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Drag racer explodes in ball of flames when NHRA driver Tony Pedregon makes a run for it

Posted Feb 24th 2013 8:00PM


Canadians tend to prefer circuit racing over drag racing - but we still have thousands of drag racing fans, and plenty of drag strips to test our northern metal. A bit like NASCAR, it's most entertaining to watch drag racing when things go wrong - though we'd prefer they didn't for the sake of the teams and health of the driver.

When two-time Funny Car world champion Tony Pedregon went to Pomona for the O'Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Winternationals last weekend he was ready to kick the 2013 season off with a bang, but not like this. Half way down the track on a run that looked like a sure thing, a fuel system issue caused a catastrophic engine explosion that sent the entire shell of his funny car flying into the air.

Fortunately, no one was injured at the scene other than the 8000 hp engine that was clearly done-in by the failure. Immediately off the line you can see the car is over-fueling, however Pedregon stays on the throttle until the very last second, possibly hoping the car would survive the pass. In the slow-motion segment of the clip you can actually watch the throttle valves close as the explosion builds and the car begins to tear itself apart.

Having such an explosive start to a race season has to be a bit unnerving for team Pedregon, and we wish them the best of luck as they head off to Phoenix for their next race of the NHRA season.

Click past the jump to see the full video of Pedregon's exploding funny car.

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