Von Smith Wades Into Unfamiliar Waters At The IHRA Amalie Oil Summer Nationals CORDOVA, ILL.-- Von Smith found himself in unfamiliar territory as he was defeated during...
Von Smith Wades Into Unfamiliar Waters At The IHRA Amalie Oil Summer Nationals
CORDOVA, ILL.-- Von Smith found himself in unfamiliar territory as he was defeated during the second round of eliminations by Tony Bogolo. As a three-time finalist, he was accustomed to being a regular player in the championship round. A poor reaction time was enough to do in the Oak Ridge, TN.,-based, Smith in the quarter-finals at the IHRA Amalie Oil Summer Nationals in Cordova, Ill.
The defending World Champion made an appearance at Cordova with the livery of Autozone in a test marketing venture. He gave the veteran auto parts chain a glimpse of the limelight as he posted the quickest run of the first session with a 5.98/234.41. Smith declined to make an appearance during the second session, but retained his top position, nonetheless.
Smith returned to take part in the third session and failed to improve, but exhibited a fair amount of consistency as he posted a respectable 6.03/232.19. He failed to improve during the final session. The first round paired him against Paul Girot in the opening round of competition.
Smith had Girot beat from the start with a .032 difference in reactions. By the time both cars reached the quarter-mile marker, Smith had easily outdistanced Girot by a 5.969/235.10 to 7.044/174.34 margin. He continued his advancement on the ladder and matched with Bogolo in the quarters. Bogolo holeshot Smith and found the finish line first with a 6.022/234.57
Smith plans to continue on his trek to winning another championship with his Big Daddy’s-backed 1999 Pontiac Firebird at the IHRA CARQUEST Empire Nationals in Leicester, NY., during the weekend of July 9-11. Smith, along with each Pro Alcohol Funny Car contestants, will be afforded two qualifying runs on Friday and another two on Saturday. Final eliminations are slated for Sunday. This event will be televised on ESPN2 with the dates and times TBA in an upcoming issue of the IHRA’s Drag Review magazine.