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Track Champions Crowned at NOS Energy Mayhem @ the MAX Finale
The fifth and final round of NOS Energy Mayhem @ the MAX Presented by Kooks Custom Headers, JE Pistons and Roush Yates Performance Parts took place on Saturday at zMAX Dragway. The double points event included the crowning of the seven class champions as well as the coveted King of the Track Award. The five-round championship series featured Super Pro, Pro Street, Top Eliminator, Sportsman, Motorcycles and two divisions of Junior Dragsters doing battle at the Bellagio of drag strips.
Ashley Strickland, of Concord, N.C., capped off a championship season by claiming the win in Top Eliminator. Her dragster covered the eighth-mile in a time of 4.96 seconds at 135.52 mph.
“It feels like a dream to win the championship.” Strickland said after claiming the race win and championship. “We came into today three rounds out of the points lead and to win the championship is great.”
Tim Martin, of Fort Mill, S.C., picked up the Pro Street victory as his 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS thundered down the quarter-mile in a time of 12.39 seconds at 112.46 mph.
The championship was awarded to Troutman, N.C.’s, Aimee Najarian and her 1973 Chevrolet Camaro.
“It’s absolutely fantastic and the feeling is indescribable. My husband and I have been working many years to be a track champion.” Najarian said after claiming the championship. “We saw this track on TV when we lived up north. It’s amazing to be able to run at the only track in the world with four lanes.”
Chip Johnson, of Fayetteville, N.C., claimed the Super Pro class victory in his 1968 Chevrolet Camaro. Johnson covered the quarter-mile in an elapsed time of 10.87 seconds at 131.80 mph.
Second-generation star Doug Foley Jr., of Statesville, N.C., locked up the championship in his dragster.
Brian Yerger, of Pottstown, P.A., claimed the Sportsman class victory. Yerger’s 1965 Comet Cyclone won with an elapsed time of 8.15 seconds at 53.621 mph in the quarter-mile.
Allen Furr of Ritchfield, N.C., claimed the championship. The final points standings required a two-way runoff to determine the champion.
On two wheels, Daniel Comer, of New London, N.C., defeated his teammate Scottie Keller in the final. Comer’s elapsed time in the quarter-mile was 9.90 seconds at 135.97 mph.
Keller, of Mooresville, N.C., claimed the motorcycle track championship.
For the third time this season, Pawleys Island, S.C., native Azarias Gouin took the win and claimed the championship in the Junior Dragsters A division. Gouin had an elapsed time of 9.10 seconds at 72.50 mph in eighth-mile competition.
Joe Foley, of Statesville, N.C., also made his third trip to victory lane this season in the Junior Dragster B division with an elapsed time of 7.92 seconds in the eighth-mile at 79.82 mph. Meanwhile, Noah Strickland, of Concord, N.C., claimed the championship.
Each race winner in the Super Pro, Pro Street, Top Eliminator, Sportsman and Motorcycle classes claimed a “Wally” trophy to commemorate their victory. The trophy is similar to the one given to NHRA national event winners.
“We have worked 15 years to win one and its great”, said Sportsman winner Brian Yerger. “I have tried to win one in all different categories and we finally got it.”
The day ended with the “King of the Track” race to crown an overall track champion. Top Eliminator champion Ashley Strickland defeated Pro Street champion Aimee Najarian in the final. Strickland covered the track in an elapsed time of 4.96 seconds at 135.67 mph.
“To be crowned the first King of the Track is an honor.” Strickland said after taking the win. “We came into today thinking we would win nothing and somehow we won everything.”
It was a championship day for the Stricklands, as both Noah and Ashley won titles in their respective classes.
The pros take to the Bellagio of drag strips Sept. 14-16 for the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Nationals.
Tickets and camping are still available at zMAX Dragway, by calling the Charlotte Motor Speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS (3267).
Connect with zMAX Dragway and stay up to speed with all the happenings at the Bellagio of drag strips on Facebook at www.facebook.com/zmaxdragway and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/zmaxdragway.