By Ike Maier Racing
Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals next stop for Ike Maier
Canadian to race in both Top Fuel and Pro Modified at upcoming Norwalk event
The upcoming Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals will be Ike Maier’s third big-league event for 2011 behind the wheel of the Paton Racing Top Fuel Dragster.
The June 24-26 race at Summit Motorsports Park at Norwalk, Ohio, will also be Maier’s third race with his Pro Modified this year as he will be competing in the two divisions with totally different race cars.
“You have to stay focused on each,” noted Maier about his plan on competing in a full-bodied, front-engined, rear drive Pro Mod and then stepping into the ultimate in the sport of drag racing, an 8000-horsepower, rear-engined, rear drive Top Fueler. The Pro Mod, with less than half the horsepower of the Top Dragster, will be raced on the traditional quarter-mile, while the fuel car is raced to the 1000-foot marker, a policy instituted by the NHRA two years ago.
“These are two totally different cars,” Maier continued. “There is no comparison. You must keep a separate mindset for each.”
The race is the 10th in the 16-race NHRA Full Throttle drag race series for the Top Fueler, and the seventh race in the 10-event Get Screened America Series for Pro Modified cars.
With two Top Fuel events now under his belt, Maier is hoping to qualify, as he did in Atlanta, and make some rounds at Norwalk with the dragster.
“Our goal, obviously, is to qualify and make some laps with the fuel car,” he noted. “We’ve got a new blower on the Pro Mod, so we’re hoping to make some good passes with it, but it’s always a tough field.”
Maier’s 1963 Corvette Pro Mod will receive engine tuning from Kirk Silbermann of Ajax, Ontario. The noted engine builder will also act as crew chief with the Corvette.
After obtaining his Top Fuel license earlier this year, Maier entered into an agreement to drive the Paris, Ontario-based Paton Racing Top Fueler with crew chief James “Jimbo” Ermalovich. Sponsorship for the Top Fuel effort is provided by John Hoey of Tim Hortons, Lenron Inc, a New Brunswick transportation company, and Crosbie Industrial from Newfoundland.
Qualifying in both Top Fuel and Pro Mod take place Friday, June 24, and continue on Saturday June 25, with eliminations scheduled to begin at 11 am Sunday June 26.
The Top Fuel entry is headed up by Barry Paton of Paton Racing which has employed Todd Paton behind the wheel of the Top Fueler, as well as Alberta’s Tim Boychuck in both the NHRA and the IHRA.
In the past few years Maier has raced competitively in the Pro Modified class with his 1963 Corvette in the PMRA, the IHRA, and the NHRA, and will compete in selected NHRA national events in both classes for 2011.