Ray takes first NHRA Pro Mod win

Jeremy Ray (far lane) got the win over Justin Bond.


Jeremy Ray raced to his first career victory during the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series presented by J&A Service portion of the AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals. This weekend’s Pro Mod racing, presented by Bruce Lowrie Chevrolet, is the 10th of 12 races this season.


Ray won on a holeshot with his pass of 5.785-second at 248.07 mph in his ’63 Corvette to Justin Bond’s 5.774 at 255.53. This is his first season in the E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.


“We just had to keep everything together,” Ray stated. “You have to be perfect every time you go up to the line. Everything worked well here though. The tuning was good, I was driving good and was able to just keep ahead on everything.”


Ray defeated Stevie Fast Jackson whose car made a move toward the centerline before he clicked it off, Steven Whiteley (5.796/247.57 to and No. 1 qualifier Sidnei Frigo (red light) to advance to the finals.

Sidnei Frigo qualified at the top of the Pro Mod field. He got the first-round win over a red-lighting Danny Rowe then Frigo coupled a .014 RT to a 5.801 at 256.11 mph to get the holeshot win over Mike Castellana’s 5.771/252.57.  


Frigo’s crew chief Brandon Stroud revealed the Bickel-built '69 Camaro debuted by the Frigo team in April was carrying a brand-new engine combination.


"It's a new generation AJ Hemi by Proline with FuelTech EFI and twin 88-mm Precision turbos that produce 36 pounds of boost -- NHRA makes sure of that," he said. "This is my first race with it and it is a little different. We have to learn what it likes, but it's showing some promise."


Bond, competing in his first NHRA Pro Mod event, defeated Keith Haney (who got loose and clicked off the car), Rickie Smith (5.767/256.02 to 5.787/250.55) and Todd Tutterow (5.770/255.82 to 5.848/245.23) to reach the finals.

Pro Stock driver Erica Enders just missed the cut, with her twin-turboed Elite Motorsports 2018 Camaro qualifying in the 17th spot of the 26 cars trying for the field. 


E3 Spark Plugs NHRA Pro Mod Drag Racing Series continues at the NHRA Carolina Nationals on Oct. 12-14 at zMAX Dragway located in Charlotte, NC, before their season ends in Las Vegas on Oct. 25-28.  

Blevins, Bowman capture Farmington Dragway IHRA finale wins

Hannah Blevins and Jeff Bowman captured wins at the IHRA Summit Sportsman Spectacular finale at the Farmington Dragway in Mocksville, NC. Driving a No Box door car, Blevins of Jefferson, NC, won the Moser Engineering $10,000-to-win top prize. Jeff Bowman from Asheboro, NC, drove a Box door car to the win the Hank Thomas Performance $5,000-to-win race.

Hannah Blevins had a .016 reaction time matching her 6.11 dial-in at 112.75 mph to beat Box racer Taylor Davis from Thomasville, NC, in the final round. Davis had the losing run with a .004 reaction time 4.48-second pass at 151.82 mph.


Blevins added to her overall winnings by claiming the $1,000 No Box bonus defeating Ernie Humes of Troutman, NC. Blevins had a .013 reaction time 6.10 second pass at 110.02 mph. Humes had a .053 reaction time 5.82 second pass at 118.20 mph.


Cameron Whisnant of Dallas, NC, won on a holeshot in Junior Dragster with a .053 to .067 reaction-time advantage over runner-up Slade Kincer of Rural Retreat, VA.  Whisnant, won the $700 winner’s purse, with a 7.895-second pass at 82.60 mph. Kincer went down the track in 8.103 seconds at 79.72 mph.

Jeff Bowman took home the Hank Thomas Performance race win, over runner-up Chris McGuire of Christianburg, VA.  Bowman had a .031 reaction time coupled with a 5.71 elapsed time at 121.10 mph and a 5.70 dial-in. McGuire raced down the track with a 4.80-second pass at 140.36 mph.


Phillip Harrison of Sugar Grove, NC, won the $500 bonus as the final No Box racer on Sunday with a .053 reaction time with a 6.14 at 111.28 mph. Runner-up Todd McKinney of Elizabethton, TN, went down the track with a 6.77-second pass at 100.99 mph.


Dillon Goodnight of Landis, NC, took home the victory over Saylar Bustle of Sherrills Ford, NC, with a .007 reaction time and 7.95-second pass at 78 mph.  Bustle had a .097 reaction time with a 7.8- second pass at 81.07 mph.   

Severance, Bellemeur top at Dallas; Rampy misses 100th win

Joey Severance, Woodburn, OR, and Sean Bellemeur, Placentia, CA, took home the wins in Top Alcohol Dragster and Top Alcohol Funny Car respectively at the NHRA FallNationals in Dallas.

Severance, defending NHRA Lucas Oil World Champion, was victorious with the quickest pass of the weekend at 5.236 seconds at 273.55 mph in his final round victory over Alan Bradshaw, Odessa, TX, who clocked in at 5.342 seconds, 270.00 mph.

