FINAL RESULTS - TEETS' SUMMIT CLASH WIN HEADLINES ADRL VMP WINNERS
In what was the most lucrative win in his career and in Top Sportsman history, Terry Teets didn’t have to go far to get it on Saturday.
Racing close to home at Virginia Motorsports Park, Teets capped off a terrific day with a winning 4.444 at 163.59 miles per hour in the finals of the Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman “Clash of the Titans,” which was held at this weekend’s American Drag Racing League (ADRL) U.S. Drags V.
The win against Richmond-area native William Brown III netted Teets a Top Sportsman-record $10,000 prize and one massive winner’s circle smile.
“This is the biggest win I’ve ever had. I love Summit and the ADRL for putting this on,” said Teets, who also credited tuner Wayne Rogers, stepdaughter Sidney Spence and his son, Chris Teets. “It’s a big deal, too, because my brother (Glenn) won (in Top Sportsman) last year here, so we kept it in the family.”
Other winners at the U.S. Drags at VMP included Mick Snyder (Pro Extreme), Doug Riesterer (Pro Nitrous), Brad Brand (Mickey Thompson Extreme 10.5), Casey Stemper (Pro Extreme Motorcycle), Richie Stevens Jr. (Extreme Pro Stock) and Fredy Scriba (Aeromotive Fuel Systems Pro Modified).
Driving a Jerry Haas Race Cars ’04 Cavalier, Teets qualified No. 15 in the 32-car qualifying field and then persevered through five rounds of eliminations before topping Brown in a memorable and historic final round.
“William is a great guy and a tough racer, so it’s also nice to keep this in the state of Virginia,” Teets said. “The car ran great all weekend and we just took it a round at a time. Getting to go out last and run as the final pair was really great.”
Mick Snyder made Pro Extreme history on Saturday, becoming the first driver in PX history to win three straight races.
This time, Snyder won it on the line, using an .043 reaction time to have his 3.665 at 208.23 mph hold up in a holeshot win against Tim Tindle and his career-best 3.646. The win stretched Snyder’s points lead and also gave him a significant first in the class.
“We’ve done it three different ways. My dad gave me one (win) with some awesome horsepower, we won one on a single and this one, I got to do it. A holeshot win is always cool,” Snyder said. “To get three in a row, it’s just crazy.”
Snyder was his usual consistent self in the Powersource Transportation Corvette and stayed in the 3.60s the entire weekend, making six passes just on Saturday alone. Tindle, though, nearly matched him with an outstanding run in his first PX finals appearance.
“It rattled the tires and got out of the groove a little, but I just kept driving. It was a great race,” Snyder said. “It was the most passes I’ve ever made in one day, but this is all of us working together.”
Doug Riesterer again delivered a masterful performance in Pro Nitrous, winning for the second straight race for the first time in his ADRL career by running an unbelievable 3.75 at 195.11 mph to also beat Burton Auxier, who ran a strong 3.824, for a second straight time.
The career-best pass is just off Auxier’s record pass of 3.74 set in 2011 at VMP, and came after some considerable adversity. Riesterer didn’t make a qualifying pass until the final session, just getting into the field with a 4.24. He turned it on late, running a 3.84 and 3.85 to reach the finals, capping off a truly memorable day with the brilliant pass.
“It was definitely the best win I’ve ever had, putting together a run like that in the finals. Getting back-to-back wins is so hard and Burton is as tough as they come. To run that kind of number, it’s just amazing,” said Riesterer, who thanked Reher-Morrison and Switzer Dynamics.
“We had it hopped up, but I didn’t think it was going to run that. It held the front end up forever, but to get that is just unbelievable. It’s just an awesome feeling.”
Richie Stevens won the Extreme Pro Stock “Battle For The Belts” in 2011, but his first official event win came on Saturday after he reeled in Dean Goforth with a 4.091 at 176.33 mph in the finals, picking a perfect time to run his quickest and fastest time of the weekend.
Afterwards, he dedicated the win to team sponsor and CarSafe Owner Mark Eckman.
“This feels awesome. Everybody out here is great and the competition is just incredible, so this means a lot to me. But it meant even more to get this win for Mark,” Stevens said. “This trophy is going right to his house.”
Stevens put together back-to-back 4.09s in his Jerry Haas Race Cars Mustang to finish his day, which followed a lucky break when he pedaled to a win in the quarterfinals against Pete Berner.
“We had a good day and a couple lucky breaks, but you need that,” Stevens said. “(Crew chief) Tom (Pierson) gave me a great car and we pulled it together when we had to. It was a good effort by everybody.”
