Norwalk, Ohio - Even though the weather didn't fully cooperate, it was a good outing for Duane Shields and the PEAK Team. They did everything right but lost a very close nail-biter in the second round of eliminations at the 12th annual Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals. “It was a rain plagued race which always effects the race teams and makes the event a guessing game” Duane noted.

Duane qualified fifth with a respectable 5.31@ 276 MPH. This set up a showdown between Duane in the PEAK Dragster and Corey Michalek. At the hit, Michalek pulled off an impressive 0.010 reaction time to Duane’s 0.037. Unfortunately for Michalek, his great reaction time was all for nothing as he immediately lost traction right off of the starting line. Meanwhile, Duane was on a clean pass and stopped the clock with a 5.33 at 272 MPH for the win.

In the quarterfinals, Duane took on Troy Coughlin Jr. This race turned out to be one for the highlight reel. At the startingline, Duane was out of the gate first with an 0.059 to Coughlin’s 0.077. Both cars were side by side with Duane slightly ahead by mid track. Then, Coughlin was able to overpower Duane and command the lead. At the finish line Coughlin held on by inches, taking the narrow win with a 5.28 at 276 MPH to Duane’s very close 5.32 at 275 MPH. “They had good MPH at half track and I think that was the race. It’s disappointing to see them slow down in the next round after they had their best run against me” Duane said.

Next weekend the team heads to Lebanon Valley Dragway in New York. If you are in the Northeast, this will be your chance to see the nitro fueled dragsters up close and personal. “The car is running great and my driving is good so we’ll roll into New York expecting to do well” Duane said. The race team would like to thank PEAK Antifreeze and Motor Oil, Final Charge, Blue Def, NGK, GRP and Brad Anderson Enterprises for their support.
NORWALK, Ohio (June 24) -- NORWALK, Ohio (June 24) -- Troy Coughlin Jr. drove his JEGS.com McPhillips Racing Top Alcohol Dragster to a runner-up finish Sunday, leading the Team JEGS effort in their home state of Ohio. Troy Jr.'s uncle, six-time world champion Jeg Coughlin Jr., reached the second round before falling to teammate Erica Enders, ending a three-race winning streak for the 79-time national event winner.

A winner at this facility one month ago during a divisional race, Troy Jr. almost repeated the feat but ultimately fell to Megan Meyer by a thousandth of a second. Troy Jr. was up for the race, peeling off a stellar .027-second reaction time, well ahead of Meyer's lazy .075-second start, but Meyer managed to make up the deficit and win with a 5.320 at 277.94 mph to Troy Jr.'s 5.369 at 275.67 mph. The margin of victory was six inches.
"I desperately wanted to win another race in my home state of Ohio," Troy Jr. said. "We got very close but credit to that Meyer team, they were strong all weekend. I wanted to do all I could to help my guys in the final and I'm pleased to have made a race out of it. I actually thought we had it won but she must have nipped us right at the line. Good race.

"Thank you so much to everyone here who gave us so much support all weekend long. The JEGS brand is strong here and we appreciate our loyal customers and fans. I also want to thank Steve and Samantha Bryson at Global Electronic Technology for their support. I'm humbled by the hard work put in by the crew at McPhillips Racing. I could not be on a better team. We'll get 'em, next time."

In reaching his second final of the year, Troy Jr. beat Jeff Chatterson, Duane Shields and Todd Bruce....
NORWALK, Ohio (June 21) -- Shane Conway has never driven a racecar down Summit Motorsports Park so he's looking at this weekend's NHRA National event as the perfect place for a fresh start in his Magic Dry/CatSpot Organic Cat Litter Top Alcohol Dragster.

"I like Norwalk, I just haven't raced a car there myself," said Conway, who hails from Spring, Texas. "I've been there as a crew chief and I've been there as a crewman, just not as a driver. I was crew chief on Mike Manner's team when he won Norwalk in 2010 and now he's a sponsor on our car with his company, Anglia Homes, so that's kind of cool.

"My dad (vaunted drag racer Tom Conway) had a huge win in Norwalk in 2008. He actually hadn't driven a car in like 11 years and had the urge to drive again so he returned at Norwalk and won the race. Funny thing is, he won't be here this weekend. He's actually going to the drag boat race in San Angelo (Texas)."

Just like his young career -- he won his first-ever Top Alcohol Dragster race in Noble, Okla., last year -- Conway's season started off great with a No. 1 qualifying effort at the Dallas regionals. But in his four races to date, he's only won a single round of eliminations.

"I should have retired after Noble," Conway said with a hearty laugh. "I could have saved us all a lot of time, money and frustration. But there's no doubt it's a lot of fun to drive this Magic Dry/CatSpot Dragster.

"We've been struggling with the heat. We've used a lot of passes to scuff tires for the two CatSpot Top Fuel dragsters (driven by Scott Palmer and Dom Lagana) and the two CAPCO Top Fuel dragsters (driven by Steve and Billy Torrence) and we're having issues getting them to work for us with
any consistency.

