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Ed Hoover, who won the first Pro Modified race ever contested nationally, got another major win Sunday when he drove his super-charged 1968 Chevrolet Camaro to victory in the featured event in the annual Super Chevy Show presented by Chevrolet Performance and Richmond County Tourism at Rockingham Dragway.
The veteran from Gilbert, S.C., qualified No. 1 on the eighth-mile course at 3.895 seconds, then beat John Camp of Canonsburg, Kinston’s Ernie Everett, former national touring pro Steve Vick of Mocksville and, finally, Elon’s Travis Harvey to win the Beal Racing Engines Pro Mod Shootout, part of the Extreme Outlaw Pro Mod Series.
Hoover, who was the first Pro Mod champion as the winner of the IHRA Winternationals at Darlington, S.C., on March 11, 2000, recorded the quickest time of the event in the first round at 3.879 seconds. Unfortunately, his semifinal showdown with Vick turned out to be anticlimactic when the latter suffered engine failure on his Camaro and was unable to compete.
Among the biggest surprises was the qualifying struggle of veteran Charles Carpenter of Harrisburg who failed to make the 16-car lineup in his iconic 1955 Chevy Bel Air. Carpenter, considered to be “The Father of Pro Mod,” was among eight drivers who were on the outside, looking in, at the conclusion of the qualifying phase. Carpenter turned at 3.930 et at 189.52 mph on an exhibition run on Sunday, which would have been the fourth quickest qualifying run.
Other winners in the event that celebrates all things Chevrolet included Lee Astle of Jonesville, S.C., who, as the DriveDuracell.com Top Eliminator champion on Sunday, took home a $3,000 winner’s share of the purse, and Rockingham’s Tim Clark, who won the DOT Street title on Sunday.
Former IHRA national event winner and Rockingham track champion Chip Johnson of Fayetteville was the Top Eliminator winner on Saturday while the Footbrake titles fell to Kyle Oliver of Jefferson, S.C., on Saturday and Dunn’s Justin West on Sunday.
Tom Johnson of Newport News, Va. won the prestigious Camaro Guys.com Generation Five trophy.
In the Junior Dragster division, it was an all-female final as Benson’s Kristen Byrd forced Maxton’s Brittney Dial into a breakout foul to get the win.
In the Super Chevy Car Show Jeff Smith of Richlands won the Award of Excellence in his 1955 Chevy and the 1962 Chevy of Troutman’s Billy Moore won the coveted Best of Show Award.