The season opener in Bradenton is the undisputed biggest race of the NMRA racing season.  It is where 2010 records fall and new cars are unveiled. Also, this is the place that sets the tone for who will be on top in 2011.  Nearly all the records in every class were broken last year – will it happen again?  Stay tuned all weekend as we bring you updates from the first race of the 2011 NMRA racing season.

Special thanks to our event sponsor SCT Performance.  Check out their great line of tuning products at

I woke up this morning to a wet ground, but luckily it was not raining. It looks like we might be clear of the rain for the rest of the day and the crew almost has the track prepped and ready for racing.

At about 11am all the heads up cars started rolling out of their trailors and getting ready for the first round of eliminations today!

Sunday’s First Round of Eliminations

Despite Mitchell’s brief tire spin off the line, he was able to beat Renegade newcomer Bryan Muth on a hole-shot victory with a 8.902 @ 156.44 to Muth's 8.882 @ 150.75.

Chris Van Gilder showed A.J.Wyce why he wears the number one on the window with a 9.184 @ 136.59 to Wyce’s 9.787 @ 142.81. Bart Tobner would take a bye into the semis.

Jimmy Wilson took the Pure Street semi final victory over Kris Clark with a 10.225 @ 132.23 over Clark’s 12.196 @ 109.48. Brandon Alsept took the bye to the finals against Wilson

A little starting line wheel spin and being late on the tree was all it took for John Leslie to loose against Rick Walsh in Factory Stock. Walsh would narrowly beat Leslie at the stripe with a holeshot 11.413 @ 117.52 to a 11.401 @ 119.63

Brian Campell would take the win over Chris Creadeur with a 11.549 @ 118.96 to Chris’ 12.305 @ 115.88. Carlos Sobrino would take a bye to the finals

Only two cars showed up for Real Street and those were veterans Bruce Hemminger and Tim Matherly. In the end, it would be Hemminger with the 9.414 @ 143.10 mph win as Matherly had problems getting the car into fourth gear.

Enzo Pecchini would still have starting line problems but would still have what it takes to run down Andy Manson with a 7.802 to Manson’s 7.832

Jason Lee was able to keep the wheels down against Daniel Pachar and run a respectable 7.654 @ 180.43 to Pachar’s lifting 8.894. Sean Lyon got the bye into the semis.

Don Bowles had a hard time getting his car in reverse and had to be pushed back to the line to pair up against Charlie Booze, who took the win with a 8.548 @ 152.69 to Bowles’ 8.692 @ 154.32

Timmy Eichhorn took a solo hit into the semis since Fred Ferrante did not make the call. Robbie Blankenship would still have problems with wheel spin off the line and would loose to Jared Johnston with a 8.785 @ 154.98 to Blankenship’s 9.081 @ 153.55

Another guy that is having new engine blues is Johnny Mac. He would get defeated by Phil Hines with a 7.600 @ 185 to Mac’s 8.073 @ 153.97. John Urist would run a 7.47 on a bye.

While Chris Tuten shocked the crowd Friday with his record breaking pass, he has been having a hard time putting down a fast past sense. Kenjo Kelly would take out Tuten in the first Sunday round of SSO with a 7.444 @ 191.65 to Tuten’s lifting pass.

Semis and Finals

Due to Dwyane James' engine mishap during qualifying yesterday, it was down to Tim Essick and Conrad Scarry in the finals of Pro Outlaw 10.5W. Conrad's Mustang would leave really lazy while Tim Essick went up in smoke at the 60 foot mark. Essick would have time to regain the car before Scarry would get completely power and take the victory with a 7.562 @ 201.43

Kenjo Kelly would face champion John Urist in the semi final round of SSO. Urist would strike the tires, tried to regain, but then got too far out of the groove, prompting a shut off. Kelly would make a straight blast out the back door to a winning 7.640 @ 188.04. Phil Hines would take a bye run to the finals

Kenjo Kelley would take the win over Phil Hines, who spun the wheels off the line. Kelley won with a 7.579 @ 189.99 over Hines' 7.803 @ 186.29

It would be a great side by side race for the semi final match up between Chris Van Gilder and Bart Tobner for the final round match with Brian Mitchell - Tobner would come up on top with a 8.574 to a 8.766. In the finals, it would be Mitchell with the win over a spinning Tobner.

It would be a classic drag radial battle of Sean Lyon versus Enzo Pecchini to choose who raced Jason Lee in the final. It would be Lyon with the win on a 7.630 to a 7.730. In the finals Lyon would be too early on the tree and Lee would have to ride out yet another wheel stand to take win with a lifting 11.364

Tim Eichhorn would square off against Jared Johnston in a Hot Street semi final duel. Though Johnston was quicker on the tree with a .006 light, Eichhorn would have the power to nudge out Johnston with a 8.621 to a 8.764. In the final Eichhorn would be too quick on the tree and hand the final round win over to Charlie Booze with a quick 8.494 pass.

Wheels up Brandon Alsept took home the win against hard hitter Jimmy Wilson in the finals of Pure Street. Alsept would net a 10.155 @ 131.36 and Wilson a 10.405 @ 131.77 at the stripe.

Carlos Sobrino continued his dominance in Factory Stock with a win over Brian Campbell in the semi final round with a 11.159 to a 11.557. Carlos followed up with a final round victory against Rick Walsh with a 11.013 to a 11.375

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