McManus, Bronec, Lamkin, Moilanen, and Plaster Winners at Sunoco Series #4, Harley Eliminator #1
Jaw-Dropping Racing Action. It has come to be the norm here at Woodburn Dragstrip, and April 29th was no difference as we saw victories by Mike McManus (Super Pro), Dave Bronec (Pro), Jim Lamkin (Sportsman), Bryce Moilanen (Run Tuff), and John Plaster (Harley Eliminator). Temperatures started off cool in the morning with a light wind, but while the sky broke for sunshine later in the day, also came a strong head wind, making it extra hard for drivers to dial-in their vehicles to the thousandths needed to visit the Winner’s Circle.
In the Sunoco Race Fuels ET Series Super Pro category, Mike McManus took down Michael Boyd, Dennis Weddle, Devon Hilton, and Danny Wargnier to face off against Jim McDermott in the final. McDermott, on the other side of the ladder, faced off with names such as Charlie Dietrich, Bill McNeal, Mark Dawson, and Dave Sattem to earn his trip into the final. In the final round, McManus had a slight .03 of a second advantage, and flew down the track at over 168 mph to run an 8.418 on his 8.41 dial in, while McDermott ran under, running a 7.418 on his 7.42 dial in. Special notices should go to Devon Hilton for winning the A-1 Performance Trans and Converters Package for the Points. Hilton was the second pair out, and left with a .010 reaction time, motoring down to a 8.235 on his 8.23 dial in.
Pro bracket racers are in an almost airtight bubble of competition, with the current top 4 drivers separated by only one round. Dave Bronec, your number two qualifier, raced through former National Champion Steve Kelly, Jeff Marchi, John Maul, and Dave Fowler before earning the single pass into the final round. Meanwhile, Thomas Jackson III went through Carl Wilkerson, Andy Harris, Casey DePeel, Mike Hansen and Steve Stuart to reach the final round. In the final, Jackson left on Bronec via an .025 to .043 reaction time start, but Bronec was able to seal the deal as Jackson broke out by 29 thousandths of a second, giving the win to the ’72 Nova of Dave Bronec. Through the six round race, Bronec had a light better than a .014 on three occasions, while Jackson averaged a .038 (.027 if you threw out one bad reaction time). Special recognition should go to Bryce Moilanen, who on the second to last pair of Pro competition, used a .020 package to earn the A-1 Performance Trans and Converters Package for the Points prize, and 10 additional points that go along with it.
In Sportsman competition, there were new visitors to finals for the year, with Jim Lamkin facing off with Jerry Durant Jr. Lamkin’s trip to the final included wins over Michael McFadden, a single pass, Tracy Herinckx, and Derrick Jackson, of whom he defeated with a .017 package. Jerry Durant Jr, on the other side of the ladder, eliminated Elvon Kauffman (in a race decided by just .002), Kathy Figini, and Jerry Weber before earning the single pass in the semis. How fitting it was to have your number one and two qualifier face off in the final round, and it was a round won by Jim Lamkin after Jerry Durant Jr broke out, running a 13.855 on his 13.87 dial in. Sunday was Lamkin’s day as he was also the winner of the A-1 Performance Trans and Converters Package for the Points with a .041 total package.
In Run Tuff Competition, a class for racers unable to win in the first round, Bryce Moilanen made up for his first round loss by defeating last year’s Sports Compact Pro Champion William Breese. Eli Taghon and Gary Palmateer were the semi-finalists.
In the first ever Harley Eliminator event, a six race series started just this year, competition was great among the competitors. However, as in the standard for bracket-style eliminations, the final round could only consist of two of the great racers, namely John Plaster and Mike Graver. Plaster defeated Gary Tokos before earning himself a single pass in the semis, and Graver took down Kerry Drost and Mike Bracken to make his way to the final round. In the final round, Graver had a near-perfect .009 reaction time, but it was all for not as his biked slowed a full second, running a 12.809 on the 11.80, giving the win to Plaster who ran a 10.664 on the 10.60.
In addition to the Sunoco Series and the Harley Eliminator bikes, the conclusion of the NWDRA Winter Classis was run on this date. After respective wins by Gordon Cady Jr (Sportsman), Rick Sales Sr (Pro) Gary Wargnier (Super Pro) and Don DePeel (Motorcycle/Sled), the winners and runner-ups ran off to see who would be crowned King of the Hill. After their first round of eliminations, Gordon Cady Jr downed Steve Kelly (Pro R/U) in the semis. using a .021 to .049 reaction time to his advantage. On the other side of the semi’s, Don DePeel was battling with Super Pro R/U Billy Taylor. After almost identical reaction times, Taylor broke out by 14 thousandths to send DePeel into the final. In the finals, Cady Jr had a .040 reaction time to DePeels .067, after a double breakout seperated by one hundredths of a second, the win went in the favor of Gordon Cady Jr.
Drivers are listed in order of name, hometown, (vehicle make/model), [reaction time], elapsed time, mph, and (dial-in).
W: Mike McManus, Happy Valley OR (’01 Tuttle) [.034] 8.418, 168.72 (8.41 dial).
R/U: Jim McDermott, Eugene OR (’98 Dragster) [.063] 7.418, 182.33 (7.42 dial).
Semi’s: Dave Sattem, Camas WA; Danny Wargnier, Keizer OR.
W: Dave Bronec, Hubbard OR (’72 Nova) [.043] 10.273, 127.33 (10.26 dial).
R/U: Thomas Jackson III, Carlton OR (’70 El Camino) [.025] 11.801, 109.51 (11.83 dial).
Semi’s: Steve Stuart, Estacada OR.
W: Jim Lamkin, Clackamas OR (’75 Monza) [.063] 14.800, 88.57 (14.78 dial).
R/U: Jerry Durant Jr, Oregon City OR (’05 Dodge) [.117] 13.855, 96.25 (13.87 dial).
Semi’s: Derrick Jackson, McMinnville OR.
W: John Plaster, Buckley WA (Harley XL883C) [.174] 10.664, 109.11 (10.60 dial).
R/U: Mike Graver, Beaverton OR (’00 Sportster) [.009] 12.809, 107.18 (11.80 dial).
Semi’s: Mike Bracken, Yamhill OR.
W: Bryce Moilanen, Woodburn OR (’71 Vega) [.050] 10.325, 127.04 (10.35 dial).
R/U: William Breese, Hillsboro OR (’92 Talon) – foul.
Semi’s: Eli Taghon, Oregon City OR; Gary Palmateer, Monmouth OR.
NWDRA Winter Classic King of the Hill
W: Gordon Cady Jr, Vacnouver WA (’65 El Camino) [.040] 12.597, 104.21 (12.62 dial).
R/U Don DePeel, Gladstone OR (’74 Kawasaki) [.067] 8.587, 149.40 (8.62 dial).
Semi’s: Steve Kelly, Vancouver WA; Billy Taylor, Kelso WA.