There are just some racers who are downright versatile and Henderson, Nevada's Justin Lamb continues to show that his name belongs on that elite list. Lamb recently earned his ninth NHRA National Event victory when he took the Super Stock title during the NHRA Sonoma Nationals. While he has been very successful at many facilities across the country, for Lamb there is just something that clicks for him in Sonoma, where with his latest win made a total of four at the California track. Lamb's first coming to him in 2007, when he grabbed the Super Comp win, then doing so again in 2009. His third was technically a Phoenix national event win, which was competed at the Sonoma facility.
Justin Lamb Claims NHRA Super Stock Wally at 2012 Sonoma Nationals
Super Stock Sunstate/K&N 2010 Chevy Cobalt Takes Justin Lamb all the way at Sonoma Nationals
"It's hard to explain," said Lamb, when asked of his success in Sonoma. "There are just some venues that agree with particular racers. We've always had success here, so it's like a shot of confidence when I come through the gate. The only tangible explanation I can give is that this is a really tricky track in terms of predicting weather and track changes as they affect these cars. The weather and the wind are constantly changing, and it can create huge swings in E.T. We've got a lot of data here and that allows me to really trust my setup each round. That's one area where I feel like we've got an edge, particularly here in Sonoma."
Not only is Lamb versatile, so is the Sunstate/K&N 2010 Chevy Cobalt that he has been so successful in. Before returning to Sonoma, where he competed with the car in Super Stock SS/CM, he entered the same Cobalt in and won the Competition Eliminator class during the NHRA Div. 7 event in Fallon, Nevada, where he also drive his way to the 9.90 Super Gas title class as well during the same event. Following his good fortune in Fallon, he represented NHRA Div. 7 in the JEGS All-Stars event at Joliet, where he helped his Division 7 team bring home the All-Stars team championship by plowing through the Comp Eliminator field to take the runner-up honors.
Now back to a track where it seems his entire family has great luck, Lamb put the team's Cobalt right at the top of the ladder, qualifying number one in Super Stock by running nearly a second under his SS/CM index. After making it past, Richard Pinoski and SergioFelipe Crespo during round on and two, it set him up for a competition single during round three to end Saturday's on track activities.
Eyeing the remainder of his potential customers, Lamb knew he needed to stay right on his game as he was to start off championship Sunday by first facing fellow West Coast standout, Gregg Luneack in the Super Stock quarterfinal round. Fortunately for Lamb, Luneack was unable to make the call and he received a nice warm up single to start his day to sail into the semifinals where he would face one of the winningest sportsman competitors of all-time, K&N's Dan Fletcher. Fletcher, and his very familiar '69 Camaro, had just won the Denver Super Stock Wally a week prior.
No matter whom you are facing at this level of competition, but especially when so much is on the line once you have made it into the later rounds, Lamb assembled his game plan carefully and went to the line to face the sportsman racing giant, more than ready not to allow Fletcher any room right from the hit. With his near perfect reaction time of .001, Lamb quickly slammed the door on any hopes that Fletcher may have of back-to-back Super Stock national wins and was on his way to another championship final round in Sonoma.
"That was definitely the key round," Lamb admitted of his race with Fletcher. "The final was a great race too, but the semi's was big for several reasons. First off, it's the semifinals. No one remembers who loses in the semis. Plus, there's a huge swing in prize money from the semi-finalists to the finalists. On top of that, I was racing Dan Fletcher, who has won nearly 80 NHRA national events. I was happy with my lights all weekend, and made some minor adjustments to try to be high .00 or low .01 against Dan. I didn't really intend to be .001, but it certainly worked out!"
For the Super Stock final, the 25 year old Lamb would line his K&N clad Cobalt up against another very quick Super Stock entry, Dave Raybourn and his SS/AH 1968 Dart. In a rare match up, it would almost appear to the onlookers on hand, that these two competitors we running a same index heads-up race with the nearly identical dial-ins of 8.56 for Lamb and 8.58 for Raybourn.
In a round like this, reaction time was going to make a huge difference and with a nice .019 advantage at the tree, Lamb made it a squeaker at the stripe when he took just seven inches or two thousandths of a second for the win light and the 2012 NHRA Sonoma Nationals Super Stock Wally.
Lamb thanked the many great companies for their support for his family's entire fleet of winning races cars, including K&N Engineering and more notably the protection that each one of the entries receive with both K&N Wrench-off oil filters and K&N high flowing air filters.
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