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OCTOBER NEWSLETTER ISLAND 2017

 

During the week leading up to the final race of the year; the weather forecast was all over the place. By Friday afternoon, it looked as if we might be looking at some rain on Sunday; but no one can accurately predict what will happen. As we made our way down to the track on Saturday, we found out that the racing for that day had been cancelled due to fog, low clouds and some intermittent mist. On Sunday morning, all 3 of the local New York TV networks were calling for sunshine by 2:00 PM. Well, that never happened. It was very cloudy and humid all day long.

Even though the weather was very gloomy, the competition was anything but that. We had 18 drivers and 46 family and crew show up for this race. I’m telling you folks, our club looked great spread out all over the pit area. The track opened at 10:00 AM; but there was no activity until noontime. Since the track has a 7:00 PM curfew on Sunday’s; and because the overall car count was large; our club would be restricted to only one round of qualifying. After all of our cars made clean passes down the strip; the five best reaction times belonged to the following drivers. David Grubb cut an .031 light; and Pat Kelly broke the beams with a .029 reaction time, The third quickest time belonged to Ron Cason with a .026 light; and Ron was bested by his brother Rob by a thousandth of a second with a .025. The best reaction time belonged to point contender Wayne Beach with a very quick .005 light. Wayne just added 2 points to his total on his way to try and capture the 2017 point championship.

 

 

ROUND #1

Our drivers were called to the staging lanes for the first round of eliminations and we were scheduled to make our runs after the NETO Comp cars finished their round. It was still very dark and gloomy looking; when Kevin Lynch and Clayt Deming rolled toward the starting line. Clayt dialed am 11.17 on his ’64 Falcon and Kevin put up a 10.33 on the window of his 502 powered “Prime Suspect” Nova. When Clayt’s light went green, he left the line on a rather slow .204 light; but it was Clayt’s race; because Kevin was just too quick on the tree and he fouled by only 8 thousandths of a second; but no matter how close Kevin was to a perfect light; he lit that red bulb; and the race went to Clayt. Kevin ran a 10.60 @ 125 mph; against Clayt’s breakout 11.11 @ 118 mph. Clayt dodged a bullet on this one. Following that pair of gassers, we saw Carly Boyer (11.25 dial) versus John Schreiner (10.32 dial). We haven’t seen Pete Boyer’s daughter since earlier in the year; but one thing is for sure; Carly can really handle Pete’s “Untouchable” Chevy sedan.

It was also nice to see John Schreiner make an appearance for this race. John’s “Good Vibrations” Anglia is always a crowd favorite. As each driver got the go signal, Carly had a much better reaction time (.046) than John’s (.125); but it was still anyone’s race. Down track, Carly got the win on her 11.29 @ 110 mph; against John’s 10.50 @ 124 mph. Up next we had Bruce Deming’s ’41 Willys coupe (10.68 dial) and Gregg Grubel’s ’51 Chevy (9.65 dial). Bruce and his “Rattle Trap” Willys would leave a full second before Gregg jumped on the gas of his “Class Reunion” Chevy. Bruce might have opened the door with his .109 light; and Gregg took advantage of this with a nice .034 light. Looking toward the finish line, Gregg got the win; running a 9.76 @ 135 mph; versus Bruce’s breakout 10.65 @ 121 mph. That race was followed by the Willys of David Grubb (9.59 dial) and the Nova of Jim Wheeler (11.43 dial). Grubby would have to wait almost 2 seconds before he could leave the starting line; and Jim’s .097 light, was bested by Dave’s .059 reaction time. As both cars proceeded down the strip; we saw the win go to Grubby on his 9.60 @ 136 mph; versus Jim’s breakout 11.38 @ 112 mph. Up next came Ray Bruno and Scott Hasko. Scott was showing an 11.29 on his ’40 Willys coupe; and Ray posted a 12.99 on his ’57 Chevy. Scott’s “Relic” Willys moved into position and so did Ray’s “Sidewinder” Chevy. Both drivers reaction times were close; with the advantage going to Scott’s .076 versus Ray’s .107; but at the far end, Ray broke out with a 12.96 @ 102 mph; against Scott’s 11.37 @ 118 mph. Continuing on, we had current point leader Tommy Magers (10.38 dial) versus Ron Carson (9.49 dial). In looking at Ron’s dial, I think he has found the gremlin that has been plaguing him for the last couple of races. Tommy needed this race to continue on in his quest to stay on top of the point standings. Both cars staged and Tommy cut a beautiful .013 light; while Ron’s .073 was not Ron’s best effort. Watching the lane boards, the win light pointed to Tommy’s lane; but this was a double breakout race. Tommy ran a 10.28 @ 126 mph; while Ron ran a 9.37 @ 133 mph. Obviously, both drives were on it as they crossed the finish line; but Tommy got the win and would move on.

