update the chart after every race." Great job Spearco!
Turbo Magazine Pro-Import (P/I) ClassMany of the Pro-Import racers were skeptical about the 1/8-mile drag due to the nature of high-powered FWD vehicles. Most don't really start hooking up until after the 1/8-mile mark. So this was going to be a real test of driving skill and traction tactics. In a sea of DOHC-powered powerplants, a single-cam qualified at the top of the chart. James West's CRX, which is powered a 1.6-liter single-cam engine, qualified with a blazing 6.993; James was the only FWD driver to eclipse the sub-7-second mark in either qualifying or competition. The queen of Quick Class, Lisa Kubo was not too far behind with a 7.005, giving her the rights to the number two spot. Battle King, Jojo Callos was able to grab the number three spot with a 7.059. Ed Bergenholtz and his STR-sponsored CRX grabbed the number four spot with a 7.115.