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AutoMeter Northern Class Nationals Results

Sunday, May 04, 2014



After a great reception and encouraging words from 2001 U.S. Class Nationals promoter Alex Denysenko, final eliminations for the Inaugural AutoMeter Northern Class Nationals fired off to complete a dream that was started and set over one year ago.  Racers from all over the country and Canada gathered under the best weather for the weekend to determine a champion in ATI Performance Super Stock and Ultimate Converter Stock for the day.  After some hard fought rounds that were nip and tuck all day long, two deserving champions found themselves in the winner circle claiming the $5,000.  It was a tough battle for all, but Charles Downing (Stock) and Pete D'Agnolo (Super Stock) leave the track as the big winners in 2014.


 Ultimate Converter Stock Winner - Charles Downing
(Loose Rocker Photo)

The first final round run for the event was found in Stock eliminator.  Downing and his 2010 Mustang out of Britton, Michigan had missed out on the Quick 32 win on Friday, but started his journey to the final round on this day from the #6 qualifying spot.  Downing worked his way past Dan Sayres, Jimmy Gower, Bob Shieff, Myron Piatek, and Donnie Beeler to reach the semifinal race with Paul Boster's 1990 Corvette from Pataskala, Ohio.  There, Boster left the starting line too soon and gave Downing's 10.728 on a 10.60 the pass to the final round.

On the other side of the ladder, Bill Sempsrott came from the #30 qualifying spot with his Franklin, Ohio based 1966 Nova SS.  Sempsrott advanced to the semifinals by getting past Mike Warren, Tim Gillespie, had a third round bye, Jeff Day, and Patrick Downing before racing Bryan Merkle and his Johnstown, Ohio based 2002 Firebird.  Like the previous semifinal, Merkle fouled with a -.008 and made the 11.712 on a 11.69 of Sempsrott good enough for the final round of competition.

In the final, with two stick shift cars on the line and Sempsrott looking to defeat both Downing cars in eliminations, anything was possible.  Charles Downing got the better reaction time with a .032 to the .044 for Sempsrott.  As they charged towards the finish line, it was Downing trying to get around Sempsrott but instead forcing him to breakout at the stripe.  The Mustang rode into the winner circle with a 10.604 on his 10.60 dial in, while Sempsrott was forced to settle for runner up with a 11.688 on his 11.70 dial in.

Super Stock

 ATI Performance Super Stock Winner - Pete D'Agnolo
(Loose Rocker Photo)

The action was just as intense, if not a bit more nerve-wracking at the end, in the Super Stock division of racing.  D'Agnolo came from Rochester, New York with his 1967 Camaro and started his run to the final round from the #79 position in the field.  In the very first pair of Super Stock round one, D'Agnolo was able to defeat Gene McBean to start his day.  D'Agnolo then got past Michael Mans, Stephen Belanger, Tim Kish, and Garrett Ghezzi before his semifinal matchup with Tyler Bohannon.  In the battle of 1967 Camaros, it was D'Agnolo with a two thousandths of a second edge off the line and a 9.811 on a 9.77 win over the 9.887 on a 9.81 for Bohannon.  After the finish, Bohannon's car crossed over and hit the wall behind D'Agnolo and came to a stop on his roof.  Bohannon was checked out by EMS and was OK after the incident.

Waiting for D'Agnolo in the final round of Super Stock would be the 1987 Camaro of Belding, Michigan's Brad Zaskowski.  After finishing on the qualifying sheet in the #51 spot, Zaskowski stared his day by defeating the always tough Jeff Niceswanger.  Zaskowski then got past George Taylor, Mike Skinner, Bob Marshall, and Bill Dyer before getting the always important bye run into the final round.  After the cleanup for the Bohannon incident, Zaskowski ran a 10.299 on his 10.30 dial in to setup the final round.

The old school versus newer school matchup of Camaros pulled to the line to conclude not only the Super Stock final round but the Northern Class Nationals.  D'Agnolo, who's worst reaction time all day was .030, once again had a great light of .015 and had the edge over Zaskowski.  It would prove to be a $5,000 winning reaction time as D'Agnolo used it to win on a holeshot.  A 9.790 on a 9.77 for D'Agnolo secured the final win light of the event over the 10.186 on a 10.18 for Zaskowski.

