Racing at his home ADRL track, the Pro Nitrous standout delivered an incredible performance in front of a huge gathering of friends and family, going a career-best 3.797 at 197.10 miles per hour on Saturday to beat Pat Stoken in the finals of the Summer Drags VIII at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park.
It capped off a day the Grosse Point, Mich. native wonâ€™t ever forget.
â€œI’m feeling numb. This is pretty overwhelming. To do this at your home track and have everybody here, it’s just a storybook thing,â€ Rahaim said. â€œYou couldn’t have scripted it any better.
â€œI can say my life is complete. I’ve always wanted to win one of these races and I’ve always wanted to do it at my home track with everybody here in person.â€
Other Summer Drags VIII winners included Jason Scruggs (Pro Extreme), Alan Pittman (Mickey Thompson Extreme 10.5), Eric McKinney (Pro Extreme Motorcycle), John DeFlorian (Extreme Pro Stock), Mike Castellana (Aeromotive Fuel Systems Pro Modified), Bruce Thrift (Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman) and Bo Butner (SuperCar Showdown).
Rahaim, DeFlorian and Thrift were all first-time ADRL winners.
Rahaimâ€™s career-best 3.797 came after a lengthy rain delay but it was the perfect combination and the perfect time for the run against Stoken, who was also seeking his first ADRL win.
“The team made a lot of great calls today and it couldn’t have went any better,” said Rahaim, who dedicated the team to crew chief Kevin Bowen after Bowen was recently hospitalized.
John DeFlorian let loose with a memorable celebration in the winnerâ€™s circle after picking up his first career ADRL win. Driving a Jerry Haas Race Cars 2012 Camaro, DeFlorian went 4.086 at 174.78 mph to beat Matt Bertsch in a matchup of first-time finalists and hand the Black Diamond Motorsports team, owned by Karen and Kevin Bealko, its first ADRL victory as well.
â€œIâ€™m never speechless, but Iâ€™m almost speechless over this,â€ DeFlorian said. â€œThis is just an amazing thing. This is something Iâ€™ve dreamed about. Iâ€™ve been trying to get one of these things for so long.
â€œI have to thank Kevin and Karen for just giving me this opportunity. This is something Iâ€™ve always wanted to experience and itâ€™s beyond my wildest dreams.â€
After breaking the world E.T. record (4.01) in June at his hometown track in St. Louis, DeFlorian didnâ€™t qualify three weeks ago in Virginia. But the team put it together in Martin, qualifying No. 4 and knocking off 2012 event winners Dean Goforth, Todd Hoerner and Cary Goforth to get to the finals, running as quick as 4.10.
â€œWe couldnâ€™t seem to get all the pieces of the puzzle together and then Virginia couldnâ€™t have been any worse,â€ DeFlorian said. â€œWe had to get our act together and we finally put it all together for this race. Itâ€™s an incredible bunch of guys on this team.â€
After a series of unfortunate events at recent races, Jason Scruggs put in a banner day, capped off by a new track record of 3.638 at 208.87 mph to beat Terry Leggett and his 3.689 at 205 mph in the finals.
Scruggs had four runs in the 3.60s during eliminations, including a 3.643 in the quarterfinals to get by Tommy Dâ€™Aprile. It gives Scruggs eight career wins, matching Joshua Hernandez for the most in Pro Extreme history.
â€œIt was a very good day today and weâ€™re real happy to get the win,â€ Scruggs said. â€œEvery round here is tough. Tommy had a great run, and Terry and his team are a great group of guys.
â€œIâ€™ve never had that much luck here, but the track was really good and things just worked out well.â€
With Mick Snyder falling in the first round, Scruggs also inched back into the championship chase. Coupled with Scruggsâ€™ win in Bristol, Snyderâ€™s three-race winning streak and Scruggsâ€™ win on Saturday, their two-car team is also in the midst of a potent stretch.
