Toyota Drag Racing Las Vegas preview

RECORD HOLDER IOANNOU TOPS PRO RWD IN SOLARA - Bullish Motor Racing driver George Ioannou has raced his record-setting StreetGlow Toyota Solara to two wins in 2003 and currently sits in first place in the season standings ahead of Toyota drag...

RECORD HOLDER IOANNOU TOPS PRO RWD IN SOLARA - Bullish Motor Racing driver George Ioannou has raced his record-setting StreetGlow Toyota Solara to two wins in 2003 and currently sits in first place in the season standings ahead of Toyota drag racers Matt Scranton and Grant Downing. The second race of the series in Englishtown, N.J., was the site of Ioannou's Pro RWD record run of 6.786 seconds at 205.35 mph in the first elimination round. He would post two more runs over 204 mph on the way to his first win of the season. Ioannou followed up that impressive performance with several more 200-mph runs in Gainesville, Fla., where he led an all-Toyota second elimination round and went on to beat last year's Pro V8 champion Matt Scranton for his second win. Ioannou's Bullish Motor Racing owner and teammate Ara Arslanian is eighth in the Pro RWD standings and has recorded several runs over 200 mph in 2003, putting him in an elite, all-Toyota club with Ioannou and Scranton.

SCRANTON ADDS METHANOL TO CELICA FOR SECOND-HALF RUN - Matt Scranton, the first sport compact/import drag racer to break the 200-mph barrier, will debut a new methanol fuel system this weekend in the Scranton Bros. Racing Turbonetics Toyota Celica. Despite a couple of mechanical difficulties this year, the undefeated 2002 Pro V8 class champion is solidly in second place in the Pro RWD standings with a victory in the first race at Moroso Motorsports Park in Palm Beach, Fla., and a runner-up finish to Ioannou at Gainesville. Scranton also had a Pro RWD best-ever run at Englishtown with an elapsed time of 6.745 seconds.

DEFENDING PRO CHAMP HAS TUNDRA PRIMED FOR ANOTHER TITLE RUN - 2002 Pro-class champion Grant Downing goes into the second half of the season within striking distance of another title in his Venom Racing Toyota Tundra. The New Zealand native and Southern California resident has been in the second elimination round in each of the last two races and sits third overall.

RADO LOOKS FOR FIRST WIN OF 2003 - The first four Pro FWD events have been filled with heated racing, and the combination of the hot Las Vegas weather and the determination of Toyota racer Christian Rado should produce more exciting race action. The World Racing Toyota Celica driver is currently second in points in the class and is coming off his best showing of the season at the last event at Atco Raceway in New Jersey. Rado made his first final round of the season with a run of 8.478 seconds at 175.98 mph, making him the number one qualifier.

TOYOTA RACERS TAKE THREE OF TOP FOUR IN MODIFIED CLASS - Led by Venom Racing Toyota Supra driver Jimmy O'Connor of Los Alamitos, Calif., Toyota drag racers occupy three of the top four and five of the top ten in the Modified class standings. With a win at Englishtown and two final-round appearances, O'Conner is in second, followed by Luis Carujo, who made the finals in Gainesville in his 1985 Toyota Corolla.

"QUOTES"

Ara Arslanian, Bullish Motor Racing Owner/Driver: "This has been a dream season so far with George [Ioannou] on top with two wins. The Toyota motor has been insanely fast! We're trying to keep the Solara up with the 1,600 hp it's generating."

NHRA Summit Sport Compact Drag Racing
2003 Standings
Pro RWD (Rear Wheel Drive)
1. George Ioannou 389
2. Matt Scranton 345
3. Grant Downing 255
4. Matt Hartford 250
5. Jorge Lazcano 237
6. Abel Ibarra 226
7. Stephan Papadakis 218
8. Ara Arslanian 208
9. Manny Cruz 166
10. Brendon Alvarez 10

Pro FWD (Front Wheel Drive)
1. Nelson Hoyos 470
2. Chris Rado 281
3. John Brown 266
4. Jerrold Rhodes 234
5. Shaun Carlson 193
6. Jarrodd Silvers 183
7. Luis Ferrer 132
8. Ed Bergenholtz 76
9. Bruce Mortensen 75

Modified
1. Cesar Febus 490
2. Jimmy O'Connor 348
3. Luis Corujo 271
4. Alex Dieguez 207
5. Carlos Gonzales 207
6. Paul Efanits 159
7. Vinny Ten 131
8. Carlos Perez 94
9. Luis Maldonaldo 55
10. Joey Gonzalez 52

-tm-

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Drag
Drivers Grant Downing , Shaun Carlson , Matt Scranton , Matt Hartford , Chris Rado