Norwalk: R2B2 Racing Saturday report

Top qualifier Commisso carries R2B2 Racing's hopes into Sunday's action NORWALK, Ohio (June 26) -- Pro Mod racer Ray Commisso maintained his No. 1 position through the end of qualifying and won his first round elimination race against race Rick...

Top qualifier Commisso carries R2B2 Racing's hopes into Sunday's action

NORWALK, Ohio (June 26) -- Pro Mod racer Ray Commisso maintained his No. 1 position through the end of qualifying and won his first round elimination race against race Rick Stivers to lead the three-car R2B2 Racing effort in the Get Screened America Pro Mod Drag Racing Series event at Summit Motorsports Park.

Following a track-record qualifying effort of 5.910 at 248.20 mph, set under the lights Friday evening, Commisso dismissed Stivers with a 6.029 at 244.16 mph in Saturday aftrenoon's heat to advance to the quarterfinals.

"The car's running nice and smooth, staying right in the middle of the racetrack," Commisso said. "We had a 6.02 there in the heat and I think we can probably pick it up a little bit for tomorrow when we race Burton (Auxier, his next opponent). It depends what the weather does.

"I've had two semifinal finishes in a row and I'd love to finish this race off with a win. I know we have a racecar that's capable of getting the job done."

Commisso's teammates, Melanie Troxel and Roger Burgess, are finished for the weekend with Troxel upset in Round 1 and Burgess overcoming a scary Friday night accident only to miss the field by a few thousandths of a second in his backup car.

After qualifying a season-best No. 2 on the grid with a 5.940 at 245.40 mph in her brand new In-N-Out Burger '67 Camaro, Troxel was unceremoniously dumped in Saturday afternoon's first round of eliminations by the turbo-powered entry of Brad Personett.

"We earned the No. 2 spot, which is a huge improvement over how we've been doing this year," Troxel said. "This new car is certainly showing great potential, and that's exciting. We're having discussions about running the Unleashed race in Indy so we can get some more data and get this thing dialed in even better before the next race."

In their head-to-head Round 1 race, Troxel and Personett left the starting line within .002 seconds of one another, but Personett was able to pull away at the other end, winning with a 6.020 at 253.52 mph to Troxel's 6.062 at 242.76 mph. Personett's top speed was the best of the meet.

"We knew with the sun out that the track was going to be tricky for Round 1," Troxel said. "We got down the track, and made a nice, straight run. I feel like I drove well and hit all the shift points; we just got beat. I actually thought I had him. I didn't see any of him until after 1,000 feet when he jumped out there. It was close."

Burgess' accident was strikingly similar to the one suffered earlier in the session by Tony "the Barber" Pontieri as both men swerved from the left lane and into the right-side retaining wall near the top-end of the track. Fortunately, neither driver was hurt, but Burgess was the only one of the two who elected to continue on in a back-up car, which he nearly qualified with a last-gasp pass of 6.060 at 239.44 mph.

-source: r2b2

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Melanie Troxel , Rick Stivers , Roger Burgess , Brad Personett