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Today is Saturday December 16, 2017      
2014 Schedule
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2003   *  Event 1   *  Event 2   *  Event 3   *  Event 4   *  Event 5   *  Event 6   *  Event 7   *  Event 8   *  Event 9   *  Event 10   *  Event 11 * 2003 Standings

Perez wins Event 10 over new points Champion, Joe Blass

11/01/03 - The East Coast Supercharging Corvette Challenge closed out its 2003 points season with its third different points champion in as many years; Joe Blass. We saw Chris Young hold on to the Rookie of the Year honors and the return to the event winners circle for Edgar Perez. Keeping with the odd weather we have had all year, November 1, 2003 brought a temperature in the 70's and a density altitude hovering around 2000+. Isn't this supposed to be the fall? Car count was great as we started a full 64 car field (just one car short of going seven rounds). That meant no one would get a "free pass" today. Racers and fans came out to see who would take the titles for the season for points champion and rookie of the year. While tiles were being sorted out there was an event to be won.

Edgar Perez, called by rookie of the year, "the hottest driver in the Corvette Challenge" could not be stopped today. Perez went to the finals in Event 7 and Event 8 before being sidelined with a faulty transmission in Event 9. The transmission work was turned around quickly and accurately by The Vette Doctors who do the work on his car. Five days was all that was taken to turn it around. And turn it around they did! Perez came out and ran both, The Corvette Challenge and the Trophy Marathon class to get a feel for the freshly redone transmission and torque converter swap. The extra runs paid of because when eliminations started, Perez ran a near perfect .005 package. Abbruzze would leave first. Perez followed with an 11.75 dial. Abbruzze cut a good tree but Perez cut a .504 light and reeled Abbruzze in at the top end tightening up the package running just .001 over the dial at 11.751. The performance left John Panuzzo stunned as Perez had beaten him out for the John Panuzzo Jr. Memorial trophy for the best winning reaction time in the first round (JP .506). In addition, the package earned Perez another Boweryboy Racing Closest to Dial Award going .001 over. In round two, Perez followed up his .001 dial performance by lowering the dial to 11.73 and running 11.730. You can see why Young made the comment.

Runner-up Vic Gandhi Edgar's lucky duck Winner Edgar Perez
Runner-up Joe Blass Edgar's LUCKY DUCK Winner Edgar Perez with Best RT, Closes to Dial and winner trophy

Blass goes for the win while taking the Championship

While Perez was working his way through the field, so was Joe Blass. Out to win the championship from the second spot, Blass also worked his way through the field getting him to the final and convincingly winning the points championship in the fourth round when reigning champ, Ralph Savarese took a gut wrenching loss in round three. Blass needed the win as Savarese held the tie-breaker having won two events to Blass' one. The tension in the staging lanes was thick as drivers tried to keep away from Joe to try to let him relax. The task would not be easy. Blass would have to race Bob Hollingshead with his 1963 manual shifted Corvette. Hollingshead came in to the event in fifth place and needed the win if he was make an attempt to move into fourth. The dials were set, 13.05 for Hollingshead, who would go first, and 12.21 for Blass. Both drivers cut stellar lights, proving they were up to the challenge. The slight advantage went to Hollingshead, .523 over Blass', .536. When the cars evened up at the top, it was very close. Hollingshead crossed first but the win light went to Blass. Blass forced Hollingshead to break out in the, too-close-to-let-up-race, as Blass ran just .029 over his dial. The relief was beginning to set in as he was congratulated in the lanes for taking the win and championship for the 2003 season. He can finally breathe again. There were still two races before the date with Perez in the final.

Perez and Blass faced each other in the semi-final just a couple of events ago with Perez coming out on top. Blass was looking to even the score. Blass dialed in at 12.22 and would go first to Perez' 11.73 dial. At this point, track conditions had completely gone away as the day was almost over. Both drivers suffered severe tire spin. Perez, however had the advantage with a .511 light to Blass' .615. There would not be any brake tapping on this one as neither driver was going to run his number. Blass was closer to his dial, but Perez took the stripe and the win because of the starting line advantage. That closed out another exciting event for the 2003 East Coast Supercharging Corvette Challenge.

A tough loss for Ralph Savarese

In the heat of the points chase, Ralph Savarese, our defending champion came into the event with a one point lead just like he did last year. If he kept on winning, he would lock up his second consective championship. Destiny would be in his hands. All he had to do was win. First round was a tough challenge for Savarese against another hot driver, Frank Fiori. Savarese would start that race at a disadvantage as Fiori's .525 gave him an advantage over the .544 by Ralph. Savarese could not catch him but Fiori stayed in it a little too long running under his dial and breaking out. Savarese was determined not to be treed again. In the second round he cut a .513 and made opponent Dave Tortolani try too hard to catch him as he apparently missed a shift and lost his momentum. Savarese coasted across the finish line. Round three was both a heartbreaker and a Cinderella story. Savarese was paired with first time racer, Steven Petouvis. Petouvis managed to get himself to the third round in his first event and found himself facing the points leader. Very tall order for a first timer. Petouvis did not let it faze him and ran his race as all drivers should do. Savarese watched Petouvis leave the line and his own tree start to come down. As he launched, he was sure he was being conservative on the tree. Adrenaline must have gotten the best of him as he cut a bleeding red .489. Now he had to watch as Blass moved on. You already know the rest.

