the 16-car Pro Extreme (PX) field with
an outstanding 3.514-second run at
218.94 mph, behind only an
other-worldly 3.485 at 216.97 by
"We figured when we got here that we
might be able to run a .50; I had
never even been in the .50s before and
I would've been happy just to see a
3.59, so to go run 3.54 and then that
.51, I am totally thrilled," Stanton
said. "This car has been immaculate
from the first time we started it up.
I'm loving it."
Stanton ran an impressive trio of
3.53-second passes to set low elapsed
time (ET) for each round of
eliminations while getting by John
Stanley, Joey Martin and Todd Martin
(no relation) to reach the final.
Meanwhile, number-four qualifier Mick
Snyder beat (Joey) Martin's teammate
Neal Wantye, PDRA co-founder Jason
Scruggs and Kuwait's Anthony DiSomma
to reach Stanton.
Unfortunately, the transbrake solenoid
failed on Snyder's Powersource '63
Corvette just as he was trying to
start the car for the final and
Stanton was sent on a solo pass to his
first win since July 2009 at Richmond,
Virginia. It turned out to be the
lucky break that Stanton and the
Henson Motorsports team needed as the
car lost traction off the launch and
Stanton coasted through the finish
line more than five seconds later at
just 96.78 mph.
"We tried to step on it a little this
time; I just wanted to see if it would
take the power, but it shook on me,"
Stanton said. "I've needed this win
for a long time. I just can't thank my
crew enough, Roger and Shirley Henson,
Mitchell and Jason Scruggs, just all
of my guys; they're awesome."
From the opening round of qualifying,
Jason Harris had the car to beat in
Pro Nitrous. With a brand-new 903 c.i.
Pat Musi motor beating beneath the
hood of his '68 Firebird, Harris
secured the number-one start with a
3.801-seconds charge that more
significantly also delivered a
career-best 200.05 mph top speed.
Harris, the son of PDRA director Bob
Harris, went even quicker and faster
in a first-round win over fellow Musi
customer John Camp, earning his first
.70 in the process with a 3.783 run at
200.50 mph. Though he dropped off a
little in performance in defeating
David Janes and Chris Rini, Harris was
tuned up to race PDRA co-founder Tommy
Franklin and his new Bickel-built,
Musi-powered '69 Camaro in the final.
Franklin got there after qualifying
second, then downing Randy
Weatherford, John DeCerbo and Musi's
daughter Lizzy in the semis during her
Pro Nitrous debut. It produced a great
race, with Franklin getting away first
to earn a holeshot victory over a
career-best 3.802 for Musi as she also
broke the 200-mph barrier (200.02) for
In the final, however, it was Harris
who left first with a .022 advantage
and he never looked back, earning the
win in another career-best 3.770 at
200.89 mph, while Franklin ran a very
solid 3.793 at 197.83 race. It marked
Harris' second-straight win at
Rockingham after winning there when
the now-mothballed ADRL visited last
"We were a little hurt in the final
round, but we didn't have anything to
lose so we just went for it. Tommy had
been running good, he was right there
with us, so we just threw the kitchen
sink at it and hoped it stuck," Harris
explained. "When it left, it felt
good. Then, when it hit high gear and
took off it threw me back in the seat
and I knew it was on. I knew it was
EXTREME PRO STOCK
The more things change, the more they
stay the same, or at least that seems
to apply to mountain-motor Extreme Pro
Stock, where regardless of sanctioning
body--ADRL, IHRA, and now the new PDRA--Holdenville,
OK's Cary Goforth emerges as a winner.
Since debuting his new Sonny's-powered
2013 Camaro at the ADRL event in
Rockingham last fall, Goforth has yet
to miss making it to the final round
in five events.
That trend certainly held true at the
PDRA Spring Open, where Goforth drove
to his third final-round victory with
the car, beating the 2010 Shelby
Mustang GT of Belmont, NC's Richard
Penland, who made an off-the-pace
4.189 at 168.43 lap.
"We ran a 4.02 in the final there
(4.024 at 179.76), which is really
what we needed to be running the whole
time here," Goforth said. Instead, he
qualified third with a 4.068 pass at
177.72 mph, behind the 4.027 of
polesitter John Montecalvo and the
4.049 of John Pluchino, with Penland
starting fourth after posting 4.088 at
"This thing has a mind of its own
sometimes, but I told my guys, 'If I
wanted to ride something with a mind
of its own I'd have taken up bronc
riding,'" Goforth said. "We have a new
crew chief in Jeff Dobbins this year
and the last two times before the
final he got it settled down and we
made good passes."
Goforth admitted, however, he began
feeling anxious about the final as he
watched the PDRA's "Traction Twins,"
Cale and Cody Crispe, prep the lane in
front of him after Todd Tutterow oiled
it down during his Pro Boost
"I always get a little scared when
they have to do that and I know the
Traction Twins are great and that
probably actually helps, but I've
always had a phobia that I don't like
that," Goforth said. "Of course I
couldn't have been proved more wrong;
the car went straight, it didn't carry
the wheels too far, just set them down
and let me drive it straight. My guys
delivered for me again."
