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Pro Mods, Jets, Nostalgic Muscle Cars Shine at Honor Credit Union FC Nationals

MARTIN, Mich. – Keith Haney drove his “Black Mamba” 2020 Chevy Camaro to a Pro Mod victory in the Mid-West Drag Racing Series portion of the 19th annual Honor Credit Union Funny Car Nationals Saturday at US 131 Motorsports Park in the process taking a major step toward claiming his second series championship.

Vandalia’s Mark McElwee and his “Buzz’s Nitro Bomber” 1962 Chevy II recorded quick time among the nitro Funny Cars at 5.314 seconds, Marc White drove Tom Motry’s “Drastic Plastic” Anglia to a fuel altered best of 5.378, David Douthit won the Jet Funny Car match in his “Quartermaster” Ford Mustang and Lytchfield’s John Renfroe was among the Nostalgia Drag Racing League winners in a two-day extravaganza that also featured the world’s only wheelstanding, bullet-nosed ’50 Studebaker, and the Larsen Motorsports jet dragsters.

Haney, who won the MWDRS championship in 2017, used a huge starting line advantage to turn back Californian Ed Thornton and his ’70 Chevy Camaro in the Pro Mod final to join Phil Esz of Amelia, Ohio, Tony Williams of Millington, Tenn., Ionia’s Billy Swan and the Milan father-daughter team of Jon and Ellie Vesper in the MWDRS winners’ circle.

Esz drove his 2017 Camaro past the 2013 Mustang of Bountiful, Utah’s Steve Macklyn who, despite the loss, managed to pad his narrow points lead over Jim and Annie Whiteley, whose YNot Racing Camaros, both fell in the semifinals.

The NDRL event featured some surprises, but not in Pro Comp where Jaxon Messamore of Hansen, Ky., won for the third straight time at US 131 and opened up an enormous lead in his bid for a third straight series championship.  Messamore used an incredibly tight .008 package to deny Nick Hamilton’s Ohio-based dragster in the final.

Scott Braskett of Galena, Ohio, won Pro 700 in his first NDRL appearance this season; point leader Jarrod Bradshaw extended his lead with a Pro 750 win over Kingsley’s David Reckow and another Ohioan, Bill Hamilton, won Pro Gas.

It was an all-Renfroe, all-Michigan Modified Production final with John driving his ’67 Nova past point leader Kyle’s Homer-based ’62 Corvette for the win after Howell’s John Denbrock bowed out in the semifinals in his crowd favored “Grumpy’s Toy IX” 1973 Chevy Vega.

* * * *

MARTIN, Mich. – Results from the 19th annual Honor Credit Union Funny Car Nationals featuring the Mid-West Drag Racing Series.  Hometowns are Michigan unless otherwise indicated.  Results include reaction time, track time, target time when applicable and finish line speed:



Round 1 – John Lawson, Joliet, Ill., “Runaway” 1957 Chevy Bel Air, .068, 5.636, 200.89 mph, def. Joe Haas, Findlay, Ohio, “American Way” 1957 Chevy Bel Air, .119, 5.650, 180.22 mph; Levi Keenen, Paris, Ill., “Illinois Thunder” 1978 Plymouth Arrow, .139, 5.835, 244.96 mph, def. Mark McElwee, Vandalia, “Buzz’s Nitro Bomber” 1962 Chevy II, .194, 6.491, 150.85 mph; Greg Jacobsmeyer, St. Louis, Mo., “All-Star Hotshots” 1970 Dodge Challenger, .160, 5.703, 291.42 mph, def. Tim Cullinan, Des Planes, Ill., “Irish Car Bomb” 1970 Camaro n, .099, 5.908, 227.85 mph.

Round 2 – McElwee, .235, 5.314, 291.07 mph, def. Haas, .468, 6.844, 134.61 mph; Keenen, .099, 5.919, 235.36 mph, def. Lawson, .058, 7.673, 112.33 mph; Jacobsmeyer, .236, 5.938, 243.77 mph, def. Cullinan, .152, 6.861, 150.50 mph.


Round 1 — Roger Lechtenberg, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, “Nitro Madness” ’23 Ford T, .354, 5.827, 234.86 mph, def. Kurt Duckworth, Weirtown, West Va., “Complete Chaos” 1948 Fiat Topolino, .138, 6.515, 220.26 mph; Dan Pettinato, Woodruff, S.C., “Rat Poison” 1927 Ford T-Model, .138, 6.045, 229.12 mph, def. Dan Hix, Central Point, Ore., “Heatseeker” 1934 Chevy, .109, 6.156, 234.74 mph; Marc White, Glendale Heights, Ill., “Drastic Plastic” 1948 Anglia, .133, 5.378, 278.81 mph, def. Pete Dove, Shelbyville, Ill., “Back from the Ashes” 1932 Austin Bantam,” .099, 21.591, 61.17 mph.

Round 2 – White, .171, 5.618, 216.97 mph, def. Dove, .150, 10.711, 53.95 mph.

