Reichert caps championship season with third-straight Auto Club Finals win
POMONA, Calif. - Two-time defending NHRA Top Alcohol Dragster World Champion Bill Reichert and his Rislone Engine Treatment backed team capped their season with a dominating performance during this past weekend's Auto Club of Southern California Finals at Auto Club Raceway in Pomona, Calif. Reichert qualified No. 1 and set low elapsed time of the event on his way to winning the event for the third straight year.
Reichert, who helps run the family business, Reichert Racing Engines, in Owosso, Mich., qualified the Rislone injected nitro dragster on the pole with a 5.233 second elapsed time at 275.73 mph. In round one, he took out fellow Division 3 competitor Dave Hirata with a 5.256 at 274.66 mph, then edged local racer Larry Miersch with a 5.208 at 275.06 mph in round two. His semifinal opponent Kate Harker smoked the tires while he streaked to a 5.278 at 270.05 to advance to the final.
Reichert's final round opponent would be last year's No. 4 finisher, Duane Shields. Like his semifinal opponent, Harker, Shields went up in smoke while Reichert thundered to a 5.191 at 275.22 in front of the standing room only Auto Club Raceway crowd.
"We really had a great weekend," said Reichert. "To be able to win a race like this makes for a nice drive. I get to smile the whole way back to Michigan. We had a good track all weekend; there wasn't much sun on the track Sunday. We're very glad to finish the year by giving Rislone and Bar's Leaks another win."
The only run Reichert was not on top of the pack was the first qualifying session when he was working in a new fuel pump.
"We put a different fuel pump on the car," Reichert explained. "It's actually an old pump we had refurbished. We set it up pretty conservative to get a feel for what it wanted. Once we knew what the pump was actually flowing, we were able to get the jetting right to get the car where it needed to be."
Reichert will be crowned as the World Champion today at the NHRA Sportsman Awards Banquet in Los Angeles.
-credit: bars leak