Motivated Martel scores third win of the season

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					                             COMP — 21st annual O’Reilly NHRA Mid-South Nationals presented by Pennzoil, Sept. 26-28, Memphis

                             Motivated Martel scores third win of the season




by Phil Burgess                                            (Above) Arnie Martel, far lane, drove his Speedco-backed
                                                           B/Street Roadster to his third national event title of the

A    s a successful businessman in the land-
     development and home- and condo-building
business, Arnie Martel knows a thing or two about
                                                           season by defeating Kevin Self’s F/EA Bantam in the final
                                                           round. (Right) Martel, left, and his crew also have a
                                                           national event runner-up and a divisional win and runner-
motivation, and the Massachusetts motorsports              up to their credit this season.
maven certainly knows how to channel it.
   Already revved up to make good after giving away        John Crupi and his wife, Karen, had been killed in a
a winning run at the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals trying       car accident.
to protect his index, Martel got another jolt of               “It was just a horrible deal; my heart goes out to
inspiration late into the NHRA Carolinas Nationals         them and John’s brother, Carl, who is a partner of
when he learned that Anthony Crupi, the 22-year-old        mine,” said Martel. “I found out during the Charlotte
son of associate business partner and close friend         event and just put my head down and kept racing,
                                                           but Memphis, this was for Anthony.”
                                                               Martel dedicated his third win of the season in the      cutting lights of .032 and .018 against Todd
 About the winning car                                     Speedco-backed B/SR in the young man’s memory,               Patterson and Kevin Self, both of whom had been
 A rnie Martel originally purchased the Suncoast Race      adding another Wally to the mantel and in another entry      heavily penalized by the CIC.
 Cars-built roadster from Allan and Todd Patterson.        in the most memorable season of his racing career.               In the final, Martel quickly caught Self’s handicap
 Power comes from a 316-cid Patterson engine topped            Martel may well have had an angel on his shoulder        start, and both drivers throttled back with Martel
 with CFE heads and manifold and Bob Book-prepped          as he survived two .05-second Competition Index Control      making it official via a (-.43) 7.89 to (-.28) 8.23 count.
 carbs. Power is transferred through an A-1 torque         penalties — in the first and third rounds — that had him         “I had six or seven [hundredths] in the bag, but I
 converter and ProTrans transmission. Stef’s, Jesel, and   down a tenth of a second heading into the semifinals.        didn’t want to have to use it,” said Martel. “I
 Holley also contribute parts to the winning race car.         “In the first round [against Chase Williams], I          thought he might have had one or two left. I figured
     Martel also acknowledged his appreciation to          burped it a couple of times and knew I had plenty of         if I had a good light, I could put a wheel on him and
 Larry Allen and his wife, Betty; crewmembers Billy        room, so I got all the way out of it and coasted             stay there and be safe. He had a late light, and once
 Nies, Peter, Sal, and Sam at Biondo Racing Products       across the finish line and still went .55 under,” said       I put a car or two on him, he lifted and gave up. My
 (“for their continuing support and friendship and         Martel. “In the third round, I was really late [.114         hat’s off to Kevin. He’s a gentleman, and I had fun
 their great products”); Mark and Jeff Clark, Paul         against Indy runner-up Adam Hickey]. I knew I                racing him in the final.”
 “Torch” LeSage, Scott Forthmann, Steve Bowman,            missed it and had to make it up on the other end.                Although Martel’s recent national event hot
 Mike Barrett, and Don Coonce of Speedco; Charlie              “After that round, my good friend, ‘Torch’ [Paul         streak came after he had used up his allotted points-
 Taylor; Carolyn Ashbee and David Farwell at               LeSage], got me a pair of Oakley’s driving classes,          scoring national events, he still has a great shot at
 Goodyear; Fred Simmonds at GM; Marv Ripes and             and it helped me get killer on the Tree. It changed          winning the Division 2 championship and finishing
 Adam Bowdish at A-1; Dave at Pro Trans; Ringer’s          the whole filament of the bulb.”                             as high as third in the national standings.
 Gloves; Dan Fletcher and Rick Braun; Bob Gerdes at            Martel returned to form for the final two rounds,            “It’s a shame I can’t count those national event wins,
 Circus Paint; John Partridge at Bullet Cams; Joe                                                                                                 but with the season I’ve had,
 Santangelo; Jim Boudreau; Anthony and Malinda                                                                                                    it’s hard to complain,” he said.
 Bertozzi; Bob Kaiser; Rod and Chris Butcher
 (“congratulations to Chris on his first win”); Jack                                                                                            The key race: “It wasn’t one
 Beckman (“thanks for your winning ways rubbing off                                                                                             of my races,” explained Martel.
 on me”); Kenny Koretsky at Nitro Fish (“for the free
 hat; I started winning as soon as you gave it to me”);                                                                                         In the semifinals, Martel had to
 Vic Santos; Tom Boucher Racing Engines; Dean                                                                                                   duel with low qualifier Todd
 Ribero; Clint Neff; Ed McDevitt, of New Hampshire;                                                                                             Patterson, who won this event in
 Bob and Patrick Kelleher; John DiBartolomeo (“for all                                                                                          1989. Patterson already had lost
 of the exposure”); and “the NHRA tech and safety                                                                                               two-tenths to the Competition
 people and everyone who helps put on these races.”                                                                                             Index Control and couldn’t match
                                                                                                                                                Martel’s .50-under pace.
52 ✦ National DRAGSTER
                                                                                                                                                             Comp Qualifying
                                                                                                                                                         (Top 16 of 32 first-round winners)
                                                                                                                            1. Todd Patterson, Augusta, Kan. (D/A ’08 Cobalt). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                    7.667 (-0.693)
                                                                                                                            2. Kevin Self, Caddo, Okla. (F/EA ’32 Bantam) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                 7.997 (-0.653)
                                                                                                                            3. Peter Biondo, Maspeth, N.Y. (I/SMA ’08 Cobalt). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                    9.091 (-0.649)
                                                                                                                            4. Chad Voges, St. Peters, Mo. (K/A ’32 Bantam) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                   7.903 (-0.647)
                                                                                                                            5. Bruno Massel, Woodbridge, Ill. (DD/AT ’08 Cobalt) . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                      7.284 (-0.646)
                                                                                                                            6. Brian Browell, Lafayette, Ind. (D/D) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                           7.179 (-0.641)
                                                                                                                            7. Arnie Martel, Tewksbury, Mass. (B/SR ’34 Chevy). . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                       7.789 (-0.641)
                                                                                                                            8. Glen Treadwell, Sorrento, Fla. (F/EA ’23-T Ford) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .                                   8.020 (-0.630)
                                                                                                                            9. Scott Benham, La Grange, Texas (E/SM ’05 Sunf
				
DOCUMENT INFO
Description: Already revved up to make good after giving away a winning run at the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals trying to protect his index, Martel got another jolt of inspiration late into the NHRA Carolinas Nationals when he learned that Anthony Crupi, the 22-year-old son of associate business partner and close friend John Crupi and his wife, Karen, had been killed in a car accident. Self, a winner earlier this year at the Jegs NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals and most recently the low qualifier at the O'Reilly Super Start Batteries NHRA Fall Nationals in Dallas, defeated Steve Kent, recent Jegs NHRA Northern SPORTSnationals champ Robert Bailey, Paul Pittman, and multi-time world champ Jeff Taylor to reach the final round, the second of his career.
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