| Bowling Green, Ky: The fall weather is on us and that means the closing days of racing season are just around the corner. This season’s finale had a little extra flair as it marked the return of the GoodGuys Rod and Custom Association back into drag racing. This race had everything from highs to lows with all four IAM Championship Series class championships still open. The teams were ready to do battle and a free time session proved that with every car unloaded and making laps to get the tune up just right.
Quick Fuel Technology PRO Gas is becoming the class with the tightest racing with it taking a .035 over to break into the top 20 at this event. The top five in qualifying all had something in common and that was that they were all dead on to earn the spots. Mike Japczyk ran .009 over to take fifth, Bob Perkins ran .008 over for fourth, Rob Davis ran .007 over for third, Dave Mullin and Scott Hudson were both .002 over with Hudson running it first to take the bye into the first round. Nick Dishon, holding a slight advantage over reigning champ Sam Patrick coming into the race, was dispatched first round with mechanical gremlins leaving Patricks fate up to himself. Mitch Allen cut Patrick loose in the third round leaving Patrick in a dead tie with Dishon for the Championship with Dishon getting the nod after the tie break procedure went to the third step and that was counting round wins. Back to the race we found Kurt Duckworth and Sue Campbell squared up with Campbell taking the tree and Duckworth running closer to his A/G index to take the round where he would meet Jaxon Messamore who advanced over Mitch Allen. Messamore left first but crossed .009 under his E/G index handing the win to Duckworth for his first NDRL victory.
Hot Heads PRO Comp would be up next and the drivers started qualifying with their game faces on. Stan Hunter stormed to the top running dead on 5 to take the top spot besting Gary Williams effort of .022 over his E/C index. The top three in points qualified all together with Tim Reis, Dale Fidler, and Troy Wilson rounding out the top five. Reis and Fidler went out first round leaving the door open for Wilson to win the championship but Adam Satterfield shut that door leaving Fidler with his first ever NDRL championship by two points over Reis and four over Wilson. The semi finals found Phil Stamps advancing over Williams setting up the final round with Satterfield. Mechanical gremlins showed up in the form of a bad starter and Satterfield showed great sportsmanship by waiting for fifteen minutes in the car while Stamps and crew changed starters. Satterfield rolled up and took a huge advantage and carried it all the way to win his first NDRL Willy.
Phenix Industried PRO 7.5 had the same storyline but a different cast and the qualifying numbers were just as good. Points contenders Bo Boles(.036) and Darrell Wathen(.013) rounded out the top five in qualifying following Jarrod Bradshaw (.011), Ross Smith(.009) and pole sitter Kerry Millet going .007 to earn the bye for round one. Boles exited during round two and sealing his fate leaving the title fight up to Wathen and Sears. Wathen showed his power by wheeling past Justin Shaffer running dead on 0 to earn his side of the final with Sears advancing over Pat Malloy. The final was a nail biter the whole was as both cars left together with both drivers feeding stripe to the other and Wathen taking the line and the win. With Sears able to make the final, he carried the advantage in the points and bested Wathen by four points to retain his NDRL title.
Ross Racing Engines PRO 7.00, the fastest in the fleet, were up next and they did not disappoint. The top ten in qualifying were separated by .057 for the tightest qualifying batch in NDRL PRO 7.0 history. Points leader Robbie Freels qualified fifth losing a crucial qualifying point to 2nd place Billy Smith to tighten it up to a single round lead for the championship. Larry Harlen (.019), Sue Christopherson (.016) followed Steve Walczak through qualifying with his dead on .003 run to earn the bye. The entire NDRL pits were standing in the lanes awaiting the outcome of first round as the championship would be decided. Freels lined up with Preston Davis and, after the hit, the car suffered mechanical failure leaving Freels parked on the side of the track and his hopes of a NDRL championship fleeting. Watching the agony on the faces of the team left most of the NDRL contingent in shock and feeling the pain with Freels. It all came down to one round and Smith rounded the corner paired up with “The Islander” Pat Freels. It was obvious Freels was on a mission as the pair staged up and the mighty Pontiac left first with Freels feeding the stripe to Smith and lighting up his win lights sealing the first Ross Racing Engines PRO 7.00 for the the younger Freels. As the celebration ensued, Pats mission was far from over as he took the bye run earning his way into the final where he would meet Walczak who advanced over Cory Millet. The Final brought more tension to Drama Island as Freels could not get the Pontiac started. Walczak waited patiently until Freels threw in the towel leaving him on a single running 7.04 to take the win.
Thanks go out to Jason Bunker for inviting us into the event. As always, we would be nothing without the great marketing partners that support us: International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers (IAMAW), Quickfuel Technologies, Briggs and Stratton, ScottRods Custom HotRods & Fiberglass, ET Genie, Sexton Wilbert Corporation, Ross Racing Engines, Hot Heads Research, Phenix Industries, Freedom Racing Engines, Howards Cams, Saldana Racing Products Competition Products, Shorty Rader Racing, Deist Safety, Renegade Racing Fuels & Lubricants, DJ Safety, and Buzelli Golf.
Ross Racing Engines PRO 7.0
Winner- Steve Walczak firstname.lastname@example.org
Runner up- Pat Freels (broke)
Phenix Industries PRO 7.5
Winner- Darrell Wathen email@example.com
Runner up- Wayne Sears firstname.lastname@example.org
Hot Heads PRO Comp
Winner- Adam Satterfield email@example.com (9.00)
Runner up- Phil Stamps firstname.lastname@example.org (8.50)
Quick Fuel Technology PRO Gas
Winner- Kurt Duckworth email@example.com (8.00)
Runner up-Jaxon Messamore firstname.lastname@example.org (10.00)