The PDRA's brand-new and unique Pro
Boost class enjoyed good participation
at the PDRA's inaugural event as 20
entries made qualifying attempts
before North Carolina racing legend
Todd Tutterow emerged on top of the
16-car raceday field with a last-lap,
3.813-seconds pass at 194.69 mph in
his roots-blown '67 Mustang. Swedish
racer Adam Flamholc placed second,
with Delaware's Gerry Capano third and
Charles Terrell replacing Troy
Coughlin in fourth after Coughlin went
home early to Ohio.
Tutterow made it through three rounds
of preliminary eliminations with wins
over JR Linton, Larry Higgenbotham and
Craig Pio in order to reach Todd Moyer
and his twin-turbocharged '63 Corvette
in the final. Moyer, from San Leon,
TX, started from the sixth position
and previously defeated Jimmy
Blackmon, Capano and Flamholc in what
probably was his best competition
outing with the car.
"We're trying some new stuff this year
and it's already looking promising,"
Moyer said. "It's at least getting a
little more predictable and
Tutterow absolutely drilled Moyer on
the tree with a .017 reaction time and
despite making his weakest pass in
eliminations with a 4.071 at 188.73,
it handily defeated Moyer's 4.244 at
172.94 effort. Unfortunately it also
dropped enough oil on the track to
cause a 40-minute delay for clean up.
"It shook right off the bat, so I kind
of pedaled it and got it settled down.
Everything went real well through
qualifying, but we struggled a bit
with the cloud cover we had today,"
Tutterow explained. "We had never run
this combination this way before, so
it was kind of uncharted waters."
PRO EXTREME MOTORCYCLE
As the two-time defending Pro Extreme
Motorcycle champion, Eric McKinney is
used to winning, but putting his name
on the first PXM trophy handed out by
the fledgling Professional Drag Racers
Association means something special to
the new 29-year old.
"It's my birthday today, so this is a
great present. It's a new year, a new
race organization, and our first win,
so I couldn't be happier right now.","
McKinney declared after making a
4.127-seconds solo pass in the final
after Jay Fisher's bike was shut off
on the start line.
"I don't know what happened to Jay's
bike there, but I feel bad for him.
That was his first final and I was
looking forward to racing him," the
Ohio-based rider added.
McKinney started second on the
eight-bike qualifying list with a
4.067 pass at 177.86 mph that fell
short of bumping veteran rider Paul
Gast's 4.036 at 176.79 from the top
spot. Third went to former class champ
and McKinney teammate Ashley Owens,
with Fisher rounding out the top half
of the eight-bike field.
"Paul (Gast) came out swinging and my
hat's off to him," McKinney said.
"He's been snowed in all winter up
there in New York and spending a lot
of time on the dyno and it looks like
it paid off. He's going to be tough
After qualifying 14th in the 16-car
Top Dragster field for the PDRA Spring
Open, Elon, NC's Travis Harvey made it
to the final round against 13th-place
starter Ken Batchelor.
Harvey left first in the final with a
.011 holeshot in his 2012 Racetech
dragster, then ran 4.331 against a
4.29 dial in, while Batchelor and his
2012 American dragster ran a little
too quick at 4.236 against a 4.24
Harvey, who also reached the
quarter-finals in Pro Nitrous before
falling to class newcomer Lizzy Musi,
said that overall his weekend went
very smoothly, but summed up his Top
Dragster win with three words.
"I got lucky," he said. "I ran off my
dial by four numbers, but he broke
out. So, very lucky."
For Stacy Hall of Chesnee, SC, his win
over Ronnie "The King" Davis in round
two was every bit as satisfying as
prevailing over William Brown III in
the Top Sportsman final at the
inaugural PDRA event in Rockingham,
"It feels great; I've never won a race
like this before. The best round,
though, was against Ronnie Davis, but
winning the race is good, too," said
Hall, a longtime employee of master
engine builder Gene Fulton.
Hall qualified his '63 Corvette 13th
for the PDRA Spring Open and dialed in
at 4.25 for what turned out to be a
heads-up final round. He left first on
Brown with a .023 light, then ran
4.300 at exactly 154 mph to take the
win over Brown, who slowed to 4.874 at
just 107.81 mph in his 2005 Grand Am.
"We both dialed in the same numbers,
so when I moved first I knew he was in
trouble, so I let off a little at the
finish line down there," Hall said.
In a 31-car Pro Jr. Dragster field,
Connor Caulder of St. Pauls, NC,
prevailed in the final over Rebekah
Evans from Athens, AL, while Ressalaer,
IN's Alexis Tanner beat Thomas Oates
of Clearbrook, VA, in the Top Jr.
The next race on the 2014 PDRA
schedule will be May 9-10, at South
Georgia Motorsports Park, near