Putting the Wraps on 2016 and Preparing for 2017
In the last three months we have had some good things happen as we prepare to hit the 660′ again in 2017 with our new look Lucas Oil Racing TV, DJ Safety, Boccella’s Performance NHRA junior dragster powered by Craw’s Racing and NGK.
Before we start the season we had to officially put the wraps on 2016 at the 54th annual Maple Grove Awards Banquet on February 4th. Over 300 racers, families and sponsors were in attendance to watch the top point earners in each category cross the stage and accept their rewards. Congratulations to all the winners and champions in their respective classes. It was an honor to be there as a family to watch long time icons of the sport, Lex Dudas, Mike Lewis and Al Hanna take the stage to share memories and present awards.
Braylon received a plaque for his 4th place in points this past season and we hope to improve on that finish next season. That will be a tough order since every racer at Maple Grove has a shot at winning each race. Braylon was also nominated for the “Finish Line Magician” award for the best junior dragster finish line driver, as well as “Breakout Season” from which three drivers were nominated out of all classes. Unfortunately he didn’t win either of the votes but it was surprising for Braylon to hear his name from the stage when the nominees were presented since we never told him about the voting. We still had a great night hanging out with good friends at such a well-run event. Now we know what to expect next year and hope to be invited again.
As most of you may know our team has enjoyed the support and awesome products from Lucas oil for several years now and after much persuasion they have entrusted us with responsibility of promoting their Lucas Oil Racing TV channel for 2017. Braylon’s 2016 Mike Bos dragster that we raced the last few events last season and brought home two wins and a semi-final appearance, clad in basic black, now flies the awesome colors of the LORTV brand thanks to AwesomeRacecarWraps.com.
On a cold windy afternoon back in January I coordinated a photo shoot with Mark Tinari, one of the best in the business, and fortunately close to our home. We set up shop at Jacob Pattern Works on an old wooden floor with lots of character and with my father helping set things up; Mark came up with some great shots. We didn’t do this just because we had spare time on a snowy Saturday, but we are always looking for ways to thank and promote the great companies that help us out. Here are a couple of my favorites. Which shot do you like the best?
One thing that I was shooting for, pun intended, was to have the car featured in National Dragster or the Jr Dragster Magazine. I lobbied both magazines and their editors but the best fit for them was in the “What’s New” section of the NHRA Jr Dragster publication. As it ended up we got the lead in shot and for that I am grateful to Mark for his time, Jim Jacobs for his hospitality and the NHRA for the promotional opportunity.
We were proud to play a small part in the resurrection of Maddie Stephen’s junior dragster that was heavily damaged in a tragic fire that claimed her home and left her father critically burned. In just a few months the car that was practically destroyed was brought back to life with two of our local racers Jarrod Kissinger and Ben Spotts leading the charge to find sponsors and doing the repairs at Ken’s Kustom Chassis. Once the car was done it was unveiled for the first time in front of Maddie and her healing father at the Motorama in Harrisburg, Pa on February 18th. So glad to be a part of such a great racing community that helps others. We can’t wait to see her in the new car at the track.
In just a little over a month the season will start with hopefully a test session in late March and the first race in early April and then its full steam ahead. Whether you are looking for performance, safety or getting your racing “fix” at home or on your mobile device please keep these companies that support racing and racers first on your contact list: Craw’s Racing, DJ Safety, Lucas Oil Products, Lucas Oil Racing TV, Boccellas Performance, NGK, Clark Industrial Supply and remember you always have a Right2Breathe!
See you at the track!