NHRA Sportsman at the Winternationals

NHRA Winternationals at Pomona

Cannan, Meziere Score First National Event Victories

Chris Demke and Brian Hough took home big wins to kick off the 2014 NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona and the Circle K NHRA Winternationals. Demke defeated Don St. Arnaud for the Top Alcohol Dragster title and Hough ran down Sean Bellemeur in Top Alcohol Funny Car.

Demke, Tujunga, Calif., qualified No. 1 with a 5.218 second pass at 276.46 mph then clicked off runs of 5.220 in a first round bye, and 5.230 and 5.276 to knock out Megan McKernan, Sierra Madre, Calif., and Casey Grisel, Orangevale, Calif., on his way to the final with St. Arnaud. St. Arnaud, Edmonton, Alberta, came out of the No. 3 position and beat Bruce Litton and Duane Shields in rounds 1 and 2, and had a bye into the final when Larry Miersch hurt his car in round 2 and was unable to make the call for the semifinals.

Demke (near lane) got the early lead in the money round with a .029 second reaction time and never looked back posting a pass of 5.251, 275 mph to St. Arnaud’s 5.328, 276.46.  (Tim Marshall photo)

Hough was looking for his seventh NHRA national event win while Bellemeur was in search of his first.

Anaheim, Calif., resident Bellemeur (near lane) was off the line first with a great .007 reaction time but was not enough as Hough, Junction City, Ore., powered by for the win in 5.571 seconds at 257.83 mph to Bellemeur’s 5.646, 257.78.  (Tim Marshall photo)