As the second half of the points season was just getting underway July
already had several dates set aside for special events that would cut short the
counting. The holiday weekend, a grudge race and swap meet left only two dates
to earn points, and when one of those came with bad weather, it left only a single
race day to add to the tallies. It brought with it some great racing that did lead to
some changes in the standings but with a lot of racing yet to be completed before
the final totals are processed.
All the leaders in Super Pro fell to the wayside when Luis Martinez showed
up with his Vega and marched through the field to take the top spot. Martinez, a
second generation racer, gunned down Robbie Boyd’s dragster in a QF match
while Todd Martin advanced his dragster past the Chevy of Steve Jepko and Jason
Wilson took out Connor Hebig to complete the semifinal class. Martinez got to
take a bye in that round and Wilson edged out Martin in a race what separated
them by just .003 seconds at the finish. Martinez then closed the deal when he hit
an 8.711 on a dial of 8.71 to take the win light over Wilson’s 6.317 (6.31) and
Dan Tice showed up in Pro and after a first round loss and a bye back win
ran the table to take home the top purse. Tice was unopposed in the quarters and
Jim Trommelen continued his march with a victory over Mike Franek. Rob
Zetterberg was better than Ralph Savarese and Rich Secula bested Shane Sweigert
top make a full field for the semis. Tice hung a light on Zetterberg ion that round
and advanced to the final on an 11.93, 105 to 9.54 and 134. Secula, reaching his
first title round in some time took out Trommelen when his 9.79, 138 pushed the
AMC entry under the dial at 11.22 and 117. Tice played a little top end cha-cha
after giving the better RT to Secula in the last race and then turning an effort of
11.93 seconds at 109 that held up to a slowing 9.86 and 138.40 pass by Secula.
Dan Baker continued to roll along in Sportsman when he defeated Scott
Franks Sr to the bracket. Baker beat Bill Hakucsa with a superior light to move
from the quarters while Scott Franks Jr downed Ralph Blauvelt and Franks Sr won
over a fouling Gary Apar. Baker was assured of a final berth with a solo and
Franks Sr hit a 12.37, 106 ticket to oust Franks Jr’s 11.50 at 115. The determining
contest was decided early when Franks went red on the tree to toss out his 12.38
and 107 and provide Baker the trophy with a 15.31 at 87.48.
Bike totals shuffled a bit without much change at the top two positions but
two new names appeared in the title dash. Charlie Koenig and Neil Smith faced
off after some fancy racing earlier in the eliminator. Smith, making a rare
appearance, took out several heavy hitters along the way in the form of Don
Hookway, Joe DiPiazza and Barry Stephens. Koenig slammed newcomer John
Liefer and points leader Chris Miele before soloing the SF. Smith ended his
journey quickly against Koenig when his negative RT ruined a 10.86 118 slip and
gave Koenig a victory at 10.19 and 126.47.
Riley Parson was the best of Jr., Dragster as she finished off Shawn
Sanseverino . Shawn fouled out in the final to waste an 8.49, 77.76 time slip and
Parson turned in an on the dial 8.00- with a speed of 83.24. Pat Myers kept the
heat on Jaina Embley in Jr./St by winning the event. Embley moved too soon in
the last race and slowed to a 9.50 as Myers legged an 11.01, 66.14.
Rich Wilk defeated Bryan Mirsky for Consolation One and Terry Benton
drove through a big field for Consolation Two honors to beat Anthony P:icone in
the final.