Going rounds

While not in the thick of the points chase, two other drivers in addition to Petouvis did very well. Bill Driber made it to the fourth round before being eliminated by Andy Kenopensky. Driber is a points racer who missed a few events and this was his best showing of the season. Kenopensky is not a points driver and did quite well before coming up against Blass in the semi-final. Perhaps Andy will join us in the points hunt for 2004. Congratulations to all three drivers for a good performance today. In addition Bob Sebrowski ended the points season on an upswing going to the semi's as well before losing to Perez. Sebrowski had a tough first half of the season but came on strong scoring three points or more in three of the last five races.

Today's event featured 64 Corvettes making first round.

Summary of driver Dial-In times

Time 10 11 12 13 14 15 Total
# 1 4 20 29 10 1 61
% 1.56% 6.25% 31.25% 45.31% 15.63% 1.56% 100%

Other Awards Handed Out at this Event

  • Event winner Edgar Perez went home with $250 cash, a $100 gift certificate from Pro Torque and the winner trophy.
  • Runner-up Joe Blass went home with $125 cash, a $50 gift certificate from Pro Torque and the runner-up trophy.
  • Semi-finalists included Bob Sebrowski and Andy Kenopensky who won $60 cash.
  • Edgar Perez and John PanuzzoEdgar Perez won the 'John Panuzzo Jr. Memorial' trophy and $50 cash presented by Team Panuzzo Racing for the best winning reaction time in the 1st round. Edgar Perez was quickest on the tree in the 1st round when his RT was .004.
  • Mark Jackson won the 'Almost Perfect Award' presented by Marotta Racing when he took himself out in the 1st round with the red light closest to .500. Mark Jackson's light was 0.00 and for that he earned a $25 Tech Card gift certificate usable on a future to Raceway Park courtesy of Lenny Marotta and Marotta Racing .
  • Edgar Perez won the 'Closest to Dial Award' Trophy presented by Boweryboy Racing by only .001 off his dial.
  • Ohh so Close Award of Zaino productsSheila Murchan won the 'Ohh so Close Award' presented by Zaino when she was edged out in the 1st round by the smallest margin of victory of .0011. That number is the MOV number on your time slip. Although she lost in the 1st round by the smallest Margin of Victory, Sheila Murchan earned a Zaino starter package that includes Z1, Z2, Z6, Z7 and a polish pad.
  • All winners of the first round were awarded a trophy sponsored by United Racing. With 64 cars making this event, United Racing gave out quite a few trophies or 1st Round Trophy Upgrade Program credits.

Next race

While this was our last points race, it was NOT the last race of the season. We race again on November 15th at 9 AM. We will have a full prize/cash non-points race featuring the first time ever Vette Doctors Quick 4 + 4. In addition, on November 22nd, qualifying Top 16 points drivers are invited back to race in the Top 16 $1,000 gamblers race and all drivers are invited to attend. Visit http://www.racewaypark.com to view the schedule.

East Coast Supercharging Corvette Challenge helps Toys for Teens & Tots

The 50/50 raffle was held at the track and the racers and spectators hopeful of winning the money while helping out a worthy organization put together $282. The winner received $141 while the other $141 was donated to the St. Peters church in Jersey City to Sister Grace for the Toys for Teens & Tots fund from the East Coast Supercharging Corvette Challenge. We thank Bob Mackey, yes John's brother, for making the rounds to collect the money. The 50/50 will be held at each of the ECS Corvette Challenges this year. To date we have donated $846 to the organization. Thank you for your continued support.

Corvette Challenge Multimedia

Pictures

Pictures by Mike Moran | Pictures by Chris Young | Danny's Pics | Pictures by Erin and George

We couldn't do it without our sponsors

The Corvette Challenge gives thanks to all of its supporting sponsors for whom without this series cannot be possible. Thanks go out to East Coast Supercharging | United Racing | The Vette Doctors | Team Panuzzo | Spectrum Voice & Data | Simple Man | EnviroLution | CCDV | Mufflex Performance | CFM Racing | Tortolani Racing | Boweryboy Racing | Marotta Racing | RMS Racing | Pro Torque | Zaino Bros | Perez Web Design |

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modified: December 31, 1969 - 7:00 pm




 
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