With the rising popularity of drifting throughout the United States, it was only a matter of time that two of Sport Compact’s biggest forms of motorsports would combine for an event beyond anyone’s imagination. The fine folks of NHRA Sport Compact and D1 Grand Prix combined with Las Vegas Speedway to combine the wonderful world of drifting and drag racing in an action packed event. Despite the intense heat and temperatures well above 110 degrees, fans and racers from all across the company traveled out to Las Vegas to witness sport compact history.
On the drag racing side of things, Jason Hunt would battle his way through an impressive Pro FWD field to capture another Wally. Matt Scranton and the Ride Revolution Solara made its way back into the winner’s circle after besting Titan Motorsports’ Gary White. Modified class brought an old familiar face back to the top spot as Paul Efantis qualified second and captured another win in his Solara. The Hot Rod class offered a Stephanie Eggum vs. Ron Lummus final, but Lummus’ Sunfire continued its dominance in the Hot Rod class. Lastly, all motor brought Leslie Durst Armendariz and her new Scion tC to the finals against points leader Jeremy Lookofsky. Honda power would prove a little faster against Armendariz’s Scion this weekend, but we are looking forward to plenty more surprises from their team! In the Sportsman FWD class, racers from Florida, Utah, Texas and California battled it out in a complete field of 16. Texas racers would prove comfortable in the unbearing heat that Vegas had to offer as Tony Palo not only qualified first with a blistering 9.79, but would capture the win as well. Sport RWD competitor Ryan Woon powered his way to a Wally in his Supra over Julie Stepan.
On the drifting world, the D1 Grand Prix competition was more than crazy as plenty of drivers from both Japan and USA came out to represent. AEM’s Tanner Foust and their 350Z along with Team Falken’s Mustang with Vaughn Gittin Jr. behind the wheel lead the way for the American competitors. The surprise of the weekend however was the dominance of the AE86s on the fast course laid out, and the final brought two Japanese drivers to the table with one of them an AE86. Team Orange’s Nobushige Kumakubo and his GDB Impreza battled against Toshiki Yoshioka and his DRooP AE86. This wouldn’t be Kumakubo’s event however as an unfortunate spin out in the first tandem battle gave Yoshioka a slight advantage despite his running off the course. The second pass proved too much for Kumakubo’s Impreza as this course most definitely proved to be made for the lightweight AE86s. Yoshioka would claim the trophy and the check as the event came to a close in the early morning.
Check in a future issue of Modified Magazine for a complete breakdown of each NHRA Sport Compact class racing and the complete D1 Grand Prix coverage!