â€œI think all this did was give something people can talk about for a little bit,â€ Scruggs said. â€œMick had won three in a row, so as a team weâ€™re on a pretty good streak.â€
Eric McKinney took a commanding lead in the Pro Extreme Motorcycle points race with a brilliant showing at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park. McKinney made it three wins in 2012 after running a 4.073 at 170.15 mph against first-time ADRL finalist Dave Norris.
â€œIt was unbelievable. We changed some stuff and really stepped it up. Youâ€™re only as good as the people surrounding you and they make my program easier,â€ McKinney said. â€œThey keep everything routine and we just keep plugging away. This was an awesome weekend.â€
McKinney was outstanding on the tree during eliminations, capped off with an .006 and .013 reaction times in the semifinals and finals, respectively. McKinney also finished as the No. 1 qualifier after going 4.10 in the final qualifying session to take momentum into eliminations.
â€œThat was definitely a confidence-booster,â€ McKinney said. â€œThereâ€™s nobody easy out there, so everyone has to do their jobs. This bike is consistent and comfortable and thatâ€™s big.â€
Alan Pittman gladly took a lucky break in Mickey Thompson Extreme 10.5, denying Billy Gliddenâ€™s chance at history in the process.
Glidden went 3.917 â€“ a weekend-best in the class â€“ but had an .001 red light, handing the win to Pittman and his 4.042 at 195.28 mph. Itâ€™s the third win in 2012 for the XTF points leader, and Pittman also kept Glidden from picking up an ADRL-record 14th career win.
â€œI won already when Terry Leggett made it to the finals. I mean, I wouldnâ€™t be here if it wasnâ€™t for him and his wife,â€ Pittman said. â€œI felt real good and then I pulled up to the starting line and I had it in low gear but the car wouldnâ€™t move forward.
â€œSo I had to stick it in high gear and leave in high gear, so he definitely would have had me beat if he hadnâ€™t turned it red.â€
Bruce Thrift was remarkably consistent in picking up his first win in Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman, finishing off a standout day with a 4.376 at 153.61 mph in the finals to beat William Brown III.
â€œIâ€™m real excited. This is the real deal for Top Sportsman racing,â€ Thrift said. â€œThis is the cream of the crop in this class. You really have to get after it just to get in. This was just awesome.â€Mike Castellana was superb in his fourth trip to the finals in Aeromotive Fuel Systems Pro Modified, winning his fourth race of the year with a 3.827 at 196.35 mph, giving him the quickest pass in the history of the class.
Driving a 2012 RJ Race Cars Camaro, Castellana beat Pat Musi in the finals to add to his points lead. It also gives him 13 career wins to match Glidden and Ashley Owens for the most in ADRL history.
â€œOur main concentration is to win the Pro Modified championship and this is all because of my crew. They do a great job and they got it right,â€ Castellana said. â€œItâ€™s been a great year and I canâ€™t say enough about it.
â€œI really have to thank KH (Al-Thani) and Al-Anabi Racing for making this happen.â€
Bo Butner made it four wins in the SuperCar Showdown, slipping past Drew Skillman in a great side-by-side pass with a 5.77 at 119 mph, inching past Skillman and his 5.80 at 118.57 mph.
In Pro Junior Dragster, Devin Isenhower won with a 7.88 at 81.68 mph, knocking off Lane Ledford.
The sixth stop on the 10-race 2012 ADRL Tour takes place Aug. 3-4 at the state-of-the-art zMAX Dragway in Charlotte for ADRL Dragstock IX.
MARTIN, Mich. — Saturday’s final results from the ADRL Summer Drags VIII at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park. The race is the Sixth of 10 in the American Drag Racing League:
Pro Extreme — Jason Scruggs, Chevy Corvette, 3.638, 208.87Â def. Terry Leggett, Ford Mustang, 3.689, 205.70.
Pro Nitrous — Bob Rahaim, Chevy Camaro, 3.797, 197.10Â def. Pat Stoken, Camaro, 3.936, 188.55.
Extreme 10.5 — Alan Pittman, Ford Mustang, 4.044, 195.28Â def. Billy Glidden, Mustang, foul.
