VIPsports Drag Race Joliet summary

Bubbling in the kettle -- Milford, Michigan -- The Chicagoland Dodge Dealers NHRA Division 3 race wrapped up on Sunday, July 17th, at Rt. 66 Raceway in Joliet, Illinois. This was the division's third round of NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing ...

Bubbling in the kettle --

Milford, Michigan -- The Chicagoland Dodge Dealers NHRA Division 3 race wrapped up on Sunday, July 17th, at Rt. 66 Raceway in Joliet, Illinois. This was the division's third round of NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series competition. ParkerTech Racing Services entered their VIPsports.com 2005 Dodge Stratus Top Alcohol Funny Car, ran hard and returned home with the Division 3 points lead.

Sixteen Top Alcohol Funny Car teams battled for eight qualifying spots, in high heat and humidity that was interrupted only by occasional rain. After the first qualifying session, Danny Townsend, driver of the VIPsports.com Dodge Stratus, was in the number three position, behind long-time rivals Vern Moats and Frank Manzo. The top three cars all improved their times in the second round, but remained in the same order. However, Mick Snyder found something to his advantage in the weather and leap-frogged into the top spot, ahead of Manzo. Townsend's 5.849 best pass, at 249.72 mph, was now good only for fourth.

Eliminations began with the VIPsports.com Dodge Stratus facing Jeff Burnett's Firebird. This round was crucial to both racers, as they were dead-even in the Division 3 points lead. Townsend lit the win light and broke the deadlock with a 5.865 run at 249.72 mph. In the semi-finals, Townsend met up with his old friend, Mick Snyder, whose crew had helped change Townsend's engine in time for him to win the Round 1 race in Indianapolis. As sporting as he may be, Townsend wasn't about to pay that favor back on the track. The VIPsports.com Stratus left hard and Townsend kept Snyder at bay until half-track. At that point, Snyder started gaining ground and picked up just enough for his first final-round appearance of the season.

The VIPsports.com crew was disappointed at loading up early, but happy to be loading the undisputed number one Top Alcohol Funny Car in Division 3. The weekend effort also moved the team from ninth to seventh, in NHRA National points, and maintained their lead in the Division 3 Jeg's All Stars competition. While pleased by the mid-season standing, Frank Parker, team owner, is not letting up on the search for more performance. "All the right ingredients are bubbling in the kettle: a tightly knit crew, a great car and sponsor and one of the best drivers around. The hot sauce to top off the stew is in our toolbox, but I just haven't found it yet."

The VIPsports.com Dodge Stratus has the following races on tap;

Aug. 5-7 Division 3, Edgewater Sports Park, Cleves, Oh.

Aug. 26-28 Division 3, Beech Bend Raceway, Bowling Green, Ky.

Aug. 31-Sep. 5 MAC Tools NHRA US Nats, Indianapolis Raceway Park, Clermont, In.

Sep. 23-25 Division 3, National Trail Raceway, Columbus, Oh.

Sep. 29-Oct. 2 Ameriquest Mortgage NHRA Nationals, Rt. 66 Raceway, Joliet, Il.

Don't forget the August 20th Woodward Avenue Dream Cruise. The VIPsports.com car and crew will be part of DaimlerChrysler's display at Woodward Avenue and Thirteen Mile Road. Join the action with over one million new friends at the world's largest single-day automotive event.

VIPsports.com provides sports enthusiasts, around the world, up-to-the-minute sports news, statistics and safe, reliable sports betting, casino games, horse racing and poker. Learn more about VIPsports.com, "Where the World Wagers," at www.vipsports.com. Click on the VIPsports.com Dodge Stratus image to see NHRA race action, crew photos, pit activities and more.

-Challenger Consulting

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Frank Manzo , Vern Moats , Mick Snyder , Danny Townsend