NHRA FLOPPERS EARN BOWLING BRAGGING RIGHTS OVER HOLESHOTS AND ELIMINATORS AT USBC OPEN CHAMPIONSHIPS IN LAS VEGAS LAS VEGAS -- The trio of NHRA teams who participated in the USBC Open Championships Thursday at the Cashman Center may not have...
NHRA FLOPPERS EARN BOWLING BRAGGING RIGHTS OVER HOLESHOTS AND ELIMINATORS AT USBC OPEN CHAMPIONSHIPS IN LAS VEGAS
LAS VEGAS -- The trio of NHRA teams who participated in the USBC Open Championships Thursday at the Cashman Center may not have challenged for the top score among all of the 17,200 teams that will compete in the marathon five-month tournament, however, for bragging rights in the pit area, there was an exciting battle, and as is typical in NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing, there was a close finish.
The NHRA Floppers, led by the tandem of Auto Club Ford Mustang driver Robert Hight and Al-Anabi Racing Toyota Solara driver Del Worsham, squeezed out the victory among the three NHRA teams, posting a team total of 2,180. The NHRA Holeshots posted a late third game rally behind the smooth-rolling Jeg Coughlin, but came up a few pins short with an overall total of 2,154. Shawn Langdon paced the third-place NHRA Eliminators (1,979), and notched an overall high score of 528 among the 15 drivers who participated.
The drivers took time out of their busy schedules to participate in one of the world's oldest major competitions. The drivers will hit the track tomorrow for the SummitRacing.com NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Tickets are still available for the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series event by calling (800) 644-4444. The race will be televised on ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD.
"Bowling is a lot like a race car when you consider you have to make a lot of minor adjustments as you go and the lanes change just like a track will change," said Hight, who posted game scores of 165, 178 and 182 to lead his team. "It was a fun experience. The other NHRA teams were really good too. It went right down to the tenth frame of the last game."
JEGS.com Chevy driver Coughlin, who was a late addition to the Holeshots team after Tom Hammonds had to cancel due to a day full of travel delays, led a third game rally of 724 for the Pro Stock team with five strikes. Allen Johnson, a former Tennessee junior state champion and driver of the J&J Racing Team Mopar Dodge Stratus and current Pro Stock points leader Jason Line, driver of the Summit Racing Pontiac GXP, both chipped in with two strikes and scores of 145 in the third.
"I got progressively better each game," Coughlin said. "I've never bowled on a professional setup like this and it is very different and takes some time to get used to, but we had a blast. It is amazing what the USBC has put together here, it is such a tremendous undertaking. We really appreciate the opportunity to do this."
However Hight's third game total of 182 with three strikes and six spares was enough to give the Floppers the edge in the final tally.
"Just to tie this USBC Open Championships in with our drag race is cool," Hight said. "There were a lot of people in this tournament that said they came here for this tournament because of the NHRA race this weekend. There are a lot of bowlers that are drag racing fans."
Worsham garnered the best individual game score, as he knocked out 198 pins in the first of the three-game set with six strikes and a spare. He finished with games of 171 and 141 for a 510 total.
"I've never bowled in a tournament before," Worsham said. "It was fun. Bowling takes a lot of concentration and for drag racers who are used to racing in quick bursts, this was a little different. It was great to win among the three NHRA teams, and all of our guys contributed to that win. I was getting a little worried about the Pro Stock team because they started to come on there in the final game. I've bowled with most of the racers that were out here today so I know they are all good."
Dixie Choppers/Lucas Oil dragster driver Langdon, who consistently took out the pins with a powerful right-to-left curve on his ball, used a best of 189 in the second game, 172 in the third and 167 in the first to take the overall high score honor of 528, which was three pins more than Hight's 525.
"It took some time to figure out the lanes and how the balls were breaking and how each lane was oiled," Langdon said. "The guys on our team kept talking about it and we finally figured it out together. We didn't have the final result we were hoping for, but we had a lot of fun. It's just great to be a part of this tournament and hopefully we can do it again next year."
For more information about the USBC Open Championships, please visit www.bowl.com; For more information about NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing, please visit www.nhra.com.
TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL SCORES
NHRA Floppers (2,180)
Robert Hight, 165, 178, 182 (525)
Del Worsham, 198, 171, 141 (510)
Jeff Arend, 168, 177, 160 (505)
Jack Beckman, 117, 115, 86 (318)
Matt Hagan, 95, 101, 126 (322)
NHRA Holeshots (2,154)
Jeg Coughlin, 129, 165, 175 (469)
Allen Johnson, 141, 131, 145 (417)
Greg Anderson, 137, 136, 118 (391)
Jason Line, 157, 137, 145 (439)
Jason Gray, 158, 139, 141 (438)
NHRA Eliminators (1,979)
Morgan Lucas, 157, 123, 131 (411)
Shawn Langdon, 167, 189, 172 (528)
Spencer Massey, 108, 104, 100 (312)
Chuck Worsham, 158, 165, 148 (471)
Rod Fuller, 54, 101, 102 (257)