Summer Fling 2022 - Complete Race Recap
Bill Webb Wins American/Race Tech Super Tuesday Shootout at the Summer Fling
The first day of on-track action of the JEGS Performance Summer Fling presented by Optima Batteries at National Trail Raceway began on Tuesday following the free Expert Seminar Monday afternoon.
Cars hit the track at noon for the Law Chevrolet Buick Test and Tune where racers were given an early opportunity to get their equipment dialed-in for the days of racing ahead. Meanwhile, an exclusive 32-car field matched up in the Super Tuesday American Race Cars/Race Tech Shootout in hopes of securing one of the two dragster chassis up for grabs with the winner having choice of builder.
As 32 cars became eight, Matt Schell, Jeg Coughlin Jr., Garrett Griffith, Joe Hoskins, Kyle Bigley, Donovan Williams, Bill Webb, and Tim Kelley rolled into the lanes for the ladder round.
Griffith turned it just two thousandths red to Hoskins, and Bigley used a substantial advantage on the tree to eliminate Williams. Schell moved to the semifinals by way of Coughlin’s .006 breakout, while Webb took the TruStart win after turning it .004 red to the .015 redlight of Kelley.
At four cars, Schell locked Hoskins out with a .015 package, and Webb parlayed his perfect reaction time into a winlight against Bigley to earn a place in the final round.
While both finalists had secured themselves a $16,000 dragster chassis, Schell and Webb would face off once more for the choice between the American or the Race Tech. By way of Schell’s .005 redlight, Webb claimed the last winlight of the night and the Race Tech dragster chassis while Schell walked away with the American dragster chassis after dedicating his performance to cousin Sean Serra.
Josh Luedke Wins Advanced Product Design $15,000 Wednesday at the Summer Fling
The sun rose above the greenery of National Trail Raceway for the second day of racing at the JEGS Performance Summer Fling presented by Optima Batteries. Advanced Product Design Wednesday held a $15,000 Warm-Up race in store for the 205 entries on property.
With the progression of the program the Fling Team added more racing to Wednesday’s schedule with a $5,000 32-Car Shootout in the afternoon, giving racers eliminated from competition in the main event a second opportunity to park in the winner’s circle.
A ladder was set at the quarterfinals of five cars including Josh Luedke, Garrett Griffith, Wes May, Chris Stine, and Jeff Serra.
While Serra and Griffith left the starting line one thousandth apart, it was Serra that turned on the winlight after the .005 breakout of Griffith. Both Stine and Luedke laid down .010 total — Stine .002 and dead-on eight and Luedke .010 dead-on zero — but Luedke took the win by just .0006. May cruised down the dragstrip on the solo shot.
The final four of the $5,000 Shootout was comprised of Gerald Ingle, Robbie Breeden, Cameron Adkins, and Rob Leipziger with Ingle and Adkins advancing to create an all door car final round. Adkins turned it .003 red and Ingle drove it down to be dead-on four to pick up the 5K payday.
Then it was time to continue on into the semifinals of APD $15,000 Wednesday. Serra was .001 against the .007 of May, but May ran it down to be dead-on five crossing the stripe first by .001. Luedke was .014 total on his bye to the final where he would wheel his 4.60 dragster against the 6.80 ‘82 Regal of May.
Luedke used a .015 advantage on the tree and took .006 against May to score the APD $15,000 Wednesday victory. Luedke is no stranger to a Fling winner’s circle, having won a 50K event at the GALOT Fling in 2020.
Pete D’Agnolo Wins FuelTech $30,000 Thursday at the Summer Fling
FuelTech Thursday at the JEGS Performance Summer Fling presented by Optima Batteries at National Trail Raceway raised the purse and the stakes with a $30,000 payday with 270 entries staging up in pursuit of hoisting up a big check at the end of the night.
The morning kicked off with a Run for the Money open to all racers on property for a $20 buy-in. Kenny Underwood put down the best overall package of .001 total, earning himself $2,000. The second best package was that of Tim Markoglu, who was .003 total with a .001 reaction time to win $1,000. $500 was awarded to Cameron Manuel, who also had a .003 package but was .002 on the tree.
Sunny skies and great track conditions made for close laps throughout the day. Three drivers carried two entries to the round of 12 including Chris Bear, Chase Meade, and Cameron Manuel accompanied by Jessica Cameron, Pete D’Agnolo, Courtney Grisez, Eric Peterka, and Jeff Serra.
Six returned for Round 7 with no doubles carrying over. Cameron turned it .006 red to Peterka, and Manuel fouled by .006 as well against Meade. D’Agnolo laid down a .007 package after a perfect light against Bear to earn the bye in the semifinals.
At the round of three, Meade let go .006 too early to Peterka, who met the ‘79 Malibu of D’Agnolo in the final round of FuelTech $30,000 Thursday. Nine thousandths separated them on the tree with the advantage going to D’Agnolo, and D’Agnolo crossed the stripe first by .006 to have the lesser of the two breakouts against Peterka. After a Super Stock win at the U.S. Nationals just days prior, D’Agnolo repeated his 2021 Summer Fling $25,000 Thursday win with the $30,000 FuelTech Thursday victory.
