Edmonton: Series Friday qualifying summary

Hoover resets track records at Castrol Raceway On a night where records seemed to fall left and right, Pro Modified driver Ed Hoover made the biggest splash of them all with a new track mark for speed and elapsed time in front of a packed...

Hoover resets track records at Castrol Raceway

On a night where records seemed to fall left and right, Pro Modified driver Ed Hoover made the biggest splash of them all with a new track mark for speed and elapsed time in front of a packed house Friday the River Cree Resort and Casino Rocky Mountain Nationals presented by Paradise RV at Castrol Raceway in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

Going head to head with points leader Kenny Lang in a battle of the United States versus Canada, Hoover (Gilbert, S.C.) got the best of the Grande Pointe, Manitoba resident with a 6.026 E.T. at 237.55 mph to Lang's 6.154 elapsed time at 235.72 mph to top the provisional qualifying charts and claim Friday's Last Man Standing in Pro Modified.

"Jim (Weinert) has done a great job on the track. I did not expect that kind of E.T. out of my car, but we just got a hold of it early and had a great 60 foot and a great eighth mile and that is where your E.T. comes from," Hoover said. "I didn't expect 6.02 here on the mountain. I figured it would probably go 10 or 11 at best, it was pretty surprising."

Hoover's numbers were good enough to reset all of the track records at Castrol Raceway, joining a pair of Alcohol Funny Car drivers who also set new marks as records seemed to fall at will under the pristine drag racing conditions at the Canadian quarter mile.

"We work on this thing every week and I am tuning it myself," Hoover said. "I never quit tinkering with it; I am never settled on a tune-up. We are trying a few things a little different this weekend and hoping they will pay off on Sunday."

Behind Hoover and Lang was a trio of Alberta natives including Rick Distefano (6.231, 229.12) who made his IHRA return after a lengthy absence with the third spot through two rounds of qualifying. Rounding out the Pro Mod top five are Ross Hogenson (6.298) and Joe Delehay (6.309).

While Hoover headlined the door slammer rounds, the nitro rounds saw an incredible night of racing in both Top Fuel and Nitro Funny Car as the IHRA welcomed the nitro burning floppers back to competition in style.

Dale Creasy Jr., Terry Haddock, Jason Duchene and Randy Bykowsky put on quite a show in Nitro Funny Car to round out the evening's competition rounds.

While the Funny Cars put an end to the evening's qualifying sessions, Top Fuel got down to business in trying to determine the fastest rail car of the evening.

And that honor went to Indianapolis, Ind. native Bruce Litton who claimed Friday's Last Man Standing and topped the provisional qualifying charts with a 4.868 elapsed time at 297.16 miles per hour.

"It was a good run. We just wanted to go down to the finish line under power and just get something under our belt," Litton said. "The sun played a little bit of havoc, driving right in the glare, but we kept it in the groove and that is all you can ask. It worked out well."

Mitch King (Galveston, Texas) was just behind Litton with a 5.044 E.T. at 286.80 mph while King's second car, driven by Del Cox Jr., qualified fourth (5.448). Tim Boychuk (7.509) was fifth.

IHRA also welcomed Alcohol Funny Car back to the fold and the alcohol burning cousins of the nitro clan did not disappoint.

Both track records were reset during Friday's qualifying rounds as Roger Bateman (Calgary, Alberta) set the new E.T. mark with a 5.655 second lap at 252.05 mph to top the provisional qualifying charts while Ken Webster (Red Deer, Alberta) set the new speed record at 253.61 miles per hour, falling in line behind Bateman on the charts with a 5.761 elapsed time.

Three-time IHRA Alcohol Funny Car champion Rob Atchison was third on the charts with a 5.767 E.T. at 250.41 mph followed by Scott McVey (5.775) and John Evanchuk (5.807).

A pair of two-wheel classes made quite a bit of noise in the middle of the order headlined by the nitro-burning Harley Davidson class. Damian Cownden (Victoria, British Columbia) headlined the Nitro Harleys with a 6.664 elapsed time at 210.97 miles per hour to take the provisional pole, followed very closely by Ken Kent (Edmonton, Alberta) who put down a blazing 6.665 E.T. at 210.93 mph.

Andy Beauchemin (6.729) was third and Jason Arkinstall (6.747) was fourth, putting down top speed of the night at an incredible 218.90 miles per hour, one mile per hour shy of the world record. John Breckenridge (6.821) rounded out the top five.

In Pro Modified Bikes it was Hope, British Columbia native Gary Christopher on top of the charts with a 7.154 elapsed time at 199.49 miles per hour. Gord Smith (Kelowna, British Columbia) is second with a 7.243 E.T. at 189.63 mph.

Rounding out the Pro Mod Bikes are Rich Podszus (7.473), Kevin Shupac (7.975) and Tony Clizbe (8.089).

In Pro Nostalgia Edmonton's own Rod Elliott topped the provisional charts with a 7.243 E.T. at 194.24 miles per hour. Ron Sekura (Drayton Valley, Alberta) was second on the charts with a lap of 7.243 seconds at 188.25 mph.

Eddy Plaizier (7.254), Tim Boychuk (7.267) and Cal Tebb (7.272) rounded out the top five in Pro Nostalgia.

Racing action will get back underway at Castrol Raceway at 10 a.m. Saturday morning leading up to the SMS Equipment "Night of Fire" at 7:30 p.m. Saturday evening.

-credit: ihra

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Series Drag
Drivers Bruce Litton , Dale Creasy Jr. , Ed Hoover , Mitch King , Terry Haddock , Kenny Lang