It takes about 15 minutes to get to Famoso Raceway from the city of Bakersfield, but when you get there you'd swear you you just traveled 40 or 50 years in the opposite direction. The annual California Hot Rod Reunion is our once-in-a-while chance to experience drag racing the way it was every weekend way back when gassers, altereds, early Funnies, Factory Experimental cars, and backyard-built hot rods showed up to show off.
Of course, not all the action is on the drag strip. When not photographing the racing from our sweet vantage point at the starting line, we were hiking through the vendors' midway, hanging out in the pits and staging lanes, enjoying the show 'n' shine area right behind the grandstands, and hunting for treasure in the enormous swap meet area. As it's name implies, the Reunion is a chance to get together with old friends and even to shake hands with some of the heroes of this sport, who seem to enjoy being here as much as we do. And after the sun goes down, the stands stay packed for one of the highlights of the weekend-the Cacklefest, a cacophonous jam session of nitromethane-burning motors and fire-snorting pipes. There's nothing like it!