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Doc's Blog

Welcome to Diana 'The Doc' Thomas' official Blog ... A radio interviewer once referred to Diana as being a 'Celebrity Drag Racing Authority & Visionary'... Diana has indeed filled the shoes (or fire boots) as truly being America's foremost 'Celebrity Drag Racing Authority & Visionary'... Diana is known for being somewhat controversial at times... She writes the truth... Diana tells it like it is about drag racing and other topical issues-- You've seen Diana 'The Doc' Thomas on our DVDs, with Bret Kepner on ESPN, and in all the major media... Don't miss your opportunity to read her daily blog right here at DRAG RACING UNDERGROUND... Diana's blog gives you a daily dose of truth and reality with heart... Diana's unique and refreshing perspective is unlike anything else on the drag racing web... We strongly recommend that you bookmark this page now... Be sure you check in daily to experience & enjoy Diana's unique insight, worldly wisdom and perspective...
Emmylou Harris gave a beautiful performance last night at the Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, NJ. She dazzled the crowd with a truly eclectic collection of songs. I took my trusty assistant Stephanie with me to the show, and she thoroughly enjoyed it, although she was skeptical at first, 'cause she ain't exactly the "laid back" music type. Y'all know me, I love all kinds of music, I really do, so I was definitely psyched before the show, during the show and immediately after, ha ha, I had a fabulous evening. It was my first time back at the Count Basie Theatre since seeing and hanging with my buddy and fellow Jersey native Fred Schneider of the B-52s, after he just recorded vocals for us (BIG STICK), and played the Jersey shore venue with his bodacious band... I also want to give you folks a heads-up about an upcoming show at the Count Basie Theatre scheduled for Wednesday night, August 31st, 'cause that's when that little band from Texas, ZZ TOP, take the stage. Both ZZ TOP and BIG STICK received lots of ink in Leah Kerr's popular DRIVING ME WILD (NITRO CULTURE) book a few years back, and I had the opportunity to meet those guys, they're incredible folks and seasoned musicians. And they most definitely appreciate hot rods and cars that go fast. Get your tickets NOW to see them play on August 31st... Another personal appearance that I believe is certainly worth mentioning in today's "Doc's Blog" is NHRA Funny Car star Matt Hagan's scheduled in-store meet 'n' greet TONIGHT 7-8pm at the Bass Pro Shop located at 1356 Bass Pro Drive in Manteca, California. Matt Hagan drives the DieHard Dodge R/T flopper for Don Schumacher Racing AND is also an Angus cattle farmer who spends much of his leisure time away from the drag strip hunting and fishing (I like to go fishin' too). This appearance is sponsored by the always generous Full Throttle Energy Drink folks, and is in conjunction with this weekend's big FRAM/Autolite Nationals in Sonoma, CA. I'd like to see all my regular west coast readers, and according to our most recent web site stats, there's an awful lot of you, go out tonight and see Matt at the Bass Pro Shop... Have Matt autograph your tackle box...

I want to give a heads-up to all my readers in the area regarding what I believe to be an extremely talented singer/songwriter scheduled to perform tonight at the Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, NJ. Emmylou Harris will be playing the classy Jersey shore based venue. She's a 12-time Grammy Award winner, Billboard Century Award recipient and Country Music Hall of Fame inductee. Emmylou Harris' career as a singer and songwriter spans more the 40 years and 25 albums-- She has endured for so long and continues to remain as one of the most eclectic of recording artists I'm aware of. Her exquisite vocal style allows her music to flow effortlessly between pop, folk, country and alternative. Once while touring with BIG STICK, I had the pleasure of crossing paths with Emmylou Harris on the road, and she's one of the most genuine and down to earth ladies I've ever had the pleasure of meeting in this business of music. I respect her as an artist and as a human being. The Count Basie Theatre is a great place to experience live music. The last time I was at the Count Basie Theatre, was after Fred Schneider of the B-52s sang vocals with us (BIG STICK) in the studio on one of our new recordings-- wow, the B-52s sounded superb playing in the Count Basie Theatre, the acoustics and overall atmosphere can't be beat. I'm sure that Emmylou Harris is also going to shine and deliver a spectacular performance this evening at the Count Basie Theatre. Hope to see some of you music buffs there tonight. I'll definitely be there with bells on... Switching gears here, from talkin' 'bout one of music's most fabulous females, to hyping-up one of Raceway Park's most ferocious of new quartermile classes. It's the E-Town "BIG TIRE OUTLAWS", appearing THIS SUNDAY July 31st. This class features the most dastardly doorslammers on the planet, racers that are somewhat in the tradition of the track's former notorious and glorious Ultra Quick 8. I strongly recommend this date for those who like their doorslammer racing well-done and sizzlin' with excitement. See the best of heads-up heavyweights assaulting the historic E-Town drag strip!! Gates open at 8am, 2 qualifiers at 10:45 and 12. First round commences at 1:30. It all happens THIS SUNDAY at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Englishtown, New Jersey!!...

