Mike Castellana wins first NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge at St. Louis MADISON, Ill. (June 29, 2003) -- Mike Castellana won his first Pro Mod title of his career by winning the NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge being held this...
Mike Castellana wins first NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge at St. Louis
MADISON, Ill. (June 29, 2003) -- Mike Castellana won his first Pro Mod title of his career by winning the NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge being held this weekend as part of the NHRA Sears Craftsman Nationals at Gateway International Raceway, just across the river from St. Louis.
In the opening round, the No. 1 qualifier Tim McAmis, from Hawk Point, Mo., bested Troy Critchley; Mike Castellana, from Westbury, N.Y., turned back Rickie Smith; Thomas Patterson, from Houston, won over Chip King. Then in an unique occurrence, Shannon Jenkins, from Tuscaloosa, Ala., red-lighted but Frankie Taylor crossed the center line and by virtue of the first or worst rule Shannon Jenkins advanced to the second round.
In the semifinals, Castellana was a surprise winner over McAmis and his Saunders Motorsports '63 Corvette. While Patterson defeated Jenkins, who once again red-lighted.
In the final round, it will be the supercharged '41 Willys of Patterson against the '68 nitrous-assisted Camaro of Castellana. Patterson has one NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge win and one runner-up in his career. Castellana will be looking for his first career win.
Patterson was out first at the green light but Patterson got loose and crossed the center line and Castellana raced away to the win light, his first.
At the top end of the track, Castellana first words were, "Nitrous cars aren't dead!" The remark refers to the never ending battle of words between the two type of cars -- supercharged alcohol and nitrous-assisted -- that make up the Pro Mod category on both the NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge and the IHRA circuit.
Reflecting on the win, Castellana said, " The win means a lot. My whole crew worked hard. We've been looking for a win for a while now. Today we put everything together and here we are.
"There was a lot of good competition out there today. The supercharged cars ran a little faster but they have a little bit of an advantage, but on race day you have to race good also. Our crew chief Shannon Jenkins and my whole crew made the right calls all day. We just out raced them today and we won."
This weekend's Pro Mod action from the NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge at Gateway Raceway in Madison, Ill. (St. Louis) can be seen on ESPN2 on Thursday, July 10 at 3:30 p.m. (Repeat: Saturday, July 26 and Monday, July 28 at 5 a.m.). Times are Eastern Time and subject to change without notice.
The next event, the seventh of 10 on the NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge, an exhibition class on the NHRA National event circuit, will not be held until the Labor Day weekend, when the 49th annual NHRA Mac Tools U.S. Nationals unfolds at Indianapolis Raceway Park in Clermont, Ind., just outside Indianapolis, the motorsports capital of the world.
MADISON, Ill. -- Final round-by-round results from NHRA AMS Staff Leasing Pro Mod Challenge, an exhibition class on the NHRA national event circuit, being held at the seventh annual NHRA Sears Craftsman Nationals at Gateway International Raceway.
ROUND ONE -- Mike Castellana, Chevy Camaro, 6.309, 219.76 def. Rickie Smith, Chevy Corvette, 6.332, 221.92; Shannon Jenkins, Camaro, 6.330, 221.16 def. Frankie Taylor, Corvette, foul; Thomas Patterson, Willys, 6.430, 222.95 def. Chip King, Dodge Avenger, 6.432, 223.69; Tim McAmis, Corvette, 6.220, 226.51 def. Troy Critchley, Corvette, 6.486, 217.14;
SEMIFINALS -- Patterson, 6.728, 159.40 def. Jenkins, foul; Castellana, 6.271, 221.02 def. McAmis, 6.290, 226.35;
FINAL -- Castellana, 6.251, 221.92 def. Patterson, foul.