Top Alcohol Funny Car points leader Bellemeur faced off against Doug Gordon, Paso Robles, CA, and posted a winning run of 5.513 seconds, 265.43 mph in his Chevy Camaro. Gordon, drove to a 5.513 second, 265.43 mph lap for his runner up finish. The win puts Bellemeur one step closer to clinching the NHRA Lucas Oil Top Alcohol Funny Car Championship.


There was one scary moment in the second round when Colorado TAFC driver Annie Whiteley could not get her car stopped after a loss to Doug Gordon. Whiteley’s chutes did not blossom and although she was on the brakes, the Camaro ran through the sand trap and into the safety net. Whiteley was not hurt.


Clint Neff, Arvada, CO, in Comp Eliminator and Brandon Bakies, Alexandria, La., in Super Stock both ran against David Rampy, Piedmont, AL, who advanced to the final in both classes and was hoping for his 100thNHRA national event win this weekend. Neff had the starting line advantage and made a winning pass of 7.573 seconds, 172.36 mph to deny Rampy. In Super Stock Rampy had the starting line advantage, but Bakies chased him down to get the win with a pass of 9.688 seconds and at 132.88 mph.


STOCK ELIMINATOR: Brian McClanahan, 9.971, 124.58 def Jimmy Hidalgo Jr., 11.168, 117.87


SUPER COMP: Jackson Collier, 8.921, 177.88 def Steve Williams, 8.912, 185.13


SUPER GAS: Casey Plaizier, 9.921, 150.00 def Joseph Lokhaug, 9.884, 158.20


SUPER STREET: Val Harmon, 10.948, 143.38 def Barney Barnhart 10.980, 134.97


TOP SPORTSMAN: Lance Rutland, 7.664, 177.81 def Bryan Warr, 7.007, 197.42


TOP DRAGSTER: Darian Boesch, 6.112, 215.93 def Mallori Rodgers, 6.288, 211.26   

NHRA Southeast Division champs head for national championship

Jeremy Hancock, Matt Ward, Earl Talley and John Markham each raced to victory at this weekend’s NHRA Southeast Division Summit Racing Series Finals and punched their ticket to the NHRA Summit National Championship in California next month. The team from Bristol Dragway swept the Team Championships winning the team title in both the Summit Series Finals and the Summit Jr. Drag Racing League Division Championships.


Hancock won on a holeshot over Michael Brown in Super Pro as did Ward over Derek Putnam in Pro. Hancock went .011 seconds on the tree then clocked in at 4.496 seconds at 151.12 mph for the win over Brown at 4.813, 143.64. Ward went 6.417, 105.98 to hold off Putnam who closed the gap with a 6.050, 112.40 but could not catch Ward.


Talley had a great .003 second reaction time then ran dead-on his dial at 7.730 on the 7.73 to knock out Tracy Sikes for the Sportsman trophy.


In the Super Pro Motorcycle final round, it was Markham clocking in at 5.542 seconds, 122.40 mph to beat Candy Hagadorn who tripped the clocks at 5.601, 114.75 for the runner up finish.


Joining in on the celebration were Joshua Googe, Carleigh Bynum and Gage Burch in the Summit Jr. Drag Racing League action. Googe made up a ton of ground on Forrest Radford to take the win in Jr. Novice, Bynum took the holeshot and held on for the win over Cody Owens in Jr. Intermediate and Burch grabbed his third win of the weekend in beating out Katrina Carpenter in Jr. Advanced.


In Saturday’s Race of Champion’s action Burch raced to a pair of wins grabbing the title in both High School and Jr. Dragster Advanced. His .009 reaction time in High School was the difference in beating out Seth Bevins who was looking to double himself. Burch’s win in Jr. Advanced came at the expense of Zach Goodwin with a red light start.


Kelly Hicks led the charge on Saturday with a win over Hank Wilhelm in Super Pro. Hicks, St. Augustine, FL, was out first then went 4.588 seconds at 141.55 mph to force Wilhelm, Maysville, GA, to breakout


Bevins, Albany, Ga., was also in the final of Pro taking the early lead with a .015 second reaction time, combined with a 6.547 second lap on the 6.54 dial to beat out Steve Foley and his ’75 Vega. Foley made it close running 6.242 on the 6.24 at 106.72 mph.


Dickey Forrester and Jerry Turner took the trophies in Sportsman and Super Pro Motorcycle respectively. Forrester went 7.569, 82.89 to defeat Sikes who had problems right off the start and Turner, Bluff City, TN, recorded a .010 package over Tim Sutton, Clermont, GA.


In other Jr. Dragster Race of Champion’s action, Carley Brown left first on Carson Emmett then drove the top end for the win in Jr. Dragster Intermediate and Hayden Hall won a close one over Nolan Callahan in the Jr. Dragster Novice. 

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