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2002 * Event 1 * Event 2 * Event 3 * Event 4 * Event 5 * Event 6 * Event 7 * Event 8 * Event 9 * Event 10 * Bonus * Top 4 * Final Standings

Edgar Perez wins 2002 Cartek Corvette Challenge Event 4

John Mackey, Edgar Perez, Bob Trieschmann, Ralph Savarese and Dennis Kazimir On Saturday July 13th, a prime vacation week, Cartek Corvette Challenge Drag Racing Series Event 4 hosted a 1st round field of 73 Corvettes. The weather for this event was a little less brutal than Event 3 but hot nonetheless. Event 4 marks the halfway point of the Challenge series points events with two additional non-point races to be held in November. At the end of the night, the Corvette Challenge had it's first repeat winner of the 2002 in points leader Edgar Perez. Perez made his way through the field of 73 cars while encountering some great competition along the way. The toughest was runner-up Ralph Savarese. Ralph comes to the Corvette Challenge from Mahopac, NY and is an established racer. The final round gave us Perez, from Howell, NJ, in his 1999 Torch Red C5 Coupe and Savarese in his 1985 Black C4 Coupe with some '96 body panels. Edgar dialed 12.69 and would get the head start to Ralph's 11.86. Edgar got off the line with a cautious .571 light and Ralph also, not pushing it got off to a .610. It was close at the top end with Edgar staying in it all the way running 12.74 vs. Ralph's barely breaking out 11.852. Ralph took the strip by very small .0195 for the win light came on for Edgar because of Ralph's .008 breakout. Ralph did everything he could but with such a small margin advantage at the stripe there was nothing he could do. Ralph's car was limping through the event with tire and fuel issues but managed to make it to the his first Challenge final of 2002. Ralph was asked by a fellow driver why he did not hit the brakes and replied "I had to catch him first!" Only Ralph and Edgar could see how close that race was as both drivers looked up for a win light fully expecting to see Ralph get it. This is one of the closest finals the Challenge has ever seen. Great job by both drivers.

Plenty of drama in Points Chase

The points chase had some heated battles as the top 4 in points tried to settle amongst themselves. Round 2 saw the #4 points racer, Aaron Askenback take on the #1 points racer in a move that could have shaken up the points chase. Aaron dialed his usual dial and took off 3 seconds ahead of his opponent. However, Aaron was caught by the 330' mark and Perez coasted through the traps at 70 MPH. Aaron evidently had a problem. What was not evident was that Aaron had the problem since time trials. Aaron was running with only 1st gear and could run nowhere near his dial with 1 gear. Aaron did what any competitor should have done and that is run it and don't let your opponent know. He got the benefit when his first round opponent went .486 red giving Aaron a win and point. It did not work in the second round but Aaron did leave the event with two points and with a broken car. Good job Aaron.

The third round featured #3 in points Bill Wilson against #1 in points in a rematch of Event 2 finals against Edgar Perez. If you missed that one, you can read about it at www.corvettechallenge.info/2002round2.shtml. Both drivers wanted this one bad as they left the line with identical .536 lights making it a race of execution and how well you know your car. Wilson gave it everything he had with a great run 0f 14.025 on a 13.96 dial, enough to win many races but not this one. Perez ran 12.737 on a 12.73 dial.

Number 2 points driver, Jack Schwarzwalder also fell in the third round when he came up against eventual semi-finalist Eric Fischer in his dad's unique LT4 with an automatic transmission. Eric put it in himself for his dad to race. We will have a feature article on this conversion in the near future.

Drivers please remember that the top 4 in points at the end of our next event, July 27th, will be invited to the race at Raceway Park Wednesday night July 31st in the PC Richard & Son All American Jet Car Nationals. Please check Raceway Park points standing to see where you stand. Remember, there are 8 points to be had at each event so the top 4 is wide open right now. Raceway Park for the complete points standings

Some statistics from Corvette Challenge Event 4

Time # % Ladder for Event 4
11 3 4%
12 24 33%
13 32 44%
14 11 15%
15 3 4%
Total 73 100%
(above) dial-in times for 1st round.
Congratulations to the drivers that made the ladder in round 4. That means each driver won at least 3 rounds. This week's ladder featured 10 drivers of which 6 were in their first 4th round of the season. Again you will see how this series is open to all to win. Good job drivers.

Cash and Prizes awarded drivers courtesy of the sponsors.