The Inaugural AutoMeter Northern Class Nationals is in the books for 2014.  Everyone from National Trail Raceway and Loose Rocker Promotions would like to thank each and every racer, crew member, and spectator that came out to the track this weekend.  We hope that a great time was had by everyone over this special race for the racers by the racers.  Congrats once again to all of the winners from the weekend.


 photo by Pat Donahue

The final two qualifying passes for tomorrow's Inaugural AutoMeter Northern Class Nationals were bothered by some intermitted rain showers that proved to be more a nuisance than anything to the racers.  After final qualifying was complete, the NitroPlate Stock and Super Stock Combo event was run and crowned a friendly racer from north of the border as champion.  While Friday leaders Robert Shaw and Dan Jacobs would retain their top spots after the dust settled in qualifying, it was Robert Becker that was crowned the champion of the Combo race for 2014.

Becker, all the way from Port Colborne, Ontario Canada, showed the Americans what was up with his GT/CA Camaro.  After working through the tough field of great racers, Becker would go up against the 1966 Chevy Nova of Robbie Harrison from Kokomo, Indiana for the top prize.  Becker, who had stopped the final Stock eliminator runner of the evening Rob Holmes in the round before, was killer on the tree all event long.  He carried it with him in the final round as he used a .011 reaction time to get the lead off the line and drive past Harrison before the stripe.  His 9.905 on a 9.89 got the win over the 10.522 on a 10.51 from Harrison.

Final eliminations for the AutoMeter Northern Class Nationals will begin with Stock at 9:30 AM and run to its conclusion throughout the day.  Below is the top qualifiers and final results from Saturday here at NTR:

Top Qualifiers (Final Order)
ATI Performance Super Stock

1. Dan Jacobs (GT/G) -1.703
2. Ron Terrell (SS/JA) -1.599
3. Ricky Decker (SS/IA) -1.552
4. Dave Layer (GT/HA) -1.541
5. John Stock (GT/MA) -1.539
6. Bobby Dennis (GT/MA) -1.529...
7. Garrett Ghezzi (GT/MA) -1.516
8. Jeff Niceswanger (SS/JA) -1.498
9. Gary Summers (SS/N) -1.458
10. Ronald Matcham (SS/BA) -1.415

Ultimate Converter Stock

1. Robert Shaw (U/SA) -2.110
2. Marty Buth (Q/SA) -2.062
3. Paul Wong (T/S) -1.968
4. Gary Summers (U/SA) -1.822
5. Larry DeForrest (D/FXA) -1.725
6. Charles Downing (G/FX) -1.634
7. Jim Boburka (CC/FXA) -1.542
8. Randall Campbell (Q/SA) -1.515
9. John McCarthy (U/SA) -1.498
10. Randy Eakins (C/FXA) -1.487

NitroPlate Stock / Super Stock Combo
W: Robert Becker ('69 Camaro) - 9.905, 132.46 (9.89 dial).
R/U: Robbie Harrison ('66 Nova) - 10.522, 123.37 (10.51 dial).
Semi's: Jerry Silveus; Rob Holmes.


Photo by Pat Donahue

The opening day of the Inaugural AutoMeter Northern Class Nationals was not a friendly reminder of the weather from the first Class Nationals that was held at Byron Dragway back in the early turn of the century.  There was nowhere near the 100+ degree temperatures that was seen at Byron here at NTR today, but the racing action more than made up for it.  After one round of qualifying and class eliminations for everyone, the three classes of competition for the day were run to conclusion and crowned three champions to kick off the weekend.  Scoring wins here today were Tyler Fillipone in ET Enterprise Junior Stock, Ricky Decker in the Lucas Oil Quick 32 for Super Stock, and Marty Buth in the Lucas Oil Quick 32 for Stock.

