Gallen blasts to new Funny Car record in front of capacity crowd
Nitro Jam Media
Jul 16, 2011
Peter Gallen 1, Tim Boychuk 0.
In a showdown that was billed as a battle of the fastest between Pennsylvania’s Peter Gallen and Alberta’s Tim Boychuk, it was all Gallen on Saturday as the driver of the “Poverty Stricken” 1974 Vega Prostalgia Nitro Funny Car blasted to a potential world record and a win in front of a capacity crowd at the Mopar Nitro Jam Nationals at the Grand Bend Motorplex in Ontario.
Gallen put a blistering 5.707 elapsed time on the charts at 247.25 miles per hour to pick up the win, his sixth of the season to wrap up a wild and crazy evening of racing in front of one of the biggest crowds in recent Grand Bend history.
“We felt like we had something to prove. We wanted to go out there and win this thing,” Gallen said. “To do that, we knew we had to run some pretty quick numbers and thankfully we were able to do that. The last time I raced Tim we didn’t get to race him in the final and we really wanted to go up against that team with a win on the line.
“It felt great from the start to finish. Hopefully we can do this all over again tomorrow and actually take the record back home with us.”
Now all Gallen has to do is back up his time with a similar number on Sunday and the new record will be his and his alone.
Other winners from the opening day of the Mopar Nitro Jam Nationals at the Grand Bend Motorplex included Bobby Lagana in Top Fuel, Tom Padilla in Nostalgia Fuel Altered and Steve Dorn in Nitro Harley. In other action Eric Latino topped the charts in the Pro Mod Invitational, while top qualifiers in the sportsman ranks included Kim Dineen (Top Sportsman), Rick Kopp (Top Dragster), Ollie Stephen (Super Stock), Briane Philbrick (Stock), Leo Zynda (Quick Rod), Charlie Kenopic (Super Rod) and Doug Wood (Hot Rod).
Mike McIntire - Photo courtesy of Dale Boeru / Canadian Drag Racer Magazine
Lagana came one step closer to winning his second straight Nitro Jam Top Fuel championship on Saturday with his 10th victory of the year over Litton. Lagana needs only to start Sunday’s professional rounds to wrap up the title.
Behind the wheel of the Lucas Oil-sponsored Top Fuel machine, Lagana laid down two very quick laps on Saturday, one in the heat of the day and the other under the lights, to pick up his third Ironman trophy in a row. In the final Lagana ran a 4.882, 306.74, almost identical to his round one numbers, to get around Litton who rattled the tires and pedaled the car before shutting it off near half track.
In round one Lagana recorded a 4.872, 307.51 in a win over Todd Paton, while Litton advanced to the final via a 4.948, 299.66 in a win over Kyle Wurtzel. In the consolation pairing Wurtzel produced his best career numbers in a Top Fuel machine to defeat Paton.
While Gallen took home the Ironman in Funny Car, it was actually Boychuk who had lane choice in the final thanks to the quickest pass in round, but that number couldn’t help Boychuk in the final as he ran a 5.899, 231.40, a solid number but still a considerable distance from Gallen’s record pace.
Gallen advanced to the final with a 5.975, 239.06 in a round one win over Greg Jacobsmeyer, while Boychuk recorded a 5.897, 233.12.
The great final wrapped up a wild opening evening of Funny Car action as two separate incidents marred an otherwise smooth first round. The first incident involved nitro veteran Rick Krafft who was transported to a local medical center following a mechanical failure just after launch in the “Chicago Fire” Corvette, while the other involved Mike McIntire who slammed the wall in the “McAttack” Camaro a few hundred feet into his run, sending the car several feet in the air before slamming back to earth. McIntire was treated and released following the accident.
While Krafft and McIntire were unable to continue, the consolation rounds saw former champion Laurie Cannister return to form in a win over John Dunn and Nitro Jam newcomer Troy Martin in the “Chi-Town Hustler” defeated Greg Jacobsmeyer.
An equally wild evening of racing was produced in the nostalgia Fuel Altered ranks as timing blocks were sent flying and cars rarely finished in their own lanes, typical of the wild behavior of these nitro-burning nostalgia machines.
Despite all the chaos, Tom Padilla managed to come away with the win behind the wheel of “Nasty Benjamin” with a 6.410, 194.88 in the final to defeat Jason Richey in “Pure Hell.” Richey ran a 7.473, 215.31 in the runner-up effort.