Just some added notes on this past Sunday's E-Town NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS. I'd like to thank veteran drag racing personality Jack Redd for taking the time to share some great stories with me at the event. And we're plenty thankful that he's awarded the E-TOWN NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS, DRAG RACING UNDERGROUND, and yours truly with his prestigious "JACK APPROVED" official seal of excellence, an extremely sought after honor in the world of drag racing. I've been receiving some emails from folks who were not at the event, who for some reason have had their heads filled with misinformation about the race, misinformation that's probably come from the same mental midgets who lie about practically everything else nostalgia drag related-- If you want to know the TRUTH and REAL SKINNY of the race, just read yesterday's blog, or read the raves on the H.A.M.B. board. Kudos again to Walter Frey and the entire E-Town staff for making such a success of this event, even with the wicked heat we experienced... If it's wicked 'n wooly fast doorslammers you seek, THIS SUNDAY, July 31st, the "BIG TIRE OUTLAWS" return to Raceway Park. These cars are the cat's meow for those who dig unadulterated head-ups side by side door-car drag racing. Gates open at 8am, 2 qualifiers at 10:45 and 12. First round kicks off at 1:30... Sorry to see Amy Winehouse join the "dead at age 27" musicians club, others in this sad club include Brian Jones, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, and Kurt Cobain. I'm aware that Amy had her drug and alcohol problems, and her "Rehab" hit certainly exemplified that. I did admire the way she creeped into the pop culture world with a brand of music that was kind of off the beaten path. On some of our (BIG STICK) stuff that we're recording and mixing, we've got baritone sax, trombone, and trumpet on a couple of the tracks, and the songs have a slight classic swing feel, so I can definitely appreciate what Amy Winehouse accomplished with her music. We have some of the best horn players in the world on our tracks, and they all told me that they believe Amy Winehouse broke positive ground in the music business. I feel bad for her parents, and I hope Amy can rest in peace...

Yesterday's running of Raceway Park's 32nd Annual NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS, OLD TIME DRAGS & FUNNY CAR REUNION was a success. Despite the fact that the weather, while not as outright "oppressive" as it was on Saturday, was still pretty gosh darn hot on Sunday. The event definitely lived up to its "SUMMERNATIONALS" moniker. When I arrived at the track yesterday morning, in the extreme comfort of the Drag Racing Underground 2000 Lincoln Continental, with its cold as ice air conditioning, and TYPE O NEGATIVE blaring out of its newly installed Bose premium sound system, I was happy as heck to see the extremely long line of racers and fans waiting to drive through the gates. Thankfully the day's predicted heat and humidity didn't scare off the hardcore nostalgia drag racing contingent. It was nice to hear DRU's John Gill tell his touching "Jungle Jim" story over the track's P.A. system, hearing John tell his "Jungle" story involving his dad and the late Vinny Napp really puts this whole nostalgia scene in the proper perspective for me, as I'm sure it did for the racers and spectators listening. The event went off without a hitch, yeah, nostalgia Funny Car veteran Dave Sano experienced some gremlins with his '73 "Screamin' Insanity" Grand Am, but for the most part, we were fortunate that the majority of drag machinery handled the hot weather well, and held together, making for a flawless day of racing-- And even with the hot weather, performances were still relatively impressive. All the different classes had strong showings. A group calling themselves the "422 All Stars", a nostalgia themed Super Stock circuit, certainly showed off their ability to produce dependable wheels-up entertainment for the crowd. The East Coast Gassers had some new cars and drivers, combined with their already established stable of members, as always, they put on an awesome show. Funny Cars were in very strong supply, whether it was the injected, blown, alky or nitro cars, they all performed their "fliptop" brand of drag racing magic, and satisfied all the spectators. The North East Timing Organization had their wide variety of cars, and were demonstrating why they're the best nostalgia drag club in the region. The show car portion of the event also produced some incredible and interesting eye candy. So many of you folks came to visit me at the Drag Racing Underground tent, I love seeing you all-- I really do-- And like I said yesterday, thanks for all your praise for this here blog page, I really do appreciate it. I simply must express my respect and admiration for event organizer Walter Frey, and the entire E-Town staff-- Everyone on the Raceway Park crew pulled together and made the event work like a charm. Props are also in order for all the drivers and race teams who produced an exceptionally healthy car-count, a car-count that was surprisingly high, especially considering the weather. And last but certainly not least, bless all you folks who came out to spectate, braving the heat to support the nostalgia drag racing movement-- I love you all and I want you to know that it is YOU who inspire all the racers, crew people, and track staff to do their best-- YOU are the inspiration and main reason why this northeast nostalgia drag racing scene will continue to grow and prosper--- THANKS A MILLION!!...

