Atco takes NHRA Northeastern Division team title

Atco Raceway captured the team championship and four racers are headed to the NHRA Summit Racing Series National Championship with victories at the NHRA Northeast Division Summit Racing Series Finals.

The team from Atco Raceway racked up 60 points in topping the team standing and bettering Old Bridge Township Raceway Park and Maple Grove Raceway, who finished second and third with 56 and 44 points respectively.

Stephen Sisko led the team from Atco taking the win in Super Pro over Brian Kunkowski, Laurel, Del. The pair left the line together but Sisko was better at the stripe posting a 7.612-second lap on his 7.61 dial for a .015-second package, good enough for the win and the trophy. Kunkowski clocked in at 7.109, 191 mph in his dragster.

In Pro it was Sean Steffey, Reading, Pa., running for Maple Grove Raceway who drove his ’72 Demon to a 10.412 (10.41 dial) to knock out Rick Mattiolli, Middlesex, N.J. Mattiolli left early with a red light foul start in his ’67 Camaro.

Scott Smith was red hot on the tree all day posting a pair of perfect reaction times, including one in the final, along with a .002 in round 5 and a .007 in his third round win. Smith crossed the finish line in 11.769 at 112.81 mph in his ’80 Malibu to end Michael Barbone’s day out of East Hanover, N.J., in his ’70 El Camino.

In the Bike/Sled class it was Dale Hamilton, Mount Airy, Md., advancing to his second final round in two days and hoping to close the deal on David Ferguson, Newburgh, N.Y. But Ferguson would have nothing to do with it taking the win by about six feet, posting a 9.773 on his 9.77 dial for a .026 second package at 129.53 mph on his ’95 Arcticat sled.

Hamilton also advanced to the final in Friday’s Race of Champions competition that pits the top point earners from each track in a special elimination shootout. Hamilton faced off with Derek Cesair, Southampton, Pa., who took the starting line advantage and held on to defeat Hamilton crossing the finish line in 8.439 seconds at 144.23 mph to Hamilton’s 9.637, 143.44

Sisko, Steffey, Smith, and Ferguson all advance to the NHRA Summit Racing Series National Championship in Pomona, Calif., where they will meet up with the champions from the other NHRA six divisions at the Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals in November at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona.

FINAL TEAM POINTS
1. Atco Dragway 60
2. Old Bridge Twp Raceway Park 56
3. Maple Grove Raceway 44
4. Mason Dixon Dragway 42
5. Numidia Dragway 41
6. US 13 Dragway 35
7. Lebanon Valley Dragway 28
8. New England Dragway 28
9. Island Dragway 23
10. South Mountain 20
11. Spencer Speedway 19
12. Esta Dragway 19
13. Cecil County 18
14. Team Canada 8

SUPER PRO: Stephen Sisko, Atco, N.J., dragster, 7.612, 170.61 def. Brian Kunkowski, Laurel, Del., dragster, 7.109, 191.00.

PRO ET: Sean Steffey, Reading, Pa., ’72 Demon, 10.412, 127.24 def. Rick Mattiolli, Middlesex, N.J., ’67 Camaro, foul.

STREET: Scott Smith, Birdsboro, Pa., ’80 Malibu, 11.769, 112.81 def. Michael Barbone, East Hanover, N.J., ’70 El Camino, foul.

BIKE/SLED: David Ferguson, Newburgh, N.Y., ’95 Arcticat, 9.773, 129.53 def. Dale Hamilton, Mount Airy, Md., dragster, 9.662, 137.90.

HIGH SCHOOL: J.T Schaeffer, Lancaster, Pa., ’92 S-10, 12.140, 106.79 def. Nelson Belot, Dalton, Mass., ’62 Valiant, 12.997, 100.15.

RACE OF CHAMPIONS
SUPER PRO: Howie Smith, Cicero, N.Y., dragster, 7.066, 177.97 def. Johnny Gulliford, Iselin, N.J., dragster, 7.644, 170.35.

PRO ET: Steve Dunn, Pottstown, Pa., ’79 Corvette, 9.287, 145.89 def. Bob Mullaney, Rockaway, N.J., dragster, 9.476, 135.93.

STREET: David Harvey, Atco, N.J., dragster, 11.627, 110.11 def. Garrett Suders, Keymar, Md., dragster, 11.571, 114.92.

BIKE/SLED: Derek Cesari, Southampton, Pa., dragster, 8.439, 144.23 def. Dale Hamilton, Mount Airy, Md., dragster, 9.637, 143.44.