October 24, 1998
GILLIG WINS IHRA WORLD FINALS, FINISHES #2 IN THE WORLD!
After qualifying #4, Tony Gillig was on a mission to win the final event of the year and hopefully the championship. Gillig's performance was flawless as he riffled through the tough field en route to his second career win. Gillig needed to go two more rounds than Dan Seamon to be crowned World Champion and he did just that, however, Seamon set the ET record in the second round and Gillig finished 30 points behind. Gillig ran a career best 6.66 at 207.75 during the event and stopped the new IHRA ET World Record holder Steve Spiess in the final with a 6.68 at 206.76. "Winning the last race is great, we needed to end the season on a good note. We really wanted to win the championship also but we are still happy with our #2 finish. We had good year and look forward to 1999 already. Like they always say, " you're only as good as your last race" which may make the off season a little easier." Tony Gillig finished #9 in 1997 and jumped up to #2 in 1998 and it looks like the only place left is #1 which is where Gillig plans to be in 1999!
In the $20,000 to win Sunoco Pro Stock Showdown Gillig was the #6 qualifier. In the first round Gillig drew the #3 qualifier Jerry Yeoman. Gillig's .431 light and 6.743 at 205.29 defeated Yeoman's shut off 12.75 at 67 mph. The Semi Finals placed Gillig against the #2 qualifier Dan Seamon. Gillig left first with a .424 light to Seamon's .481 and Gillig had a coil wire vibrate loose shutting the car off before he even got past the tree, handing Seamon the win. Gillig commented, " We are very disappointed at what happened. We are very thorough with the car and things like this shouldn't happen. We we're only .004 of a second apart coming into the round and we're confident we could win the race." Gillig has qualified for the prestigious event both years he has raced with the IHRA which many racers have not been able to accomplish.