Last year, the host team from the North Central Division (Division 3) won the overall team title for the sixth time, using a late rally to stave off the Northeast Division crew. With a roster that includes Ken Perry in Top Alcohol Dragster, Andy Bohl in Top Alcohol Funny Car and reigning NHRA national champion Ray Connolly in Super Gas, the North Central team once again figures to be a force to be reckoned with heading into the 2010 JEGS Allstars.
The Northeast Division (Division 1) team will also be looking a measure of revenge and its seventh overall team title and with 13-time Top Alcohol Funny Car champion Frank Manzo and former NHRA Comp champ Frank Aragona Jr., leading the way, they will once again be among the favorites. The Northeast Division squad also includes John Finke in Top Alcohol Dragster and recent Gatornationals winner Joe Santangelo, who will be racing in Super Stock.
Top Alcohol Dragster racer Duane Shields, who drove to victory at the most recent NHRA national event in Topeka, will be the cornerstone of a very competitive Southeast Division (Division 2) team that also features Mickey Ferro (Top Alcohol Funny Car) Arnie Martel (Comp) and 19-year old Ray Miller III, who will be doing double duty as a JEGS Allstars representative in Super Comp and Top Dragster. The Southeast Division team has a long history of success in the JEGS Allstars competition, having won six overall titles of their own.
The South Central Division (Division 4) has claimed five overall titles including the most recent one in 2003. The team that is headed for this weekend’s event in Joliet is formidable as it will include Malcom Whale (Top Alcohol Dragster), Burl Brown (Top Alcohol Funny Car), Adam Hickey (Comp), and veteran Gary Emmons (Super Stock).
The squad from the Pacific Division (Division 7) is also looking for its first overall team title and this year’s line-up offers perhaps the best chance for a victory. Jim Whiteley (Top Alcohol Dragster) and Steve Gasparrelli (Top Alcohol Funny Car) will be joined by past national event winner Mike Depalma in Comp and Val Torres Jr., who finished the 2009 season as NHRA’s fourth-ranked Super Gas driver.
While the JEGS Allstars is a highlight competitive event, camaraderie between racers and their crews is evident, especially during Friday evening’s racer appreciation barbecue which is open to all of the JEGS Allstars competitors, their families and crews. The barbecue is scheduled for 8 p.m., at the conclusion of Friday evening’s Pro Stock qualifying session at Route 66 Raceway.