A blown head gasket almost cost Casey Stemper in the Pro Extreme Motorcycle finals, but he was determined not to let it get the best of him.
It might have cost some parts on the bike, but Stemper continued to fight even as his bike caught fire in the finals against Eric McKinney, holding onto the win with an impressive 4.034 at 164.77 mph.
“I was not going to let up. I felt the flames on my arm, but if I was that close to the win, I wasn’t going to give it up in the last 100 feet. When I saw that win light come on, it was just awesome,” Stemper said. “It was so close at the end and I thought he might get me, but that was just incredible.”
Stemper went as quick as 4.034 to qualify No. 1 and picking up his second victory in 2012 also put him closer to points leader McKinney in the championship chase.
“Eric’s a great rider and we’re always trying to chase him down. You always want to beat the best,” Stemper said.
Brad Brand broke through for his first ADRL victory in Mickey Thompson Extreme 10.5, just avoiding the left guardwall en route to a 3.949 at 185.72 mph to beat Alan Pittman in a highly-entertaining come-from-behind victory.
Brand qualified No. 2 with a 3.938 and his turbo-charged RJ Race Cars Mustang went 3.972 to beat Chuck Ulsch and advance to the finals. Pittman left first on Brand, but Brand never lifted despite the scare with the wall to end up with a highly-satisfying victory.
“We had been to two finals and had not won, so that felt really good,” Brand said. “We had the low round every round in eliminations, too. We wanted to get aggressive, but we did what had to be done.
“We just had to work with the track and it was definitely a satisfying win.”
Fredy Scriba had an impressive run for his first ADRL victory, knocking out stalwarts Rickie Smith and Todd Tutterow in Aeromotive Fuel Systems Pro Modified.
Scriba went 3.981 at 188.25 to beat Smith, the No. 1 qualifier, in the semifinals and then stepped up with a 3.972 at 188.96 to chase down Tutterow and win by two feet in the finals.
Racing in a final of his fourth different ADRL class, Tutterow knocked out Jeff Naiser and points leader Mike Castellana – handing him his first ADRL loss in 2012 – but Scriba overcame Tutterow’s starting-line advantage.
“This was really cool. It was definitely a tuner’s weekend, but all the hard work we put in really paid off,” Scriba said. “I’ve got a good group of guys and things really came together.
“We had to play our own game and just run our race. We were running pretty consistent, going rounds and we just stuck to the gameplan. We had a lot of fun and I’m really glad they added this class.”
Bo Butner won for the third time in the SuperCar Showdown, running a career-best 5.798 at 118.87 in the finals to outdistance Chris Holbrook.
In Pro Junior Dragster, Robert Vogler won with a 7.917 at 80.53 mph.
The sixth and next stop on the 10-race 2012 ADRL Tour takes place on July 13-14 with the Summer Drags VIII at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park in Martin, Mich.
SATURDAY: FINAL QUALIFYING
FRIDAY QUALIFYING - ADRL FIGHTS RAIN TO GET ONE FULL QUAL. SESSION COMPLETED
Travis Harvey is hoping his stay on top in Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman lasts one more night.
Right now Harvey is the driver to beat at Summit Racing Equipment’s Top Sportsman “Clash of the Titans,” a special one-race event during the American Drag Racing League’s (ADRL) U.S. Drags V at Virginia Motorsports Park.
He went a remarkable 4.141 at 173.43 miles per hour in the massive 35-car Summit Racing Top Sportsman field on Friday, jumping to the top spot of the 32-car qualifying field that will pay out a Top Sportsman record $10,000 to the winner.
“This is a pretty huge event and since it’s $10,000 on the line and Summit was putting it on, I really wanted to come out,” said Harvey, who won Dragstock VIII in 2011. “I tried to put together a run in the 4.10s and that’s what it did.
“That was really good for the conditions. You have to be smart and know what the track can take. We test a lot and this car is really good in the heat.”
Other qualifying leaders of the U.S. Drags V after a rain-shortened Friday include Jason Scruggs (Pro Extreme), Jim Halsey (Pro Nitrous), Brad Brand (Mickey Thompson 10.5), Dave Norris (Pro Extreme Motorcycle), Elijah Morton (Extreme Pro Stock) and Mike Castellana (Aeromotive Pro Modified).
Rain washed away one qualifying session for every class, while only three classes (XPS, PM, TS) were able to get in two qualifying runs because of the inclement weather.
That weather also bumped Saturday’s action at VMP to an earlier starting time. Racing will start at 9 a.m. with the completion of the second qualifying session. A third qualifying session will follow, with eliminations for the U.S. Drags V and the Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman “Clash of the Titans” slated to begin at its previously scheduled 3:30 p.m.
