MISSION, B.C. - In the final results for the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series and the Lordco Auto Parts B.C. Nationals at Mission Raceway Park, one of the fastest tracks in North America for years, Alcohol Dragster racer Ray Martin continued to star in regional competition and perennial Top Alcohol Funny Car contender Steve Gasparrelli scored for the third year in a row.
In the Top Alcohol Dragster final, Martin, who also won this race in 2011, topped Greg Sereda, who had been running steady 5.60s, for a come-from-behind win, 5.52 to 5.64, popping the blower near the lights. Martin now has a 7-1 win-loss record and two victories in three regional starts this season after reaching three finals in five such starts in 2012.
Martin qualified third in the four-car field, seven-hundredths of a second behind Joey Severance, and defeated former national event finalist Don St. Arnaud in an upset-filled first round, 5.46 to 5.68. Neither Severance, who qualified No. 1 with a 5.36, nor St. Arnaud, who was No. 2 with a 5.38, survived the opening round. Severance banged the blower near mid-track, slowing to a 6.09 at just 130 mph and allowing Sereda to move on with a 5.68, 232.
Top Alcohol Funny Car came down to the only two drivers to win this race in the past five years. In a rematch of last year's finale, Gasparrelli, who won here in 2011 and 2012, topped Brian Hough, who won in 2009 and 2010, getting off the mark first with a .060 reaction time and getting the best of a tight race, 5.72 to 5.74.
Hough was the early performance leader, qualifying No. 1 with a 5.64 and topping 260 mph both in qualifying and in the first round of eliminations, where he beat Randy Parker, 5.62 to 6.33. Gasparrelli began eliminations from the bottom half of the program with a 5.99 and put away John Evanchuk in the first round, 5.70 to a shutoff 9.17, earning a small measure of revenge for his final-round loss to Evanchuk in last year's Northwest Nationals final, the toughest loss of his long career.
Hough, who already had the two quickest e.t.s of the event, 5.64 and 5.62, smoked the tires trying to go quicker on his semifinal single and clicked it off for a 12.05. In the other semi, Gasparrelli dropped Dave Germain, ending one of the finest outings of Germain's career. The former firefighter qualified in the fast half of the field with a 5.83 and got around Russ Parker in the first round with an even better 5.75.
Hometown racer Kirk Lanz, Mission, B.C., advanced to the final round in both Super Gas and in the RH Racecars Top Sportsman looking for the elusive double-up. In his first test, he would meet up with Daryl Hemley and take the early lead but Hemley ran Lanz down to take the Top Sportsman trophy in 6.951 seconds at 199.42 mph.
Lanz would come back around to face off with Brian Preszler, Kennewick, Wash., in Super Gas where he would not be denied. Lanz clocked in at 9.865 at 168.91 mph for the win and his first ever NHRA Wally trophy.
The Super Comp final was a family affair as Michael Dalrymple faced off with his father John. Michael got the early lead and needed every bit of it to hold off his dad who ran 8.903 on the 8.90 dial.
Joe Sorensen also used a starting line advantage to force Mark Faul to break out in the Super Stock final round. Sorensen, Woodburn, Ore., went 10.279 at 126 mph in his '69 Camaro for the win.
Former division champion Dudley Gee, Canby, Ore., recorded a .009 second package for the win in Super Street over Arron Spitzer and last year's finalist in Sportsman Motorcycle presented by Harley Davidson Jeff Havens went the extra round for the win over Doug Rathbun.
Brandon Huhtala took the early lead in Comp Eliminator and held on to beat Joe Roubicek while Tom Clark held on to defeat Peter Saruga for the Top Dragster title.
Other winners this weekend were Mick Alley, Eagle, Idaho, who beat Jim Storms in Stock, Al Quigley, Aldergrove, B.C., defeated Jon Bradford in Super Pro and Stefan Kondolay, Chilliwack, B.C., knocked out Chris Stone, Mission, B.C. in Pro ET.
