TOP SPORTSMEN SIZZLE
BIG FOOTBRAKE CHECK TO MAFFIORE
Racing has been hit and miss thus far this season with a load of bad weather forcing cancellations and postponements all down the line. So it was hoped that the Doorslammer Domination weekend would break the streak and bring along a great day to watch some of the fastest cars to hit the track in quite a while. As luck would have it, the day broke out as a 50-50 split.
The Top Sportsman racers put on a good show through two rounds of qualifying with some of the best times in the mid-four second range over the 660 foot race distance. Unfortunately, with the beginning of time trials moved back by a couple of hours and a few track oiling situations, the qualified field was not able to complete their scheduled eliminations and as most could not return on the next day, the payout was split among the qualifiers.
Ronnie Proctor and his Cobra Mustang nailed down the number one qualifying spot when he legged out a straight and quick 4.407 at a speed of 157.71 mph. Following close behind was Ray Bamond aboard his 68 Camaro whose 4.408 elapsed time fell into the number two spot with a top speed record of 157.83. Just to show how close the top half of the field was clustered, James Cook cranked out a 4.49 at 157.76 and Wayne Horton flashed up a 4.47 and 155.40 on the scoreboard to fill the third and fourth slots. In all the top eleven qualifiers were in the four second range which promised a great show to come, if only there had been time to finish it.
It was a different story in the high dollar footbrake race that offered a top prize of $3K and with money like that at the end of the trail it brings out the best in any real competitive racer. To get to that payout you needed to go seven rounds, or maybe eight if you lost in the opener and bought back in for a second chance. There is no more competitive racer in the bracket than Frank Maffiore Jr and his consistent Chevy Monte Carlo. In the rounds when he didn’t have the better light he was close enough to push the competition under the handicap and move up through ranks to get into the quarters against local racer Joe Dukin and his S-10 mount. A 10.90 and 121.44 sent the MC entry on as Dukin ran an 8.96 at 146.83. Just like Dukin, Greg Myers and John Hedenburg had to cough up an additional fee after a first round loss to race in the QF and it paid off for both of them. Myers took on Gerard Lisa’s Malibu and won the round in his 69 Camaro with an on the number 10.64, 124 to a breakout 10.26, 122.20. Hedenburg was unopposed. Hedenburg then squared off with Maffiore and the Ford pilot went red on the tree to toss away the race and let the Chevy get into the money race. Myers fell into the bye run and the match was set. Maffiore received the head start and nailed down a RT advantage of almost a half a tenth and was never headed. The Monte Carlo recorded a 10.92 at 119.47 for the bigger share of the purse while the Camaro’s 10.61 and 123.05 settled for a little less, but surely making the extra buy in worthwhile for Myers.
Making their first appearance of the year were the nostalgia racers of NETO. With two classes of competition these entries remind the old timers of what the sport of drag racing used to look like. And while a couple of their number broke parts on the starting line, the rest had a good showing.
Scott Hall drove his Chevy to the NETO Nostalgia title when he was better than Jerome Heller’s Maverick. Heller had sent Ed Hartman’s Pontiac to the trailer in the semis while Hall disposed of the Dodge Wagon of Steve Consentino. Although Heller had a big advantage on the tree his 12.65 and 101.90 pass was too quick and threw the win light to Hall’s 12.16 and 108.15 which was a tad less under his dial.
Ron Baker was the champ in NETO Comp eliminator in his 66 Chevelle. Baker advanced over the super 63 Corvette of James Mullen in the semifinal when Muller had problems and Mike Petrole’s Camaro ran alone. Just as in the other bracket this one was decided via the runout numbers. Petrole ran a 9.24, 150.83 that was .063 under his dial that resulted in Baker taking the win light on his 8.78, 151.56 ticket against a handicap of 8.80.