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   MDIR e-News Headline

Maryland International Raceway Crowns Speed Unlimited ET Season Champions &
Rick’s Jewelers “Ring for the Queen” Challenge Winner


October 27, 2016

   Story courtesy of:  Rick Lindner

MECHANICSVILLE, MARYLAND (October 26, 2016) –Maryland International Raceway ™ (MDIR) 2016 Speed Unlimited ET Series season championships in Top ET, Mod ET, Motorcycle ET, Hubble Motorsports Jr. Dragster and the Rick’s Jewelers “Ring for the Queen” 2016 challenge winner were all claimed this past weekend at the season-ending point series event.

Mike Nelson Jr. of Valley Lee, Maryland claimed the 2016 Top ET crown with his ’81 Camaro with a monstrous performance at the last event of the season finishing with 551 points. Nelson Jr. entered the last race of the season in fourth place, but managed to win round-after-round and eventually the race. Nelson used a convincingly perfect .000 reaction time and a 5.126 ET on a 5.12 dial-in to win over Brent Martin of La Plata, Maryland who cut a .007 reaction time and a perfect 4.590 ET on a 4.59 dial-in in the race finale. The event win was Nelson’s first and only race win of the season, but season-long consistency paid off in the long-run for the Valley Lee based competitor.

While he may have lost the race and overall season point’s championship, Martin didn’t waste his perfect dial-in in the race finale. It was Martin’s sixth perfect dial-in or reaction-time claimed on the season, earning him the 2016 Rick’s Jewelers “Ring for the Queen” Challenge win and the certified full one-carat ladies diamond solitaire ring prize. Martin would end the season with 540 points in a three-way tie for second place with Robbie Parlett of Lusby, Maryland, Bert Lewis of Mechanicsville, Maryland and Mickey Nelson, son of Mike Nelson Jr. from Leonardtown, Maryland.

In Mod ET, the championship proved to be nearly as dramatic as Top ET, coming down to the final rounds of the season. Bradley Tippett of Mechanicsville, Maryland claimed the season championship with 461 points in his ’68 Barracuda. Tippett entered the last event in second place, 19 behind then point’s leader Tony Mattera of Mechanicsville, Maryland. Mattera bowed out in second round of competition opening the door for a possible Tippett championship. Tippett took full-advantage, advancing to the race final, thus securing the season championship. Mattera finished tied for second with Steve Cross Sr. also of Mechanicsville with 440 points. Joseph Jones of Huntingtown, Maryland and Bobby Mattera of Waldorf, Maryland finished in fourth and fifth, respectively, with 431 and 411 points.

Mike Schultz of Manassas Park, Virginia was the only repeat-winner from 2015 taking his second Motorcycle ET season championship in a row. Schultz also used a strong performance at the last event, making it to the finals to finish the season with 404 points. Schultz entered the race in second place behind then points leader Darrell Mahoney of Pomfret, Maryland. Mahoney experienced difficulties with his bike leading to an aborted run and a second-round loss, opening the door for Schultz’s eventual championship. Mahoney finished the season in second place with 394 points. Michael Sweeney was the last event winner of the season topping Schultz in the final. Sweeney would end up with 292 points, good for a third place finish. Richardo Alston of Mechanicsville, Maryland finished the season in fourth place with 220 points and Kelly Clontz of Hughesville, Maryland rounded out the top five with 190 points.

In Hubble Motorsports Jr. Dragster, Jacob Mattera of Mechanicsville, Maryland used a small cushion heading into the event to fend off the competition and win the season championship. Mattera finished the season with just a one-point margin with 512 points to second place finisher and 2015 track champion AJ Jenkins also of Mechanicsville. Jenkins ended the 2016 season with 511 points. Louis Estevez of White Plains, Maryland finished in third place with 500 points. Jordan Mason of Manassas, Virginia used an event win at the last race to finish in fourth with 472 points. Jenna Cockrell of Prince Frederick, Maryland finished runner-up at the last event and ended up with a fifth place finish on the season with 451 points. Cockrell played spoiler in the final season points chase by taking out Jenkins in the fourth round of the event, securing the season win for Mattera who had lost in round one competition.

“The 2016 finished with one of the most exciting and dramatic completions of an ET Series season at MDIR as far back as I can remember," said IRGSE/MDIR Chief Operating Officer Royce Miller. “With several tight points’ scenarios in all classes and so many strong competitors and story lines, it ended up being one for the ages!"



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