Northwest Division racers head to Woodburn Dragstrip for the next NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event, July 12-14.
The following are the final results from the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Lordco Auto Parts B.C. Nationals event at Mission Raceway Park:
TOP ALCOHOL DRAGSTER: Semifinals 4) Greg Sereda, Spruce Grove, Alb., 5.680, 232.73 def. 1) Joey Severance, Woodburn, Ore., 6.094, 130.49 3) Ray Martin, Anchorage, Alaska, 5.467, 263.31 def. 2) Don St. Arnaud, Edmonton, Alb., 5.681, 240.12 Final Martin, 5.527, 251.95 def. Sereda, 5.642, 254.74 TOP ALCOHOL FUNNY CAR: Round 1 1) Brian Hough, Junction City, Ore., '10 Mustang, 5.621, 260.56 def. 6) Randy Parker, Puyallup, Wash., '04 Mustang, 6.333, 220.96 5) Steve Gasparrelli, West Covina, Calif., '06 Monte Carlo, 5.707, 257.36 def. 2) John Evanchuk, Edmonton, Alb., '06 Monte Carlo, 9.176, 104.43 3) Dave Germain, Toledo, Wash., '06 Monte Carlo, 5.758, 243.37 def. 4) Russ Parker, Salem, Ore., '02 Camaro, 5.916, 237.46 Semifinals Gasparrelli, 5.706, 256.33 def. Germain, 13.337, 69.77 Hough, 12.050, 83.53 was unopposed Final Gasparrelli, 5.726, 256.55 def. Hough, 5.744, 257.28 COMP ELIMINATOR Brandon Huhtala, Puyallup, Wash., '09 GXP, C/A, 7.320, 175.43 def. Joe Roubicek, Westlake Village, Calif., '68 Camaro, A/AA, 6.748, 207.66 SUPER STOCK Joe Sorensen, Woodburn, Ore., '69 Camaro, SS/EA, 10.279, 126.95 def. Mark Faul, Tacoma, Wash., '98 Grand Am, GT/DA, 10.094, 130.77 STOCK ELIMINATOR Mick Alley, Eagle, Idaho, '69 Camaro, A/SA, 10.164, 123.23 def. Jim Storms, Renton, Wash., '72 Barracuda, G/SA, 11.165, 113.12 SUPER COMP Michael Dalrymple, Sunnyside, Wash., dragster, 8.928, 176.36 def. John Dalrymple, Sunnyside, Wash., dragster, 8.903, 180.39 SUPER GAS Kirk Lanz, Mission, B.C., '04 Cavalier, 9.865, 168.91 def. Brian Preszler, Kennewick, Wash., '00 Corvette, 9.485, 152.51 SUPER STREET Dudley Gee, Canby, Ore., '66 Mustang, 10.905, 138.52 def. Arron Spitzer, Arlington, Wash., '66 Chevy II, 10.906, 143.28 TOP DRAGSTER Tom Clark, Spokane, Wash., dragster, 7.354, 178.39 def. Peter Saruga, Fort McMurray, Alb., dragster, 7.278, 181.48 TOP SPORTSMAN Daryl Hemley, Burley, Wash., '02 Cavalier, 6.951, 199.42 def. Kirk Lanz, Mission, B.C., '69 Camaro, 7.256, 184.53 SPORTSMAN MOTORCYCLE PRESENTED BY HARLEY DAVIDSON Jeff Havens, Yakima, Wash., '95 Suzuki, 8.028, 158.45 def. Doug Rathbun, Oak Harbor, Wash., '74 Kawasaki, 8.616, 145.37 SUPER PRO Al Quigley, Aldergrove, B.C., '98 Mustang, 9.250, 145.70 def. Jon Bradford, Tucson, Ariz., dragster, 7.143, 190.88 PRO ET Stefan Kondolay, Chilliwack, B.C., 11.272, 115.74 def. Chris Stone, Mission, B.C., 10.319, 121.42