Denmark, Furman and Peterson score on first day of Northern Bracket Nationals
Russ Denmark (Super Pro), Zane Furman (Pro) and Matt Peterson (Street Money) led a group of winning racers as Skyview Drags presented its inaugural Northern Bracket Nationals July 2-3. Joining the winners in victory lane at the June 2 event were Howie Conklin (Street Trophy), Brandon Searcy (TCR) and Rich Reome (Bike Sled).
Denmark posted his second win in a row in Super, having won the week prior in his Ovid based rear engine big block Chevy dragster. Denmark’s final round foe was arch nemesis Don Kiekel, Kirkwood, in his similar dragster sponsored by Kiekel’s Precision Crankworks operation. Denmark needed his right on 5.15 on a 5.15 dial at 141 mph with a .542 reaction as Kiekel reeled off a .515 reaction and then went .03 off with a 5.19 on a 5.16 at 127 to make it a very close win for Denmark. New York racer Tom Samsel was the lone semi-finalist.
In Pro, Camptown’s Zane Furman in his Plymouth Roadrunner 440 lined up against current point leader Ray Thurston IV in the Tony DiRose Mustang/Chevy. Furman took the win light with a.525 light coupled with a 7.00 on a 6.99 at 95 mph to turn back Towanda, Pa.’s Thurston IV, who carded a second best .565 reaction with a too quick 6.21 on a 6.22 at 108 mph for the runner-up honors. Dave Fetterman, Binghamton, was the lone semi-finalist in his Dodge.
It is with sadness that we report the unfortunate death of rising young drag racing talent Chad Wilcox, 24, who lost his life in a drag snowmobile accident Sunday, July 4, at a dragstrip in upstate New York.
Skyview Drags sends its condolences to the Wilcox family, the Dote family and his fiancee and friends. Chad had already scored impressive wins this year at Skyview Drags, and we will miss him as he was well liked by all competitors.
Snowmobile Racer Life Flighted to Robert Packer Hospital After Scary Accident at Skyview Drags
Ken Burlew, 66, of Ithaca was involved in a frightening crash with defending Bike/Sled champion Brent Garcia, Cincinnatus, when the wheelie bars on Garcia’s Buell motorcycle broke off, forcing the motorcycle rider into Burlew’s lane, where he was accelerating on his snowmobile.
Burlew’s drag racing Ski-doo snowmobile, equipped with special front rollers made for asphalt or concrete track racing, made contact with Garcia’s motorcycle, catapulting Burlew and his snowmobile into the air. Burlew fell backwards and heavily impacted the surface.
Track and emergency personnel responded immediately to the stricken driver. Renee Jordan, the track's trained emergency technician, cleared Burlew's airway and track personnel treated the driver until the Robert Packer Hospital helicopter arrived and transported the stricken rider.
Following two cat scans and other tests, Burlew was released after a night’s stay at the Sayre, Pa. based healthcare facility. There were no broken bones, and Burlew luckily escaped what many at the track felt was a very scary incident.
Forbes, Thurston IV and Thompson post wins at Skyview Drags
Richie Forbes, Ray Thurston IV and Dave Thompson scored big wins in Super Pr, Pro and Street eliminators as beautiful weather greeted race teams and fans at Skyview Drags second week of racing on Saturday, May 15.
Forbes, from Esperance, drove his Forbes Automotive rear engine big block Chevy dragster to the win in a heads-up final round against fellow big block dragster campaigner CJ Drake, from Binghamton. With both drivers dialing a 4.64, Forbes was just a hair quicker off the line with a .506 light (.500 perfect) to Drake’s game 5.14. Winning numbers were 4.66 at 147.63 to Drake’s right there 4.67 at 142.40. Semi-final honors went to Bob O’Malley in his beautiful Vega from Mt. Upton and Rick Simon Sr., Endicott, in his Chevy powered “Black Jack” dragster.
Skyview Drags announces expanded Test & Tune opportunities!
Drag racers who enjoy the Skyview Drags Test & Tune event days and every Friday night during the season now have an additional day of testing to add to their calendars. Amy Culver, track director, has announced an enhanced Test & Tune policy that will open upWednesday night’s as an additional day for drivers to fine tune their vehicles or just get familiar with the IHRA drag racing procedures.
“We’ve had several up and coming racers, or those who just wish to time trial their cars, ask for another day of test and tune opportunities as not everyone can make it on Friday night. So, starting this coming Wednesday, we’re going to run Test & Tune every Wednesday night to both allow these drivers time to test their cars and reaction skills,” said Culver.
Additionally, Culver said that the extra day of testing and tuning, to be held on Wednesday May 12, will also allow Skyview Drags to put any money received on the extra test day toward the purchase of a new timing system.“We want to upgrade our timing system to mirror that of other national and divisional event IHRA tracks as we’re still using the system we started with when we opened in July of 2004. I want to emphasize that there is nothing wrong with our timing system we currently use, but the new systems are more modern and need less maintenance, so we want to go in that direction,” Culver noted.
IHRA has sanctioned the Tioga Canter-based drag strip since its inception, and Skyview Drags has been on the receiving end of several prestigious awards. Included are the IHRA National Sportsman Track of the Year Award in 2007 and IHRA Pro Am Track of the Year Award in 2008.
Special IHRA sanctioned events in 2010 will include the return of the Pro Am Series and the inaugural Ironman Classic. The always popular jet car exhibition nights are set for July 10 and September 4, while the Nostalgia Funny Cars will kick off the track’s first major show on Saturday, May 29. For more information, contact Skyview Drags at 607-687-9392 or check the website at www.skyviewdrags.com. GATES OPEN 5PM RACING FROM 6-10PM
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