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Northwest Nationals Tests Ahten's Mettle

KENT, Wash. (August 12, 2015) – Shinny bits of metal are great when they are jingling in your pocked as coins. They are less desirable when they are inside the block of your racing motor. That’s just what Johnny Ahten had after his first qualifying run at the NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways last weekend. A wrist pin broke near the finish line under power and the number five cylinder became a disaster zone.

“Our 5.474/250.04 in the first session put us in the fourth position, but it was costly,” said Johnny Ahten. “The wrist pin failure meant we had to change motors between rounds, and the thrash was on. When they called Alcohol Funny Cars to the lanes we still had yet to put the magnetos on. Luckily, there was oil down and it gave us time to complete the motor change. The plan was to go to a thousand feet with the backup motor. The run went well with a 5.459/245.23, making me wish I had kept my foot in it. That put us in the number five spot after Friday qualifying. It was a positive sign after the destruction of the first session. ”

For Saturday’s final qualifying session the decision was made to crank it up a bit, and try move up the ladder. The Stump Puller had other ideas, as large clouds of smoke poured from the Goodyear’s at the hit. That put Johnny in the eighth spot and a first round meeting with CleanBoost Oil teammate Garrett Bateman. At... [Read More]
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Towlot.com Joins Randy Meyer Racing for Topeka Regional Race

TOPEKA, Kans. (August 14, 2015) – The two-car A/Fuel Dragster team of Randy Meyer Racing (RMR) has announced a new partnership with Towlot.com. The major associate sponsorship will begin this weekend as RMR competes at the NHRA Lucas Oil Series Central Region event at the team's home track, Heartland Park Topeka.

Towlot.com is an online auction where anyone can buy affordable used cars. When tow companies impound cars that aren't claimed, those cars will eventually be sold at auction. Towlot.com hosts those auctions for tow companies nationwide. The bi-weekly online auctions are open to the public and have no buyer fees or reserves.

“We are proud to welcome Towlot.com to the RMR team this weekend. It is a great opportunity to join with Meyer Truck Center and the towing industry. We are very excited for this opportunity and the future of Randy Meyer Racing and Meyer Truck Center,” said Megan Meyer, the new driver of RMR's second nitro-injected A/Fuel dragster.

Both of the team's A/Fuel cars will be competing this weekend, as well as the RMR Super Comp dragster, driven by Rachel Meyer. Megan is coming off of an impressive runner-up finish at her Top Alcohol Dragster debut race in St. Louis last weekend. Randy is gearing up for the late-season points chase, where he currently sits fifth in NHRA national points.

... [Read More]
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Booher Earns St. Louis Wally for Newborn Daughter

ST. LOUIS (August 11, 2015) – An average stop on the NHRA Lucas Oil Series regional tour turned into a significant occasion for Top Alcohol Dragster pilot Brandon Booher this weekend. Racing at the All-American Hot Rod Showdown at Gateway Motorsports Park, Booher picked up his first event win of 2015 when he defeated A/Fuel rookie Megan Meyer in the final round. It was also Booher's first win since he and wife, Shannon, welcomed their daughter, Adelynn, into the world on July 31st.

“It was great to be back and to get that first win as a dad was pretty special. At the start of the season, before she was born, I promised Adelynn I would get her a Wally. I was hoping I would get it a little sooner, but it's nice that she's actually here to enjoy it. This one will be special,” Booher said of the traditional trophy awarded to NHRA event winners.

Booher qualified fifth in the strong eight-car field with a 5.409 elapsed time. He used a .021 reaction time and 5.427 et to defeat Tripp Tatum and his Anthony Dicero-tuned A/Fueler in the first round, lining up a semifinal match-up with “Miss Mia” Tedesco. Tedesco currently leads the North Central Region points, while Booher is closing in at second. Booher was ready with another quick reaction time and consistent 5.424 lap, easily taking the win over Tedesco's tire-smoking run.

