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Baker Dominates MIR Mountain Motor Nationals

By Bill Pratt
Photos by Stephen Hawes

Carl Baker won the 24th Annual Mountain Motor Nationals Pro Stock race June 18 at Maryland International Raceway in a dominating performance. Driving the Summit Racing 2002 Cougar, Baker set Low ET and Top Speed and won the eight-car qualified event with consistent 6.50s. In a repeat of the IHRA Shreveport final this year, Baker defeated John Montecalvo and the Citgo Chevrolet Cavalier. Larry Plummer won an associated Frantic 7 Doorslammer show in his nitrous assisted '63 Corvette.

After two rounds of qualifying, the Pro Stock field was set as follows:

1. Carl Baker, 2002 Mercury Cougar, 6.559, 211.36
2. Doug Kirk, 2001 Chevrolet Cavalier, 6.618, 210.87
3. John Montecalvo, 2002 Chevrolet Cavalier, 6.620, 209.79
4. Tim Nabors, 2001 Chevrolet Cavalier, 6.634, 209.04
5. Wally Stroupe, 2001 Pontiac Grand Am, 6.677, 208.52
6. Frank Gugliotta, 1997 Ford Probe, 6.692, 209.59
7. Frank Snellings, Jr., 2002 Chevrolet Cavalier, 6.728, 207.43
8. Terry Walters, 1999 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 6.806, 203.37

Round one began with Wally Stroupe upsetting number Tim Nabors, who shut off with problems. Wally's 2001 Pontiac Grand Am went 6.780 at 207.37 to advance to round two with a unique Jon Kaase GM powerplant.

Pro Stock rookie Frank Snellings Jr. then won his first-ever round of Pro Stock racing in a huge upset of Doug Kirk. As the two-time IHRA World Champion shook the tires to a 10.90 shut off, Snellings sped to a personal best time of 6.705 at 207.82 mph. Snellings is a local racer who won the first two Frantic Four season championships at MIR. He went to Jerry Haas's shop in late 2001 and dropped $82,000 on a brand new Cavalier, then spent more money on the best motor Sonny's Automotive had to offer. NHRA Ford Pro Stock star Robert Patrick Jr. was on hand to help Snellings.


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