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Reichert to Retire from Driving at the End of the 2014 Season

Five-time NHRA National Champion Bill Reichert announced today that he is retiring from driving in NHRA competition at the end of the 2014 racing season. Reichert, who has compiled one of the most accomplished NHRA resumes ever in his 22-year driving career, is still the all-time low elapsed time record holder in Top Alcohol Dragster at 5.10 seconds. He recorded that elapsed time, as well as a companion 284.75 MPH top speed record, at Houston in 2007. Both are records that will likely never be broken.

In his retirement announcement Bill noted that his racing career has been very satisfying with more career accomplishments than even he could have imagined at its start. Those include 28 NHRA National Event wins beginning with the 1995 Brainerd event. Bill has also recorded 54 NHRA Regional/Divisional wins in 77 final round appearances.

Bill was quick to thank his family and friends for their support throughout his long and fruitful racing career. He also remarked that none of these accomplishments would have been possible without the enthusiastic support of the Bar’s Leaks and Rislone brands of automotive chemicals.

Noting that he competed in a class that required a significant investment, it was Bar’s Leaks and Rislone that had made it possible for him to achieve all that he has. He was honored to have earned their support... [Read More]

Robertson's Eaton TAFC Headed to Big Go

Top Alcohol Owner/Driver Todd Robertson is taking his Eaton Backed/Pro Power Top Alcohol Funny Car Team to Indy for his third visit to the Big GO. Last year Robertson was able to qualify in the top half of the field with a 5.64 elapsed time at just over 255 miles per hour. After a first round win over long time veteran Fred Tigges, Robertson fell to one of the Kings of the Top Alcohol ranks, Frank “ACE” Manzo in round two. This year Robertson is hoping to take it a few rounds further.

“Much like last season, we took a while to get going but lately with the help of Darren Mayer at DMPE we have made some huge strides and hope to be able to benefit from what we’ve learned. We’ve also been working alongside Brandon Booher of “Torque MGMT” Brandon’s additional knowledge of converters and power application is very helpful and with the power we’ve been able to find through working with Darren I couldn’t ask for a better guy to team with. The added input could be very helpful to my Crew Chief, Dennis Kolomyjec when he makes the final call,” said Robertson.

Robertson and his Eaton corporation backed Pro Power Top Alcohol Funny Car team will compete in the 60th annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at historic Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis, Indiana this August 27-September 1st. To follow all the action, log onto ... [Read More]

A/Fuel Driver Ashley Sanford Anticipating First U.S. Nationals Experience

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (Aug. 28) – Southern California native Ashley Sanford and her Gelish Gel Nail Polish A/Fuel dragster team have made the trek to Indianapolis for the legendary NHRA national event known by many simply as “The Big Go”. The 60th Annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, August 27 through September 1, is the one race that every drag racer wants to enter, and Sanford is doing just that for the first time this weekend.

“I'm blown away by the experience so far,” she said of the historic race. “It's kind of a racer's dream to come to Indy, especially coming from southern California. Making the trip to Indy is a big deal for a sportsman team like ours. It's the 60th anniversary, my first time here – I'm so excited for the experience.”

This is the first time 20-year old Ashley Sanford and her Gelish/Lucas Oil team have raced east of the Pacific Time Zone, which means new experiences for the driver and crew chief.

“I'm excited to meet new drivers. This race is going to be a challenge because there will be a lot of great A/Fuel cars. This will be a learning experience for me and my team. We're racing with drivers who we've never lined up against on a track that is new to us. I think we're up for the challenge though,” claimed the former sand dragster driver.

Sanford is looking to improve... [Read More]

Demke Riding Four-Race Win Streak into U.S. Nationals

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (August 27) – A fourth consecutive regional event win has Top Alcohol Dragster hitter Chris Demke primed for the upcoming 60th Annual Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals near Indianapolis. Demke and his Maddern Racing team treated their most recent event, the Topeka regional race, as a test session for Indy and ended up in the winner's circle. They look to have similar success at “the Big Go”.

