Leading into this past weekend’s final NHRA LODRS Southeast Division event in Reynolds, GA Casey Spradlin, former national event winning driver of the Southeastern Hose Top Dragster and Top Sportsman team, knew he had to have a spectacular weekend if he wanted to break the stranglehold Dylan Stott, the 2011 Champion, had on this seasons points lead.
The Reynolds LODRS event presented a unique opportunity to win two races in one weekend for Spradlin as the Bristol LODRS had to be postponed to the Reynolds race due to inclement weather.
“I knew headed into Reynolds that being in the Bristol race gave us a great opportunity to gain some ground on Dylan if we could do well in both. I purposely never looked at the points breakdown, instead setting my game plan to win both races and let the championship work its way out,” Spradlin describes how he handled the pressure of competing for the championship.
Spradlin and the Southeastern Hose team worked their way through the remaining elimination rounds of the Bristol event, meeting Top Dragster veteran Ken Wells in the final. In the final, Wells got the holeshot but Spradlin was able run closer to his dial and take the win.
“I told Ken before the final that this was the longest race we have ever run! With the different tracks and varying conditions we had thrown at us, it was a great feeling to get back in the winner’s circle for the second time this season.”
The Bristol win on Saturday propelled Spradlin from 4th to 2nd in the points standing just 1 point behind Stott going into the final race on Sunday. This set the stage for a shootout for the championship. Spradlin qualified second with a career best quarter-mile E.T. and speed of 6.43 seconds at 211 MPH in his supercharged alcohol burning dragster.
Spradlin continued, “I never looked at the points, but the track announcer was keeping everyone informed of the points battle. The way the ladder worked out, we had a semifinal marque match-up waiting on us to decide the championship.“
Spradlin advanced to the quarterfinals where he had a laddered bye run which put him into the semifinals. Stott would ultimately redlight in the quarterfinals which would set his point total at 325. The quarterfinal bye run didn’t go as planned for the Southeastern Hose team.
“We decided to run first so we would have more time for the semi’s, we broke a transmission on the starting line right in front of the Stott team, they helped us push the car off the track and were the first to offer assistance for the needed repairs. Even after they lost they came over to our pit to assist in the transmission exchange. Now that is a class act! A big thanks to them, the Hickory Enclosed Trailers team, and our honorary crew members from our home town of Ranburne, AL for their help in getting us to the semi’s.”
Miraculously the team made the necessary repairs and where able to win the semifinals and advance to the second final round of the weekend to face former national event champion Lauren Freer of Lewisville, NC. Spradlin would have a great .008 reaction time but would leave the line second to Freer’s nearly perfect .001 and she would also run closer to the dial to take the win.
The runner-up finish would give Spradlin enough points to overtake Stott and give the team its first NHRA division championship.
“It’s rough losing a final but the way this weekend worked out with the Bristol win and the points championship, I know I have been richly blessed by my Lord and Savior. We opened up with a win and then we faltered with parts breakage in the summer races and that got us down, then to come here to Reynolds with so much on the line and to come away with the championship with my friends and family there was just the greatest feeling ever. I also want to thank Southeastern Hose, Smith Brothers Push Rods, TCI, and Tim Gaines Performance,” Spradlin exclaimed.
About Spradlin Motorsports
Spradlin Motorsports with its second generation driver, Casey Spradlin, competes in NHRA Top Dragster with his 1500 hp, 200 MPH supercharged, dragster. Spradlin competes in NHRA Top Sportsman with a 1300 hp, nitrous assisted, ’37 Chevy Coupe. The team is a two time NHRA national event finalist, winning the 2009 SportsNationals in Top Dragster. Other accomplishments include an IHRA Southeast Division Top Dragster Championship. Marketing partners include Southeastern Hose, Smith Brothers Push Rods, TCI, and Tim Gaines Performance. Visit www.spradlinmotorsports.com for more information.
About Southeastern Hose, Inc.
Established in 1963, today Southeastern Hose stands as a major factor in the Hose Assembly and Expansion Joint Industry. With over 200 years of combined experience, from welding, fabricating, sales, and administration departments, the knowledge, capabilities, and expertise of Southeastern Hose is virtually unsurpassed. Southeastern Hose is a leading fabricator of Flexible Metal, Rubber, Teflon, and Composite Hose Assemblies and Expansion Joints, Pump Connectors, Hydraulic, Pneumatic, and Jacketed Assemblies, Chemical Transfer, Tar & Asphalt, Air, Coolant, and Stripwound Hose. Offering an assortment of Fittings, Couplings, and Adaptors, as well as components in an exceptionally wide variety of types, sizes, and materials. The Southeastern Hose, Inc. mission is simple: "Connect with Confidence". Visit www.sehose.com for more information.