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Wed, 03 Dec 2014, 10:17 AM

SHRA Nostalgia Eliminator Shootout Wins Go To Dunkin, Godwin and Morrison
By Chris Graves
Photo copyright 2014 Max Cackle Photography





ENNIS, Texas -- The Southwest Heritage Racing Association presented by MalloryPrint.com concluded the first ever SHOOTOUTS for SHRA nostalgia eliminator racers during the SHRA Championship FINALS event held November 8th in Ennis, Texas. It took all season to determine the racers who would face off for the big bucks at the final event of the year in this unique "race within a race" format. Racers earned points based on final qualifying positions at each of the previous seven SHRA events in 2014. Those top eight competitors in points earned the right to compete for the money, with the pairings taking place in the first qualifying session for the final event of the season. The quickest two winners in each NE class would face off in the final round that would decide who got the highly anticipated $1,000 pay day.

Good Vibrations Motorsports Nostalgia Eliminator 1 SHOOTOUT
In the Nostalgia Eliminator 1 class, with the support of Good Vibrations Motorsports in Whittier, CA the Shootout would find Tera Wendland-Graves in the Walden Power Equipment slingshot dragster from Kilgore, Texas at the top of the qualified list and favored to run for the money. Graves' four #1 qualifying efforts in 2014 at the Denton spring event, Wichita Falls, Temple and San Antonio put her in a solid top position by almost 20 points when the racers arrived at the Texas Motorplex for the FINALS.


Steve Dunkin (far lane) defeats Ron Muncy.


Steve Dunkin celebrates win.
In first round action, Steve Dunkin had the tough task of tackling the dragster from Kilgore with Wendland-Graves behind the wheel. Conditions were very cool and windy, and with no time trial runs prior to this important first round, Dunkin made the right calls on the tune up as he took out the top qualifier with a clean 4.73 blast to Wendland-Graves' 4.76. Another favorite, Dale McKee has been on his game with the Richard DeLaMatyr owned altered and was primed to do well in the Shootout against Gary Ballard. However, at the green light, McKee went into severe tire shake, and despite pedaling the altered darted towards the green Motorplex wall and McKee earned a "Motorplex Stripe" when the car tagged the wall, taking him out of competition for the rest of the day and giving the win to Ballard. In other first round action, Clay Cunningham made the trip from the Texas Panhandle to take out number two in points Chris Graves in the "Blown Inheritance" dragster and Ron Muncy who narrowly qualified for the Shootout field in the number eight spot took out a strong contender in Jason O'Neill who lit the red bulb. The two quickest winners of that round were Ron Muncy (4.70) and Steve Dunkin (4.73) and these "Foolish Pleasure" teammates would face each other in the second qualifying session for the finals for the shootout title and cash from Good Vibrations. With conditions slightly warmer and more sun on the track for the money round, both drivers brought their diggers to life. At the green light Muncy was caught napping by Dunkin and in a holeshot win it was Dunkin's 4.74 at 133 mph blast that took out Muncy's better 4.73 at 144 pass, giving the $1,000 Good Vibrations cash to Dunkin while Muncy took $500 back to Weatherford, TX for his efforts.

Meyer Enterprises Nostalgia Eliminator 2 SHOOTOUT
In Nostalgia Eliminator 2, sponsored by Meyer Enterprises located in Denton, TX backed this Shootout as it featured the closest competition of the three classes for the top spot. After swapping back and forth all year, Lake Dallas, TX runner Tommy Drozd took his altered to the top spot by just one point over Bee Godwin. Drozd and Godwin both took top qualifier positions in the NE2 class two times during the season but Bruce Dodson also had two #1 qualifying spots during the year and was a serious contender. Dodson missed races in Temple, Ardmore and San Antonio and that likely cost him the top spot.


Bee Godwin defeats Bruce Dodson.


Bee Godwin celebrates win.
First round of the NE2 Meyer Enterprises Shootout would feature some close and exciting races. Bee Godwin who last year was the NE2 Series Champ drew a bye when his opponent Mike Mauldin was a no show for round 1 and Godwin laid down a 5.11 that put him in position to possibly get into the money round. Don Holley from Aubrey, TX found himself in the number seven slot and drew a tough racer in the 'One Wild Ride' digger wheeled by Thomas Hixson. Hixson had starter issues and was not able to fire giving a single to Holley who put down a 5.17 pass at 131 mph. Bruce Bruno, Jr who was slotted in the fourth position faced off with Rick Goodale's 'Hill Rat' altered from Austin and Bruno's 5.22 was enough to take Goodale out. In a battle of class titans, number one seed Tommy Drozd lined up with Bruce Dodson and in the closest of races Dodson's 5.02 was just enough to handle Drozd's 5.04. When the time slips were compared it was Godwin and Dodson who would advance to the final round. This would prove to be just as good of a race as any for the money and at the green light Bee Godwin's .001 light nearly cost him the win but would actually get him the win as that light and his 5.03 run was just enough to handle Dodson's 5.00 perfect run in spite of his great .049 light. Bee Godwin took the $1,000 from Meyer Enterprises back to Iowa Park, TX!