Harvey will hope to keep his top spot through eliminations, but he will have incredible company. Thirty-four of the 35 cars ran in the 4-second range and Harvey knows it will take a monumental effort to win the $10,000 prize.
“I’m really thankful for the ADRL and Summit for putting on a race like this. It’s pretty awesome to have (35) fast cars like this,” Harvey said.
“You’re going to have to keep up with the weather and keep the car running well, but you’re also going to need some lucky rounds. There’s some really good competition out there, that’s for sure.”
Jason Scruggs laid down arguably the most impressive run of Friday as track temperatures approached 140 degrees, delivering a 3.674 at 206.13 mph in sweltering heat to take the No. 1 qualifying spot in Pro Extreme. It put Scruggs on a good path as he tries to become the first PX driver to win in consecutive years at VMP.
“I like to go first, that way I don’t have to watch anybody else,” Scruggs said. “I was shooting for a 3.70 or a 3.69, and it went a tad better than I thought. It really came together for us. For the conditions, that was a great run and we were very happy with that.”
Mick Snyder, who is trying to become the first PX driver in ADRL history to win three straight races, went 3.705 in his Powersource Transportation Corvette, while Brandon Pesz is third with a 3.71.
Scruggs wasn’t sure what to expect in the heat, but he has always held VMP in high regard.
“Very rarely do you get a track that hot, but even though it was hot, the track was in pretty good shape. We feel like we’ve got a pretty good car in any conditions,” Scruggs said.
“Virginia Motorsports Park didn’t get ADRL Track of the Year (in 2011) for nothing. This facility and track is definitely one of the best we run on. This track has been pretty good to us, too.”
In just one pass, Jim Halsey might have gotten the turnaround he had been hoping for in Pro Nitrous.
As one of only a small number to get his car down the track in some tricky conditions, Halsey went a solid 3.905 at 193.16 mph.
“We’ve been testing the last five weeks and the last two were in 90-degree weather, so that probably gave us an edge. This last three weeks testing have been good and we learned a lot of stuff not to do,” Halsey said. “The track was very good considering the temperature, but I think there’s more in (the car).”
Jim Laurita was right behind with a 3.928, as was Robert Patrick and his 3.934. Even with the early-season struggles, Halsey has only one goal coming into the weekend at VMP.
“We come out to win and that’s not going to change. If I didn’t think we could win, I wouldn’t be here,” Halsey said.
Morton was more than happy to wait through the lengthy rain delay after the end result gave him his first No. 1 qualifying spot in 2012 in Extreme Pro Stock.
Todd Hoerner and his Sonny’s Racing Engines EFI-powered Jerry Bickel Race Cars 2012 Camaro was the first to take advantage of the cooler weather after the rain, running a 4.078 at 176.24 mph.
Morton then followed minutes later with an identical 4.078 but his faster 176.77 mph pass gave him the top spot and left him feeling good in his new Jerry Haas Race Cars Mustang after some early-season struggles.
“That did feel good. We’ve been digging around the yard and I found my mojo,” Morton said. “Some new JRi Shocks helped us and our guys are getting the program straight. We’ve dug hard, found some things and it’s working.
“It felt good when we left and that was an awesome feeling.”
Joining Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman and Extreme Pro Stock as the only classes to get in two qualifying sessions, Mike Castellana jumped to the top spot in Aeromotive Fuel Systems Pro Modified with a 3.965 at 192.80 during his second run.
Castellana improved slightly on his first pass and he will try to remain unbeaten in the class on Saturday.
“It was a decent run. (Crew chief) Shannon (Jenkins) and the guys got a hold of the track on that second pass, but we don’t really see temperatures like this too often,” Castellana said. “Our goal was to just go down, get qualified and go from there. We were pretty happy with the run.”
Dave Roemer is currently second with a 3.976 and Jeff Naiser is right behind with a 3.984.
Dave Norris impressed with a huge season-best for him in Pro Extreme Motorcycle, running a standout 4.168 at 169.40 mph.
Casey Stemper and Eric McKinney ran a pair of 4.18s in a terrific side-by-side pass to sit second and third, respectively.
In what proved to be a difficult qualifying session in Mickey Thompson 10.5 during the peak afternoon heat, Brad Brand had the top run, going a 4.245 at 170.32 mph. Brand and his jet-black ’07 Mustang was the only car to remotely make it down the track, as everyone else struggled with two qualifying sessions still remaining.
Chris Holbrook is the top qualifier in the SuperCar Showdown class, running a 5.85 at 116.48 mph.
In Pro Junior Dragster, Josh Phelps is currently on top after running a 7.909.
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