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Mon, 15 Oct 2001, 01:37 PM

Santos Races to Victory at Thunder Valley Ties Hentges for Point Lead
Courtesy of NHRA Marketing





NOBLE, Okla. -- In the final results from Thunder Valley Raceway Park, Federal-Mogul Dragster driver and four-time national champion, Rick Santos and Federal-Mogul Funny Car pilot Todd Simpson drove to victory in their respective fields.


Hentges vs. Santos
Santos of Brentwood, Calif., took on current point's leader Mark Hentges of Federal Way, Wash., in the final and laid down a 5.485-second, 260.79-mph pass to turn on the win light. Santos, seeking his fifth consecutive national championship, tied Hentges atop the national points standing. "We needed this," said Santos. Adding, "Mark got me last week in Reading with a killer reaction time. I was happy to see that I gave myself a chance to win with a .425 reaction time."

Ponder, Texas resident, Todd Simpson squared off against Tate Branch of Artesia, N.M., in the Funny Car final. Simpson drove his '00 Avenger to victory with a pass of 5.951 seconds and 244.43 mph.

Others claiming wins here this weekend were: Don Stratton of Beloit, Ohio in Competition Eliminator; Jimmy DeFrank of Tarzana, Calif., in Super Stock; Steven Hall of Sweeney, Texas in Stock; Shannon "Elvis" Brinkley of Highlands, Texas in Super Comp; Jimmy Lewis of Forney, Texas in Super Gas; Steve Domingues of Derby, Kan. in Super Street; and Joe Herron of Freemont, Neb., in Motorcycle.

Earning the award for Best Appearing Crew was Tulsa, Okla., resident and Federal-Mogul Dragster pilot Shelly Howard. Taking home top honors for Best Appearing Car was Tommy Costales of Houston, Texas for his immaculate Super Comp dragster. John Garner of Houston, Texas earned the Best Engineered car for his Super comp dragster.

This is the final Federal-Mogul Drag Racing Series event of the 2001 season for the NHRA South Central Division. The 2002 South Central division season kicks off in Houston, Texas on March 2-4.

The following are Sunday's final results from the NHRA Federal-Mogul Drag Racing Series event at Thunder Valley Raceway Park:

Federal-Mogul Dragster
First Round
1) Mark Hentges, Federal Way, Wash., 5.502 seconds, 261.24 mph def.
8) Gene Snow, Fort Worth, Texas, 5.631, 241.67

7) Alan Bradshaw, Odessa, Texas, 5.551, 258.91 def.
2) Bruce Bowler, Denver, Colo., 26.926, 22.30

3) Rick Santos, Brentwood, Calif., 5.455, 260.79 def.
6) Larry Traugott, Woodward, Okla., 5.799, 241.15

5) Troy Buff, Spring, Texas, 5.550, 257.58 def.
4)Jay Meyer, Freeport, Texas, 5.586, 253.87

Semi-Finals
Hentges, 5.520 seconds, 250.69 mph def. Buff, 5.583, 257.36
Santos, 5.479, 259.59 def. Bradshaw, 5.747, 227.79

Final
Santos, 5.485 seconds, 260.79 mph def. Hentges, 5.581, 258.62

Federal-Mogul Funny Car
First Round
1) Todd Simpson, Ponder, Texas, '00 Avenger, 5.963 seconds, 239.29 mph def.
8) Kirk, Johnson, Dallas, Texas, '98 Avenger, 7.731, 118.62

2) Tate Branch, Artesia, N.M., '00 Avenger, 6.001, 237.40 def.
7) Lawren Jones, Albuquerque, N.M., '01 Corvette, 6.333, 231.30

3) Jackie Stidham, Chickasha, Okla., '00 Camaro, 5.891, 241.28 def.
6) Kebin Kinsley, Arlington, Texas, '98 Achieva, 6.587, 157.15

4) Scott Palmer, Highlandville, Mo., '98 Achieva 6.041, 241.28 def.
5) Jimmy Jones, Cleburne, Texas, '98 Camaro, 6.133, 236.40

Semi-Finals
Simpson, '00 Avenger, 5.936 seconds, 244.36 mph def. Palmer, '98 Achieva, 6.148,
237.02
Branch, '00 Avenger, 5.982, 240.00 def. Stidham, '00 Camaro, 6.020, 235.41

Final
Simpson, '00 Avenger, 5.951 seconds, 244.43 mph def. Branch, 6.013, 240.57

Comp Eliminator
Don Stratton Jr., Beloit, Ohio, '34 Chevrolet, B/SR, 8.160 seconds, 160.48 mph def.
Andy Manna Jr., Laguna Niguel, Calif., '90 Pontiac, D/EA, 8.474, 157.23

Super Stock
Jimmy DeFrank, Tarzana, Calif., '89 Chevrolet, GT/HA, 10.484 seconds, 127.58 mph
def.
Tim Cole, Collierville, Tenn., '96 Corvette, SS/AX, 9.069, 146.96 mph

Stock Eliminator
Steven Hall, Sweeney, Texas, '68 Mustang, B/SA, 10.663 seconds, 123.32 mph def.
Jeff Swanson, Arlington, Tenn., '93 Mustang, I/S, 11.786, 111.80

Super Comp
Shannon Brinkley, Highlands, Texas, 8.898 seconds, 168.85 mph def.
Jimmy Lewis, Forney, Texas, 8.890, 163.84

Super Gas
Jimmy Lewis, Forney, Texas, '94 Brogie, 9.955 seconds, 146.15 mph def.
Frank Kohutek, Mesquite, Texas, '96 Roadster, 10.197, 140.07

Super Street
Steve Domingues, Derby, Kan., '67 Camaro, 10.931 seconds, 139.83 mph def.
Delbert Hembey, Fort Worth, Texas, '77 Vega, 10.933, 128.42

Motorcycle
Joe Herron, Freemont, Neb., '81 Suzuki, 10.217 seconds, 130.60 mph def.
Chris Oravecz, Arlington, Texas, '81 Suzuki, 10.131, 117.83







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