Extreme Pro Stock — John Deflorian Jr., Chevy Camaro, 4.086, 174.78Â def. Matt Bertsch, Ford Mustang, 4.128, 174.19.
Pro Extreme Motorcycle — Eric McKinney, Suzuki, 4.073, 170.15Â def. Dave Norris, Suzuki, 4.133, 170.95.
Pro Mod — Mike Castellana, Chevy Camaro, 3.827, 196.35Â def. Pat Musi, Dodge Stratus, foul.
Top Sportsman — Bruce Thrift, Pontiac GTO, 4.376, 153.61Â def. William Brown III, Pontiac Grand Am, 4.358, 161.29.
SuperCar Showdown — Bo Butner, Ford Mustang, 5.779, 119.00Â def. Drew Skillman, Mustang, 5.806, 118.57.
Pro Junior Dragster — Devin Isenhower, Half Scale, 7.880, 81.68Â def. Lane Ledford, American, 7.873, 82.28.
MARTIN, Mich. — Final round-by-round results from the ADRL Summer Drags VIII at U.S. 131
Motorsports Park, the Sixth of 10 events in the American Drag Racing League:
ROUND ONE — Von Smith, Chevy Camaro, 3.742, 204.17 def. Tim Tindle, Chevy Corvette, foul; Terry Leggett, Ford Mustang, 7.412, 55.35 def. Mick Snyder, Corvette, DQ; Dan Millen, Mustang, 3.894, 198.88 def. Alex Hossler, Camaro, broke; Jason Scruggs, Corvette, 3.693, 204.23 def. Quain Stott, Corvette, 3.799, 199.35; Tommy D’Aprile, Corvette, 3.720, 200.24 def. Art McMahan, Chevy Bel Air,
5.413, 94.10; Todd Martin, Mustang, 3.726, 202.32 def. Frankie Taylor, Corvette, 3.696, 203.92;
Brandon Pesz, Corvette, 3.735, 201.50 def. Chris Russo, Camaro, 3.954, 191.74; Bubba Stanton,
Camaro, 3.791, 194.55 def. Duane Rister, Camaro, 3.816, 200.24;
QUARTERFINALS — Leggett, 3.721, 205.83 def. Pesz, broke; Smith, broke def. Stanton, broke;
Scruggs, 3.643, 207.05 def. D’Aprile, 3.687, 199.44; Martin, 3.689, 204.23 def. Millen, 5.204,
SEMIFINALS — Leggett, 3.693, 207.58 def. Martin, 3.740, 202.40; Scruggs, 3.654, 206.20 was
FINAL — Scruggs, 3.638, 208.87 def. Leggett, 3.689, 205.70.
ROUND ONE — Pat Stoken, Chevy Camaro, 3.945, 190.94 def. Jason Harris, Pontiac Firebird, 4.278,
147.92; John Vergotz, Camaro, 4.031, 183.51 def. Robert Mathis, Camaro, foul; Ed Burnley, Camaro,
4.025, 187.20 def. Stan Allen, Camaro, broke; Rickie Jones, Camaro, 4.845, 125.91 def. John Hall,
Camaro, 6.416, 61.96; Robert Patrick Jr, Ford Mustang, 3.907, 190.92 def. Chris Juliano, Mustang,
4.013, 183.46; Bob Rahaim, Camaro, 7.775, 57.02 def. Blake Housley, Chevy Corvette, foul; Aaron
Hodges, Corvette, 5.346, 80.52 def. Jim Laurita, Camaro, DQ; Doug Riesterer, Camaro, 3.857, 191.99
def. Monroe Guest, Camaro, 4.347, 178.12;
QUARTERFINALS — Vergotz, 4.348, 172.05 def. Hodges, 5.038, 110.72; Rahaim, 4.150, 178.51 def.
Burnley, foul; Jones, 3.833, 195.32 def. Patrick Jr, 3.860, 192.64; Stoken, 3.884, 192.56 def.
