DENTON, Texas --
Fifteen teams came out to battle in Denton, Texas for the bragging rights of winning the First Annual Fall Nostalgia Nationals including Donnie Massey and the "Showtime" nitro burner who had won the previous two OFAA events of the season. Massey and a tough field of entrants hoped to play spoiler for those contending for the Championship as the Outlaw Fuel Altereds were joined by the Texas Blown Fuel and Southwest Junior Fuel Associations to entertain the nostalgia drag racing fans in the house.
DoDad Burton and Donnie Massey started the show as the first pairing of the first qualifying session. Burton wheeled his "Free Spirit" machine to a nice 4.15 at 170 mph while Massey lifted early to a 4.55 at 111 mph. John Broussard and Brad Rigler were out next in a pair of heavy hitting blown alcohol machines as Broussard clicked off a 4.03 at 176 mph while Rigler was the first of the evening to dip into the threes with a 3.99 at 176 mph.
Aaron Leyda's "Hemi Hunter" made the tow from Kansas and ran a 4.22 at 170 mph with Howard Farris at a 4.20 at 166 in the "War Wagon" in the opposing lane. Sean Belt and Jimmy Jones closed the session with Belt clicking off a 4.08 at 178 mph in the Iowa based "Nitro Madness" entry and Jones' "Texas Tremor" posted a 4.30 at 126 as the teams returned to the pit area to prepare for the final qualifying round.
Jones was last pair in the first session and first pair in this second session, this time along-side Bobby Marriott. This pairing turned out to be one of the wildest of the season as the "Shockwave" car of Marriott blew a slick around half track and Marriott had his hands full doing a masterful job behind the wheel to keep the car off the wall and in his own lane, actually making the turn off the track at the top end and climbing out on his own power uninjured in this bizarre incident. Unaware of what was happening in the other lane, Jimmy Jones clicked off a solid 4.01 at 153 mph.
Raymond Dawson's "High Octane" and Jim Overly's "Fuelish Habit" came up just short of the quick twelve cut-off and Chris Trussell missed the show after suffering event ending engine damage on a test pass Friday night in the "Assassin" fuel altered. Jim Overly claimed the Lone Wolf Fabrication "Luck of the Draw DNQ" bonus and Raymond Dawson won the B&J Transmissions "Outside Looking In" bonus.
Final Qualifying Order: 1) Brad Rigler (Heath, Texas) - 4.001 (3.998) @ 176 2) Jimmy Jones (Cleburne, Texas) - 4.01 @ 153 3) Bobby Marriott (Pilot Point, Texas) - 4.022 (3.977) @ 188 4) Terry Brian (New London, Texas) - 4.032 (3.967) @ 178 5) John Broussard (Lake Charles, Louisiana) - 4.034 @ 176 6) Sean Belt (Kansas City, Kansas) - 4.04 @ 181 7) Howard Farris (Tyler, Texas) - 4.102 (3.897) @ 181 8) Mary Reep (Austin, Texas) - 4.130 (3.869) @ 179 9) Donnie Massey (Little Elm, Texas) - 4.135 (3.864) @ 188 10) DoDad Burton (Tyler, Texas) - 4.15 @ 170 11) Nick Poloson (San Antonio, Texas) - 4.204 @ 147 12) Aaron Leyda (Bartlesville, Oklahoma) - 4.206 @ 170 13) Raymond Dawson (Nevada, Texas) - 4.31 @ 164 14) Jim Overly (Oyster Creek, Texas) - 4.65 @ 121 15) Chris Trussell (Canton, Texas) - No Time (Broke)
Next out, Donnie Massey crept into the stage beams in his flame throwing nitro burner along-side Aaron Leyda. Leyda got the jump off the line but soon lost traction and had his hands full keeping the "Hemi Hunter" off the wall while Massey clicked off a clean and straight 4.01 at 181 mph to take the win.
Mary Reep was out next facing off with Raymond Dawson who was inserted into the field for Bobby Marriott whose car was damaged beyond repair in qualifying. Dawson took the upset win in this one when Reep went red on the tree by -.011 and threw away a 3.88 at 171 mph to Dawson's 4.35 at 164 mph.
