Factory Stock racer Jay Dold purchased Jeff Schmell's Mach 1 for racing the '08 season. We remember Jay hot-lapping the car at Bradenton to get seat time. At Bowling Green, Jay put together a solid effort with an 11.41/118-mph qualifying pass. Jay hung around the 11.40 range during eliminations, and those times were enough to get him to the final against Tommy Godfrey, but with Tommy running bottom 11s, Jay will have to wait till 2009 to get another shot at victory.
In Modular Muscle, Reggie Burnett Jr. ended his NMRA season the way he started it, winning the event. After starting the season with a well-earned win at Bradenton, Reggie came to Bowling Green hoping to wrap up his season on a high note. But on the way, it seemed like the universe was trying to keep him and his father, Reggie Burnett Sr., from making it to the race. After surviving three different breakdowns, a wrong turn, and having to hunt for gas at 6:30 in the morning, the Burnett crew pulled into Beech Bend ready to race. When eliminations came on Sunday, everything seemed to be going Reggie's way. After an easy first-round win, Reggie was set to face off against his father until Senior's car broke at the line. Then in the third round, Reggie cut a bad light (0.103 to a 0.059) and Jeff Stafford jumped out to a healthy lead. But Reggie made up the distance, ultimately running a 11.119 on a 11.10 dial-in to Stafford's 12.783 on a 12.71 dial-in for the win. After a fourth-round bye, Reggie lined up against Brad Elander's '98 Cobra, but Elander fell asleep at the line, cutting a 0.157 light to Reggie's 0.050. Braking hard through the finish line, Reggie came out on top for the Bowling Green win.
Winning Bowling Green meant more than just winning for Stacy Estel. Up until 2008, Stacy had run every event on the NMRA circuit, along with his wife, Sarah. After starting the season out running Paul Svinicki's V-6-powered S197 at Bradenton, Stacy stopped racing to help Sarah in her battle with thyroid cancer. On June 12, Sarah was pronounced cancer free, and plans were made to run the rest for the season. However Stacy's stepfather was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and family being more important, Stacy stepped away from racing again to lend a hand. He was going to skip Bowling Green for his stepfather's treatment until he received a phone call from friend and former teammate Lew Workman the Sunday before the event. One of Stacy's former crewmembers, Ronnie Thompson, had been killed in a four-wheeler accident the night before. Stacy and his stepfather talked things over, and Stacy decided to race at Bowling Green and win in honor of Ronnie. The weekend started out great for Stacy, who took the number-one qualifier spot for the Open Comp class, but it got a little hairy after the second round of eliminations when Stacy hurt his transmission. Keeping his fingers crossed and talking to his mother and stepfather between rounds, Stacy kept things going all the way to winning the Open Comp class at Bowling Green. On his win, Stacy had this to say: "I want to dedicate the win to Rusty Dozer and Ronnie Thompson, may they rest in peace. I also would like to dedicate it to my stepdad, Chuck, and my close friend Lew, may they keep fighting and be able to overcome the illnesses they are experiencing. Special thanks to my wife, Sarah; Paul and Rhonda Svinicki; Paul and Shelly Rosner; Peter Rogowski; Ron Cates; Brian Dow; SPEC Clutches; and JPC."