Riesterer, 4.102, 180.53;
SEMIFINALS — Rahaim, 3.997, 189.33 def. Vergotz, 5.996, 97.33; Stoken, 3.872, 191.00 def. Jones,
FINAL — Rahaim, 3.797, 197.10 def. Stoken, 3.936, 188.55.
ROUND ONE — Alan Pittman, Ford Mustang, 3.982, 195.88 def. Dan Myers, Chevy Bel Air, 4.039,
191.24; Todd Moyer, Chevy Corvette, 4.314, 201.19 def. ‘Wild’ Bill Devine, Mustang, 4.312, 161.18;
Billy Glidden, Mustang, 3.990, 187.27 def. Nick Jackson, Willys, 4.418, 168.27;
SEMIFINALS — Glidden, 7.620, 68.95 was unopposed; Pittman, 3.936, 195.98 def. Moyer, 4.096,
FINAL — Pittman, 4.044, 195.28 def. Glidden, foul.
EXTREME PRO STOCK:
ROUND ONE — John Pluchino, Ford Escort, 4.177, 173.64 def. John Montecalvo, Chevy Camaro, foul;
Matt Bertsch, Ford Mustang, 4.150, 172.91 def. Richie Stevens Jr, Mustang, 4.188, 173.42; Pete
Berner, Camaro, 4.134, 174.86 def. Elijah Morton, Mustang, 4.166, 173.37; Todd Hoerner, Camaro,
4.160, 174.70 def. Trevor Eman, Mustang, DQ; John Deflorian Jr., Camaro, 4.155, 174.77 def. Dean
Goforth, Pontiac GXP, 4.169, 173.59; Larry O’Brien, Dodge Avenger, 4.205, 172.28 def. Kevin Bealko,
GXP, broke; Doug Kirk, Mustang, 4.180, 173.37 def. Brian Gahm, Mustang, 4.172, 173.52; Cary
Goforth, GXP, 4.110, 174.78 def. Richard Penland, Mustang, 4.626, 129.71;
QUARTERFINALS — Deflorian Jr., 4.103, 176.12 def. Hoerner, 4.152, 174.93; Bertsch, 4.128, 175.05
def. Kirk, foul; O’Brien, 4.172, 173.36 def. Berner, 4.908, 105.77; C. Goforth, 4.107, 174.78 def.
Pluchino, 4.135, 174.26;
SEMIFINALS — Bertsch, 4.166, 172.91 def. O’Brien, 4.336, 155.53; Deflorian Jr., 4.114, 174.30 def.
C. Goforth, foul;
FINAL — Deflorian Jr., 4.086, 174.78 def. Bertsch, 4.128, 174.19.
PRO EXTREME MOTORCYCLE:
ROUND ONE — Eric McKinney, Suzuki, 4.108, 171.61 def. TT Jones, Suzuki, 4.279, 163.33; Brunson
Grothus, Suzuki, 4.227, 165.80 def. Paul Gast, Suzuki, 4.218, 168.39; Dave Vantine, Suzuki, 4.194,
169.66 def. Casey Stemper, Suzuki Hayabusa, 4.483, 121.98; Dave Norris, 4.267, 167.87 def. Billy
SEMIFINALS — McKinney, 4.119, 168.91 def. Grothus, 4.220, 166.49; Norris, 4.167, 169.47 def.
Vantine, 4.175, 167.15;
FINAL — McKinney, 4.073, 170.15 def. Norris, 4.133, 170.95.
ROUND ONE — Mike Janis, Ford Mustang, 3.965, 188.60 def. Jeffrey Cummins Jr, Chevy Camaro, 3.997,
188.06; Rickie Smith, Camaro, 3.907, 192.55 def. Dave Roemer, Chevy Cavalier, 3.933, 191.24; Pat
Musi, Dodge Stratus, 3.968, 189.64 def. Jeff Naiser, Camaro, 3.985, 187.06; Mike Castellana,
Camaro, 4.361, 177.74 def. Adam Flamholc, Camaro, foul;
SEMIFINALS — Castellana, 3.879, 193.72 def. Janis, 3.961, 178.86; Musi, 3.885, 193.37 def. Smith,
FINAL — Castellana, 3.827, 196.35 def. Musi, foul.