After the clean-up, Jimmy Jones and Howard Farris crept into the beams as Jones was facing a must win situation after watching both Terry Brian and Nick Poloson earn round wins. Incredibly, Howard Farris blasted to the second quickest pass of the OFAA season with a 3.83 at 189 mph and lost to Jimmy Jones' 4.03 at 180 mph. Farris' .408 reaction time allowed Jones to hold him off at the stripe as Jones took the must win into the semi-finals.
One pair had been sitting in the lanes watching this ensue, both drivers looking to play spoiler as Sean Belt and Brad Rigler were out next to close the first round of eliminations. Rigler was -.330 red on the tree giving Belt the win, Belt was on a lap before popping the burst panel and coasting to a 4.39 at 144 mph. Meanwhile, in the other lane, Brad Rigler had his hands full as a wheel broke from the car and exited sending Rigler to a rolling stop on three wheels. Rigler did a great job behind the wheel and climbed out un-injured in this incident.
First Round Results: (W) Terry Brian (.103 rt) 4.19 @ 172 mph vs. (L) DoDad Burton (.040 rt) 4.28 @ 158 mph (W) Donnie Massey (.098 rt) 4.01 @ 181 mph vs. (L) Aaron Leyda (.065 rt) 5.26 @ 90 mph (W) Raymond Dawson (.-0006 rt) 4.35 @ 164 mph vs. (L) Mary Reep (-.011 rt) 3.88 @ 171 mph (W) Nick Poloson (.068 rt) 3.98 @ 177 mph vs. (L) John Broussard (No Time - Broke) (W) Jimmy Jones (.072 rt) 4.03 @ 180 mph vs. (L) Howard Farris (.408 rt) 3.83 @ 189 mph (W) Sean Belt (.017 rt) 4.39 @ 144 mph vs. (L) Brad Rigler (-.330 rt) 9.06 @ 35 mph
Jimmy Jones and Nick Polson were up next, Poloson could end Jones' title run with a win here as the two cars crept into the stage beams. Poloson took a very slight advantage off the starting line and the cars were dead even to the 330' before Poloson lost a blower belt and had the best seat in the house to watch Jones win the semi-final with his best pass of the night, a stellar 3.89 at 186 mph.
Every fan, racer, crew member and track employee was on the fence for this one as the call went out to fire them up for the final OFAA competition round of the season. After their burnouts the "II N'Tense" machine of Terry Brian and the "Texas Tremor" machine of Jimmy Jones crept into the beams. The drivers brought up the RPM's on their screaming blown alcohol Hemi powerplants and at the flash of amber they were off!
Jones was off the line with a staggering .001 reaction time (which earned him the Good Vibrations "Quick Reaction Time" Bonus) and had the lead as the cars reached the 330' foot cone. By half-track, Terry Brian's car was on fire kicking the head gasket out of the left side of the engine but was wide open doing all he could to keep up with Jones. Jones was moving to the center and had his hands full as the car went from the center back to the right lane guardrail and as he crossed the finish line the score boards lit up with the win light followed by a shower of sparks as the headers dragged along the guardrail.
Final Round Results:
"I want to give thanks to my partner Paul Kelley and my crew John Jett, John Morris, Wesley Ice, Gary Greer, Joey McCrory and especially to my wonderful wife Glenda. Many thanks also goes out to Painless Performance Products and all the associate sponsors of the Outlaw Fuel Altered series. Bobby and Nancy Marriott are the ones who deserve the most credit for making all this happen. They supply us with a great playground and racing with these people is more fun than you can imagine. We surely used up all the racing luck we could have ever had this year and we somehow came out on top. Terry Brian and his team ran fast and consistent all year and the competition in this series is second to none. It won't be easy, but we will be back next year ready to defend the title. Thanks again to everyone who helps us with our racecar and to all the sponsors, fans and tracks who support the Outlaw Fuel Altered Association," said Jones.
It was yet another Championship battle that came down to the late rounds of the final race of the season proving again how close the competition is in the OFAA series. Twenty three teams earned points in the 2012 racing season and the series six different number one qualifiers and four different winners in the seven completed races this season. We'd like to wish all our fans, tracks, teams and staff a relaxing yet productive off season as we will be back in action and ready for another exciting year of racing in 2013, our seventeenth consecutive year entertaining the drag racing fans of the southwest.
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