The engines roared, motorcycles soared and monster trucks were adored.
The seventh annual Octane Fest monster truck jamboree at the Churchill County Fairgrounds was a smashing success over two nights as the trucks crushed cars and mud drags added to the excitement.
On Friday, the motocross freestyle riders put on an aerial display, flying up to 70 feet in the air and performing numerous heart-pounding tricks.
On Saturday, the Iron Outlaw monster truck hit a back flip to the delight of the crowd. Both days also featured an exhibition from Northern Nevada Outlaw Karts drivers, some as young as 5.
But the biggest the treat was an appearance by legendary comedian Chris Rock, who was in town to film a segment for the BET Awards. Rock will host the show on June 29.
He interviewed several people about the hip-hop scene, black culture and how BET can expand to “a wider whiter” audience.
Hoards of fans surrounded Rock, who graciously took photos with hundreds of fans. Rock also drove one of the monster trucks around the arena as the crowd acknowledged him with a large ovation.
“And remember, watch the BET Awards,” he said.
Over at Rattlesnake Raceway, a solid car count highlighted a day featured by large payouts for drivers in the IMCA, Sports Modifieds and Hobby Stock divisions.
Results were not available.
At Top Gun Raceway, however, the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series was in full force. Doug Lambeck and Dennis Paz lead the list of winners who took home trophies and bragging rights.
Lambeck of Northridge, Calif., got the early lead in his Comp Eliminator final round match up with Aaron Strong of Auburn, Wash., and held on for the win in 8.815 seconds at 153.28 mph.
Stockton, Calif., racer Paz, was out second to Ken Etter in Super Stock, but made up the time in his ’65 El Camino to take the win in 12.029 seconds to Etter’s 10.577.
Moe Trujillo of Happy Valley, Ore., was better at both ends of the track as he faced off with Mike MacBrair of Napa, Calif., in Top Dragster, while Gary Forkner of Temecula, Calif., parlayed a holeshot into a win over Will Boxold of Citrus Heights, Calif., in Top Sportsman.
Local runner and reigning NHRA Lucas Oil National Champion Justin Lamb met Earl Blake in Stock Eliminator. Both drivers left the line together but Blake got the best of Lamb, taking the win in his ’68 Barracuda in the double-breakout as did Dave Hall over Gordon Boven in Super Street. Hall of Winters, Calif., got the holeshot with his ’72 Challenger and never looked back running 11.297 to Boven’s 11.287 out of Boise, Idaho.
Rounding out the Lucas Oil categories were Steve Casner of Sheridan, Calif., over Dave Alves in Super Comp and Steve Parsons of Ridgecrest, Calif., in Super Gas when Mike Coltrin left early with a red light start.
Tom Medlin of La Mirada, Calif., took the honors in the Sportsman Motorcycle presented by Harley-Davidson class that was close at the start with Medlin pulling away for the win.
In other action this weekend at Top Gun, Justin Morgan of Concord, Calif., downed Kyle Seipel in Super Pro; Summer Black of Reno upended Jim Grace in Pro; and Reno’s Steve Melson beat Jim Setterberg in Sportsman.
In the NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League competition, it was Brandon Marcheski doubling up with wins in both the Jr. Comp and the 15-17 year old category. The Mesa, Ariz., racers beat Megan Shaffer in Jr. Comp and then Cody Webber in 15-17. Kaitlyn Savolt won over Summer McCallson in 13-14; Linkin Pinoski defeated Maverick Molly in 10-12; and Peter Kaiser III took the 8-9 over Cy Mitchell.
The Pacific Division racers head west to Sonoma Raceway for their next NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event on July 18-20.