ROUND ONE — William Brown III, Pontiac Grand Am, 4.419, 160.15 def. Ronnie Davis, Chevy Corvette,
4.250, 169.16; Glenn Butcher, Chevy Camaro, 4.495, 166.01 def. Randy Primozie, Chevy Cavalier,
4.295, 167.89; Bruce Thrift, Pontiac GTO, 4.405, 156.25 def. Don Klooster, Corvette, 4.182, 169.75;
Barry Danilink, Camaro, 4.265, 150.57 def. Marco Abruzzi, Camaro, 5.715, 88.55; Scott Blake, GTO,
4.254, 171.02 def. Earl Folse, Camaro, foul; Kevin Wicke, Dodge Stratus, 4.391, 161.29 def. Lizzy
Musi, Camaro, 4.154, 175.00; Chuck Mohn, Camaro, 4.300, 139.43 def. Ricky Adkins, 6.051, 83.63; Bob
Gulitti, Camaro, 4.145, 169.74 def. Aaron Glaser, Camaro, 4.397, 159.02;
QUARTERFINALS — Thrift, 4.402, 154.70 def. Wicke, 4.379, 161.88; Mohn, 4.152, 164.22 def. Butcher,
4.308, 167.26; Danilink, 4.176, 171.72 def. Blake, foul; Brown III, 4.389, 154.66 def. Gulitti,
SEMIFINALS — Brown III, 4.375, 160.71 def. Danilink, foul; Thrift, 4.363, 161.87 def. Mohn, 4.077,
FINAL — Thrift, 4.376, 153.61 def. Brown III, 4.358, 161.29.
ROUND ONE — Jimmy Ronzello, Ford Mustang, 5.939, 114.49 def. Chris Holbrook, Mustang, 6.630,
110.17; Bo Butner, Mustang, 5.780, 118.69 def. Wesley Wells, Mustang, 6.004, 116.42; Drew Skillman,
Mustang, 5.807, 118.37 def. Rick Rodgers, Mustang, 6.284, 111.79;
SEMIFINALS — D. Skillman, 5.830, 117.78 def. J. Ronzello, 5.902, 120.76; B. Butner, 5.808, 119.00
def. W. Wells, 6.017, 116.09;
FINAL — B. Butner, 5.779, 119.00 def. D. Skillman, 5.806, 118.57.
PRO JUNIOR DRAGSTER:
ROUND ONE — Zac Barnett, Mike Boss, 8.747, 82.28 def. Braydon McCann, BOS, 7.891, 79.95; Tia
Tutterow, Halfscale, 7.991, 79.82 def. Alexander Oppen, Junior, 7.966, 81.24; Lane Ledford,
American, 7.933, 79.68 def. Kyle Dvorak, Spitzer, 7.965, 79.38; Devin Isenhower, Half Scale, 7.970,
78.84 def. Brittany Clark, Halfscale, 7.954, 82.27; Samatha Coe, America, 7.919, 81.40 def. Jackson
Core, Junior, 7.893, 80.80; Camrie Caroso, 7.948, 79.95 def. Madisyn McCormick, Gage, 7.976, 82.87;
Bethany Crick, Halfscale, 7.924, 82.58 def. Nick Isenhower, Half Scale, foul; Derek Raymond,
Halfscale, 7.974, 76.20 def. Marc Hammock, Junior, 7.938, 78.68;
QUARTERFINALS — Tutterow, 7.899, 81.08 def. Crick, foul; Ledford, 7.926, 77.10 def. Caroso, 7.899,
82.12; D. Isenhower, 7.886, 80.38 def. Coe, 7.866, 82.43; Raymond, 7.978, 73.59 def. Barnett,
SEMIFINALS — Ledford, 7.979, 80.37 def. Tutterow, 7.941, 80.12; D. Isenhower, 7.961, 80.51 def.
Raymond, 8.008, 76.98;
FINAL — D. Isenhower, 7.880, 81.68 def. Ledford, 7.873, 82.28.