lead.jpgThe 2010 Pro Truck Nationals (PTN) series continued on to race 2 in Cleves, OH in late June. Following up a great Season Opener in Cleves, this race had all the makings for an awesome event. Blistering temperatures greeted racers, but it surely didn’t put a damper on the action. Here is a look at the action.


Pro Truck

2009 PTN Pro Truck class champion Ben Dozeman kicked off the season with a win at Cleves to position him self atop the standings & solidified the fact that he is the man to beat in Pro Truck action. A strong field of 17 entries made the haul to Cleves to try to unseat Ben. In qualifying, Dozeman would earn the Low ET bonus points with a 3.649. However, the #1 qualifying spot (based on RT) & the round one bye run, would go to Mike Page, who stole the best RT from Dozeman on the last pass of qualifying with a great .438 RT (.400=Perfect RT).

Round one saw some great racing action, including the upset of the event. In a pair of tough Michigan racers, Dozeman faced off with “Fast Freddy” Hugo. Hugo looked great in his first trip back to Cleves since a crash several years ago. On this pass, both drivers would leave with identical .477, and at the other end it would be Hugo running closer to his Index with a 3.738 (3.70) to take out the defending champion.

After a Michigan sweep of the top three spots at the PTN Season Opener, the IOK group came ready for war and heading into the quarter-final round they would have 3 entries left with MI down to just two. The first pair would see Michigan’s Ryan Fredricks in his Green Jeep face off with Kentucky’s Ryan Wilson, driving Jeff Banks’ Speed Buggy Bronco. Wilson broke his Red Chevy Truck in qualifying, and moved over to Banks’ Bronco to keep up his points. In a heads-up 4.30-Index battle, Wilson took a slim starting line advantage and forced Fredricks into a 4.263 break out. The next pair would see Michigan’s Fred Hugo go up against Ohio’s Mike Ellington in an all-Jeep battle. Ellington would take the RT advantage with a nice .453 RT and hang on with a 4.422 (4.40) to advance. This would eliminate the Michigan contingent, ensuring an IOK victory. Kentucky’s Kyle Harney in the Hayshaker Jeep had the quarter-final round bye run and ran a 4.252 (4.20) to advance on.

Kicking off the semi-final round would be the Jeeps of Harney and Ellington on the starting line. Harney would leave first by .003, and run nearly dead-on with a 4.204 (4.20) to force Ellington into a 4.371 (4.40) break out. So, Harney would move on to race off with fellow Kentuckian Ryan Wilson in the final round. In this match up, Wilson would leave first by .1, being on a 4.30 Index as opposed to Harney’s 4.20. Off the line, Harney would take a five-hundredths of a second advantage, and run another consistent 4.216 (4.20) to force Wilson’s 4.295 (4.30) break out. This capped a great weekend for Harney, who also won Friday night’s 4.5 Index class. He also leads the Pro Truck point standings with Dozeman 6 back and a tie between Kramer & Wilson 8 back.

Kyle Harney

Ryan Wilson

Mike Ellington

Pro Outlaw FE

The Pro Outlaw FE class continued to put on an excellent show at race 2 of the PTN series. Qualifying saw Josh Stephens lead the way in the Blown Income Altered with a 3.095/116.10 mph hit. He would be followed closely by Brian McWethy in “The Boss” Funny Jeep running 3.162/100.00mph. Rounding out the top half of the field would be Race 1 Runner-Up Kathy Ellington in the Black Widow Altered with a 3.381 and Race 1 Winner Brian Ambs, who struggled a bit in qualifying to a 3.518/94mph.

Round one started with Ellington facing off with #6 qualifier, Gary Vereeke in the Turbulence Blown Alcohol Ford F-150 Truck. Vereeke’s struggles with the Cleves track continued as he spun the tires to a 3.63 while Kathy ran a smooth 3.40 for the win. Next up would see McWethy go up against #5 qualifier Dan Wies in the Wies Racing Naturally Aspirated SBC-powered Altered. Wies would take nearly a two-tenths of a second starting line advantage, however the screw-blown Chevy power of McWethy would prove too much as he ran a 3.199/96.90mph to Wies’ 3.499. The final pair of the round would see Ambs’ Blown Ford-powered Altered against another Naturally Aspirated SBC-powered Altered of Ben Steele. Ambs would get back closer to his tune up, running a 3.324/106.08mph shot to take the win. Josh Stephens advanced on with his bye run.

A David vs. Goliath match up kicked off round two with Josh Stephens in the PSI-screw blown Hemi Altered versus Kathy Ellington’s Nitrous-assisted SBC-powered Altered. Ellington took the starting line lead, however Stephens would step out to a lead until 60’ where the big Hemi would go silent and Kathy would run a great 3.339/95mph for the win. The other semi-final match up would be anti-climatic as the McWethy crew discovered a problem with the blower snout, putting them out of action for the weekend. Ambs would idle down the track on his single pass.
The final round would be a rematch of the Race 1 Pro Outlaw FE final round with Ambs & Ellington facing off. Ellington would jump out to a lead off the line; however her car would not shift allowing Ambs to drive around with another consistent 3.349/104.97mph winning pass. The Pro Outlaw FE class takes the race off at the next PTN race in Michigan, but it will be back at the Missouri Season Finale where we will see if Brian Ambs can sweep the 2010 season.

