October 2016 Aeroquip Heads Up Story:
Last night’s final Aeroquip Heads Up Race of the season was a beautiful event even though it was cut short by rain. Luckily none of the championships were up in the air so they were unaffected by the classes that weren’t able to finish the race and even though that was disappointing not to name winners in every class we were excited for solid champions and a good day of racing.
Ricky Adkins took the win in Mechanical Heating & Cooling Run What Ya Brung with his 4.09 at 177 pass in the final. Dave Sullivan who did not make it past first round had already secured his championship so he remained there with Don Walsh Jr sitting in second and Brandon Wakeling in third.
Amsoil Open Comp created a surprising evening for us, not because of who won the championship as Erin Freese was more than qualified to take ownership of the “Open Comp Champion” title after last year’s “Masta Performance Pro Champion” and “Female Driver of the Year” status, but because the battle ended so early in the night. With Will Crawford and Chelsey Hinton on her tail Erin Freese knew she would have to go rounds to protect her #1 status, but as first round played out Freese took the win while Crawford and Hinton went out first round along with Chelsey Hinton’s brother Mitchell Hinton going out first round. It is not a common sight to see all three of those competitors out so early, but Erin Freese got to have a victory dance and claim her championship position a little earlier as a result. There was no race winner for October in Open Comp as Robert Laskey, Tyler McCurry, Dennis Livingston, and Chris Cadle were just getting ready to pull out of the lanes to take on their semi-final round.
In Liberty’s Gears All Motor, we were waiting to watch the final round face off of Frank Cervelli and Dave Theisen. That would’ve been a race too as Cervelli had been running 7.96 and we saw Theisen put down a 7.86 pass. Brian Wolfe who went out in the second round remained at the top with Dave Theisen right behind him in the number two spot and Van Geibel in third.
Darren Hilterbran, Scott Carter, Trace Meyer, and Karri Beebe were getting ready to roll up for their semi-final round before the rain hit us. We saw all of those competitors lay down good passes throughout the day and any one of them could’ve been the winner of this race, but none of them the champion as Mike Barran who wasn’t able to attend this final race locked up the championship prior to last night. David Harmer who didn’t have the best night here landed in second place with Karri Beebe 3 points behind him in third. The second through fourth place finishing spots only span across a 10-point range with Dale Arbogast in that fourth place spot.
If we didn’t hate Mother Nature for that rain before, once we realized we were going to miss the matchup of Anthony St. Bernard and Mike Barackman in the final round of Diamond Pistsons Outlaw 10.5 we officially hated her. In the semi-final round we saw Barackman lay down a 4.24 pass and St. Bernard a 4.17. Barackman’s don’t lay down and take a beating so we know they would’ve come up swinging and giving Anthony St. Bernard everything they had as that crew just LOVES racing and putting on a show. Regardless of that final round outcome, Barackman had the points championship locked up as Joel Wensley broke earlier in the night making Barackman the champion, Wensley second, and St. Bernard third in the points chase.
In Team Z Motorsports Motor city Muscle Challenge, we were reminded of the lesson that even if you are the slower car you should always show up prepared to go into battle as class leader Tony Veresuk was taken out in the semi-final round by Shawn Staniszewski who went on to win the race as he defeated Dave Yurgelaitis in the final with his 9.43 pass being enough to win over the 10.00. But that didn’t worry Tony Veresuk much as he had the championship clinched.
It has been an amazing season for heads up racing at Milan Dragway and I’m bummed to see it wrapped up after last night, but can’t wait to honor these champions at the Awards Banquet on Friday, February 3, 2017 (2017 already!?!?!?!!) at Crystal Gardens in Southgate, MI. After that, it is time to rock and roll and start another BOMB A$$ SEASON of heads up racing.