Before I get into all the particulars of today's E-TOWN NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS, OLD TIME DRAGS & FUNNY CAR REUNION, I'd like to discuss what it was like yesterday at Raceway Park, with many of the race teams arriving to get parked and situated, and of course the track's famous Saturday evening Meet 'n' Greet dinner held in the hospitality tower. There were a lot of racers and team members that I haven't seen since last year's event. It was nice to see drag racing veteran Jack Redd, who gives this year's NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS his very prestigious "Jack Approved" endorsement. As you already know, I also give this race Five "Doc" Stars, my highest possible recommendation and rating-- So you know it's a "must attend" event for sure. It was so nice to see so many friends at last night's Meet 'n' Greet. I had the chance to chat with great folks like Willie Johnson of "No Money No Funny" '68 Nova Flopper fame, and many others. Despite yesterday's oppressive heat, everyone was in good spirits. I was also flattered by the number of nostalgia racers and crew people who brought up this blog!!-- And told me how much they appreciate reading it every single day, and especially how much they appreciate me telling THE TRUTH about the current good points (and bad) of the nostalgia drag racing scene-- I got lots of laughs from seeing how many folks can really relate to it, and get such a kick out of me having the courage to bring up the grotesque ('cause it sure ain't "Far Out") "All-Male-Only San Francisco Bath House" mentality that occasionally plagues this scene and practically smothers it to death. Oh, and the food was excellent. Walter Frey and the Raceway Park staff go all out to make the Meet 'N' Greet a most memorable gathering... I hope to see lots of you TODAY at Raceway Park. It's gonna be a really big show. Come to E-Town and see the best in old-school Dragsters, Funny Cars, Altereds, East Coast Gassers, Nostalgia Super Stocks, Roadsters, Legendary Display Cars, The North East Timing Association, Street Rods and Rat Rods-- AND see Drag Racing Celebrities, Classic Memorabilia, and High-Quality Vendors too. The weather is going to be much better than yesterday, and I assure you that there's a lot of your old favorites of Nostalgia Drag Racing here at Raceway Park, and also plenty of new faces and race teams too-- Load up the car with all your family and friends, and make tracks to E-Town today. We're gonna have ourselves one incredible Nostalgia Drag Racing event-- I strongly urge you to not miss your opportunity to be a part of this year's E-TOWN NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS... BE HERE!!...

As I stated in my blog yesterday, today's (Sat July 23) scheduled "DIGS AT E-TOWN" event has been cancelled due to oppressive heat warnings, however, the "weather professionals" tell us that tomorrow's forecast, for Sunday July 24, for the 32nd ANNUAL NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS, OLD TIME DRAGS & FUNNY CAR REUNION is far more "people friendly", with temps in the 80's, so therefore, tomorrow's event is a go-- And I encourage y'all to not let today's pressure cooker scare you from keeping your plans to attend tomorrow/Sunday's NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS. I tell ya, this bizarre weather has broken heat records 'round these parts, yesterday I took a dip in the pool and the water didn't even feel cold!-- What's up with that?!?-- But hey, like I said, this oppressive heat is finally supposed to subside by tomorrow-- I'm extremely thankful for that... So anyways, I sincerely hope you're still planning to attend this undisputed premier East Coast nostalgia drag race tomorrow at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, I know that I sure as heck am, I wouldn't miss it for the world. Come and see old-school Dragsters, Funny Cars, Altereds, East Coast Gassers, Nostalgia Super Stocks, Roadsters, Legendary Display Cars, The North East Timing Association, Street Rods and Rat Rods-- AND drag racing celebrities, memorabilia, and vendors too. Nostalgia drag racing isn't just for grandpa, people of all ages and generations have a terrific time at this event-- Bring the whole family to experience E-Town's NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS-- I give this event FIVE "DOC" STARS, my highest possible recommendation and published rating, so you know your family is in for a fabulous day at the drags. Don't miss this opportunity to travel back to the years when the sport was young, vibrant and vivacious!!-- Don't miss your chance to step through the proverbial drag racing time tunnel, and experience this truly incredible "Blast from the Past" event!!... "BE THERE"!!... This is a definitely a bona-fide drag strip time warp that will stimulate all your senses!!...

