SHREVEPORT, La. - Despite persistent rain and threatening skies, IHRA
Top Fuel World champion Clay Millican won the Top Fuel title at the 5th
Annual IHRA K&N Nationals presented by Dodge at Red River Raceway.
Millican, of Drummonds, Tenn. defeated Paul Romine of Indianapolis with
a run of 4.804 seconds, 308.71 mph to 6.990/131.86 as Romine smoked the
tires at half-track. This earned the Werner Enterprises team their second
win of the 2002 Hooters IHRA Drag Racing Series.
"I'm the lucky guy that gets to drive this Mike Kloeber prepared
dragster," said an animated Millican. "I don't worry about
anything until Mike tells me to worry.
"This is a great win for the Werner team and we are using this win
to launch our second straight championship quest; we're on our way."
The K&N Filters Nationals marked Romine's first final round
appearance since the CARQUEST Autumn Nationals at Rockingham last fall.
The three-time IHRA Top Fuel champion has not won an IHRA national event
in over a year, his last victory at the inaugural ACDelco Nationals last
Following two rounds of the Hooters IHRA Drag Racing Series, Millican
leads Bruce Litton by 63 points and Romine by 65 in the chase for the
$200,000 IHRA Top Fuel championship.
The surprise of the Top Fuel field was the emergence of Don Reed as a
competitive threat. Reed recorded his best ever IHRA Top Fuel finish,
going to the semis. The Kokomo, Indiana resident defeated Louie Allison in
the first round before falling to World Champion Millican.
Reed quickly acknowledged the role veteran crew chief/tuner Jimmy Walsh
has played in the improved performance of the team. Walsh, a friend of
Reed, joined the team as "an unpaid helper and consultant" three
weeks ago, following his release by the Joe Amato NHRA Top Fuel
organization, a team he led to five NHRA World championships.
"Jimmy's been a good friend of mine for years and been good enough
to help our team until he lands another full-time opportunity," said
Reed. "We ran a 5.10 at Richmond last month and made a few changes
with Jimmy's guidance. We ran a 4.84 in qualifying and I believe we could
have gone 4.75. Regardless, it's the best performance the team has run.
"My crew worked their tails off; we work together every day and
it's great to see things coming together. We're going to go and get ready
"Somebody asked me what the difference between this team running a
4.80 lap and a 5.20 lap is," said Walsh. "Don and his team were
so close to running well; my role is to bring all the elements together
and give them the best opportunity to perform well.
"I want to tell everybody IHRA national event tracks are among the
best prepared in drag racing," added Walsh. "It makes our job
easier when we race on the quality racetracks Bill Bader, Jim Weinert and
his team provide us. There is a misconception that IHRA tracks are
second-rate; I'm here to tell you they're not."
IHRA's most competitive class, Pro Modified featured the first
all-nitrous final since the CARQUEST Empire Nationals last July. It also
marked the first final round appearance for Martin since 1990. The Red
River Pro Modified and an electronic fuel injected engine. Martin's
opponent, Ed Hoover, stunned Rockingham winner Al Billes in the semis on a
holeshot from which the Canadian never recovered.
Both Hoover and Martin launched hard and straight, with Martin getting
out of the groove at 1000 feet, giving the win to Hoover.
"I told Paul (car owner Trussell) that we needed to make a change.
We changed some settings in the suspension and it responded well. We
failed to qualify the first race of the season, but this win puts us right
in the thick of the championship," said Hoover.
"The car hit a bump in the right hand lane at the top end and the
car started to dance and the wheels spin," said Martin. "I saw
Ed in the other lane and decided it was better to lift then crash."
The win vaults Hoover into second place in the Pro Modified
championship, 68 points behind Al Billes.
The first round of Screamin' Eagle Nitro Harley-Davidson eliminations
was the most competitive in recent history, featuring four side by side
passes, including a new IHRA world elapsed-time record of 6.378 seconds by
Steve Stordeur of Goshen, Ohio.
Another Romine, Mike Romine, surprised Stordeur in the quarters, with
the Sturgis, MI native advancing to his first Nitro-Harley final since
Rockingham last fall. His opponent; 64 year-old Ray Price, currently
celebrating his long motorcycle drag racing career with the "Ray
Price 65th Birthday Tour." Qualifying seventh in the field Saturday,
Price broke an input shaft, which had to be flown from Raleigh, NC
overnight. The shaft arrived for eliminations and Price dispatched Mark
Conner and IHRA World Champion Doug Vancil on his way to the final.