The Peen Rite-sponsored car and driver had one of their more impressive outings of the 2014 season at Topeka. Demke qualified No. 1 with a 5.325 and stayed in the five-thirties through eliminations. Both man and machine were quick and consistent, with Chris cutting .031, .044 and .043 lights. The California-based dragster ripped off 5.375, 5.320 and 5.336 elapsed times to secure the event win.

“We found everything we were looking for and more,” Demke said of the race/test session. “The team was looking for a quick, consistent tune-up for conditions that we could expect at Indy. I was working on improving my reaction times after receiving some advice from Tom Bayer, a sportsman racer who once drove Top Alcohol Dragster. While one race isn't conclusive, I think we found what we needed.”

With a promising tune-up and a stride in their step, Demke and his Jerry Maddern-led team head to Indianapolis' Lucas Oil Raceway for the... [Read More]

Randy Meyer Clinches Central Region Points Lead with Topeka Regional Runner-Up

August 25th, 2014 – Smart Chicken and Price Chopper Top Alcohol Dragster Team Randy Meyer Racing had a solid performance at the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Central Regional event held at Heartland Park Topeka this past weekend with both of their A/Fuel Dragsters.

Randy Meyer and Chase Copeland took the second and third qualifying spots after two sessions on Friday with a 5.391 E.T. at 265 mph for Chase, and a 5.396 E.T. at 266 mph for Randy. Randy went on to defeat Todd Odom during first round with a 5.518 E.T. at 262 mph to Odom’s 5.711 E.T. at 239 mph, and Chase also won first round against Brandon Pierce with a 5.503 E.T. at 262 mph to Pierce’s 5.582 E.T. at 222 mph.

Paired up against each other for second round, Chase had lane choice over Randy, but immediately smoked the tires after his launch, as Randy pulled his Smart Chicken Price Chopper Dragster ahead for the semi-final win with a 5.358 E.T. at 268 mph. Moving onto the final round, Randy was up against the number one qualifier of the event, Chris Demke. With a slightly better reaction time, Demke was able to pull ahead of Randy for the win with a 5.336 E.T. at 268 mph to Randy’s 5.383 E.T. at 265 mph.

Although Randy didn’t get the hometown win, he was able to clinch his Central Region points lead with his runner-up finish. Chase currently sits... [Read More]

Booher Looking for Resurgence at Bowling Green Regional

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (August 20) – A breakout 2013 season had Brandon Booher and his AB Construction team primed for a national championship chase as the 2014 season began. They kicked off the year with a runner-up finish at the Four-Wide Nationals in Charlotte then a win at the Norwalk regional. Their luck turned for the worse after that, falling in the first and second round at most races, even failing to qualify twice. Booher, who drives and tunes the family-owned Top Alcohol Dragster, hopes to turn things around for the better at this weekend's NHRA North Central Region event in Bowling Green.

“To go from the year we had last year and starting this year strong to struggling with issues and the car not running these last few races has been tough. It's no shortage of work or effort on anyone's part, it's just issues we've had to chase. It's been tough but that's part of the deal. We just need to plug away and get our car back to running where it should.

“After switching literally everything except my driving shoes and firesuit, we thought we had it figured out in St. Louis. The same issue persisted so I came back home, looked at my notes and realized that it was a certain part that I tried. It looked good on paper but it just caused the car to run very poorly. That part has been switched out and now we just need to go to Bowling Green, make some... [Read More]

Demke Wins Seattle Regional, Adds Topeka Regional to Schedule

TOPEKA, Kan. (August 20) – Top Alcohol Dragster star Chris Demke claimed his third regional event win of the season last weekend when he won the NHRA Lucas Oil Series West Region race at Pacific Raceways. Just weeks removed from reaching the finals at the O'Reilly NHRA Northwest Nationals, also at Seattle, Demke beat two northwest blown alcohol drivers and a fellow SoCal resident to win his third regional event in as many attempts. Now Chris and the Peen Rite team head east for two weeks of Midwest racing in Kansas and Indiana.

Demke qualified at the Seattle regional event in the No. 2 spot with a 5.273 at 273 MPH. He was a few thousandths of a second shy of repeating in the first round against Kim Parker, winning with a 5.278. A quick pedal was necessary to beat local hero Shawn Cowie in a 5.357 to 5.436 semifinal decision. Chris again had to pedal the Peen Rite entry in the final round but opponent Johnny Ahten, who ran 5.22 and 5.20 earlier in the weekend, smoked the tires. Demke took the win with a 5.348 elapsed time.

