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ELK CREEK –– The Junior Dragster Summer Nationals, presented by Bales Tool Co., headlined what turned out to be a fantastic weekend of racing at Elk Creek Dragway.
Jason Halsey of Independence drove his dragster to a final round 7.96 e.t. at 68 mph to win the title over fellow Independence drive Corey Pack, who posted a 9.26 e.t. at 63 mph.
Saturday’s Junior Dragster competition began with the Super Pro class, in which Elliston’s J.T. Shrader took the win with a 7.94 e.t. at 75 mph. Ben Denton of Bristol was the runner-up with a 7.93 e.t. at 73 mph.
The Top Eliminator class was next in line, and Pack came back to improve his previous day’s standing by one spot, claiming the win with a 9.43 e.t. at 64 mph. Joseph Denton of Bristol was the runner-up after recording a 9.02 e.t. at 66 mph.
In the Second Chance race, it was Dylan Kiser of Knoxville earning the win with a 7.92 e.t. at 74 mph. Brittany White was the runner-up with a 7.98 e.t. at 74 mph.
The grand champion of the Junior Dragster Summer Nationals was Kiser, running a 7.90 e.t. at 75 mph. Runner-up Ben Denton redlighted en route to a 7.89 e.t. at 71 mph.
Moving on to the bigger machines, the Footbrake class came down to a Pontiac vs. Chevy final, with Tim Douglas taking the win in his Firebird with a final round 8.87 e.t. at 82 mph. The runner-up was Robbie Copenhaver in his Chevelle.
In the most talked-about Super Pro program in a long time, dragsters, full-bodied cars, altereds, roadsters and even pickups toed the line for a purse that paid out $5,000 to the winner and another $1,000 to the runner-up.
Bill Lewis of Hillsville walked away with the big check, running his small block Chevy-powered dragster to an impressive 4.77 e.t. at 132 mph. Equally impressive was the final round run of class runner-up Robert Houston of Spruce Pine, N.C., recording a 4.61 e.t. at 136 mph in his big block Chevrolet-powered dragster.