Mud racing is ‘Dirty Drag Racing’

Houston Mud Drags organizer Craig Stoltenberg has big plans for next year.

Houston Mud Drags organizer Craig Stoltenberg has big plans for next year.

Stoltenberg said the races will see improvements in organization, accessibility, scale and excitement next year. He wants to organize two races here, enforce car specifications restrictions that allow fair competition and invite more exhibit vehicles to speed down the drag strip.

“I think they went extremely well compared to all the other events in the area,” he said. “We’re always trying to do better and we’re trying to put on a show and bring faster, more competitive vehicles to make it attractive, more exciting to the spectators.”

Stoltenberg said the highlight of this year’s mud drags was Chris Gagnon’s F-class mud racer with a blown alcohol engine.

“Everyone knows [it], right, it was the fastest, loudest, vehicle there,” he said.

This year, the organizers tried to entice these fast vehicles to come by putting up prize money for the quickest time.

“We’ve talked to people now and they would rather we paid them travel expenses, and they’ll come put on a show, because they can’t risk not getting fast pass,” he said.

They are now working on changing the funding to attract these racers, such as the drivers of Canada’s third fastest drag car, Ghost Rider.

“They committed to come if we pay their travel expenses, so we’re going to try to do that instead.”

Stoltenberg believes that classification is essential to ensure accessibility. Currently, the races allow vehicles in street, improved street and competition classes based on the modifications made to it.

“We’re trying to structure the classes so there’s classes for everyone,” he said. “So, there’s totally bone-stock, entry-level classes where you can bring any four-wheel-drive vehicle and race it. And we’re trying to keep the competitive racers out of those classes.”

“The newcomers don’t feel intimidated, they don’t have to spend the money to be competitive and there’s a place for them.”

Finally, Stoltenberg wants to create a new race that requires manoeuvring around an obstacle course.

“An off-road challenge, basically, that involves driving through obstacles, over obstacles, and through the mud as a timed event for the intermission and half-time, just to try and keep people’s interest,” he said.

Stoltenberg believes that mud racing attracts people because sport has a lower barrier to entry.

“It’s like drag racing, but you don’t have to spend all your time making it pretty. Drag cars are always pretty and kept clean. They call this dirty drag racing,” Stoltenberg said. “I don’t even bother to wash mine anymore. I just took it home, it’s covered in mud, I wash the motor off, you know.”

Mud drag racing also has less intense competition.

“In drag racing, you’re competing against your own time, so you have 30 vehicles competing for three prizes,” he said. “Mud racing, you don’t. You have 11 classes of vehicles and each one of those 11 classes [has] first, second and third.”

“Drag racing — the guys who have really good reaction times win consistently. And so it can be disheartening for newcomers.”

Stoltenberg has advice for people interested to race next year: “Four wheel drive truck with good tires, that’s all you need.”

 

Just Posted

Bulkley Valley SD 54 superintendent leaving

Chris van der Mark has been superintendent with SD54 for eight years, and has hands full in Cariboo.

B.C. chiefs show solidarity with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs

Chiefs from around B.C. outside the Coastal GasLink pipeline route in Smithers show support.

Woman killed in head-on crash near Vanderhoof

RCMP say driver crossed the centre line and hit a loaded fuel tanker truck

RCMP to review actions at Wet’suwet’en pipeline protest camps

Senior Mountie says he hopes protests will be peaceful following deal with hereditary chiefs

Houston property assessments nudge up

District now working on 2019 spending plans

UPDATE: B.C. legislature managers accused of excessive travel, personal expense claims

Clerk Craig James, security chief Gary Lenz call allegations ‘completely false’

B.C. man fined $10,000 after leaving moose to suffer before death

Surrey man was convicted last week on three Wildlife Act charges

‘Blue Monday’ isn’t real, but depression can be

CMHA encourages people to prioritize their mental health

Anti-pipeline group wants NEB to consider impact of emissions, climate change

Stand.earth filed NEB motion asking to apply same standard to the project as it did with Energy East pipeline

Parole granted for drunk driver who killed B.C. RCMP officer

Kenneth Jacob Fenton will be able to attend alcohol abuse treatment, nearly three years after crash that killed Const. Sarah Beckett

B.C. man charged in 2014 snake venom death of toddler

Henry Thomas was taking care of the North Vancouver girl the day before she died

B.C.’s largest public-sector union wants inquiry into money laundering, drugs

Union officials say Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby have not ruled out the possibility of a public inquiry

Teen in confrontation with Native American: I didn’t provoke

Nick Sandmann of Covington Catholic High School said he was trying to defuse the situation

Kamala Harris opens U.S. presidential bid in challenge to Trump

The 54-year old portrayed herself as a fighter for justice, decency and equality in a video distributed by her campaign

Most Read