What started as a casual ‘get together’ in 2009 at Island Dragway, has grown to be now, the northeast’s premier Nostalgia Drag Racing Event.. It all happens Sept. 17-18-19 at Lebanon Valley Dragway, just 25 miles from Albany, N.Y.
It’s all about celebrating the famous Dover Drag Strip, that ran from 1961 to 1976 in Wingdale, N.Y. The Sixties & Seventies is the featured theme showcasing the “Dover Era, with all 7 nostalgia eliminators that run off on Sunday are pre-1976 only .
One exception is the “Dover New’ Bracket to include Original Dover Racers and relatives’ newer cars, in an effort to “keep the Dover Family together”.
Dover was one of the first tracks to open in the northeast way back in 1961. It was the place to be every Sunday to watch or race in that golden era of Rock n Roll, Hot Rods and newly organized quarter mile speed races, replacing dangerous street racing.
Since 2011, the annual revival is held every year at Lebanon Valley Dragway. Lebanon is considered Dover’s ‘sister track’. If rain cancelled the racing , Dover officials would give a quick call to Howie Commander, Lebanon’s owner, to check on the weather there. If the sun was out, a mass convoy of race car trailers, trucks, and spectator cars would take to hour run up Rt. 22 to invade ‘The Valley”.
This Year’s Dover Nostalgia Drags will again present “the Way It Was’ with six 200mph Funny
Cars, four 200 mph Extreme blown altereds, six Blown gassers,& eight Front Engine Blown Dragsters. Look for some surprises as these special exhibition Match Racers recreate the Glory Days of Drag Racing on Sunday.
In Regular Sunday Eliminations, the Popular Gasser Eliminator and the crowd favorite 4-Speed Eliminator will again be featured. Friday & Saturday is slated to be test & tune, Fun & Grudge, with Saturday having Gamblers races for ‘Box” & No Box”.
Both Saturday & Sunday will have Points Races for NETO (Northeast Timing Org.) and Saturday has the NODRAMA Group running a points race.
Saturday Night join in the Flashback Party with a live band in the Speedway Clubhouse with music by Mean Gene and the Flame Throwers.
Things will really heat up Sunday with the 11th annual Time Tunnel Rod & Custom Show, presented by HotRodHotline.com , to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charites of the Capital Area. Over 300 of the northeast’s finest Street Rods & Custom Cars are expected, to compete for the 3 ft. best of show Trophy, and the top 40 awards.
But wait! There’s more on Sunday, with the Drag Alley Nostalgia Race Car Display, The Dover Originals Race Car Display, a Swap Meet and plenty to see in “Vendors’ Row” of Sponsors’ displays behind the starting line spectators stands.
PLUS The Dover Eliminators quarter mile bracket drag racing open to all competitors with Pre-1976 Vehicles in the following classes- Dover Vintage -Pre-1976 11.51 seconds or slower; Dover Modified- Pre-1976 11.50 or faster; Dover 4 speed Pre 1976; Dover DOT Pre-1976 DOT Tires, mufflers and registered; Dover New- Originals 1976 and up (pre-registration is required for this category); Dover Electronic Pre-1976; Gasser Eliminator pre-1968 bodies.
Just cruising the pits is a show in itself. Since 2019 The “Dover Drags’ has included the Dover Reunion. Now in its 31st year. The Reunion was the brainchild of Mark “Smokey” Mastrianni, and James ‘Grover” Grove. Both of whom, were original track officials.
Initiated in Danbury, Ct. in 1991, it later was moved to Big Al’s ToyBox in Gaylordsville, Ct. Also, in attendance will be Track historian Brian Marasco with his incredible display of Dover Relics and photo collections.
Friday will be fun and grudge with Test and Tune. Gates open at 1pm . Time Trials from 3-8pm. Car Entry $35, Crew/spectators $12. Children 6-10 $5, under 5 free.
Saturday- Gates open at 8am; Car Entry- $35; Crew/spectator $12; Children 6-10 $5; under 5 free.
Saturday Night- Flashback Party in the Clubhouse with live band. $2 cover charge Doors open at 5pm; Live music by Mean Gene and the Flame Throwers 7-10pm
Sunday- Gates open at 7:30am. Car entry $40. Crew/Spectator $20. Children 6-10 $5; under 5 free.
Follow the Event updates at the Dover Drag Strip Facebook page. Complete event details can be found there for Racer, Spectator and Car Show participants. For Track info & and directions visit www.dragway.com.