Alkydigger's Nostalgia Eliminator 3 SHOOTOUT
The Nostalgia Eliminator 3 Shootout had the support of Alkydigger's in Nashville, TN. Dusty Rose had a lock on the top position as the Moore, OK wheelman grabbed the top qualifying positions and points that came with it in Wichita Falls and Temple. He came into the Finals leading the championship points and was favored to take the cash in the Shootout. Dallas racer Gary Mitchell was the lucky racer in the number 5 slot in the Shootout standings and that got him a date with Rose.


Doug Morrison defeats Carl Johnson.


Doug Morrison celebrates win.
Before these two lined up there was enough smack talk going on to fill a book! When the green light came down on this pair, both cars blasted off and ran under the 5.50 index, with Mitchell getting the nod as his 5.48 was closer to the 5.50 index than Rose's 5.44, eliminating Rose from contention to the Alkydigger's cash. Ron Walden took his Kilgore based digger to a solo 5.44 under the index run when his opponent Michael Anderson was a no show. Last year's series champ Doug Morrison from Gainesville, TX took care of business when he beat Robert Springstead and Carl Johnson ran a strong 5.53 on another bye when his opponent Neal Rogers did not show. When the time slips were compared it was the two quickest winners without going under their index that got to advance and that was Doug Morrison and Carl Johnson. Only one hundredth of a second separated these two in their first round passes, so everyone was expecting this to be a RACE for the money! They did not disappoint but unfortunately it was over when the tree came down as Johnson just barely left to soon and his -.002 red light automatically gave the win to Morrison. Regardless, the two ran it out the back door and Morrison put down a perfect 5.50 ET to Johnson's under the index 5.46. Both racers gave it all they had, but Morrison came away with the Aklydigger's gold!

Below is a round by round recap of the 2014 SHRA Nostalgia Eliminator Shootouts

Good Vibrations Nostalgia Eliminator 1 SHOOTOUT
Round 1
(W) Gary Ballard, Wichita Falls, TX (.018 rt) 4.90 @ 137 defeated 
(L) Dale McKee, Heath, TX (.137 rt) 7.04 @ 60

(W) Ron Muncy, Weatherford, TX (.024 rt) 4.70 @ 145 defeated 
(L) Jason O'Neill, Mesquite, TX (-.041 rt) 4.64 @ 146

(W) Steve Dunkin, Aledo, TX (.053 rt) 4.73 @ 139 defeated 
(L) Tera W Graves, Carrollton, TX  (.141 rt) 4.76 @ 121 

(W) Clay Cunningham , Dumas, TX (.021 rt) 4.59 @ 151 defeated 
(L) Chris Graves, Carrollton, TX (.068 rt) 5.06 @ 111
 
FINAL
(W) Steve Dunkin (.025 rt) 4.74 @ 133 defeated (L) Muncy (.351 rt) 4.73 @ 144
 
Meyer Enterprises Nostalgia Eliminator 2 SHOOTOUT
Round 1
(W) Bruce Dodson, Grand Prairie, TX (.031 rt) 5.02 @ 134 defeated 
(L) Tommy Drozd, Lake Dallas, TX (.082 rt) 5.04 @ 134

(W) Bruce Bruno, Jr, Wichita Falls, TX (.129 rt) 5.22 @ 130 defeated 
(L) Rick Goodale, Austin, TX (.907 rt) 7.11 @ 110

(W) Don Holley, Aubrey, TX (.330 rt) 5.17 @ 131 defeated 
(L) Thomas Hixson, Keller, TX (No Time - Broke)

(W) Bee Godwin, Iowa Park,TX (.027 rt) 5.11 @ 129 defeated 
(L) Mike Mauldin, Wylie, TX (No Time - No Show)
 
FINAL
(W) Bee Godwin (.001 rt) 5.03 @ 134 defeated (L) Bruce Dodson (.049 rt) 5.00 @ 135
 
Alkydiggers Nostalgia Eliminator 3 SHOOTOUT
(W) Gary Mitchell, Dallas, TX (.062 rt) 5.64 @ 117 defeated 
(L) Dusty Rose, Moore, OK (.104 rt) 5.44 @118

(W) Doug Morrison, Gainesville, TX .(019) 5.52 defeated 
(L) Robert Springstead, Azle, TX (.345) 5.48 

(W) Ron Walden, Kilgore, TX (5.44) defeated 
(L) Michael Anderson, Ovalo, TX  (No Show)

(W) Carl Johnson, Iola, TX (5.53) defeated 
(L) Neal Rogers, Luling, TX (No Show)

FINAL
(W) Doug Morrison (.023 rt) 5.50 @ 124 defeated (L) Carl Johnson (-.002 rt) 5.46 @ 122





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