For those of you who reside in the northeast, and have an appreciation of "old school" styled drag racing, this Sunday at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park is a "Dream Come True". This Sunday July 24th, it's the 32nd Annual NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS - OLD TIME DRAGS & FUNNY CAR REUNION all wrapped up into one exceptionally exciting nostalgia drag racing enchilada!! I've been attending this race from its humble beginning, and I have personally witnessed it grow into the undisputed premier nostalgia drag racing event of the entire east coast-- Often imitated, but definitely never duplicated, this is the grandaddy of "old school" drag racing extravaganzas. This race is definitely the REAL DEAL, no "smoke & mirrors" buffoonery like we've seen from some of its lame-duck imitators, No-Sir-ee Bob! Every type of imaginable nostalgia themed drag racing machinery will be at Raceway Park!!-- Dragsters, Funny Cars, Altereds, East Coast Gassers, Nostalgia Super Stocks, Legendary Display Cars, The North East Timing Association, Street Rods and Rat Rods-- AND there's drag racing celebrities, memorabilia, and vendors too. It's the complete nostalgia drag racing package that will provide plenty of entertainment for your whole family. This race isn't just for Grandpa, I've learned that people of all ages and generations have a terrific time at this event-- It truly is for EVERYBODY!!-- I give this event FIVE "DOC" STARS, my highest possible recommendation and published rating for a drag racing event, so you know that you and your family are in for a fabulous day at the drags!! If you haven't already made your plans to be at E-Town this Sunday, I suggest you do so right now!! Don't miss this opportunity to travel back to the years when the sport was young & vibrant, don't miss your chance to step through the drag racing time tunnel, and experience this truly incredible "Blast from the Past" event!!... "BE THERE"!!...

Every drag racing fan knows who Ron Capps is, that's a given. Well, Ron has a brother, Jon Capps, who is also quite the accomplished drag shoe in his own right. Last night at E-Town's Summer Motorsports Spectacular, Jon Capps, flew in from Vegas for two very important reasons. The first reason being that Jon's the hired gun of the Texas based "Jungle Jim" tribute Camaro Nitro Funny Car, and the other reason being that Jon very desperately wanted to see ROBOSAURUS for the first time in his life-- And yeah, it's debatable regarding which of the two reasons really took precedence for Jon's trip to Englishtown, ha ha, but seriously, Jon really was extremely "psyched" at the opportunity to finally see ROBOSAURUS, and of course he was really ultra-chuffed to get behind the wheel of the "Jungle" Camaro and put on a show for the tens of thousands of E-Town fans... Jon did both-- He drove the "Jungle Jim" Camaro to a spectacular win over the "BRAND X" Mustang-- And John did get to experience ROBOSAURUS doing his incredible car-crushing, fire breathing performance. When it was all said and done, Jon dazzled the fans with his heavy-footed driving skills in the "Jungle" Camaro, AND Jon finally had the opportunity to be dazzled himself by ROBOSAURUS-- A true "win win" situation. Other Nostalgia themed Funnies were also booked for the show. It was my first time seeing the fabulous "FRANTIC FORD", the pristine appearing 'Stang managed to break in the 6's, but had a troubling fire on the top-end-- Hope that team can recover soon. My buddy Rocky Pirrone made lots of flames and fans with his "SCREAMING EAGLE" Pontiac. The new "TIME BOMB" Vega was a sight for sore eyes. Being a long time supporter of the Nostalgia Funnies, I was proud to see them wow the mammoth-sized Wed Nite E-Town crowd. That said, be sure to be at E-Town THIS SUNDAY, July 24th for the 32nd Annual NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS!! Jon Capps will return with the "Jungle" Camaro, and lots more Floppers will be there too. Plus you'll see old-school Diggers, Altereds, The East Coast Gassers, Nostalgia Super Stocks, N.E.T.O., Display Cars, Celebrities, and so much more!! I'll be there, and if you're a diehard drag racing fan you should darn well be there too!!...

TONIGHT PUT FAMILY FIRST AND BRING 'EM TO RACEWAY PARK!!...