  • Event winner Edgar Perez went home with $200 cash and gift certificates for a free dyno tuning session at Cartek Racing and a $100 gift certificate from Pro Torque and the Event Winner Shore Motorsports sponsored Trophy. Shore Motorsports is located in Howell, NJ and can be reached at 732-370-2067 or on the web at www.shoremotorsports.com. Cartek Racing is in Garwood, NJ and can be reached at 908-317-4496 or on the web at www.cartek.net.
  • Runner up Ralph Savarese went home with $100 cash, a $50 gift certificate from Pro Torque, the "Money Back Runner Up Award" for $20 cash from Boweryboy Racing and the event Runner-up Vette Doctors sponsored Trophy. The Vette Doctors are located in Amityville, NY and can be reached at 631-841-0779 or on the web at www.thevettedoctors.com. Pro Torque, in Bohemia, NY can be found at www.protorque.com or by calling 631-218-8700.
  • Eric Fischer was the sole semi-finalist and won $50 cash.
  • All winners of the first round were awarded a trophy sponsored by CFM Racing. With 73 cars making 1st round Chris Coriell, Frank Schear and Mike Moran gave out 37 trophies.
  • Walden Farms gift package John Panuzzo won the Closest to Dial Award sponsored by Walden Farms by running a 12.86 on a 12.85 dial. John received a beautiful gift package from Walden Farms filled with low calorie low carbohydrate products. Unfortunately for Panuzzo, he did not win this round as his opponent got a better light. You can purchase Walden Farms products at local grocery stores or on the web at www.waldenfarms.com.
  • Ohh so Close Award of Zaino products Frank Fiori from Newark, DE won the "Ohh so Close Award" sponsored by Zaino when he was edged out in the 1st round by a mere .0021 second. Although he lost in the 1st round by the smallest Margin of Victory, Frank got to drive off with a Zaino starter package that includes Z1, Z2, Z6, Z7 and a polish pad. Zaino products can be purchased online at www.zainobros.com or at Shore Motorsports on Route 9 in Howell.
  • David Hollingshead from Clark, NJ in a 1977 C3 Corvette won the Almost Perfect Award sponsored by Roybulit Racing when he took himself out in the 1st round with the red light closest to .500. Dave's light was .495 and for that he earned a $50 gift certificate to the Raceway Park Souvenir store donated by Roy Johnson of Roybuilt Racing.
  • Frank Schear from Lakewood, NJ won the "John Panuzzo Jr. Memorial Trophy" donated by Team Panuzzo Racing for the best winning reaction time in the 1st round in his Torch Red 1993 C4 Corvette. Frank hit the tree hard with a .503 light and a win. Congratulations Frank.

No Bounty on points leader, look what happened

You will remember in Event 3, John Panuzzo put a "bounty" on points leader Edgar Perez. Edgar went out 1st round. This week, no "bounty" was on Edgar's head but Panuzzo and Perez lined up 1st round in the match up Panuzzo would have preferred last event. You already know that Panuzzo ran his number winning the "Closest to Dial Award" but it was the tree that made the difference. Panuzzo apparently was thinking about something else when he left the tree a whopping .657 after the third green. That was an error that Perez capitalized on leaving the tree himself at .555. At the end of the race, Panuzzo says to Edgar "The student has taught the teacher." All Edgar can do is say "I am still shaking from having to race you. You are probably the last guy I want to see in 1st round", paying Panuzzo the ultimate compliment. What does it all mean, (borrowing a line from fellow racer Bill Fischer)? Panuzzo, you may have to do the "bounty" thing again.

Points Standings after 4 events

The Points standings took yet another shuffle though 1 and two stayed the same. Savarese, thanks to his runner-up finish moved into 3rd while Aaron Askenback's bad tranny dropped him to 5th place tie with Rob Farley(Aaron would win the tie breaker becasue he came in higher than Rob)

1. Edgar Perez 25 **
2. Jack Schwarzwalder 17
3. Ralph Saverse 16
4. Bill Wilson 15 *
5. Aaron Askenback 14
6. Rob Farley 14
7. Mike Carr 13 *
8. Joseph Conover 13
9. Vic Gandhi 12
10.Jim Kovitch 12
Raceway Park is the offcial points keeper and the complete results are posted at http://www.racewaypark.com/main/points/corvette.html

Cartek Corvette Challenge helps Toys for Teens & Tots

The 50/50 raffle was held at the track and the a racers hopeful of winning the money while helping out a worthy organization put together $270. Donald Peppler's son was the winner. Of the total collected, $135 was donated to the Toys for Teens & Tots fund. Special thanks to Jaymie Shuleski and Mariana Trieschmann making the rounds to collect the money. The 50/50 will be held at each of the Cartek Corvette Challenges this year. Please see Jaymie or Mariana in the staging lanes if they do not find you first. You do not have to be a racer to participate. Raceway Park officer, Tim, thanks the Corvette Challenge racers and fans for supporting the Toys for Teens and Tots. Thank you for your continued support.

More photos by Edgar Perez

Thank you to our sponsors

The Corvette Challenge gives thanks to all of it supporting sponsors for who without this series cannot be possible. Thanks go out to .



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