An impromptu shootout was added in conjunction with the main event eliminations, limited to a 16 car field and a $5,000 purse. The final four remaining included Skyler Bee, Josh Baker, Shane Blackburn, and Makenna Brown. Baker was .016 on the tree and ran it down to be dead-on five over Blackburn for the win, following a 2021 Summer Fling $25,000 Saturday.
Kyle Cultrera Wins ATI Performance $100,000 Friday at the Summer Fling
ATI Performance Friday of the JEGS Performance Summer Fling presented by Optima Batteries at National Trail Raceway saw the highest purse of the weekend at $100,000. 312 entries created a mix of ‘traveling pro’ bracket racers and local grassroots drivers.
Prizes ramped up to match the richest payday of the week. Gift certificates and hardcore products were given out to racers for their performances in excess of hundreds of dollars in value.
The best door car and best dragster package of the weekend throughout eliminations from Wednesday to third round Friday met in a match race for a set of Brodix SR20 cylinder heads. Jeff Fargo, new to the top bulb racing scene, qualified on the door car side with a .001 package (perfect and dead-on one) while Chris Bear was the representative on the dragster side after being .002 total (perfect and dead-on two). By way of Bear’s redlight, Fargo took the win in his ‘81 LeMans wagon.
With 14 drivers remaining in competition, tense split discussions created animosity when one racer voted against the majority. The racers included Austin Kardules, David Davis, Lou Greco, Phil Combs, Nick Hastings, Doug Lynden, Colby Fuller, Vinny DiMino, Josh Baker, Cameron Manuel, Kyle Bigley, Johnny Ezell, Kyle Cultrera, and Chris Bear.
After that, the quarterfinals saw Hastings take out Lynden, while Greco took .002 to be dead-on seven against Baker. Bear turned it red and dead-on two for the loss against the .013 package of Bigley. Cultrera drove down the dragstrip on a solo shot.
In the semifinals, Cultrera was .003 behind on the tree but took .003 to be dead-on eight for the win against Greco. Hastings used a .013 advantage on the tree off the footbrake for the win over Bigley who took .004 to be four thousandths under the dial.
In the final round that both drivers dedicated to Sean Serra, Cultrera and Hastings faced off for the ATI Performance $100,000. Cultrera had the advantage off the line and took the win on the main event day, backing up a 2021 Fall Fling Bristol $100,000 victory.
Garrett Griffith Wins American Race Cars $30,000 Saturday at the Summer Fling
The final day of the JEGS Performance Summer Fling presented by Optima Batteries at National Trail Raceway had 312 entries staging up for $30,000 on American Race Cars Saturday.
A full week of beautiful weather continued throughout the day and into the afternoon. Increased round money and special awards would wrap up the third Fling event of the year.
The Fling Team selected Chris Bear as the 2022 Summer Fling MVP to receive the Todd’s Extreme custom-painted Impact Racing helmet and $1,000 bonus for his stellar performance over the course of the event, carrying double entries deep into eliminations during the Thursday 30K and Friday 100K races. Bear also had over five perfect reaction times, proving to be set up “on kill” each day and earning him a spot on the dragster side of the Brodix Best Package Runoff for the SR20 cylinder heads (qualifying with a .002 package).
After struggling early in the week and turning things around by going deep into eliminations on Saturday, the Fling Team selected Gary Williams as the winner of the Kyle Seipel Never Give Up Award presented by Ivey Hutto Golf Cart Sales. He received a custom crystal plaque and $1,000 bonus.
For round seven Joe Hoskins, Gary Williams, Garrett Griffith, Cameron Manuel, Vinny DiMino, Tim Markoglu, and Amanda Manuel (who carried two entries to the round of 14) remained. Williams let go perfect on the line against the .009 of DiMino and took .009 for the double breakout win. Griffith and Amanda Manuel were separated by just two-thousandths and Griffith took .002 at the stripe to be dead-on eight for the win. Cameron Manuel put up .012 total taking .009 to eliminate Hoskins, while Markoglu had a .003 bulb on the bye run.
Griffith held the advantage on the tree against Williams by .009 and had the lesser of the two breakouts being three thousandths under for the win. Cameron Manuel’s perfect reaction time wasn’t enough to turn on the winlight as Markoglu was .013 total taking .004 at the stripe.
The classic door car versus dragster final staged up nice and early at seven o’clock, made up of two proven Fling winners with both drivers having multiple prior victories at past events. Griffith controlled the final round with a .009 advantage on the starting line and ran his S-10 down to be dead-on two for the American Race Cars $30,000 Friday win. It made for the third big check in Griffith’s collection, following a 2021 Summer Fling 15K and a 2021 Fall Fling 25K.