Norwalk gets ready to rumble with Thunder in the Streets

Night Under Fire tonight
Aaron Krause
Aug 9, 2013

One youngster told Dave Comparette the interior of his vehicle looked like the cockpit of an airplane.

Comparette's vehicle can fly all right -- at 160 mph.

Comparette, of Sandusky, brought his 1967 Marlboro Maroon Corvette to Thunder in the Streets on Thursday -- an event brought back to Uptown Norwalk after a several-year hiatus. The event allows people to look at race cars prior to Summit Motorsports Park's Night Under Fire, which is scheduled for Saturday night.

In addition to looking at cars, listening to music and buying snacks, people attending Thunder in the Streets could enter into a drawing for a 1994 Trans Am and a brand new grill. The Friends of the Norwalk Foundation Inc. will raffle off the vehicle and grill during Night Under Fire.

Comparette didn't plan to race his car in Night Under Fire. He brought the car uptown Thursday for display. The area resident said he let the boy who likened the inside of his car to a cockpit sit in it.

Comparette has had six Corvettes over the years. He bought his first when he was 25 and has had three altogether. He said the Corvette has been his favorite car since he was a small child.

"They are fun cars no matter what year they are," the 61-year-old said.

Clyde resident Randy Dick brought his 1961 "Roman Red" Corvette uptown. He said he bought it "in pieces" 20 years ago and has restored it.

"This is kind of my joy car," Dick said, adding he regularly drives a Ford F150.

Dick estimated he drives the Corvette twice a month.

He said people stopped by his vehicle and commented they always wanted a Corvette.

Bill Horvath came to Norwalk from Lorain to show off and race his 1969 Lakewood drag racing car.

He's been drag racing for 21 years, including regularly in Norwalk.

Horvath, who plans to race Saturday night, said his fastest time is 8.93 seconds at 156 mph.

"I love the Night Under Fire, it's a great event," the 40-year-old said, adding it's one of the high points of the season for him.

Horvath was in town with his father, Craig, his fiancé, Ann Marie, her mom, Sue and Ann Marie's 13-year-old son, Matt.

Matt, who said he wants to be a stock car racer at age 16, planned to take a special picture at Thunder in the Streets -- a panoramic shot of Horvath's trailer and car next to drag racing notable Bob Motz's vehicle and trailer.