LAMB KEEPS RACKING UP THE ACCOLADES
Justin Lamb, a five-time Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series champion, continues to defy the odds and extend his historic winning streak. With back-to-back victories during NHRA's Western Swing, Lamb has secured at least one national event win every season since 2012.
Lamb's remarkable streak was further solidified with wins at the Flav-R-Pac NHRA Northwest Nationals in Seattle and the Sonoma Nationals. At the Pacific Raceways in Seattle, Lamb drove his RAD Torque Systems Chevrolet COPO Camaro to claim his 30th career win and seventh in Stock Eliminator. He followed this up with a win in Sonoma, piloting his trusty Silver State Plumbing Chevrolet Cobalt to his 16th Super Stock victory.
Interestingly, Lamb's 12-year streak of national event wins is only surpassed by Funny Car champion Ron Capps, who stretched his series of yearly victories to 15 earlier this summer in Bristol.
Reflecting on his outstanding achievement, Lamb expressed his disbelief.
"I never would've dreamed of winning this many national events, and it's really special to be able to do so," said Lamb, who has only missed claiming national trophies in two seasons (2008 and 2011) since hoisting his first in 2006. "It's pretty unbelievable to be able to extend the win streak to 12 years. It's definitely something I'm proud of, and it's something I hope to be able to continue for as long as possible."
In Seattle, Lamb faced tough competition in his journey to the final round. He overcame Jeff Lane in the quarterfinals and Brian Seaburg in a close race to secure a spot in the final. Facing first-time finalist Greg Kielman, Lamb proved his tenacity at the starting line and clinched the win in a thrilling showdown.
"The semifinal round was really difficult," said Lamb, who was better at the starting line with a .024-second reaction time to Seaburg's .050, then carefully wheeled his way to a 9.792 (9.74) to his opponent's 13.710 (13.67) to win by just .014-second. "It ended up working out, and the final was just a great, great race. [Seattle] is the closest national event for my sponsor, RAD Torque Systems, and Dan Provost. He wasn't here, but he's been a longtime supporter, and I was really happy to get the win for him at Pacific Raceways."
Lamb attributed his success to not only his skill behind the wheel but also the strong bond with his family. His wife Jeanine and children Jayce and Jovi joined Lamb on the Western Swing, creating cherished memories together.
The Sonoma Nationals introduced an emotional twist to Lamb's winning streak. His cousin, Trey Vetter, also participated in the Super Stock ranks and joined the family on their racing tour. Coincidently, Lamb and Vetter found themselves on opposite sides of the ladder in Sonoma, setting the stage for an exciting family showdown in the final round. Vetter's remarkable journey included a perfect reaction time and a double-breakout win in the quarterfinals, earning him a shot at the title. Meanwhile, Lamb showcased his expertise, reaching his second consecutive final round.
"Trey is probably the only person on the planet I want to win more than myself," said Lamb. "He is such a great driver and an amazing person, and I'd love for him to win a national event. Trey puts in 100% effort every time he shows up, and he's only going to become a better driver. This one is bittersweet; I'm happy to win, but I want him to win, too."
The victory in Sonoma held special significance for Lamb as it marked his return to the raceway where his dear friend and racing partner Kyle Seipel once served as the track manager. Seipel, a highly accomplished racer with four national event wins at Sonoma Raceway, tragically lost his battle with cancer in 2021. Winning in Seipel's memory held deep meaning for Lamb.
Taking a momentary break from the NHRA circuit, Lamb plans to make a comeback during the fall for the Lucas Oil Series double-header in Bakersfield. In the meantime, he may engage in local bracket racing to stay sharp and satisfy his racing passion.
"These last two weeks have been a blast, but they've been tough," said Lamb. "It's very, very difficult to win because everyone out there is a great racer. I felt a lot of pressure in Seattle because I hadn't won in a while, so in a way, it was a relief. Winning never gets old, but it sure never gets easier."
As Lamb savors his recent wins, he acknowledges the invaluable support of his sponsors, including RAD Torque Systems, Silver State Plumbing, Redback Boots, Goodyear Racing Tires, LIQUI-MOLY, Moser Engineering, Palmer Electric, Stone Chevrolet, Matco Tools, Lafferty Drilling and Blasting, and A-1 Performance Trans and Converters. Their partnership has played a pivotal role in his success on the track.