Empire Nationals Race Recap

LEICESTER NY - SUMMIT FastNews - Don Lampus, Fred Hahn, Jay Turner, Von Smith, Chris Holbrook, Fred Hahn, and Laurie Cannister survived a feeding-frenzy attack on the track record book at newly-repaved New York International Raceway Park and ...

LEICESTER NY - SUMMIT FastNews - Don Lampus, Fred Hahn, Jay Turner, Von Smith, Chris Holbrook, Fred Hahn, and Laurie Cannister survived a feeding-frenzy attack on the track record book at newly-repaved New York International Raceway Park and emerged as the winners in their respective professional categories at the IHRA Carquest Auto Parts Empire Nationals. Number-one qualifier Lampus defeated number three qualifier and current points leader Bruce Litton in the final round. Lampus, second in the points, tightened the points race with his win, covering the quarter-mile in 4.794 seconds at 298.87 mph against Litton's 4.934 at 282.95. "I was a little worried about Bruce," said Garland, Texas native Lampus, "He laid down a good number in qualifying. But after I let out the clutch, I never saw him, so I wasn't worried." Said Litton, "Don and I have raced each other the last four races. We each won two, but this hurt because it's a final. He's a clean racer, we enjoy running him. We're still ahead (in the points) but we need to chip away and get more wins and points." Lampus reset both ends of the track record during qualifying, with a 4.705-second elapsed time and a 312.57 mph speed during qualifying Saturday. The finalists shared the spotlight with New York Top Fuel racer Bobby Lagana, who survived a violent accident at this event last year and returned this year to challenge the track that almost killed him. Lagana lost to Litton in the second round of eliminations. Number-one qualifier Hahn, from Elva, N.Y., cruised to victory in the hotly-contested Pro Modified category, his '54 Chevrolet Corvette an easy winner when number-eleven qualifier Steve Vick, Mocksville, N.C., fouled at the start in his '68 Chevrolet Camaro. Hahn's car demonstrated a clear performance edge over the rest of the field throughout the event, resetting both ends of the New York track record with a 6.268-second elapsed time and a 222.80 mph speed during the first round of eliminations Sunday. Number five qualifier Turner, from Whitsett, N.C., faced 62 year-old number-three qualifier Ray Price, Raleigh, N.C., in the Top Fuel Harley final. Turner was clocked at 6.616 seconds and 208.33 mph in the final round, both track records, while Price slowed after losing traction. Number-two qualifier Smith, Oak Ridge, Tenn., defeated number-nine qualifier Jimmy Rector, Vernon, Ala. in a very close Alcohol Funny Car final, running 5.934 at 238.72 in a '99 Pontiac Firebird against Rector's 5.989 at 236.13 in a '98 Dodge Avenger. Said Smith, "Jimmy Rector is consistent and hard to beat. My hat is off to the crew because my driving hasn't been up to par. If you win, everyone wins together." Track records in the Alcohol Funny Car category were spread around and changed hands frequently throughout the event. Bob Newberry, Schenectady, N.Y., ended up with the track elapsed time record, 5.892 seconds, while Scott Weney, Royersford, Penn., took home the track speed record at 239.87 mph. Number-one qualifier Chris Holbrook, Redford, Mich., drove his '98 Ford Probe to victory in another close race, defeating number-two qualifier Steve Spiess, Manhattan, Ill., in an Oldsmobile Cutlass. Holbrook was clocked at 6.733 seconds and 207.53 mph to Spiess' 6.772 at 206.64. Holbrook set both ends of the track record during qualifying, 6.654 seconds and 208.55 mph. Number four qualifier Cannister, Clinton, Penn., was competing in just her second event in the Super Eliminator category and defeated number seven qualifier Dave Price with a 6.339 at 192.80 against Price's 6.344 at 213.13. Cannister defeated number-one qualifier Bill Schultz, Lancaster, N.Y., in the semifinal round and Schultz had to be content with possession of the track elapsed time record, 6.095 seconds, and speed record, 226.70 mph, both set during Saturday's qualifying. The next event on the IHRA national event schedule is the Carquest Auto Parts Northern Nationals at Mid-Michigan Motorplex, Stanton, Mich., July 30 - August 1. ### Results provided by the FastNews Network, courtesy of Summit Racing Equipment ** http://www.summitracing.com/ **

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Drag
Drivers Laurie Cannister , Fred Hahn , Bob Newberry , Scott Weney , Bruce Litton , Ray Price , Don Lampus , Steve Spiess