“Running that 206 in the
semis, everyone just flipped,” Musi said. “We never thought it would go
faster than 205. We were hoping for a 206 maybe in Virginia with the cool
weather, so it was very exciting to run 206 twice tonight. Running against
Tommy, we knew we were going to throw everything we had at it because
Tommy would be doing the same thing. We knew we just had to do our deal.
He was probably on the same run – the early numbers were close.”
Musi qualified No. 2 and used a perfect .000 reaction time to defeat Danny
Perry in the opening round, then posted a strong 3.679 at 204.48 to knock
down points leader Jay Cox. She defeated Pro Stock racer Richie Stevens Jr
in the semifinals. Franklin in his Pat Musi-powered “Jungle Rat” ’69
Camaro led the field in qualifying before beating Buddy Perkinson, Jim
Halsey and Randy Weatherford on his way to the final round.
Pineville, North Carolina-based logger Terry Leggett added a race win to
his illustrious GALOT Motorsports Park history. Leggett, who was the low
qualifier at the GALOT spring race, drove his screw-blown Leggett Logging
& Trucking ’71 Mustang to a 3.548-second pass at 217.53 mph in the final
round. His opponent, Mattias Wulcan, left before the tree activated.
“For some reason, we just really run good here,” Leggett said. “We just
love the place. It’s a heckuva facility, the people are great, and we have
a really strong following here. This is my home race, so we have lots of
friends and family here. All of that just plays into making it a great
Racing out of the second spot, Leggett posted a 3.555 at 218.80 over Jose
Gonzales in the first round, then a 3.570 at 217.95 over points leader and
spring race winner Mike Recchia. Wulcan was the No. 1 qualifier and drove
his “Black Bird” ’69 Camaro to round wins of 3.572 at 213.03 over fellow
Swede Stefan Holmberg and 3.56 at 211.33 over Australian Pro Mod star John
Zappia before facing Leggett in the final.
Jeremy Ray has raced with the PDRA since the series’ inception in 2014,
and it took the best performance of his series career to earn his first
PDRA Pro Boost event win. He ran his first 3.6-second pass, a 3.699, to
qualify No. 4. After using a 3.762 to get around Jr. Ward in the first
round, all of Ray’s eliminations runs were in the 3.6-second range.
“In the last five races we’ve run, this car has been very consistent,”
said Ray, who reached the finals at those five races in a combination of
PDRA and Carolina Xtreme Pro Mod competition. “The air was good tonight. I
was able to go .68, .69, .68. We went in the sixties four times this
weekend. I picked up the speed a bit, too. Just kept digging. I’ve been
running PDRA since the beginning. This is my third car, and it’s one darn
Meeting Ray in the final round was Darlington winner Melanie Salemi, who
qualified sixth and defeated James Linton Jr. and Pro Boost rookies Ty
Tutterow and Brandon Snider to earn her spot in the final. Salemi left the
starting line first in her “Purple Reign” ’68 Firebird, but Ray chased her
down in his “Carolina Kingpin” ’63 Corvette, running 3.683 at 202.27 over
Salemi’s 3.905 at 192.63.
EXTREME PRO STOCK
Past PDRA Extreme Pro Stock world champion Cary Goforth secured his second
series title when he beat Jeff Dobbins in the final round. Both drivers
ran identical 4.055s in the semifinals, but the final round would be
decided on the starting line, as Dobbins left the line .007 too soon.
Goforth was ready for a race, though, as he recorded low et of
eliminations, a 4.051 at 177.95.
“It felt good to get the win because you know if you win the race, you’ll
probably seal the deal,” Goforth said. “I’m happy. I’m tickled to death. I
don’t jump up and down and go wild, but I’m awfully proud of this one.
This is our eighth championship and second with the PDRA. We just took
care of our business and let it all play out.”
Goforth qualified third in his Dean’s Casing Service/Dewayne Higgins
Trucking ’14 Camaro. He took out spring race winner Chris Powers and No. 2
qualifier J.R. Carr before the final round. Racing out of the fourth spot,
Dobbins used .014 reaction times and quick passes to beat defending world
champion John Pluchino and low qualifier John Montecalvo earlier in the
PRO EXTREME MOTORCYCLE
For the first time this season, someone other than defending world
champion Eric McKinney or points leader Travis Davis won in Pro Extreme
Motorcycle. Coincidentally, Brad McCoy had to race McKinney and Davis on
his way to the PDRA Drag Wars winner’s circle. McCoy rode his Q80 Racing
Hayabusa to low et of the event, 3.998 at 176.49, to beat McKinney’s 4.04
at 178.50 in the final round.