Price defeated Romine in the final, resetting the world-elapsed time
record Stordeur held for only two hours at 6.365 seconds at 224.21 miles
"My motor quit at 1100 feet," said Romine. "I still
don't know what happened."
"I've been racing for a long time; I think I know where I need to
be," said Price. "This team is the best bunch of guys I've had
and work well together. They're excited about their jobs, work their butts
off. What more can you ask for?"
In search of her first IHRA Funny Car victory, Laurie Cannister's
"Girl Power" Camaro shattered the Red River track record with
laps of 5.831 and 5.775 seconds, taking the pole position. In round one,
Cannister earned a bye run, but holed the engine with a connecting rod on
the burnout for that bye run. Unable to make the run, Cannister became a
second-round loser, the disappointment evident.
"I feel bad for my crew who gave me a great car all weekend,"
said a philosophical Cannister. "We will rebound and get back into
the action at Cordova; we will get that first win soon."
The ultra-competitive Alcohol Funny Car class is capable of producing
many different winners, including Cannister, five-time world champion Mark
Thomas, Dale Brand, Jimmy Rector and the ever-improving Terry McMillen. In
the first round, Brand defeated McMillen and current points leader and
Rockingham winner Jimmy Rector defeated Thomas.
In the final, Brand red lit, giving Rector an easy win.
We didn't run well, but we won," said Rector, who has won the
first two event of the 2002 season. "I shook the tires the first
round but had good lights and that's why we're here."
Carl Baker had never won a national event in five years of IHRA Pro
Stock competition, his only professional win coming at the Sunoco Pro
Stock Shootout at Norwalk in August 2001. The team struggled early this
year and had not advanced beyond the first round. Facing John Montecalvo
in the K&N Nationals Pro Stock, final, Baker won his first race, when
Montecalvo red lit.
"This couldn't come at a better time for the Summit team,"
exclaimed a jubilant Baker. "Everything came together this weekend;
we qualified number one and won the race; that's what you're supposed to
do at this level of competition. IHRA Sunoco Pro Stock is tough and a win
is hard to come by."
Baker, of N. Ridgeville, Ohio became a "five-year overnight
sensation", winning his first Sunoco Pro Stock title at Red River,
defeating Montecalvo 6.591/212.03 to 6.629/210.14.
The next race in the Hooters IHRA Drag Racing Series is the Amalie Oil
Nationals in Cordova, IL, May 17-19.
SHREVEPORT, La. -- Saturday's final results from the fifth annual
K&N Filters Nationals presented by Your Local Dodge Dealers at Red
River Raceway. The $1.1 million race is the third of 12 in the Hooters
IHRA Drag Racing Series:
Top Fuel -- Clay Millican, 4.804 seconds, 308.71 mph def. Paul Romine,
6.990 seconds, 131.86 mph.
Pro Modified -- Ed Hoover, Chevy Corvette, 6.295, 223.43 def. Harold
Martin, Pontiac Grand Am, 6.640, 176.88.
Nitro Harley -- Ray Price, 6.365, 224.21 def. Mike Romine, 6.614,
Funny Car -- Jimmy Rector, Chevy Camaro, 5.944, 237.05 def. Dale Brand,
Pontiac Firebird, foul.
Pro Stock -- Carl Baker, Mercury Cougar, 6.591, 212.03 def. John
Montecalvo, Chevy Cavalier, foul.
Top Stock -- Mike Adams, Chevy Camaro, 10.119, 128.04 def. Monty Bogan,
Chevy Corvette, 10.236, 130.86.
Top Sportsman -- Monte Weaver, Chevy Corvette, 7.508, 182.60 def.
Ronnie Davis, Corvette, 7.295, 189.66.
Top Dragster -- Christy Rice, 7.596, 178.17 def. Ernie Hillard, foul.
Modified -- Tony Stephenson, Dragster, 7.593, 175.91 def. Michael
Lyons, Dragster, 7.257, 181.01.
