Leicester: Mike Casrellana review

LEICESTER, N.Y.-Pop went Mike Castellana's weekend, the sound emanating from under the hood of his '57 Western Beef Chevrolet. For the second straight race, the Westbury, NY., resident turned in a strong pro mod qualifying performance only to...

LEICESTER, N.Y.-Pop went Mike Castellana's weekend, the sound emanating from under the hood of his '57 Western Beef Chevrolet.

For the second straight race, the Westbury, NY., resident turned in a strong pro mod qualifying performance only to bow out in the first round of eliminations. The latest heartbreak for Castellana came Sunday during the IHRA CARQUEST Empire Nationals. Castellana launched off the starting line with a reaction of .468 seconds when suddenly that loud pop brought his weekend to a halt.

All Castellana could do is coast to a stop on New York International Raceway Park's quarter-mile with no registered time, and Shannon Jenkins added to that helpless feeling by sailing past with a third run of 219 mph for the weekend. He also turned in an elapsed time of 6.425 seconds.

Castellana, who struggled earlier in the season with qualifying, continued to make progress in that facet of his racing. Mike's Drive-In was hopping with his Friday qualifying pass of 6.513 seconds at 193.75 mph, good for 13th. He picked it up during Saturday trials, claiming the 10th spot off his 6.446 and 213.92.

The previous race, the IHRA's Amalie Oil Summer Nationals a month ago in Cordova, Ill, saw him turn in a career-best qualifying with a 6.36/218.34. The first round proved to be his undoing again.

Now that Castellana has a handle on his qualifying, he will be focusing on moving up the pro mod elimination ladder when the IHRA makes its next stop at the CARQUEST Northern Nationals on Aug. 4-6 at the Mid-Michigan Motorplex in Stanton.

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Series Drag
Drivers Shannon Jenkins