In the consolation pairing Jim Maroney defeated cousin Ron Maroney after both drivers failed to finish round one in their own lanes. Both cars wiggled and wobbled down the track in their first passes of the evening, with Jim Maroney finishing in the wrong lane and Ron Maroney sending timing blocks flying.
Finally, Steve Dorn claimed the win in Nitro Harley defeating Nitro Jam newcomer and Canadian Mike Pelrine. Pelrine had problems on the launch and was never a factor as Dorn cruised down Broadway with a 6.523, 209.36 in the victory, his series-tying fourth of the year.
In the consolation round Randal Andras defeated Jay Turner.
Racing will continue at the Mopar Nitro Jam Nationals at the Grand Bend Motorplex on Sunday with more nitro racing and the finals of the sportsman cars. Gates open at 8 a.m. with sportsman racing set to get underway at 9 a.m. followed by FanFest at noon and two rounds of Nitro Jam beginning at 1 p.m.
GRAND BEND, Ont. -- Saturday's final results from the Mopar Nitro Jam Nationals at Grand Bend Motorplex. The race is the eighth of nine in the 2011 Nitro Jam Series:
TOP FUEL DRAGSTER DAY ONE
Bobby Lagana Jr., Scarsdale, N.Y., 4.882 seconds, 306.74 mph def. Bruce Litton, Indianapolis, Ind., 7.955 seconds, 106.55 mph.
PROSTALGIA FUNNY CAR DAY ONE
Peter Gallen, Broomall, Pa., '74 Vega, 5.707, 247.25 def. Tim Boychuk, Edmonton, Alb., '77 Firebird, 5.899, 231.40.
FUEL ALTERED DAY ONE
Tom Padilla, Arlington, Wash., '23 roadster, 6.410, 194.88 def. Jason Richey, Pleasonton, Calif., '32 Bantam, 7.473, 215.31.
NITRO HARLEY DAY ONE
Steve Dorn, Milwaukie, Ore., 6.523, 209.36 def. Mike Pelrine, Bruderheim, Alb., 10.478, 159.31.
GRAND BEND, Ont. -- Final round-by-round results from the Mopar Nitro Jam Nationals at Grand Bend Motorplex, the eighth of 10 events in the 2011 Nitro Jam Series:
TOP FUEL DRAGSTER DAY ONE:
ROUND ONE -- Bruce Litton, 4.948, 299.66 def. Kyle Wurtzel, 5.431, 205.54; Bobby Lagana Jr., 4.872, 307.51 def. Todd Paton, 6.734, 127.10;
CONSOLATION -- K. Wurtzel, 5.095, 281.42 def. T. Paton, 7.767, 98.77;
FINAL -- B. Lagana Jr., 4.882, 306.74 def. B. Litton, 7.955, 106.55.
PROSTALGIA FUNNY CAR DAY ONE:
ROUND ONE -- Laurie Cannister, Pontiav Trans Am, 6.128, 201.73 def. Troy Martin, 6.148, 225.30; Tim Boychuk, Pontiac Firebird, 5.897, 233.12 def. Rick Krafft, Chevy Corvette, broke; Peter Gallen, Chevy Vega, 5.975, 239.06 def. Greg Jacobsmeyer, Dodge Challenger, 6.210, 221.56; John Dunn, Plymouth Duster, 14.774, 86.19 def. Mike McIntire, Chevy Camaro, DQ;
CONSOLATION -- T. Martin, 6.155, 225.33 def. G. Jacobsmeyer, broke; L. Cannister, 6.324, 204.66 def. J. Dunn, 11.916, 89.95;
FINAL -- P. Gallen, 5.707, 247.25 def. T. Boychuk, 5.899, 231.40.
NITRO HARLEY DAY ONE:
ROUND ONE -- Mike Pelrine, 8.432, 121.50 def. Jay Turner, 10.077, 157.36; Steve Dorn, 6.580, 187.91 def. Randal Andras, 9.701, 179.33;
CONSOLATION -- R. Andras, 8.444, 197.68 def. J. Turner, 8.486, 197.08;
FINAL -- S. Dorn, 6.523, 209.36 def. M. Pelrine, 10.478, 159.31.
FUEL ALTERED DAY ONE:
ROUND ONE -- Jason Richey, Bantam, 6.243, 236.05 def. Jim Maroney, Bantam, DQ; Tom Padilla, '-T Ford, 6.209, 213.91 def. Ron W. Maroney, '-T Ford, DQ;
CONSOLATION -- J. Maroney, 6.402, 208.49 def. R. Maroney, foul;
FINAL -- T. Padilla, 6.410, 194.88 def. J. Richey, 7.473, 215.31.