"The CAPCO guys like them back after one run and Scott likes them back after two runs and it's been hard for us to get a good combination and tune up with a different tire pretty much every round. We can do it, for sure, we just have to keep working at it to figure out what...
The Randy Meyer Racing Team has been racing at Tulsa Raceway Park for decades but has had a wide range of success at the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event held at the track in June. Last year, driver Megan Meyer earned a Runner-Up finish to James Stevens, ending her streak of a perfect 5-race win record.

This year, Megan and her sister, Rachel Meyer, who was driving the team’s second A/Fuel Dragster, dominated the field. The girls were the only females competing in the 8-car field and were very successful taking down the boys. Megan and Rachel qualified first and second with a 5.22 ET and 5.25 ET respectively, running over a tenth of a second ahead of the competition.

After defeating Terry Schmidt and Dean Dubbin in first round, Megan and Rachel both won in the semi-finals against Gary Cooper and Spencer Massey. Megan had the faster time to get lane choice over Rachel, which set up the Meyer Sisters for the first time to race each other in the nitro-injected machines. This is only the third time in history that both Randy Meyer Racing dragsters have faced-off in the final round.

Megan staged deep and got out of the gate first to hold off Rachel for the holeshot win. Megan ran a 5.29 ET at 282 MPH, and Rachel’s 5.28 ET at 276 MPH was only .007 of a second crossing the finish line second.

“This race in the final round was the most fun, yet most intense, race I’ve ever had,” said Megan. “I have always wanted to race against my sister in the Top Alcohol Dragsters, and it couldn’t have come at a better time. We both gave it our all and had one of the closest drag races I’ve ever seen. My dad and our guys worked hard in the heat to give us the best race cars and I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect birthday weekend.”

With this win, Megan takes over the points lead for the Central Region of the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series. The next event for the Meyer Sisters will be on July 27-28 in Topeka, Kansas where Rachel hopes to get redemption against her...
I will be addressing the state of Top Alcohol on Facebook Live this Thursday at 7 p.m. CST at the InsideTopAlcohol Facebook page -

http://Facebook.com/insidetopalcohol

Items to be discussed will be:
  • Health of the Top Alcohol classes
  • Regional & National Points structure
  • Future of "Regional" events
  • Proposal of new "Pro Comp" class
  • Discussion to follow
Once completed I will post it to YouTube and on here for those of you who aren't on Facebook. If you aren't on Facebook, this might be a good time to join, or at least watch on your wife's account.

Hope to see you there!
Chicago - Duane Shields and the PEAK A/Fuel Dragster team went down swinging in the quarterfinal round of the Route 66 NHRA Nationals. The national points leader going into Chicago lost a heartbreaker to Chris Demke. It was one of those races where one contestant would have to lose regardless of how well the car ran. Duane qualified third with a respectable 5.24 at 276 MPH. “We ran really well so we’re happy with our performance. And it was PEAK’s hometown race so overall it was an enjoyable weekend” Duane said summing up the event.

In round one, Duane faced Kim Parker who has been impressive since switching to an A/Fuel dragster so it was anyone’s race. As both cars completed their burnout Parker was unable to get the car in reverse and wisely drove it down the track allowing Duane to solo for a first round win. Duane demonstrated he brought his A game and ran a stellar 5.25 at 278 MPH to advance to round two. “They are known to step up and run some big numbers so we were ready for them. It was too bad she broke because it would have been a great race.” Duane explained.

Going into round two Duane met up with fellow west coast powerhouse Chris Demke in the Peen Rite entry. Demke was a little off his game in round one, posting an elapse time of 5.51, so the PEAK team had a good chance of taking the win if Demke wasn’t able to improve from the prior round. As the cars left the line, Demke got the edge at the starting line with a .028 to Duane’s .064. Both cars were side by side with the PEAK Dragster closing the gap. Unfortunately for Duane, Demke was able to take the stripe by a distance of only 16 feet, which is less that a car length. Demke took the win with a 5.27 at 277 MPH to Duane’s valiant 5.27 at 278 MPH. “Chris stepped up when he had too and ran his best ET and reaction time against me so that is that. We’ll go to the next race confident that we are competitive and can win.

The PEAK team will take a quick break and then return to NHRA national...
Reading PA - Duane Shields in the PEAK A/Fuel Dragster won his second NHRA Lucas Oil Regional event of the season. This time the win came at Maple Grove Raceway over the memorial day weekend where he beat Doug Foley in the final round.

The win was much needed after an unscheduled stop in Norwalk, Ohio the week prior where the team experienced a first round defeat. “We decided to go into Reading a day early and test which paid off for us as we were able to rebound” Duane said. The PEAK team found the results they were looking for in testing as they ran an impressive 5.21 at 278 MPH. But the team fell off slightly due to an electrical problem in qualifying and ended up sixth with a 5.35 at 273 MPH.

In round one, Duane took on Richard Bourke. Unfortunately, there was a problem with the track’s staging lights so the cars were allowed to cool down and refuel before returning to the starting line once the issue was resolved. At the hit, Duane was out of the box first with an .068 to Bourke’s .102. That was all it took as Duane had Bourke covered by a country mile with a victorious 5.41 at 271 MPH to Bourke’s 5.51 at 257 MPH.

