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To celebrate the Memorial Day holiday weekend San Antonio Raceway hosted one of its biggest events of the year on May 28. The show included not one, not two, but three individual races, plus a wheelstanding PT Cruiser doing exhibition runs.
Headlining the event were the Texas Outlaw Pro Modified Association (TOPMA) with some of the most radical combinations of engines, bodies and graphics. Co-starring were the Southwest Superchargers that normally includes everything from Dragsters to Funny Cars.
Not to be overlooked were the local IHRA Summit Super Series bracket racers vying for track points in the Electronic (Box), Foot Brake (No Box) and Jr. Dragsters.
Time trials for the bracket cars began the day under cloudy, humid conditions with track temps around 125. By the time qualifying for the TOPMA and Southwest Superchargers began things had gone to sunny, hot with only a few passing clouds changing the track to over 140.
The TOPMA takes the top eight cars out of qualifying to set its field for eliminations. Doug Reisterer was top qualifier with a run of 3.804 at 196.59 mph. Current points leader Steve Wiley, was looking for another weekend that would put him back in the San Antonio Raceway Winners Circle after taking home $50K during the Bounty Hunter Grudge Nationals in March.
Wiley's day ended in the first session of qualifying when he either got out of the groove past the top end, or had a chute drag pull him over. Wiley would clip the left lane wall, then crossover and nose into the right lane wall. Fortunately, Gaylon Smith was slow to take off in the opposite lane and able to stop short of Wiley’s beautiful Grim Reaper '63 Corvette.
Wiley was able to walk away from the crash, but the car was unable to continue. Also in round 1 qualifying Dennis Sugrue had his turbo powered 2004 Camaro catch fire at the end of his run. Sugrue got at it stopped near the turn off and was able to get out uninjured.