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Tonight I urge all you Moms and Dads reading this to do the right thing, put all your mundane everyday chores and humdrum routines aside, and make a concentrated effort to PUT YOUR FAMILY FIRST, and bring 'em all out to OLD BRIDGE TOWNSHIP RACEWAY PARK. In this modern world in which we live, there seems to be less and less time for families to spend "quality time" together, less time for family members to connect with each other and create the kind of positive family memories that can be cherished for a lifetime. I assure you, if you gather up your whole family and come on out tonight to the 41st Annual P.C. Richard & Son SUMMER MOTORSPORTS SPECTACULAR presented by Modern Rental, you'll be creating the best of memories that you and your kids will be able to share for a lifetime-- And hey, isn't that really the sort of thing that's most important in this life? There's genuine value in a family taking the time to go somewhere special together and share in the fun with each other-- And to be quite frank, I must say, this particular evening's SUMMER MOTORSPORTS SPECTACULAR is indeed the perfect kind of family oriented event for you and your entire family to enjoy together. Imagine the look of wonderment on your kids' faces when they see ROBOSAURUS come to life and spark their imagination. Think of the sheer joy you'll all experience while watching the WORLD'S GREATEST MONSTER TRUCKS doing donuts on the ETown track at warp speed. When the JET CARS fire-up, your family will all ignite the friendly flames of togetherness as you share in the incredible spectacle. And hey, be sure to bring Grandpa along too, because he'll get a real kick out of seeing the NOSTALGIA FUNNY CARS on the bill (they look just like the cars he used to enjoy as a kid at the drags!!)... What I'm telling you is do not miss this opportunity to spend a night like this together with your whole family-- Raceway Park truly is the home of "FAST FAMILY FUN", and tonight's SUMMER MOTORSPORTS SPECTACULAR is going to be the optimum embodiment of that. Potent PRO MODS, NITRO HARLEYS, FIREWORKS and CARTOON CHARACTERS are also going to be featured at tonight's big show. Gates open 5pm. The main event starts at 8pm. I confidently rate this event with FIVE "DOC" STARS-- That means this event has my highest rating of recommendation, so you know it's the real deal in family entertainment. Tonight, Wed, July 20th, I expect to see YOU and your ENTIRE FAMILY at OLD BRIDGE TOWNSHIP RACEWAY PARK!!...

TOMORROW NIGHT WEDNESDAY JULY 20TH there's only one place to be for families who reside in the New Jersey area and surrounding States-- There's only one event that will deliver the complete satisfaction in motorsports entertainment that your family so rightfully deserves-- That event is the 41st Annual P.C. Richards & Son Summer Motorsports Spectacular presented by Modern Rental. One of the main reasons why this is a "must attend" event is because ROBOSAURUS returns to Raceway Park for this "one night only" ultra-hip happening, to express his amazing pyrotechnic temperament, and you sure as heck don't want your family to miss the opportunity to experience "ROBO" in all his towering glory. He's a walking and talking, fire breathing inferno of mammoth proportions-- He's the dazzling mechanical dinosaur who will make your jaw drop with his high-tech T-Rex like antics. Monster Trucks are also a major feature of this event-- The bill includes GRAVE DIGGER, SUPERMAN, BATMAN, STALLION, VIPER, and the new sensation of the MONSTER TRUCK world, the "MONSTER SCHOOL BUS"!!-- The kids are gonna wish this beast picked them up for a ride to school!! Also featured for your family's entertainment pleasure are the Jet Cars, Pro Mods, Fireworks, Nitro Harleys and Nostalgia Funny Cars (Dad & Grandpa will love the Nostalgia Funny Cars, trust me on this!!) Gates open at 5pm-- The feature show kicks off at 8pm-- Every spectator ticket is a pit pass, enabling you full access to see all the evening's performers doing their thing in the pits. Cartoon Characters will be on hand to meet the kiddies-- There's just so much going on-- every minute will be filled with super stimulation of all your family's senses!! "BE THERE" Tomorrow Night At Raceway Park!!... And while I have your attention, also please remember that THIS weekend, Sunday, July 24th is ETown's NOSTALGIA SUMMERNATIONALS-- If you want to see what drag racing was like back in the 60s and 70s, you best make plans to be at Raceway Park on Sunday. This is the premier nostalgia event of the entire east coast, often imitated , but never duplicated-- I give this race my absolute highest rating for a nostalgia drag racing event (Five "Doc" Stars), so you just know it's got to be good!!-- Make plans to attend RIGHT NOW!!