Brian Ambs

3.5 Index

The 3.5 Index class returned to its typical Friday night headline position at Race 2 in Cleves. The Dreher Race Cars Team of JR & John Dreher sat atop the standings heading into this event with JR’s win at the Season Opener. This event would see “The Legend” himself, John take the wheel. Round one would see some great action, including an excellent double break out race between Dan Wies & Brian Harrison. Harrison’s 3.498 was just .006 closer to the Index than Wies’ 3.492. The best run of the round would see Dreher run a great 3.526 to advance past Ben Steele.

A great semi-final round kicked off with Michigan racers Fred Hugo & Mike Page facing off. Page would turn on the red bulb by just .013, handing the win to Hugo, who ran a 3.647 for the win. The next pair would see 2009 3.5 Index class dominator Ben Dozeman in the Bad Company Jeep face off with current point leader Dreher in the Dreher Race Cars Altered. This would be the race of eliminations as Dozeman left first .467 to .494, but at the other end it would be Dreher taking a .016 MOV with in a 3.603 to 3.646 decision.

The final round would see a couple quality cars face off with Missouri’s Dreher and Michigan’s Hugo pulling to the line. Hugo would leave first .459 to .482, however at the other end it would be Dreher running a 3.554 to drive around Hugo’s 3.677. Dreher’s second win of the season puts their team 13 points ahead Dozeman heading into race three at WMSD.

John Dreher

Fred Hugo

4.5 Index

PTN tried out a new class at this event in Cleves, a 4.5 Index class. With the popularity of the 3.5 Index, the decision came to try this new Index out and a good field of 9 entries came out for this Friday night class. Round one saw Jami Baker run closest to the Index with a nice 4.522 in defeat of Shocker Racing’s Steve Ewing.

Baker would come up Lee Reynders in round two. Lee would lead this race wire to wire, running a 4.543 to Baker’s breaking out 4.483. Up next would see Casey Kellough’s Roadster against Kyle Harney’s Hayshaker Jeep. Harney would leave first by just over five-hundredths and hold on for a 4.54 to 4.57 victory. Finishing the round would be Ryan Fredricks running a 4.665 on the bye run.

Kicking off the semi-final round would be an all-Michigan match up between Reynders & Fredricks. They left even off the line, but at the other end Reynders would break out with a 4.481 to hand Fredricks a trip to the final round against Harney. The final round would see Harney leave first .490 to .502 and never look back for a 4.531 to 4.604 victory. Harney & the Hayshaker team certainly had an awesome weekend winning both Pro Truck & the 4.5 Index classes.

Kyle Harney

Ryan Fredricks

Bracket Classes

The traditional Cleves bracket car classes are split in half by dial-ins. Bracket 1, or Fast Class, came down to a final round between Justin Dees’ Inebriated Altered versus Ryan Lovins’ Dragster. Dees would leave first and run 4.083 (4.07) to take the big win. In Bracket 2, or Slow Class, the final saw Kasi Baker’s Purple Jeep against Keith Manfra’s Truck. Manfra would turn on the red bulb, handing the win to Baker, who ran a 5.386 (5.36).

Justin Dees

Kasi Baker

ATV & Junior Classes

Dennis Ellington had a great .428 RT in the Pro ATV final and stayed ahead for a 3.971 (3.90) victory over Brian Snikeris.  The Sportsman ATV class saw an all-Shocker Racing final round. Once again, it would be “Shocker Father” Steve Ewing running a 4.437 (4.40) for the final round victory. The Junior classes were split in two with Tristan Simon defeating Kelsey Ambs in an all-Michigan Junior final round and Trevor Harney taking another Harney family victory in the Youth class over Damion Morgan.

Steve Ewing

Tristan Simon

Photo Extra

Ben Dozeman ended up with a semi-final finish in 3.5 Index & also gained the Low ET Bonus Points in Pro Truck with a 3.649.

Josh Stephens was the #1 qualifier in Pro Outlaw FE with a 3.09.

Mike Bolyard made his season debut at Cleves with his Bronco now sporting a 10-71 Blower.

Ryan Lovins did a great job with his dragster, ending up with a runner-up finish in Bracket 1.

Rob Scheytt brought out the Bad Frog TA Dragster & made a couple of passes, of which the best was a 2.82 shot on Saturday night.

Ron Curtis, aka "Mr. Whiskers", appears to have gotten over the gremlins in his dragster & laid down a best of 3.61 on the weekend.

Jim Brantley made his first trip to Cleves & went several rounds in Bracket 1 action as well as competing in the Pro Truck class.

Photos Courtesy Lone Star Graphics

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