We still had 6 cars waiting to make their runs and the next pair of gassers saw two of the four top point drivers facing each other. Wayne Beach who is currently in third place dialed a 10.88 and Bill Magliane who occupies the second place in points dialed a 10.67. This would be a ’55 Chevy versus a ’37 Chevy. When Wayne got the green light, he cut a wicked .015 light; and Billy was much slower on the tree with his .121 reaction time. I figured that Wayne had this one in the bag; but unfortunately, he ran a 10.87 with a 7 @ 112 mph; against Billy’s 10.82 @ 109 mph. Wayne lost this one by 3 thousandths of a second. Following that race, we saw the ’48 Anglia of Denny Stewart (9.80 dial) versus the 61 Falcon of Pat Kelly (10.60 dial). Pat left the line on a .075 light; but Denny was asleep at the wheel; and his .506 light wasn’t going to help him at all. The win went to Pat; and he ran a 10.90 @ 101 mph; versus Denny’s problem filled run of 13.87 @ 58 mph. Denny’s car just never seemed to hookup and he took a cautious approach, by lifting off of the throttle and just glided across the finish line. Our final pair of cars had new member Bob Troise and his 57 VW (Rumble Bug); against Rob Carson’s ’55 Chevy (Pure Hell Jr).

Rob is currently the number 4 man in the point standings and he was looking to improve his position. Rob dialed a 10.64 and Bob put up a 12.85 on the window of his Corvair powered VW. I think Bob was just a little bit nervous; because before his lane went green; he left the starting line early and he went red with a -.048 light. Rob was fortunate that Bob went red as he ran a 10.49 @ 123 mph; versus Bob’s losing 13.16 @ 100 mph. The first round was now complete and we have reduced the field by nine.

ROUND #2:

Okay, our guys were in the lanes and ready of the second round of eliminations by mid-afternoon. The sky was still very dark; but thankfully, not one rain drop had fallen when two of our nine second cars moved into the water boxes to clean off their slicks. David Grubb dialed another 9.59 for his big block Chevy powered ’41 Willys; and Gregg Grubel posted a 9.75 on his big block Olds powered ’51 Chevy. Just like Ron Carson, Gregg has been chasing a problem somewhere in his car that has slowed his car down by almost four tenths of a second. As both drivers staged their cars, I knew this was going to be a “Good One”. Gregg shot out of the hole, with his wheels in the air; on a wicked .003 light; but Grubby was no slouch with his .020 reaction time. The question was, who could prevail at the top end of the strip? This race was a close one, with Gregg’s Chevy getting the win light on his 9.77 @ 135 mph; versus Grubby’s 9.61 @ 129 mph.

The next pair up, consisted of Clayt Deming and Carly Boyer. Clayt dialed an 11.11 for his blue Ford Falcon; and Carly put another 11.25 on the window of her ’39 Chevy sedan. When Carly’s lane went green, she left on a .128 light; but Clayt was just a bit too quick and he went red by six thousandths of a second; giving the race to Carly. Clayt ran an 11.45 @ 117 mph; versus Carly’s winning 11.25 with a 3 @ 116 mph. Next up came Pat Kelly’s “Verminator” Falcon (10.62 dial); and Robert Carson’s “Pure Hell Jr.” Chevy sedan (10.50 dial). Remember that Rob is a contender for the point championship!! When Pat’s lane said go; he left on a .137 light; but two tenths of a second later; Rob had a horrible .475 light. Down at the money end of the track; Pat grabbed the win; running a 10.70 @ 118 mph; versus Rob’s valiant effort 10.55 @ 122 mph. That was a tough loss for Rob!! The next pair of gassers to move into the water boxes was Scott Hasko (11.34 dial) and point contender Bill Magliane (10.67 dial). This was a must win for Billy if he had any chance of keeping pace with Tommy Magers in the points battle. Scott’s “Relic” Willys left the starting line on a .060 reaction time; but the driver of the “Mister C Gas” Chevy sedan was just way to quick on the Christmas tree and he lit the red light with a -.049 reaction time. Scott actually ran under his dial with an 11.28 @ 118 mph; while Billy ran a 10.76 @ 119 mph in his loss. This loss put an end to Bill’s push to win the point championship for a second year in a row. The bye run for this round had Tommy Magers running a 10.29 @ 126 mph against his 10.28 dial. Tommy’s solo run assured him of being the 2017 points champion. We are now down to five cars. The field has now been reduced to only five cars.