In the semi-final round, Duane took on Jackie Fricke. Both cars left nearly at the same time with Fricke getting a very slight edge. However, Duane was on a very good pass and clicked off a competitive 5.27 at 274 MPH to take the win over Fricke’s honorable 5.32 at 268 MPH. “This was a big match up for us as Jackie was leading the points going into the round. We were able to make up a lot of ground by getting the win in the semis” Duane said.

In the final round, Duane faced off with former Top Fuel pilot Doug Foley. As the lights came down, Duane left on Foley with an .074 to Foley’s .080. Duane was on another clean pass and took the stripe with a sizzling 5.25 at 275 MPH to take home the Wally. Meanwhile, Foley had traction problems and shut off early with a 7.62 at 113 MPH. “We tuned the car up in the finals to...
NORWALK, Ohio (May 20) -- Only a few races into his Top Alcohol Dragster career, Troy Coughlin Jr. drove the JEGS.com McPhillips Racing rail to the winner's circle by dominating the Cavalcade of Stars presented by Budweiser Sunday in what was clearly the best car of the meet.

"Winning this race in this car with this team, right here in the great state of Ohio at this track, it just doesn't get any better," Coughlin said. "To be the No. 1 qualifier and convert that into a race win is very satisfying. I've known from the start this McPhillips Racing team was capable of winning and dominating like this and to have it come together after just a handful of starts says a lot about this tenacious crew."

It's the 13th victory for the Delaware, Ohio native but his first in the Top Alcohol Dragster class. He's previously won races in Super Comp, Super Gas and Super Pro, and also has competed in Top Fuel and Pro Mod, where he was rookie of the year in 2015.

"Rich McPhillips and his son Rich Jr. are phenomenal tuners," Coughlin said. "My crew guys, Duke Roney, Andy Good and Charlie Wrotten on the dragster and Justin Beaver on my other racecars, they are all top-notch mechanics. My dad (three-time and reigning Pro Mod champ Troy Coughlin) and my fiancé Brenna (ford8and9inchrears.com."

Troy Jr. qualified No. 1 with a best pass of 5.303 seconds at 276.52 mph and beat John Paul Gutierrez, Mike Kosky and Brandon Greco to score the trophy.

Although they ended the day in the winner's circle celebrating Troy Jr.'s amazing day, Mike and Paige both exited in Round 1 at the same event, Mike in Top Dragster and Paige in Super Comp.

At...
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Female Top Alcohol Dragster and Funny Car racing stars Megan Meyer and Annie Whiteley shared the winner’s stage to highlight the list of champions at the NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals. Megan, the daughter of championship tuner Randy Meyer, collected her third national event win in the last three years, earning her first one at zMAX Dragway in 2016.

Megan won her first NHRA National event of 2018 by beating chassis builder Dan Page in the final round, 5.192 to 5.250. Megan, who was also the low qualifier with an impressive 5.168 ET, 283.73 MPH blast, was solidly in the 5.2s through the first three rounds in her wins against Krista Baldwin, Duane Shields, and first-year alcohol racer Troy Coughlin Jr.

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Photo: NHRA

Megan went on to also hold low qualifier, low ET and top speed of the meet at the following race at Atlanta Dragway with a 5.22 ET at 277 MPH. Megan got a single run in the opening round of eliminations as Dan Lucas broke after the burnout, followed by a competition bye in second round. Megan once again took down Dan Page in the semi-finals, but ultimately lost to Josh Hart in the final round of the NHRA Southern Nationals.

Megan went on to also hold low qualifier, low ET and top speed of the meet at the following race at Atlanta Dragway with a 5.22 ET at 277 MPH. Megan got a single run in the opening round of eliminations as Dan Lucas broke after the burnout, followed by a competition bye in second round. Megan once again took down Dan Page in the semi-finals, but ultimately lost to Josh Hart in the final round of the NHRA Southern Nationals.
Atlanta - Duane Shields and the PEAK Team didn’t have the outing in Atlanta they were hoping for. It turned out to be a rare, off pace weekend for the popular A/Fuel Dragster team. On Saturday, there was a tragic accident during the first round of the Top Sportsman class which understandably cast a pall over the remainder of the event.

Duane qualified tenth over all with a 5.41 at 267 MPH. In round one, Duane lost a very close race to Dan Page. Page won the round with a 5.30 at 271 MPH to Duane’s valiant 5.34 at 272 MPH. “It was a difficult weekend for us but congratulations to my PEAK teammate Jay Payne for winning in the Top Alcohol Funny Car class” Duane said.

Next, the PEAK team moves up the East Coast to Maple Grove Raceway in Reading, Pennsylvania for an NHRA regional event, May 25-27. The PEAK team would like to give their condolences to the family of Randy Alexander who was involved in the crash on Saturday. The team would also like to thank PEAK Antifreeze and Motor Oil, Final Charge, Blue Def, NGK, GRP and Brad Anderson Enterprises for their continued support.