“The second round... [Read More]
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A/Fuel Rookie Megan Meyer Races to Runner-Up Finish at St. Louis

ST. LOUIS (August 10, 2015) – A/Fuel rookie Megan Meyer had high expectations for her Top Alcohol Dragster competition debut at the All-American Hot Rod Showdown NHRA regional event at Gateway Motorsports Park. The second-generation driver qualified safely in the eight-car field and raced to a runner-up finish, competing against and beating some of the toughest cars in the North Central region.

Driving a car built by Chase Copeland and prepared by her father, Randy, Meyer started the weekend with a promising test session on Thursday. The Meyer Truck Center/Smart Chicken team, led by longtime Randy Meyer Racing crew chief Ted Lake, moved on to qualifying on Friday, narrowly avoiding a first-round race with the team car.

“With 11 cars entered for the race, I was a little concerned with how we would qualify since we were stacked up against some of the best Top Alcohol racers. When we smoked the tires during the first session, I was bummed but I knew my crew could turn the car around, and they did for the second session where we ran a quick 5.43. I was hoping I wouldn’t have to run my dad for the first round of eliminations, which we were paired up until he laid down the second-quickest pass of the night with his 5.33. Luckily, I didn’t have to run him as I sat in the sixth spot and he was moved up to second, and I had to face the third... [Read More]
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Top Alcohol Dragster Rookie Megan Meyer Making A/Fuel Debut at St. Louis Regional

ST. LOUIS (August 6, 2015) – After three years of class-specific training, Megan Meyer is finally set to make her NHRA Top Alcohol Dragster competition debut at the St. Louis regional race this weekend. The 22-year-old college student has grown up in the sport and is now following in the footsteps of her father, veteran A/Fuel driver/tuner/owner Randy Meyer. Considering her experience and the world championship-caliber crew behind her, Meyer is poised to make a positive impression on the class.

“Although I am very stoked for my debut in Top Alcohol Dragster, I am also confident I will do well at my first race. It’s not my first time in the car, or in a race. I’ve been drag racing for over 10 years with a Junior Dragster and Super Comp car, and for the past three years I have been training for my first A/Fuel race. I am not scared or nervous of lining up against the defending drivers. I have grown up around everyone who races in the field and I know them all very well. I admire them, and I hope they respect me in return because I am not going to go easy on these guys. I plan to be just as competitive. I may be a rookie in Top Alcohol, but I am a veteran at drag racing,” Meyer noted.

Megan will drive a 2015 Chase Copeland-built A/Fuel dragster that has been prepared by the Randy Meyer Racing crew. Her father's longtime... [Read More]
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Ahten Ready to Bring Some Noise to Seattle

KENT, Wash. (August 6, 2015) – Almost thirty years ago there was a music revolution that came out of the Washington area called the Seattle sound or Grunge It featured a high level of distortion, fuzz and feedback effects. Johnny Ahten and his Island Renovations/Combust Filters A/Fuel dragster are planning on their own unique brand of nitro noise this weekend at the 28th annual NHRA Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways.

“I’m really excited to get back to a national event,” said Johnny Ahten. “We have run well here in the past. In fact, our quickest pass of 2014 was here. We are chipping away at the set up on our new chassis. We are happy with the progress we made at our last race at the Woodburn Regional. “

Johnny will be once again be acting as the clutch guru on the Stump Puller in addition to driving consulting on the tune up with his crew chief father Al Ahten and with racing partner Howard Katano. Crew members Bob Ahten, and Kevin Colvell will be providing the muscle. The Stump Puller will be responsible for creating its own kind of Seattle sound. One thing is for sure, the Northwest Nationals is going to be rockin’ the sounds of Ahten A/Fuel loudness.

Event Schedule (All Times Pacific):
Friday, August 7: Two qualifying sessions at 1:30 & 4:30 pm
Saturday, August 8: One qualifying sessions at 12:00 pm & First round... [Read More]
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Points Leader Chris Demke Bringing Red-Hot Peen Rite TA/D to Seattle

KENT, Wash. (August 6, 2015) – Red-hot NHRA Top Alcohol Dragster pilot Chris Demke is back on the west coast after a dominant Midwest tour, which ended with a total of three race wins in four attempts. Demke, who leads the NHRA Lucas Oil Series national points, is set to compete in the NHRA Northwest Nationals near Seattle, with full knowledge that he'll face competitors and conditions he hasn't seen in months.

