Saturday, July 13, 2024

Racers Claim Wins at 13th Annual Bowtie Challenge

Northern Michigan Dragway hosted their 13th Annual Bowtie Challenge on June 22-24, 2023 with a record turnout of over 726 race entries.

KALEVA, MI- With another record turnout at the 13th Annual Bowtie Challenge, Northern Michigan Dragway is in the midst of having its best season. Over 726 weekend race entries and 1,200 spectators were in attendance. The previous Bowtie Challenge race entry record was set in 2021 at 684.

After three evenings of races, the Chevy (Bowtie) racers fell to the competition by a score of 320-309. This snapped their two-year winning streak.   

Chevy had built what seemed like a comfortable lead after winning performances on Thursday and Friday. They were led by Coleman Hanson of Crystal, who gathered wins both nights in Street Trophy with a ’66 Impala. Tyler Clark of Traverse City pulled off the win in Bracket I with a ’90 Lumina. Dan Snyder drove a ’23 T-Altered to the Bracket II victory and jumped into first place in the points standings. Kyle Kidder of Benzonia secured the Pro Trophy win and top points position, using a ’79 Camaro. 

Saturday evening was a different story as the Ford and Mopar racers took care of business in the later rounds allowing no Chevy racers to compete in final rounds.  Klint Bailey of Clare and Al McChesney of Kaleva met in an all-Mopar final round for $7,500 to win in Bracket II. Bailey’s ’72 Dart ousted McChesney’s ’67 Belvedere, with both drivers agreeing to a payout split of over $4,000 each. 

Bracket I had $3,000 on the line, as Chad Brintnell drove his Ford Fairmont to victory over the dragster of Grand Rapids’ Bob Kelly. In Pro Trophy, Timm Heinig of Harrison won with a ’74 Dart over the ’79 Cadillac Fleetwood of Free Soil racer James Persinger.

Top Doorslammer saw a new track record for a pickup truck as Randy Ryan of Pinckney clipped off a 4.45 second elapsed time, with a top speed of 172.14 miles-per-hour in a 2002 S-10. Tim Heiges of Traverse City took his second-straight class win with his ’63 Corvette, with Jason Helsel of Manton settling for runner-up in a ’67 Nova. 

NMD will be back in action this Saturday with WTCM/Statewide Towing Street Nights on the schedule. A special car show is scheduled from 2 pm to 4 pm, featuring five categories, plus special RC races (1/10 scale remote control) during the same time. The regularly-scheduled Street Night action will then take place from 5 to 11pm with a remote broadcast by WTCM’s Maddie Lundy. 

NMD is located three miles north of Kaleva on Potter Rd.  For further info, visit NorthernMichiganDragway.com or its social media pages.

For more bracket racing news from DragChamp, click here.

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