Quick Rod -- Matt Levatino, 8.905, 167.55 def. Benny Smith Jr, 8.896,
Super Rod -- Lamar Swindoll, Chevy Monza, 9.916, 148.18 def. Gary Risk,
Buick Regal, 9.915, 144.55.
Hot Rod -- Mike Gilbert, Chevy Camaro, 10.908, 137.58 def. Luke Bogacki,
Chevy Nova, 10.892, 122.00.
Super Stock -- Sid Bonnecarrere, Dodge Dart, 9.101, 138.56 def. Slate
Cummings, Chevy Camaro, 9.956, 134.36.
Stock -- Rusty Hall, Ford Mustang, 25.326, 33.42 def. Gary Slaton,
Chevy Camaro, 10.937, 120.74.
SHREVEPORT, La. -- Final round-by-round results from the Fifth annual
K&N Filters Nationals presented by Your Local Dodge Dealers at Red
River Raceway, the 3rd of 12 events in the Hooters IHRA Drag Racing
Series: TOP FUEL:
ROUND ONE -- Donald Reed, 4.919, 296.50 def. Louie Allison, 10.338,
87.94; Bruce Litton, 4.963, 275.22 def. Josh Starcher, 5.347, 193.99; Paul
Romine, 4.837, 292.65 def. Jim Head, 5.097, 252.99; Clay Millican, 5.009,
218.19 def. Roger Dean, broke; SEMIFINALS -- Millican, 4.757, 305.77 def.
Reed, 5.300, 197.36; Romine, 4.894, 281.42 def. Litton, 12.856, 73.87;
FINAL -- Millican, 4.804, 308.71 def. Romine, 6.990, 131.86.
ROUND ONE -- Mike Janis, Chevy Corvette, 13.775, 99.76 was unopposed;
Quain Stott, Corvette, 14.224, 82.46 def. Tim Savell, Chevy Lumina, broke;
Ed Hoover, Corvette, 6.359, 223.02 def. Alan Pittman, Willys, 6.367,
221.45; Mitch Stott, Corvette, 6.357, 225.79 def. Mike Castellana, Willys,
12.107, 78.18; Danny McVay, Chevy Beretta, 11.665, 108.27 def. Shannon
Jenkins, Chevy Camaro, foul; Al Billes, Studebaker, 6.251, 226.39 def.
Chuck Nuytten, Corvette, 7.062, 157.21; Harold Martin, Pontiac Grand Am,
6.468, 217.88 def. Paul Athey, Corvette, 12.599, 68.01; QUARTERFINALS --
M. Stott, 6.283, 227.15 was unopposed; Martin, 6.814, 201.19 def. McVay,
10.153, 124.81; Hoover, 6.289, 223.14 def. Janis, 6.307, 226.73; Billes,
6.328, 224.17 def. Q. Stott, 13.544, 61.64; SEMIFINALS -- Hoover, 6.260,
223.73 def. Billes, 12.539, 95.52; Martin, 6.589, 214.45 def. M. Stott,
10.394, 85.79; FINAL -- Hoover, 6.295, 223.43 def. Martin, 6.640, 176.88.
ROUND ONE -- Steve Stordeur, 6.378, 216.55 def. Jay Turner, 6.474,
210.34; Mike Romine, 6.467, 212.49 def. Mark Cox, 6.580, 205.19; Ray
Price, 6.370, 207.43 def. Mark Conner, 6.522, 214.89; Doug Vancil, 6.450,
217.25 def. Johnny Mancuso, 6.429, 215.68; QUARTERFINALS -- Romine, 7.021,
207.11 def. Stordeur, 7.014, 208.94; Price, 6.428, 205.60 def. Vancil,
7.508, 134.30; SEMIFINALS -- Price, 6.365, 224.21 def. Romine, 6.614,
ROUND ONE -- Laurie Cannister, Chevy Camaro, 5.818, 242.84 def. Chris
Foster, Dodge Avenger, 6.077, 231.00; Jimmy Rector, Camaro, 6.192, 236.51
def. Tony Bogolo, Avenger, 6.249, 231.12; Dale Brand, Pontiac Firebird,
6.055, 239.87 def. Ronnie Midyette, Camaro, 6.026, 233.03; Terry McMillen,
Avenger, 5.929, 239.31 def. Terry Munroe, Firebird, 6.032, 234.37; Mark
Thomas, Avenger, 5.835, 239.53 def. Rob Atchison, Firebird, 6.129, 229.70;
QUARTERFINALS -- Cannister, 99.900, no speed was unopposed; Brand, 5.950,
237.38 def. McMillen, foul; Rector, 5.991, 236.30 def. Thomas, 5.930,
236.71; SEMIFINALS -- Brand, 5.851, 235.68 was unopposed; Rector, broke,
was unopposed; FINAL -- Rector, 5.944, 237.05 def. Brand, foul.
