Big Money Kick Off Classic @ San Antonio Raceway, 2/17-19/12
William Simpkins goes "wheels up" in his Nova before breaking the rear gear
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February 21, 2012
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Marion, Tx.(Feb 19th, 2012) San Antonio Raceway concluded its Big Money Kick Off Classic Sunday on the 1/8th Mile under much better conditions. After a total rain out on Friday night, and less than ideal weather on Saturday, Sunday brought cool enough temperatures for goodhorsepower, with the sun helping warm the track to keep it hooked up.
Qualifying sessions were held for Electronics, Foot Brake and Jr. Dragsters prior to eliminations in what I’ve dubbed the “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish Bracket Game” where drivers can pick one or both sides of a ladder giving them two possible opportunities, plus any buy backs, to make the finals later in the day. Different color tech cards are used for each side of the ladder, hence the nickname.
Valdez Victorious in Electronics
Von Ormy’s Jeff Valdez, driving the Valdez Sand & Gravel, 2004 Undercover Dragster, was paired with Leroy O’Bryant(San Antonio) in his O’Bryant Automotive, 75 Chevy Monza in the Electronics final. In a classic battle of dragster versus door car, Valdez used a .002 light along with a near perfect dial index to take out O’Bryant. Both had agreed to split prize money and run for bragging rights prior to the run.
Jeff Valdez, 5.2063(5.20 dial in) @ 130.25 over Leroy O’Bryant, 7.116(7.10) @ 97.55.
Valdez made consistent runs near 1/100th of his dial index taking out two-time Electronics champion, Scott Ball along the way to the finals. O’Bryant’s journey was a bit more interesting taking wins with two red lights, a break out, a bye and former SAR track promoter, Todd Zampese breaking on the line.
Lee Likes Footbrake Finals
Albert Lee jr.(San Antonio) gave the two-wheel fans something to cheer about as he took his 2009 Suzuki Hayabusa into the finals against Held-n-Felt’s Dave Patton in the Patton Farms, ’83 Corvette. Lee(.0359) put the hole shot on Patton(.1871) and carried the advantage to the finish line.
Albert Lee jr., 5.8719(5.78 dial in) @ 118.30 wins ahead of Dave Patton’s 6.3895(8.34) @ 106.46.
Lee cut consistently good lights, and got an easy win after Kari Garbs broke on her burnout as he worked up to the finals. Pattondrew two bye runs, took a win and got a red light victory on his way to the final paring.
Hillin Happy in Jr Dragsters
In the Jr Dragster finals it was two San Antonio youngsters with Kenneth Hillin pitted against Chris Pearson. The 10-year old Hillin, in the 2004 Hardins Chassis, got his second career victory early when Pearson’s, 2007 RPC Bullet Chassis, went red. Hillin ran it out turning a 8.9317 at 75.28mph, on a 8.90 dial in.
Kenneth Hillin, 8.9317 @ 75.28 defeated Chris Pearson, 7.9363 @ 82.03(Red .0859).
After a bye in round 1, Hillin got several breaks along the way, with another red light win and a break out victory. Pearson took a win in round 1, followed by a bye in round 2, then won in a double break out during the semi’s.
The biggest incident of the day was in round 1 of Electronics eliminations when Richard Garbs(Sealy) blew the motor in his 66Chevy II at the top end, lost control, slid across the lanes and made contact with the concrete wall. Garbs was alright, but the motor is missing some vital internal parts and pieces, and the body some repairable damage.
To top things off for Garbs Racing, Kari Garbs was headed towards the Footbrake final round when she kicked a connecting rod out during her burnout, giving up any chance of making up for her husband’s earlier misfortunes.
The only other incident resulting in damage occurred when William Simpkins broke the rear end of his 70’s Nova just as he left the line.
Racing continues at San Antonio Raceway next week with Test-n-Tune/Battle of the Brands on Wednesday, Test-n-Tune Friday and LS1Truck.com Challenge on Saturday.
For more information and a full schedule you can visit www.sanantonioraceway.com or call the track 210-698-2310, 830-914-4646.The track is located in Marion, Texas between San Antonio and Seguin on I-10 and Santa Clara Rd. (exit 597)