The Junior Stock category of racing saw some the "slower" stock cars battle it out for the win.  However, what they lack in brute speed was easily overshadowed by the tight competition throughout the class.  In the final round it would be the Hampstead, New Hampshire runner Fillipone going up against the 1984 Regal of Toledo, Ohio's Brian Seibenick.  Fillipone, driving a 1986 Cutlass, would have to be patient in the final round with the slight head start going to Seibenick.  But it would not matter as Seibenick left the starting line too soon to give the win to Fillipone.  Tyler would have been tough to beat as he used a .024 light and a 12.406 on his 12.40 dial in to complete the win.

The quickest 32 racers from the first two qualifying sessions would duke it out in the Quick 32 classes for the evening.  Using a 1.25 under CIC index number, racers had to not only overcome handicap head starts, but also have to race the finish line to save index all race long.  The final round found Decker and his 1994 Camaro from Charlestown, Indiana going up against the 2012 Cobra Jet Mustang of Mike Skinner from Grove City, Ohio.  Decker, who had only lost four from his 11.00 index for the final round was up against Skinner who had lost just three from the 10.20 beginning index.  However, like the Junior Stock final, it was over right from the hit as Skinner left the line too soon and made Decker the winner.  Decker shut down to a 11.422 for the win.

While the Super Stock runners were able to get to the final round with little index loss, the Stock final round was not as fortunate.  Buth and his 1983 Mustang from Freeport, Illinois went up against the 2010 Mustang of Charles Downing from Britton, Michigan in another "new" versus "traditional" final round matchup.  Buth entered the final round down from a 14.10 index at the start to a 13.50, while Downing was down from a 12.20 to a 11.76.  After a nearly identical start, Buth was able to stay out in front of the charging Downing to pick up the win.  Buth's 12.058 got the win over the 10.499 for Downing.

Qualifying after two sessions in Ultimate Converter Stock is lead by Robert Shaw and his Sedalia, Missouri based 1977 Seville.  Shaw stopped the clocks at a 13.040 on his 15.15 index to be one of two drivers to be 2 seconds under the index.  Buth is the other one at -2.062.

Super Stock is lead into qualifying tomorrow by Dan Jacobs and his GT/G classed 2005 Cavalier.  Jacobs posted a 9.347 on his 11.05 index to sit -1.703 under the number.  Ron Terrell is second at -1.599.

Below is the results of tonight and current top 10 in qualifying:

Top Qualifiers (2 of 4 Sessions)
ATI Performance Super Stock

1. Dan Jacobs (GT/G) -1.703
2. Ron Terrell (SS/JA) -1.599
3. Ricky Decker (SS/IA) -1.552
4. Dave Layer (GT/HA) -1.541
5. John Stock (GT/MA) -1.539
6. Bobby Dennis (GT/MA) -1.529
7. Jeff Niceswanger (SS/JA) -1.498
8. Garrett Ghezzi (GT/MA) -1.472
9. Gary Summers (SS/N) -1.458
10. Rich South (SS/KA) -1.389

Ultimate Converter Stock

1. Robert Shaw (U/SA) -2.110
2. Marty Buth (Q/SA) -2.062
3. Paul Wong (T/S) -1.968
4. Gary Summers (U/SA) -1.822
5. Larry DeForrest (D/FXA) -1.723
6. Lyn Smith (D/PS) -1.641
7. Charles Downing (G/FX) -1.634
8. Jim Boburka (CC/FXA) -1.542
9. Randall Campbell (Q/SA) -1.490
10. Randy Eakins (C/FXA) -1.487

ET Enterprise Jr. Stock
W: Tyler Fillipone ('86 Cutlass) - 12.406, 104.95 (12.40 dial).
R/U: Brian Seibenick ('84 Regal) - foul.
Semi's: Brent Darroch.

QuickFuel Quick 32 - Super Stock
W: Ricky Decker ('94 Camaro) - 11.422, 83.10 (10.96 dial).
R/U: Mike Skinner ('12 Mustang) - foul.
Semi's: Dave Layer; A.H. Adkins.

QuickFuel Quick 32 - Stock
W: Marty Buth ('83 Mustang) - 12.058, 108.25 (13.50 dial).
R/U: Charles Downing ('10 Mustang) - 10.499, 124.78 (11.76 dial).
Semi's: Robert Shaw; Gary Summers.