ROUND ONE -- John Bartunek, Grand Am, 6.600, 209.30 def. Hank Hill,
Ford Probe, foul; Doug Kirk, Chevy Cavalier, 6.603, 211.20 def. Steve
Spiess, Pontiac Grand Am, 6.592, 210.31; Brian Gahm, Ford Mustang, 6.577,
212.33 def. Tim Nabors, Cavalier, 9.787, 93.95; Rick Jones, Dodge Neon
R/T, 6.598, 210.54 def. Ron Miller, Cavalier, 6.619, 209.92; Elijah
Morton, Mustang, 6.590, 209.98 def. Jerry Yeoman, Grand Am, 13.822, 60.13;
Richard Penland, Grand Am, 7.740, 166.46 def. Chris Holbrook, Mercury
Cougar, 8.494, 186.87; John Montecalvo, Cavalier, 6.595, 210.83 def.
Dwayne Rice, Grand Am, 6.645, 210.41; Carl Baker, Cougar, 6.706, 208.52
def. Jason Collins, Cougar, foul; QUARTERFINALS -- Baker, 6.608, 210.67
def. Bartunek, 6.641, 209.98; Montecalvo, 6.634, 205.26 def. Kirk, 6.643,
210.70; Jones, 6.640, 210.54 def. Morton, foul; Gahm, 6.611, 211.76 def.
Penland, 6.752, 207.18; SEMIFINALS -- Montecalvo, 6.619, 209.69 def. Gahm,
6.682, 209.92; Baker, 6.598, 211.23 def. Jones, 10.239, 88.20; FINAL --
Baker, 6.591, 212.03 def. Montecalvo, foul.
SHREVEPORT, La. -- Unofficial point standings (top 10) for IHRA
professional categories following the Fifth annual K&N Filters
Nationals presented by Your Local Dodge Dealers at Red River Raceway, the
third of 12 events in the
Hooters IHRA Drag Racing Series:
1. Clay Millican, 257; 2. Bruce Litton, 194; 3. Paul Romine, 192; 4.
Donald Reed, 143; 5. Jim Head, 128; 6. Louie Allison, 121; 7. Roger Dean,
120; 8. Josh Starcher, 61; 9. Grant Flowers, 59; 10. Steve Smith, 25.
1. Al Billes, 188; 2. Ed Hoover, 120; 3. Shannon Jenkins, 119; 4.
Harold Martin, 98; 5. Mitch Stott, 87; 6. Mike Janis, 79; 7. Tommy Gray,
69; 8. Steve Salvadore, 63; 9. Quain Stott, 62; 10. (tie) Tim McAmis, 56;
Alan Pittman, 56.
1. Ray Price, 215; 2. Doug Vancil, 194; 3. Steve Stordeur, 162; 4. Mike
Romine, 152; 5. Jay Turner, 138; 6. Johnny Mancuso, 116; 7. Mark Conner,
115; 8. Mark Cox, 113; 9. Mark Revels, 20;
1. Jimmy Rector, 210; 2. Dale Brand, 150; 3. Mark Thomas, 144; 4.
Laurie Cannister, 95; 5. Rob Atchison, 83; 6. Terry McMillen, 80; 7.
Ronnie Midyette, 79; 8. John Vouros, 52; 9. Terry Munroe, 51; 10. Paul
1. Brian Gahm, 158; 2. Carl Baker, 150; 3. Ron Miller, 144; 4. John
Montecalvo, 124; 5. Chris Holbrook, 105; 6. John Bartunek, 90; 7. Doug
Kirk, 86; 8. (tie) Jason Collins, 82; Hank Hill, 82; 10. Rick Jones, 75.
Results provided by the FastNews Network,
courtesy of Summit Racing Equipment