Versatile Douglas Horne sucked all the drama out of the Top Fuel and Pro Fuel points races this year with a dominating performance unlike any other in the long history of the All-Harley Drag Racing Association (AHDRA) Series.
Nevertheless, the man who will reign next year as champion of both of the AHDRA’s featured categories won’t be without incentive this week when he returns to Rockingham Dragway for the Jim McClure Nitro Nationals presented by the Carolina Harley-Davidson Dealers Association.
For one thing, the 23-year-old sensation will be trying to extend his unbeaten record at The Rock in Pro Fuel. Moreover, he’ll be trying to win the Top Fuel title at the Carolina track for the very first time after two straight runner-up finishes.
How dominant has Horne been this year? Well, he’s the only rider to have won more than once in either Top Fuel or Pro Fuel. He’s won five of nine races in Top Fuel; seven of nine in Pro Fuel. As a result, he rolls into the Jim McClure Nationals having almost doubled the point totals of his nearest rivals in both classes.
Not that the Aberdeen, Md., rider won’t face challenges particularly from defending Top Fuel champion and former AHDRA and IHRA series champion Jay Turner of Julian, N.C. Although he’s only eighth in season points, Turner never can be discounted at his home track where he also won AHDRA races in 2005 and 2006.
In addition to Turner, the Top Fuel field also is expected to include spring Rockingham winner Steve Dorn of Milwaukee, Ore., 2008 McClure winner Joey Sternotti of West Collingswood Heights, N.J., Larry “Drums” Braccacio of Nutley, N.J., and Pfafftown’s Tommy Grimes astride the Harley out of the Raleigh dealership owned by Harley Hall-of-Famer Ray Price.
While the Top Fuel and Pro Fuel titles no longer are in play, battles for other series titles will continue this week with Lee Hitz of Annville, Pa., Scott Truett of Wichita, Kan., Bruce Croneberger III of Cressona, Pa., and Shaun Reno of Hayes, Va., trying to hold on in the Pro Gas, Pro Drag, Pro Modified and Pro Stock, respectively.
Following a Harley-specific 3 p.m.-to-8 p.m. test-and-tune session on Friday, racing will begin Saturday with pro qualifying at 11 a.m. followed Saturday night by the third annual “King of the Rock” gamblers race and a live music show for ticketed spectators and racers featuring the Peace Pipe Band. Single elimination racing begins Sunday at 12 noon.
Weekend adult admission to the Jim McClure Nitro Nationals is $50. Daily admission is $30 including pit access. Children under 12 are free when accompanied by a ticketed adult and parking in Rockingham’s main lot is free. Admission also is free to active and reserve military personnel with proper identification.
Discount tickets are available through Davis Harley-Davidson in Burlington, Ray Price Harley-Davidson in Raleigh, Crossroads Harley-Davidson in Wilkesboro, Cape Fear Harley-Davidson in Fayetteville, Cox’s Harley-Davidson in Asheboro, Pat Rogers Speedway Harley-Davidson in Concord and Tilley’s Harley-Davidson in Statesville.
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ROCKINGHAM, N.C. – Professional point standings after eight events in the 2011 All-Harley Drag Racing Association Series:
Top Fuel – *1. Douglas Horne, Aberdeen, Md., 877; 2. Joey Sternotti, West Collingswood Heights, N.J., 469; 3. Tommy Grimes, Pffaftown, N.C., 453; 4. Steve Dorn, Milwaukee, Ore., 266; 5. Larry “Drums” Braccacio, Nutley, N.J., 235. Also, 8. Jay Turner, Julian, N.C., 157.
Pro Fuel – *1. Douglas Horne, Aberdeen, Md., 863; 2. Rickey House, Humble, Texas, 500; 3. Chris Streeter, Cleveland, Ohio, 289; 4. Greg Grove, Shelbyville, Tenn., 280; 5. Russel Sowers, Hermitage, Pa.,159.
Pro Gas – 1. Lee Hitz, Annville, Pa., 673; 2. Joey Sternotti, West Collingswood Heights, N.J., 587; 3. Keith Browne, Semora, N.C., 325; 4. Walt Sipp, Kansas City, Mo., 166; 5. Keith Williams, Myrtle Beach, S.C., 125.
Pro Drag – 1. Scott Truett, Wichita, Kan., 637; 2. Bill Purvis, Lafayette, La., 492; 3. Dustin Werner, Wichita, Kan., 436; 4. Rocky Jackson, Youngsville, La., 400; 5. Jordan Cruz, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., 262.
Pro Modified – 1. Bruce Croneberger II, Cressona, Pa., 795; 2. Joey Thomson, Hopewell, N.J., 517; 3. Bruce Chandler, Irving, N.Y., 409; 4. Henry Stanton, East Rochester, N.Y., 394; 5. Frank Capone, Wakefield, Mass., 211.
Pro Stock – 1. Shaun Reno, Hayes, Va., 687; 2. John Marinelli, Debary, Fla., 622; 3. K.W. Seneca, Irving, N.Y., 198; 4. Frank Capone, Wakefield, Mass., 132; 5. Nick Stute, Portland, Ore., 118;
*has clinched 2011 AHDRA Championship.
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ROCKINGHAM, N.C. – Final round results from last May’s inaugural AHDRA Carolina Spring Nitro Nationals at Rockingham Dragway:
Top Fuel – Steve Dorn, Milwaukee, Ore., 6.297, 215.10 mph, def. Douglas Horne, Aberdeen, Md., 6.763, 212.09 mph.
Pro Fuel – Douglas Horne, Aberdeen, Md., 7.366, 146.54 mph, def. Chris Streeter, Cleveland, Ohio, 21.864, 48.55 mph.
Pro Drag – Johnny Vickers, Millers Creek, 7.541, 168.26 mph, def. Rocky Jackson, Youngsville, La., 7.697, 168.98 mph.
Pro Mod – Bruce Croneberger III, Cressona, Pa., 8.442, 150.75 mph, def. Mark Colburn, Reynoldsburg, Ohio, 8.504, 160.06 mph.
Pro Gas – Lee Hitz, Annville, Pa., 8.745, 153.23 mph, def. Keith Browne, Semora, 11.223, 93.66 mph.
Pro Stock – John Marinelli, Debary, Fla., 8.177, 160.59 mph, def. Shaun Reno, Hayes, Va., no time.
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ROCKINGHAM, N.C. – Final round results from the 2010 Jim McClure Nitro Nationals at Rockingham Dragway:
Top Fuel – Jay Turner, Julian, 6.393, 202.79 mph, def. Douglas Horne, Aberdeen, Md., 8.631, 114.56 mph.
Pro Fuel – Douglas Horne, Aberdeen, Md., 6.665, 211.36 mph, def. Mike Pelrine, Brudgeheim, Alberta, Canada, 6.631, 218.34 mph.
Pro Drag – Rocky Jackson, Youngsville, La., 7.509, 155.97 mph, def. Bill Purvis, Lafayette, La., 7.541, 164.73 mph.
Pro Gas – Joe Sternotti, West Collingswood, N.J., 7.544, 170.58 mph, def. Keith Browne, Semora, 7.585, 171.69 mph.
Pro Mod – Joey Thomson, Hopewell, N.J., 8.512, 152.33 mph, def. Henry Stanton, East Rochester, N.Y., 8.564, 149.86 mph.
Pro Stock – Shaun Reno, Hayes, Va., 8.088, 156.68 mph, def. Andy Simon, Fairless Hills, Pa., 8.330, 161.71 mph.
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