GRAND BEND, ONTARIO, CANADA (May 11, 2001) -- Hat tricks are usually relegated to hockey, but Paul Romine will be looking for a hat trick of his own when the IHRA Summit Drag Racing 2001 tour moves north of the boarder, June 1-3, for the Mopar ...
GRAND BEND, ONTARIO, CANADA (May 11, 2001) -- Hat tricks are usually relegated to hockey, but Paul Romine will be looking for a hat trick of his own when the IHRA Summit Drag Racing 2001 tour moves north of the boarder, June 1-3, for the Mopar Canadian Nationals at the Grand Bend Motorplex in Grand Bend, Ontario.
So far this season, Paul Romine and the CARQUEST Auto Parts Top Fuel Dragster team are 2-0, winning the first two IHRA national events. Romine will go for three national event wins in a row in Canada, a feat he has only accomplished once, in 1997, when he won four IHRA national events en-route to his first of three IHRA Top Fuel titles.
"So far this season, we've had some luck on our side in winning the first two events with our new team," commented Romine, 53, of Indianapolis, who drives a Doug Herbert-owned dragster for CARQUEST Auto Parts, CARQUEST Premium Brakes, CARQUEST Filters, and Duragloss. "Now it's time to be good and win one with all-out performance for all our Canadian fans."
Last season at the Mopar Canadian Nationals, the CARQUEST team qualified #1 with a 4.769 / 307.58 and made it to the semifinals where the team was ahead by four-hundreths at half track before a $10 throttle linkage broke against eventual race winner Clay Millican.
This season Romine faces the hard charging Clay Millican and Bruce Litton in his quest to tie his team owner's record of four IHRA Top Fuel championships. Already this year, Romine has defeated Litton twice, once in the final round of the Holley Spring Nationals in Rockingham, North Carolina, and in the semifinals of the last IHRA event, the ACDelco Nationals in Richmond, Virginia. Romine has the most wins of active IHRA Top Fuel drivers with 10 national event wins and trails Herbert by 9 national event wins to become the all-time IHRA Top Fuel win leader.
The CARQUEST team is the current IHRA elapsed time record holder at 4.67-seconds and Romine believes that number will be surpassed at the Grand Bend Motorplex.
"Grand Bend is a great track and with the some nice cool and dry Canadian air, I think you'll see records fall" he said.
The Mopar Performance Parts Canadian Nationals presented by Castrol showcases a large field of IHRA nitrous and supercharged Pro Modifieds, one of IHRA’s most popular and competitive classes. Over 40 cars expect to attempt to qualify for the 16 car field, including Barrie, Ontario’s Al Billes, in a supercharged ‘53 Studebaker, Paul Athey, driving Johnny Rocca’s "Ironhorse" ’51 Mercury and 2000 Pro Mod World Champion Fred Hahn, who returns to the Motorplex in a brand new Summit-sponsored Corvette. Last year, Hahn set the quickest ET in Pro Mod history at Grand Bend, a 6.179 pass. Hahn went on to win the inaugural race, with his final round ET, backing up the 6.179 second pass as an official IHRA world record.
The three-day event will also feature 210 mph Screamin’ Eagle Nitro Harley-Davidson’s, Funny Cars, including Canadian drivers Rob Atchison and Paul Noakes from London, Ontario and the world’s fastest "Mountain Motor’ Pro Stocks, featuring Otterville, Ontario’s John Konigshofer. The Mopar Parts Canadian Nationals also features eight IHRA Sportsman classes.
In addition, Grand Bend will light up the sky with the Mac Tools Saturday "Night of Fire", featuring the final round of pro qualifying under the lights, Bob Hall’s Astro Van Wheelstander, the jet limo of Jimmy "The Jet" Neilson and Bob Motz’s legendary fire-breathing Jet Kenworth truck
The Mopar Performance Parts Canadian Nationals offers fan-friendly ticket pricing in order to provide "affordable, family entertainment". Adult General Admission tickets are on Friday and on Saturday and Sunday. Children 6-12 are always $5 and all tickets include FREE parking and pit pass as IHRA "opens our locker room to the public" for pictures and autographs.
Grand Bend Motorplex is located in Grand Bend, Ontario on Highway 81 East. For ticket and track information, call (519) 238-7223 or check out the race preview on www.ihra.com.