ROUND #3

In this round, Pat Kelly would face Carly Boyer and Scott Hasko would run Tommy Magers. Gregg Grubel had the coveted solo bye run. The first pair of competitors found Pat Kelly’s ‘61 Falcon (10.62 dial); pulling alongside Carly Boyer’s ’39 Chevy sedan (11.24 dial). Carly cut a beautiful .009 light when her lane went green; but Pat was very slow getting off of the line with a .224 light. I thought that Carly had an easy win; but that goes to show you that anything can happen in drag racing; as Carly ran six thousandths of a second under her dial with an 11.23 and a 6 @ 108 mph; versus Pat’s 10.67 @ 122 mph. Carly lost a very close race. The other pair to run each other in this round had Tommy Magers in his “Destresser” Ford coupe (10.28 dial) racing Scott Hasko’s “Relic” Willys coupe (11.25 dial). Scott would leave a second before Tommy; and his .050 reaction time was not bad; but it did not matter what his light was; because Tommy lit that ugly red bulb by only a scant 3 thousandths of a second (–.003). The victory went to Scott; who ran an 11.57 @ 118 mph; against Tommy’s losing 10.32 @ 125 mph. The solo run for this round had Gregg Grubel running a 9.74 with a 4 @ 136 mph against his 9.75 dial; and the field has no been reduced to three.

ROUND #4

The only pairing in this round had two very good friends facing each other. Pat Kelly and his wife Kim have known Gregg and Chris Grubel forever; and this was going to be a great race. After the last round of competition, Pat saw some water seepage on the left cylinder head of his big block Ford. So, before this race, he re-torqued the left side head bolts. Pat than crossed his fingers. As both drivers moved their cars toward the starting line; Pat dialed a 10.66 and Gregg a 9.73. Once both cars were staged, the starter activated the tree and those yellow bulbs glowed in the twilight as they moved downward. Pat got the green first and his Falcon launched forward; but his .152 reaction time was not his best. Gregg’s .080 light gave him the advantage over Pat; and he used it to grab the win; running a 9.93 @ 135 mph; against Pat’s breakout 10.65 and a 2 @ 121 mph. Wow, this was a close one. Scott Hasko’s solo pass was an 11.49 @ 118 mph against his 11.25 dial.

FINAL ROUND

Well, the track lights were on; and it was now after 6:00 PM when the final two cars moved into the water boxes and did their burnouts. Gregg dialed a 9.74 and Scott an 11.39. As these two gassers staged their cars; you could visualize what it was like during the “Gasser Wars” era back in the day. A ’51 Chevy and a “40 Willys would do battle. A big block injected Olds on alcohol; versus a small block carbureted Chevy on gas. This stuff is what our club is all about. When Scott and Gregg were staged; the starter initiated the countdown sequence. As the yellow bulbs moved downward, the driver’s increased their engine rpm’s; and when Scott’s lane went green, he left on a .121 light; but Gregg could not wait for the green; and he fouled with a -.030 light; handing the win over to Scott; who ran an 11.46 @ 117 mph; while Gregg just got out of the gas; running a 14.85 @ 55 mph. Today, Scott Hasko prevailed in all 5 rounds of racing. Great driving Scott!!

 

2017 FINAL 2017 POINT STANDINGS

270 Tommy Magers
254 Bill Magliane
248 Rob Carson
242 Wayne Beach
218 Scott Hasko
194 Clayt Deming
192 Bruce Deming
178 Steve Tanzella
174 David Grubb
172 Pete Boyer
170 Denny Stewart
160 Gregg Grubel
156 Ron Carson
146 Pat Kelly
140 Kevin Lynch
132 Mark Fenzel
104 Jim Wheeler
100 Cricket Clonch
100 Carly Boyer
92 Dave Fenzel
90 Ray Bruno
74 Don Lord
50 John Labuda
50 Jack Matson
50 Steve Vallieres
40 Mike Alessi
30 Brian Freels
22 Tim Grace
20 Jim Pryor
20 Paul McCorkel
20 John Schreiner
10 Frank Johnson
10 Dan Bergeron
10 Barry Stevens
10 Carl Bucks
10 Bob Troise

We had a total of 36 different drivers attend our races. This was an outstanding year of competition and attendance for our club. Thanks to everyone for all the hard work that you put forth to bring your cars to our events. You really did put on a great nostalgia gasser show at each of the tracks we attended. I truly hope that next year you will continue to be one of the best gasser clubs in the country!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On November 11, 2017 Wayne Magers was called home. We have lost a great friend and club member; and Tommy has lost his wonderful dad. Wayne was a racers friend, and he would do whatever he could to help a fellow racer or a friend. Our future days at the track will not be the same without him.We will miss his smiling face. Our thoughts and prayers are with his entire family. God Speed!

 

 

 

EAST COAST GASSERS-DRAG RACING LIKE IT USED TO BE!

 

 

 

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