“No doubt the last few races have given us great momentum but you can never take it for granted. As we head back west we're going to be facing a whole different set of players, each presenting their own challenges. We're leaving the heat and humidity of the Midwest and heading back to the oxygen-rich Northwest. We traditionally run well at Seattle. I have high expectations for our car's performance, and we're going to need it because we're going to run head-to-head with our strongest competitor, Joey Severance,” noted the Peen Rite-sponsored driver.

“We have that momentum,” Demke added. “Now it's going to be important for our team to continue what we're doing. The points and the championship chase are important, but we never want to lose sight of the fact that we go to the races to have fun.”

The Northwest Nationals is one of the most memorable and successful stops on the tour for Demke and the Peen Rite/Boost... [Read More]
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Hirata, Tedesco Still Looking for More After 3 Finals in 4 Races

Most race teams would consider in three finals in four races to be pretty successful. It is, except the Hirata Motorsports / Tedesco Racing team expect nothing but winning.

"We have brought back a win and two runner-ups. Not bad. The two races we runnered-up at were to last year's world champion, Chris Demke. We got him at one race. To have a chance at a world championship, we have to beat him. We had our chances. We cannot miss those opportunities. It has been a great, friendly rivalry. We need to race the best to be the best.

"We had the distinction of being low e.t, top speed, or both at the last four races, too. But a win is the priority. With the past races we are now #2 in the world and #1 regionally.

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Positive Momentum has Hunter Primed for NHRA Northwest Nationals

KENT, Wash. (August 5, 2015) – Top Alcohol Funny Car driver Greg Hunter is beaming with his usual pre-race optimism as he and the Synoil Energy Services team prepare for the NHRA Northwest Nationals. A recent test session in the team's native Canada has the Geoff Goodwin-owned team re-energized after a sizable break since their last event, a race they won as back-to-back champions.

“We had a pretty good test session in Edmonton after winning the Mission regional race. Testing was successful and gave us a lot of optimism. We're feeling good about Seattle,” said Hunter, a Northwest native.

The test session, held during the IHRA Nitro Jam Rocky Mountain Nationals, couldn't have happened at a better time, as it turned out. While the Synoil team was using the opportunity to gain more experience with Goodyear slicks, they also caught an unfortunate parts failure.

“We actually broke some parts at the test session, which is never good, but we were glad it happened then instead of during Seattle. We were so happy that we came out and had that happen then, because it would've been a real downer to suffer a parts failure at the Northwest Nationals. We broke the rear-end and the crew did just an amazing job. They changed it out in less than an hour. Everybody worked spectacularly together and I feel like we have some momentum. We... [Read More]
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Demke Goes "Old-School" to Win Back to Back at Columbus

HEBRON, Ohio (July 29, 2015) – An “old-school” tuning strategy paid off for Chris Demke and the Peen Rite/Boost Performance Products Top Alcohol Dragster team last weekend. Racing on a hot, tricky surface at National Trail Raceway, Demke defeated three of the hottest A/Fuel dragsters in the Midwest despite a broken data recorder. He scored his second NHRA Lucas Oil Series regional event win of his national championship defense season to maintain his position as national points leader.

“It was a tough weekend,” Demke admitted. “The track surface was over 120 degrees through qualifying – very slick conditions and our car shook the tires every round of qualifying. We tried everything and just couldn't get a handle on it. We actually had to go so far out of our tuning window that we had to pull out our log book from 2006 to find a tune-up for the conditions. We went old-school.”

Adding to the weekend's old-school theme was the lack of data. The car's on-board data recorder shut off upon launch during the second qualifying session. The team was unable to fix the recorder, so they resorted to manually noting as much as possible. The crew read the spark plugs after each run and attached a GoPro camera to the car to keep an eye on wheelspeed.

“I'm just amazed that we were able to get the car to perform as it did. The end results don't... [Read More]
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