WHYNAUGHT, FRANCEV, BEANES POST BIG WINS;
PECK AND SALIANI CRUISE AT SACRAMENTO RACEWAY’S NOSTALGIA REUNION
Sacramento Raceway Park’s Nostalgia Reunion hosted the NHRA Hot Rod Heritage Series for groups 1 and 2 July 12 and 13, a race that saw a couple point leaders relinquish leads, others make dramatic gains, and some extend their lead over closest rivals.
With his win in A/G, Chris Beanes, catapulted all the way into third place, only one point behind second place Terry Newton; and, this was after Chris had not even been shown in the top ten prior to the event. Also climbing up the ladder in significant fashion was Dr. Kin Bates in A/FD. As a result of his dominating performance at the Nostalgia Reunion, where he not only won the event, but qualified number one with top speed and low E.T., Bates jumped from seventh into a tie for second (with Jerry Kumre Jr.), and only two points adrift of leader Bill Wayne. For his part, Wayne qualified #2, but fouled out against Mike Pawluk in E1.
In 7.0 Pro, it was another showdown between number one Mike Peck and number two Bobby Cottrell. Bobby looked sharp early on, qualifying number one with a near perfect 7.005, but Peck was flawless in eliminations, carding a 7.009 against Scott Christlieb in E1 and a 7.009 against Cottrell in the final round. Junior Fuel did not follow the same script. Wayne Ramay, now driving for Bud Hammer, had the rest of the field covered by three tenths going into eliminations. Tossing out 7.0s with ease, it seemed a foregone conclusion that Ramay would snag the Wally. Well, no. The usually consistent Ramay had trouble in the final round, and a 71 year old Don Enriquez seized that opportunity and is now only about a round behind Ramay in points.
Nostalgia Eliminator 1 and Nostalgia Eliminator 2 also saw a juggling of the leaders. In NE 1, Mark Whynaught leap-frogged over Steve Schoenfeld from third into first, and in NE 2, Jason Francev maneuvered past Rick Nordness. Whynaught grabbed his Wally in dramatic fashion, surviving a heart-stopping double breakout final round against Kevin Sarginson (7.585-7.573). For NE 2, leader Nordness, fouled out in E1, leaving the door open for both Francev and then number three Jay Huckleberry. Those two met in the very next round, which saw a jittery Huckleberry both foul and breakout against Francev. Jason was gifted another victory in the final round courtesy of Dick Krieger, who broke out at 7.590. The final round of NE 3 found Rosemead’s Ed De Staute paired against points leader Roger Turley. Turley had already survived one double breakout affair against Michael Brock in E2, but was not as lucky the second time. De Staute left first (.028-.046), and his 9.565 was just slower than Roger’s 9.556.
Also finding similar success was John Saliani in B/G. By winning the event, the points leader extended his lead to 53 points over his closest pursuer, Kevin Riley. Saliani, never a stranger to the winner’s circle, had a rather easy time getting there this year, as the B/G veteran watched all his opponent’s either foul or breakout. In C/G, number one qualifier Chris Rea (9.600) looked invincible through the first three rounds of eliminations, but nothing can ever be taken for granted in drag racing. In the semis, Chris hit a near perfect .002 light, but the Sun Drop-sponsored ’64 Nova did not show its usual swagger, and Dave DuBose out-muscled him with a 9.622 to Rea’s losing 9.648. In D/G, Chris Borges had his mojo going, too. The popular driver from Roseville CA, took the Wally when Beau Judge broke out attempting to chase down the quick leaving Borges.
In Hot Rod, Tony Trimp jumped in his son’s hot pink Opel GT, and took the win, despite being involved in two double breakout races in the last two rounds. Finally, although not a Heritage Series class, a full field of Nostalgia Pro Comp (center steer cars on a 6.90 index) competed with Trabuco Canyon’s Paul “Pete” Peterson winning over final round opponent Rick High.