“We struggled all day,” McCoy said. “We had to change motors going into
the semifinals, so we had to start all over with the tune-ups and try to
figure out where we needed to be. We were way underpowered for the
semifinal round, so we just took a chance for the finals and hoped for the
best, and it fell in our favor.”
McCoy’s win had serious implications on the championship situation, as
Davis is trying to hold off McKinney from winning his fourth consecutive
PDRA world championship.
“I had to race Travis first round. He really needed that round win. He’s a
great racer. He even came over and helped me put the motor in our bike
after we raced first round. You can’t get better sportsmanship than that.
I felt I did him a favor – that final round (over McKinney) was payback
for him helping me,” McCoy laughed.
McKinney, the No. 6 qualifier, rode his McKinney Motorsports entry to
round wins over Chris Garner-Jones and teammate Ashley Owens before
meeting McCoy in the final.
EXTREME OUTLAW 632
Darlington event winner Dillon Voss showed no signs of “new-car blues” as
he brought out a new ’17 Camaro for Extreme Outlaw 632’s third of four
races with the PDRA. Built by Suncoast Race Cars and powered by a Voss
Racing Engines 632-cubic-inch bullet, the car carried Voss to a
personal-best 4.282 at 166.93 in the final round to defeat Michael Naumann.
It was just the fifth pass on the car.
“I was nervous going into this weekend,” Voss said. “We were supposed to
be here Thursday. We missed testing getting the car ready. We missed first
round of qualifying getting the car ready. Showed up for Q2, first hit off
the trailer, first time driving it, and it goes a 4.40, good for No. 2
qualifier. That eased the nerves a lot, then we just put our racing
tune-up in it once we knew it would go straight. We set our personal best
by half a tenth in the final, so we’re very happy.”
Voss defeated Mike Oldham and No. 1 qualifier Ken Quartuccio prior to the
final. Naumann’s previous opponents were Lakeland, Florida’s Jordan and
Armed with a new Albert-powered Glaser Collision Centers ’68 Camaro, Aaron
Glaser marched through a stacked Top Sportsman Elite field to meet
Reidsville, North Carolina’s Cam Clark in the final round. Glaser had the
quicker reaction time and posted a 3.932 on a 3.91 dial-in to Clark’s
4.036 on a 4.00 dial-in. Glaser defeated Top Sportsman standouts Tim
Lawrence, Glenn Butcher and Dewayne Silance on the way to the final, while
Clark defeated low qualifier Billy Albert, Scott Duggins and John Benoit.
With a total of 44 Top Sportsman cars on the property at GALOT Motorsports
Park, a Quick 32 ladder was added to accommodate the cars who didn’t
qualify for Top Sportsman Elite. The Top Sportsman Quick 32 win went to
Kris Gilbert over Donny Urban.
North Carolinians battled it out in the Top Dragster final round, as
Salisbury’s Dennis Rinehardt piloted his ’07 Racetech dragster to a 4.475
on a 4.47 dial-in in the winning effort over Hendersonville’s Matt Cooke.
Cooke, who clinched the Top Dragster world championship, ran a 3.93 on a
3.90 dial-in with his ProCharger-equipped Horton dragster. Rinehardt
marched past Camrie Caruso, Bill Fordyce and 2016 world champion Justin
Kirk before the final. Cooke’s previous opponents were Josh Duggins, Steve
Furr and Russ Whitlock.
The 2017 PDRA Tour will conclude at the 3rd annual Brian Olson Memorial
PDRA World Finals, Oct. 19-21, at Virginia Motorsports Park in Petersburg,
Photo: Gary Rowe
ABOUT THE PDRA
With offices in Pittsboro, North Carolina, and Saltillo, Mississippi, the
Professional Drag Racers Association is the top sanctioning body in the
United States for the sport of eighth-mile drag racing. The PDRA’s
professional categories include Pro Extreme Motorcycle, Extreme Pro Stock,
Pro Boost, Pro Nitrous and Pro Extreme, the quickest doorslammer class in
drag racing. The 2017 PDRA schedule consists of eight national events. For
more information on the PDRA, visit www.PDRA660.com.