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2006 Northeast NHRA Sport Compact Nationals

Atco Raceway Atco, N.J. May 20-21, 2006

Stew Lawson
Mar 30, 2009

The weather was kind to us this weekend, as it has been the last few. The racing got started quick and continued all the way until late Sunday night.

The number one qualifier was Jeremy Lookofsky – this seems to be a reoccurring thing. He broke his own record set two weeks prior in E-town. He ran an unbelievable 9.64 @ 141 mph. Second qualifying spot went to Norris Prayoonto who also broke into the 60’s. He ran a 9.68 @138 mph. By the looks of things you knew they would see each other in the final. For Jeremy to get there he had to take out Scott Kelley in the second round. He did so by running a 9.71 @ 141. For Norris the only person standing in his way was teammate Saul Salceda. It would have been an awesome race however the tried and true Integra had its own share of gremlins this weekend. Saul beat Norris on the tree but had to shut ‘er down. Norris ran a 10.3 to put him against Jeremy. The final was spectacular, both played games on the tree. Norris would roll in and out of the first bulb, enticing Jeremy to light as well. And when Jeremy finally did Norris would roll out. Finally they both restaged but Jeremy wasn’t going to play anymore. He doubled bulbed forcing Norris to come, and off they went. Norris would be the victor on this day. He won with a 9.70 @ 137 mph.

Hot Rod was just as exciting. Canadian Stephane Beauregard set a new track ET for the class and was top qualifier. He did so by running an 8.04 @ 174 mph. Ron Lummus was right on his heals though. Ron was second to Stephane by running an 8.07 @ 175 mph. The action wasn’t going to stop as racing was extremely close all weekend and everyone was getting faster. Kenny Tran ran an 8.31 @ 168 mph to gobble up third qualifying spot only to be taken out by Lummus in the second round of eliminations. Stephanie Eggum ran her best time this weekend also. She faced Lummus in the first round. Lummus ran an 8.21 and Steph just didn’t have enough room to catch him. She ran an 8.26 @ 183mph. When she can get the ET’s to match up to the car’s MPH the rest of the class better watch out! So in the final it all came down to Stephane Beauregard and Ron Lummus. Stephane had the faster time running an 8.11 @178 mph, but Ron won this race on the tree with an 8.13 @ 178 mph with a .050 reaction time.

Modified class was strong and the Puerto Ricans were here to represent! Top qualifier again was Jorge Lazcano in his 85 RX-7. He threw up a 7.53 to set the track ET record as well! Dee Karagiannis took second spot with a 7.62 @ 171. With quick times from a lot of the racers it was hard to tell what was going to be the outcome. However it would be the top two qualifiers who would be facing off, Jorge and Dee. When they both double bulbed Jorge caught a great light his reaction time was .050 and he never looked back. He finished the race with a 7.57 @ 179 with Dee running a 7.87 @ 167.

Pro Front had 5 drivers looking for the Wally, and all were more then capable of taking him home. Top qualifying spot went to Marty Ladwig running a 7.75 @ 185mph also setting the track ET record for the class. Right on his heals was Gary Gardella who ran a 7.83 @ 181mph. In the first round of eliminations Gary took on the Cavalier of Ron Townsend. Everything went great until the end of the track. Gary won the race and went to pop the shoots, the car bunny hopped and the wheelie bars came down on Ron’s car crushing the driver’s side headlight area. Gary’s car continued on and hit the wall. Gary was fine in the end and the rush was on to get it in shape for the next round bye run. In the second round top qualifier Marty faced off against Brian Jimenez. Marty couldn’t replicate what had happened earlier in the day and Brian went on to take the win. So in the final it was Brian vs. Gary with the ‘hurt’ Cobalt. Brian took the win in the end though. Gary’s car was just too ‘hurt’ to compete so he only drove up to break the beams.

More and more records were falling all weekend so why not leave some for the Pro Rear class. Brad Personett was on a mission and about to show us what the car could really do. In the final round of qualifying, Nero (Titan team owner) told me to watch the time clock, so I did. Brad ran a blistering 6.44 @ 220 mph. The crowd was a buzz and rightly so. That was the new track record for the class. All Brad had to do was back it up in the eliminations the following day and it would be a new National ET record. However in the final against Matt Scranton he missed it by only .01 nonetheless making it a great weekend. The clouds stayed away and everyone had a great time.

See you in Denver!

By Stew Lawson
16 Articles

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