READING, PA – Maple Grove Raceway hosts the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series NHRA Northeast division on May 26-28 highlighted by the Showdown at Sundown on Saturday. The event is one of 46 scheduled across the country where drivers earn points leading to divisional, regional and national championships as well as a chance at a share of the year-end purse of more than $519,000.
Categories include Top Alcohol Dragster, Top Alcohol Funny Car, Comp Eliminator, Super Stock, Stock Eliminator, Super Comp, Super Gas and Super Street. The division’s MXI/Magnaflux Top Dragster and Top Sportsman Series’ presented by Select Performance will also run in conjunction with the event.
Saturday night features the Showdown at Sundown with Jet Funny Cars, along with the Top Alcohol Dragsters and Funny Car eliminations once the sun sets beginning at 5 p.m. See schedule below for details on run times. Pricing for each day is $20 per day, children 12 and under are free with paid adult. A special $25 per car load price is offered on Saturday after 3 p.m.
COMMERCE, GA – In the final results of the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Southeast Division event at Atlanta Dragway, past national champions, Kevin Brannon and Jeffrey Barker, as well as a double up win from David Rampy highlighted the list of winners for the fifth of seven events in the Southeast division.
David Rampy, Piedmont, Ala., gained two trophies for his collection, taking home the win in Comp Eliminator and Super Stock. In Comp Eliminator Rampy ran down Jim Kimbrough, Pace, Fla., posting a winning lap of 7.230 seconds at 183.62 mph. Rampy’s win in Super Stock was won at the tree, defeating Alain Cauchon of Drummondville, Quebec.
The NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event which went into overtime when rain rolled in on its last scheduled day also featured jet engine-powered vehicles and fireworks.
Top Alcohol Dragster driver JP Gutierrez led qualifying with a 5.42 and 261 mph hit from his MGM Grand Detroit/Children’s Center of Detroit car and won with a 5.52 at 259 mph over Brandon Greco’s 6.17 at 128 mph. The top qualified position and the win are firsts for the Michigan-based driver who’s been working his way up in the category he’s been in for five years.
NORWALK, OH – Former NHRA Top Fuel World Champion Larry Dixon took home the win and the trophy in his NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Top Alcohol Funny Car debut at the wheel of the Bartone Bros. ’17 Camaro for this weekend’s Cavalcade of Stars presented by Budweiser at Summit Motorsports Park.
Dixon, Avon, Ind., qualified in the No. 4 spot then defeated the No. 2 qualifier Andy Bohl in a close semi-final round match up with a 5.576, 261.57 to Bohl’s 5.616, 267.37 setting up a final round match up with Tony Bogolo. Dixon posted the quickest run of the event at 5.533 seconds at 265.90 mph to take the win over Bogolo who clocked in at 6.289, 178.45.
John Paul Gutierrez, Berkley, Mich., qualified in the No. 1 spot in Top Alcohol Dragster then knocked out reigning North Central Region Champion Mia Tedesco and Jared Dreher in rounds one and two. Gutierrez faced off with Brandon Greco in the final and laid down a lap of 5.527 seconds at 259.91 mph for the win as Greco slowed to a 6.172, 128.54 mph run. The win was the first for Gutierrez.
FONTANA, CA – Seven California racers took home wins from the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, Pacific Division event at Auto Club Dragway at Auto Club Speedway over the weekend. Racers from all over the state were represented in the final rounds making this a golden weekend for NHRA racing in California.
It was a brotherly dual in Super Comp where Val Torres, Chino Hills, Calif., faced off against his brother Gabriel Torres, La Puente, Calif. Gabriel was better off the line posting a 0.018 second reaction time and a winning run of 8.920 seconds, 166.25 mph. The more experienced brother, Val Torres, who has six wins in Super Comp alone, had a 0.032 second reaction time and posted a runner up finish of 8.910 seconds, 173.09 mph.
Cowie, Surrey, B.C., collected his 8th career national event win and his second of the 2017 season in defeating second generation driver Rachel Meyer, Springhill, Kan., in the Top Alcohol Dragster final. Cowie saved his best pass of eliminations posting a 5.214 second 277.54 mph lap as Meyer lost traction and could not recover as she watched Cowie power to the win. Cowie qualified number one with a career best 5.214, 275.90.
Lombardo, Brea, Calif., faced off with Annie Whiteley, Grand Junction, Colo., in the Top Alcohol Funny Car Final with both drivers loosing traction at the start. Lombardo peddled his ’16 Napa Auto Parks Camaro and recovered to post a 6.261 at 263.05 for the win and the 8th of his career. Like Cowie, Lombardo posted his quickest and fastest career pass in his second round win over Doug Gordon at 5.395, 274.16, just the third 5.30 run in history.
He circled NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series and Mello Yello Drag Racing Series races on his calendar, but when the building of the powerplant for his American Race Cars-built dragster was delayed, friend and fellow racer Rob Moser invited him to pilot his American Race Cars-built dragster. It was a match, as Hessling earned his first Wally trophy in Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series’ Super Comp.
But when his own dragster was fit to fight in Top Dragster soon after that, he began laying down 6.30s via an Advanced Product Design-built big-block Chevy complemented with a ProCharger F-1X-12 and RaceDrive, and achieved a runner-up finish at the NHRA Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in 2015 and a win at the 10th Annual Cavalcade of Stars presented by Budweiser in 2016, both at Summit Motorsports Park.