:::::: News ::::::


The Tennessee Highway Patrol conducted a press conference
today discussing more details of Saturday’s Cars for Kids tragedy in Selmer, Tenn., which killed
spectators watching an exhibition of drag racing machinery. Six bystanders,
including two teenagers, were killed when a Pro Modified car driven by Troy
Critchley crashed into a utility pole and bounced into a crowd of spectators. An
official count listed 20 injuries.

Police Chief Neil Burkes said the event has been a safe one
for the eighteen years it’s been conducted in his town.
“I have been the chief here in Selmar for ten years and it has
gone on for as long as I have been here,” Burkes said. “It has been a safe event
up until this year. We had a tragic accident and that’s just it. It had been a
safe event up until this year.”


cplus-dennis-wratten.jpgThe Summer Nationals had a huge
overall entry of Sportsman racers but this weekend the headliners were the
ultimate in doorslammers - the Pro Modified cars running in their third round
of the MSA (Motor Sports Association) British Drag Racing Championship. The
220mph machines had seven British entries and one Dutch competitor but had to
contend with copious amounts of rain that was deluging the country during the
past week. It more or less wiped out the Saturday qualifying day allowing all
competitors just a one shot qualifier on Sunday morning.

In the Pro Modified class Danny Cockerill driving his 526 cubic inch
motored Chevy Bel Air sat in pole position with a fine 6.385/226.26mph clocking
with the remainder of the pack stretching all the way down to the wild but
slowed up 12.131/73 from Gordon Appleton’s Chevy Camaro then the DNQ (did not
qualify) from Holland’s usual strong contender Marc Meihuizen in his Chevy


An aching back will keep first-year Pro Stock driver Bill Windham on the
sidelines this weekend instead at Englishtown, N.J., for the 37th annual Pro
Care Rx SuperNationals at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park.


Demolition is underway on the old
Gainesville Raceway control tower which has stood as the center of operations
for the historic Florida drag racing facility since the early
1980s. The interior removal process has been completed and the exterior
demolition, which began today, is expected to take less than 10 days to


With 15 of 36-races completed, 38 drivers competing in the NASCAR
Nextel Cup Series have already earned in excess of  $1,000,000.  Kevin
Harvick leads the way with $4,462,037 in earnings,  with current points
leader Jeff Gordon second at $3,496,991.  Dale  Jarrett, who has DNQ’d
three times in his new Toyota, is at the bottom of the millionaire’s
list with “only” $1,114,852 to his credit.  Poor guy!  Johnny Benson,
who has but one start this season, is at the very bottom of the money
list with $64,875.  That’s $24,875 more than the Top Fuel or Funny Car
winner at a POWERade Series event  takes home.

After 16-races in the Busch Series, which is the support series and not
the main event, 17 drivers have earned in excess of $400,000 – the
equivalent of a T/F or F/C driver having won 10 POWERade races –
something only Pro Stock driver Greg Anderson has even come close to,
and he’s won five times in 2007.


Team CSK team member John Fink has purchased a 22-year old British
Chieftan Mark-V Battle Tank, and he has been awaiting its arrival in
Auburn, Ind. since then. 
With much of Team CSK in attendance, at the team's midwestern shop, the
55-ton machine arrived today on a special flat-bed hauler. Perhaps it
is needless to report that most of the actual work that had
been going on at the shop ceased when the behemoth arrived.


J.R. Todd added another accomplishment to his racing resume Saturday night,
albeit for bragging rights only.
Todd was the first NHRA driver to take
the checkered flag in the Gary Scelzi & Friends All-Star Challenge at Plaza
Park Raceway in Visalia, Calif.  The 25-lap main event on the fifth-mile clay
oval featured Todd, Scelzi, Del Worsham, Morgan Lucas, Ron Capps and Cory
McClenathan and was a fundraiser for the track.
The drivers competed in
600cc Mini-Sprints before what Todd said was a “good crowd.  We signed
autographs for about two hours.


Jeg Coughlin, Jr. was busy serving as Grand Marshall for the NHRA
National Hot Rod Reunion in Columbus. His sons were busy winning drag
races in Illinois.

Mike Coughlin won the Top Sportsman title at the NHRA Division 3  Lucas
Oil Series event at Route 66 Nationals and a few minutes later he
watched as his brother John joined him in the winner’s circle by
claiming a victory in the Top Dragster class.
In the Top Sportsman final, Mike drove his JEGS.com Chevy Cobalt to a
win over current points leader Billy Vaughn. Mike gained the reaction
time advantage at the start and then finished the nearly flawless run
by running right on his 7.02 dial in while Vaughn broke out, running
under his 7.11 dial with a 7.09.
Watching his brother turn on the win light only helped to motivate John
Coughlin, who claimed his second Top Dragster title of the season with
a slowing 7.86 after his final round opponent, Brian Folk, red-lighted
at the start. John has now won two of the three Top Dragster races he
has entered with his new Undercover Chassis dragster and he has built a
sizable lead in the Division 3 points standings.


For the 11th time in as many races, a new team captured a Pro Modified Racing Association event.
Sam Andreacchi of Toronto, Ontario took out Mike Stawicki of Medina,
New York in the final to win the Third Annual KC Auto Family Day
Spectacular - PMRA Challenge presented by Paul Wolf Electric &
Lighting Supply Inc., Sylvania, and Independent Electrical Distributors
at Toronto Motorsports Park in Cayuga, Ontario. It was the team’s first
PMRA win.
“This is just fantastic,” said an excited Andreacchi after the final.
“We really had our car running well, and we were on our game plan. And
with our main sponsor Wolf Electric taking part in the event, we could
not have asked for anything better.”
The one-day event, which saw a record number of 16 Pro Modifieds vie
for the eight spots in the show, was the second stop in the 2007 Pro
Modified Racing Association Tour.


An exhibition of drag racing machinery at the Cars for Kids charity
event turned deadly as a Pro Modified car doing a burnout lost control,
struck a utility pole and careened into a group of onlookers, killing
six and injuring 18 others in Selmer, Tenn.

Tennessee Highway Patrol spokesman Mike Browning said the six deaths
included two 15-year-old girls and a 17-year-old girl. Eighteen others
were injured including a 5-year-old boy. The injured were taken to
hospitals in Tennessee and Mississippi.

The Highway Patrol said Raven Griswell, 15, of Finger; and Sean Michael
Driskill, 22, of Adamsville, died at the scene. Four others -- Brook L. Pope,
20, of Selmer; Scarlett Replogle, 15, of Selmer; Kimberly A. Barfield, 17, of
Adamsville; and Nicole Griswell, no age or hometown given -- died later in area