IHBA: Firebird Lakefest 2001 final qualifying results

April 28, 2001 (Phoenix, AZ) --- Final Qualifying concluded for the Lucas Oil Products Lakefest 2001 at Firebird International Raceway with near record speeds and familiar faces returning to the top spots. In the Top Fuel Hydro Class John Hipwell,...

April 28, 2001 (Phoenix, AZ) --- Final Qualifying concluded for the Lucas Oil Products Lakefest 2001 at Firebird International Raceway with near record speeds and familiar faces returning to the top spots. In the Top Fuel Hydro Class John Hipwell, of Landing New Jersey took the top spot with a 5.416 second pass at 210.08 mph.

John Hipwell scorched Firebird International Raceway with a 5.416 second pass to capture the Top Fuel Hydro number one qualifying position. Photo: Scott Soto

"It feels great to be in the number one spot. We have been working like you wouldn't believe on this boat. Every pass we got faster and faster and getting the number one qualifying spot heading into tomorrow's race is a great feeling," said an excited Hipwell.

In the Top Alcohol Hydro Class Tim Stokes, of Eufala, Oklahoma, grabbed the number one qualifying position with a near record pass of 5.401 at 225.10 mph. Stokes had a season ending crash here last year but returned with a brand new boat and a new attitude.

"Everything felt good. We are trying a new prop but the main difference in the team has been my brother, David (Stokes). Last year over the winter we built a new boat and he wanted to try some new things. I give him all the credit. I've been number one before but to build this car from scratch and then get the number one spot at the first race of the season in very satisfying," said Stokes.

Eric Morris, of Madera, California, secured the top spot in Top Alcohol Flat with a 7.118 second, 143.78 mph pass. His crew had been working overtime to correct some early season gremlins.

"We went out to Bakersfield three weeks ago and all the boat wanted to do was try and crash. We have been working on her ever since. This weekend so far we are running really well. The first pass was O.K. but we tuned the boat right back up and everyone is happy. We won this race last year and we came here to get the number one qualifying spot and to win this race," said a confident Morris.

In the final Pro class Josh Hayden, of Pleasanton, California, captured the number one position in Pro Mod with a 7.007 second pass. The Pro Mods run on a 7.00 second index and Hayden feels good about how his team performed.

"We wanted to be number one but we weren't sure we would get it. I've never qualified number one in the Pro Mod class so this is a little different for me. We are ready for tomorrow. We had some problems yesterday but we worked them out. Tomorrow hopefully we will be able to hold on to the number one spot all day," said Hayden.

Final Eliminations for the Lucas Oil Products Lakefest 2001 will begin at 9:30 a.m.

<pre> Complete Qualifying Results

Top Fuel Hydro Pos/Name Hometown ET MPH 1. John Hipwell Landing, NJ 5.416 210.08 2. Kebin Kinsley Kennedale, TX 5.514 204.70 3. Shannon Stewart Hesperia, CA 5.728 214.42 4. Dwayne Patton Visallia, CA 6.279 140.44 5. Rex Childers Bakersfield, CA 6.605 120.74 6. Dale Ishamaru Torrance, CA 7.498 79.58

Top Alcohol Hydro Pos/Name Hometown ET MPH 1. Tim Stokes Eufaula, OK 5.401 225.10 2. Tom Wright Hermiston, OR 5.576 214.00 3. Troy Ferry Vallejo, CA 5.617 211.00 4. Ted Faggart Porterville, CA 5.629 213.36 5. Don Ney Escalon, CA 5.718 210.40 6. Mark Atkinson Dixon, CA 5.726 209.92 7. Rich Hayes Santa Ana, CA 5.816 209.66 8. Randell Roberts Andrew, TX 6.090 198.98 9. Andy Reynolds Belmont, NC 6.181 194.76 10. Glen Wilson San Francisco, CA 6.206 196.32 11. Mark Santar Escondido, CA 6.943 165.12 12. Todd Plate Visallia, CA 8.253 134.86 13. Hannes Wernhart Bakersfield, CA 19.645 59.88 14. Donny Lebon Livermore, CA 00.00 00.00

Top Alcohol Flat Pos/Name Hometown ET MPH 1. Eric Morris Madera, CA 7.118 143.78 2. Johnny Heidemann Tacoma, WA 7.236 155.94 3. Jerry Davis Conroe, TX 7.350 155.52 4. Ken Singleton Chickasha, OK 7.420 138.02 5. Dino Warda Modesto, CA 7.435 151.42 6. Jim Ermshar Riverside, CA 7.586 138.00 7. Don Ermshar Riverside, CA 7.619 149.80 8. Andy Dement Riverside, CA 7.743 129.58

Pro Mod Pos/Name Hometown ET (versus 7.00 index) 1. Josh Hayden Pleasanton, CA 7.007 2. Jay Brookhart Longview, WA 7.008 3. Gus Ward Sonora, TX 7.008 4. Darin Dunagan Minden, NV 7.028 5. Jamie Leppanen Sacramento, CA 7.059 6. Randy Johnson Whittier, CA 7.077 7. Robert Leas Independence, MO 7.088 8. Dick Crane Bermuda Dunes, CA 7.152 9. Harry Hodil Cave Creek, AZ 7.171 10. Lonnie Mills Bakersfield, CA 7.225 11. David Sharp Tucson, AZ 7.461 12. Scott Loomis Ojai, CA 7.561 13. Toby Mewharter Marysville, WA 7.565 14. Rick Mills Catheradal City, CA 8.087

-Elon Werner

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Series Boat
Drivers Kebin Kinsley