PITTSBORO, NC – For seven years Tommy D’Aprile was the hired gun for Mel Bush Motorsports. When a turn of events sidelined D’Aprile early this year, he quickly turned what could have been viewed as a sour situation into a positive, character-building opportunity.
“You know how racing is: here today and gone tomorrow,” D’Aprile told. “This was a faith-growing tool for me. The focus was not on what was taken away, but being thankful for all that I had. This wasn’t anything that was bad. This was a business decision for Mel to help him afford to run his racing program. Mel and I never had a falling out. I was discouraged and disappointed a bit, but that’s just normal.”
Elma, NY – It’s no secret that the Mel Bush Motorsports team has focused their race efforts elsewhere this season, but this weekend the team will take a shot at cracking the ultra competitive Get Screened America Pro Mod Challenge presented by ProCare Rx field at the 9th annual NHRA Las Vegas Nationals.
“Our race schedule this season has been very busy,” said Team Owner Mel Bush. “We’ve been very busy. Having only made a handful of these NHRA events we’re a little behind these guys but we’re in here and we’re gonna take a shot. Heck, its Vegas why not take a gamble.”
Mel Bush Motorsports Driver Tommy D’Aprile always looks forward to running on the NHRA side but Vegas, for some reason, demands more excitement from the normally reserved driver.
“Vegas really demands attention. Racing in that atmosphere is going to be really cool! Each NHRA event we compete in has its own personality. I’m not sure what this race’s is but I’m ready to find out and have some fun while doing it,” said D’Aprile.
Bush’s hired Gun, Tommy D’Aprile, will be tuned by the team’s regular Crew Chief, Kevin Peters, along with Engine Builder Mike Janis; both from Janis’ Elma, NY based Jan-Cen Motorsports.
Elma, NY – To say the Mel Bush Motorsports Team has had a rocky 2009 would be an understatement. Switching sanctioning bodies, debuting a new car and several bouts of bad luck have made the 2009 season one that team owner, Mel Bush, would rather put behind him.
“It’s been tough,” said Bush. “This season has taken a lot out of me and I just want to go to the races and have fun again. This format of finishing the yearwith the start of the next season is fine with me; the quicker this ones over the better.”
Elma, NY (September 16, 2009)– As Mel Bush and Driver, Tommy D’Aprile, head to Concord, NC for this weekend’s NHRA Carolina Nationals at Bruton Smith’s Zmax Dragway, “the Bellagio of dragstrips”, the duo are determined to crack the tough Get Screened America Pro Mod Challenge presented by ProCare Rx field. Continue reading
Elma, NY (September 1, 2009) – Mel Bush and Driver, Tommy D’Aprile, are bringing their Jan-Cen Racing Engines prepared Bel Air out of retirement to compete in the Get Screened America Pro Mod Challenge at the 55th Mac Tools U.S. Nationals presented by Lucas Oil.
Tommy D’Aprile’s last ride in Mel Bush’s famous ’62 Bel Air was one of his wildest rides in the seat of a door slammer. Just past the 330 mark a four-link bracket tore from the rear housing, planting the four-link bar into the track as the momentum of the car forced the car to ride over it, tossing the car in the air. Luckily for D’Aprile the car came back down on all four and has lived to fight another day. Continue reading
Elma, NY (August 25, 2009) – When Mel Bush commissioned Dan Page to build his new ride it was just that a ride for Mel himself. With recent health issues pulling Bush from the driver seat and the off season switch to ADRL competition Bush made the decision to build the car as a lightweight Pro Extreme machine with hired gun Tommy D’Aprile at the wheel.
The new Dan Page Race Cars built 70 ½ Camaro made its ADRL debut this past weekend at the ADRL Summit Racing Equipment Ohio Drags III and showed quickly that this car will be a force to recon with. Continue reading
Elma, NY (August 15, 2009) – One of the most recognizable cars on the ADRL Circuit is the Tommy D’Aprile driven ‘62 Bel Air of Mel Bush. At every ADRL event the crowds gather in the pit of the Mel Bush Motorsports team with many telling Mel, Tommy, or the crew stories of the bubble top they once had.
The Drag Story editor is no different. My family had a white ’62 Impala 2 door while I was growing up in the late 60’s. It had red interior and an AM radio, it was very cool. I always liked that car! While I’ll never take anything away from aero slick Camaros and Mustangs that populate the Pro Extreme class, I like different. Bush’s ’62 represented just that, different. Continue reading