“Our car ran what I expected it would run during qualifying and the first round of eliminations, but we just missed the tune-up in the semis and final. It shook the tires and I can't say that I was ready for it. The car was running so well in the previous runs so the shake caught me off-guard and I didn't do the best... [Read More]

Third Final of the Year for Ahten at Seattle Regional

Kent, WA. – Johnny Ahten’s performance statement at the LODRS Regional speaks volumes. Johnny not only had low ET of the event, but he reset the Pacific Raceways A-Fuel track record. He then parlayed his #1 qualifying performance into the final round, which was his third of the year. See a trend here? Even though Ahten fell to CleanBoost Performance Oil teammate Chris Demke in the final, the numerical threat the Island Renovations / Combust Filters Dragster displayed was more than enough to make it a memorable outing.

“I am very happy with our performance, “said Johnny Ahten. “The Stump Puller was a monster and we ran on the edge the whole time. I am so proud of my guys the way we came back from a first round loss at the Seattle National event. It’s tough to lose, but it’s not so bad when it’s to the team leading the points. This was our third final of the year and Ahten Racing is confident going into the end of the year.”

Ahten’s Seattle Regional adventure began with a test session on Friday. The plan was to run to 1000ft and shut it off. Johnny got a great start, motored down the track, and pulled the chutes early. The scoreboard flashed an expectedly slow 237 mph, but when the 5.22 ET lit up, it made people take notice. Saturday’s first qualifying effort was dashed in a cloud of smoke as the Stump Puller was flexing some muscle. In Q2, a clean... [Read More]

Whiteley Out in Round Two at Brainerd

After running not just low e.t. of the meet but low e.t. of all three qualifying sessions at the Lucas Oil Nationals in Brainerd, Annie Whiteley was upset in the second round of eliminations when her car got loose and drifted over the centerline. It was the fifth time in her career that she's qualified No. 1 at a national event and the third time already this season.

"Somewhere before half-track, the car decided to make a left turn," said Whiteley, who reached the first national final event of her career at this event in 2012, her rookie season in Top Alcohol Funny Car. "I have no idea why – it left hard and until that point was running just like it had all weekend."

Whiteley wheeled her J&A Service/YNot Racing Mustang to a 5.61 at 257.63 mph to pace the field and clocked a 5.67 and a 5.64 in the other two qualifying sessions. She earned a first-round bye for being No. 1 in the short field, but following a solid 5.67 on a single that was within .01-second of low e.t. of the round, the car veered toward the centerline in round two not long after she swapped feet.

"Shane Westerfield's car broke the rear end in the pair ahead of us," Whiteley said. "I don't know if that had anything to do with it or if it was because it was misting when I staged – the conditions weren't ideal for any of us – but the car turned left right where his rear end broke.... [Read More]

Randy Meyer Looking for a Rebound Win at Brainerd

August 14th, 2014 – After earning three back-to-back wins this year in Houston, Topeka, Tulsa, followed by winning the Jegs AllStars in Chicago, Randy Meyer and his team were on a roll until they had issues with the safety device at the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series event in Norwalk, Ohio. With a couple of weeks to regroup, Randy did what he could to fix his hot rod, and took on the role of crew chief at last weekend’s Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series Regional event in St. Louis, as Shayne Lawson piloted the Schnuck’s Top Alcohol Dragster. Unfortunately the team had an unexpected first round loss, and went home empty handed.

Eager for another win, Randy is looking forward to having a strong performance at the second race on his eight-week tour this weekend in Brainerd, Minnesota for the NHRA 33rd Annual Lucas Oil Nationals held at Brainerd International Raceway. Partnering with the Randy Meyer Racing Team for this event is John Haley #1 Roofer LLC. John Haley #1 Roofer has been a leader in providing the Twin Cities metro area with all its residential and commercial roofing, siding, gutters, remodeling, windows, repair needs, snow and ice removal, and more. They will now be serving the Brainerd/Baxter area with their top quality, dependable services. Learn more at: ... [Read More]

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