Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords
2011 NMRA Keystone Atco - Rain, Rain, Go Away!
True Street racers danced between raindrops as the NMRA-Keystone event was postponed
As the rain set in at Atco Raceway on the second day of the three-day event, the NMRA-Keystone Drag Racing Series officials looked at the weather satellite image with grave concern. "There is a 70 percent chance of rain for Saturday and Sunday," grumbled Charlie Harmon, president of the event division of the NMRA organization.
Working with longtime event director Lynwood Dupuy, they hustled to get in as much racing as possible before the clouds opened up Saturday afternoon. The two opening days provided enough dry weather to get two rounds of qualifying in and just one round of eliminations in Super Stang, Truck and Lightning, Modular Muscle, and Open Comp. They managed to complete the True Street cruise, but only one pass of three consecutive runs was completed. It forced the NMRA officials to declare a winner using just the one runùnot the ideal situation, but as rain fell on the fabled New Jersey facility, it was all they could do.
"It was a brutal day and a game of survival," stated Mike Jovanis, as he was crowned king of True Street thanks to his lone 8.79 at 160 mph. His name should ring a bell as he scored a runner-up finish at the '11 Spring Break Shootout with his turbocharged '89 LX hatchback. He continued, "It was 32 miles of driving in pouring rain, which made it interesting in a 1,200hp car. It was definitely the most grueling True Street drive." Jovanis tells us that was a lot of big talk heading into the race of possible 7-second cars, but those guys never showed up.
His LX is strikingly simple for a 1,200hp machine that has run as quick as 8.48 at 166 mph in non-True Street competition. Power comes from a DiSomma Racing Engines 347ci bullet with Trick Flow Street Heat heads, a Dart block, a custom DiSomma camshaft, and a few other tricks. The turbo kit is a B&G Customs single-turbo setup with a small-frame Precision GT-47/88mm (T04 exhaust housing) and a rather smallish air-to-air intercooler. The intercooler is being replaced later this year with a larger unit from B&G Customs. Jovanis was declared the Atco True Street winner by way of an 8.79 performance. He summed up his solo run, "It went really fast for the adverse track conditions."
Once the plug was pulled on racing operations the NMRA officials announced that the elimination rounds would be finished at the NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Street Legal Drag Racing (Joliet, Illinois) six weeks later.
MM&FF True Street Top 25
|1||Mike Jovanis||Wall, NJ||8.79||Winner|
|2||Art Henninger||Beachwood, NJ||9.58||Runner-up|
|3||Kris Mustacchio||Westmont, NJ||9.80||9-Second Winner|
|4||Sean O'Brian||Monroe, NJ||10.15||10-Second Winner|
|5||Jason Kahles||Minneola, NY||10.51|
|6||Ray Goelz||Hatboro, PA||10.83|
|7||Fred Felt||Brown Mills, NJ||11.49|
|8||Mike Gerhard||Lexington, NC||11.61|
|9||James Moshler||Williamstown, NJ||11.85|
|10||John Hines||Huntingdon Valley, PA||12.00||12-Second Winner|
|11||Joseph Tekverk||Centerreach, NY||12.78|
|12||Jonathan Harper||So. Bound Brook, NJ||13.08||13-Second Winner|
|13||Charles Hickenson||Franksville, NJ||13.14|
|14||BJ Thompson||Laurel Springs, NJ||13.16|
|15||Krista Elyse||Burlington, NJ||13.24|
|16||Ken Sulkowski||Burlington, NJ||13.45|
|17||Robert Kulpowitz||Shenandoah, PA||13.463|
|18||Larry Petronglo||Newfield, NJ||13.464|
|19||Mike Corrin||Wilmington, DE||13.51|
|20||Kyle Fields||South Hampton, NJ||13.72|
|21||Karen Baum||Lewistown, PA||13.90|
|22||Oscar Garcia||Leonia, NJ||14.06||14-Second Winner|
|23||Craig Sauder||Austintown, OH||14.37|
|24||John Pflug||Fresh Meadow, NY||14.79|
|25||Dave Pierce||Mount Laurel, NJ||15.11||15-Second Winner|