JET DRAGSTER – Josette Roach, Melbourne, Fla., .144, 5.882, 258.34 mph, def. Zach Costello, Palm Bay, Fla., .156, 5.911, 266.90 mph.

JET FUNNY CAR – David Douthit, Colorado Springs, Colo., “Quartermaster” 1965 Ford Mustang, .082, 6.726, 168.22 mph, def. Scott Arriaga, Tucson, Ariz., “Black Pearl” 1969 Chevy Nova, .046, 6.844, 151.21 mph.



PRO MODIFIED – Keith Haney, Broken Arrow, Okla., 2020 Chevy Camaro, .059, 3.690, 190.52 mph, def. Ed Thornton, Chino, Calif., 1970 Chevy Camaro, .184, 3.849, 219.51 mph.  Semifinalist – Ron Muenks, Strafford, Mo., 2010 Ford Mustang.

FUNNY CAR – Phil Esz, Amelia, Ohio, 2017 Chevy Camaro, .025, 3.590, 209.79 mph, def. Steve Macklyn, Bountiful, Utah, 2013 Ford Mustang, .006, 3.658, 203.16 mph.  Semifinalists – Jim Whiteley, Grand Junction, Colo., 2022 Chevy Camaro, and Annie Whiteley, Grand Junction, Colo., 2018 Chevy Camaro.

PRO MOD SLAMMERS – Tony Williams, Millington, Tenn., 1968 Chevy Camaro, .575, 3.719, 204.64 mph, def. Scott Krueger, Jordan, Minn., 1958 Chevy Corvette, no time.  Semifinalist – Chris Juliano, Iberia, Mo., 1967 Ford Mustang.

TOP SPORTSMAN – Jon Vesper, Milan, .033, 5.013 on a 4.990, 131.43 mph, def. Mike Badia, Milford, 1991 Oldsmobile Cutlass, .199, 5.746 on a 4.380, 97.76 mph.  Semifinalist – Doug Woody, Independence, Mo., 1967 Chevy Camaro.

TOP DRAGSTER – Billy Swan, Ionia, .017, 4.443 on a 4.440, 152.44 mph, def. Rick Morley, Allendale, .065, 3.977 breakout on a 3.980, 179.21 mph.  Semifinalist – Matthew Wedemeyer, Donohue, Fla.

PRO JR. DRAGSTER – Alexis Kesterson, Collinsville, Okla., .027, 8.010 on an 8.000, 80.89 mph, def. Austin Perrone, Ionia, .099, 8.037 on a 7.990, 77.48 mph.  Semifinalist – Klarke Brundidge, Ada, Okla.

SPORTSMAN JR. DRAGSTER – Ellie Vesper, Milan, .187, 8.970 on an 8.980, 73.23 mph, def. Lexie Klinger, Paw Paw, .043, 9.509 breakout on a 9.520, 69.46 mph.  Semifinalist – Jose Wanamaker, Otsego.

DRAGSTER SLAMMERS – Gabe Wojnowski, Medina, Ohio, .040, 7.937 on a 7.920, 82.01 mph, def. Carley Guerne, Bear Lake, .106, 8.023 breakout on an 8.030, 81.14 mph. Semifinalists – Alayna Thompson, Grand Haven, and Jonathan McClain, Colliersville, Okla.



PRO 700 – Scott Braskett, Galena, Ohio, 1953 Chevy Corvette, .030, 6.849, 196.25 mph, def. Jamie Palmer, Bowling Green, Ohio, 1937 Chevy, .036, 6.773 breakout, 204.27 mph.  Semifinalists – Tony Pranger, Fort Wayne, Ind., and Gordon Horn, Rockford, Ind., 1963 Chevy Corvette.

PRO 750 – Jarrod Bradshaw, Utica, Ky., dragster, .074, 12.571, 60.41 mph, def. Davin Reckow, Kingsley, dragster, foul.  Semifinalist – Brian Freund, Columbus Grove, Ohio, dragster.

PRO COMP – Jaxon Messamore, Hansen, Ky., 1938 Chevy, .007, 9.010 on a 9.000, 139.62 mph, def. Nick Hamilton, Dresden, Ohio, dragster, .078, 8.470 breakout on an 8.500, 151.52 mph.  Semifinalist – C. Shane Rasler.

PRO GAS – Bill Hamilton, Dresden, Ohio, .041, 10.972 on an 11.000, 118.86 mph, def. Robert Eaker, Camby, Ind., 1962 Chevy II, .114, 9.938 breakout on a 10.000, 132.20 mph.  Semifinalists – David Stinson, Mooresville, Ind., and Sam Patrick, Sand Point, 1937 Chevy.

MODIFIED PRODUCTION – John Renfroe, Litchfield, 1967 Chevy Nova, .044, 11.019 on an 11.000, 115.71 mph, def. Kyle Renfroe, Homer, 1962 Chevy Corette, foul.  Semifinalists – John Denbrock, Howell, 1973 Chevy Vega, and Steve Carpenter, Jackson.





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