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Tom Martino Ignites 2021 Season with Elite Top Dragster Win at PDRA Summer Shootout

Former Top Dragster world champion Tom Martino of Martino Motorsports fought through a tough field of PDRA Lucas Oil Elite Top Dragster competitors this past weekend at the 2021 PDRA Summer Shootout at Virginia Motorsports Park to bring home another victory for the City of Champions’ famed mantle in Youngstown, Ohio.

Even with tricky weather conditions and hot track temperatures dealt throughout the rare three-day event, Martino ran right on his dial-in three of his four rounds of Lucas Oil Elite Top Dragster eliminations taking out championship contenders Peter Maduri, Larry Roberts, Chase Beverly, and Nick Hamilton along the way.

“Hats off to the entire PDRA staff for their endless hard work and efforts throughout the course of this event,” said Ryan Martino. “We saw temperatures near the 100-degree mark for the first time this season, along with track temperatures well over 150 degrees. After severe thunderstorms washed out eliminations Saturday evening, the PDRA team dug deep into the early Sunday morning hours to ensure we would have the safest and best racing surface on the planet for eliminations on Sunday. Our win on Sunday afternoon wouldn’t have been possible without those efforts!”

Martino’s all-Ohio final round against Nick Hamilton was bittersweet.

“We’ve raced against Nick for well over 15 years and always look forward to spending time with him and his family on and off the track,” said Tom Martino . “We’ve always talked about matching up one day in a final round of eliminations and yesterday it finally happened. It’s always great to shake hands with your competition before and after a run, but yesterday we experienced a very memorable moment at top end following our matchup in the finals. As we saw throughout the weekend in other classes of competition, our relationship with the Hamilton family truly represents what the PDRA is all about, one big racing family regardless the outcome.”

Martino’s win narrows the gap towards his goal of adding another world championship to his resume at the end of the 2021 PDRA race season.

“We look forward to competing at Maple Grove Raceway for the next scheduled event on the 2021 PDRA Tour,” Tom added. “We’ve raced at Maple Grove Raceway since the 1990s and hope to utilize that experience to our advantage to help bring home another event win for our team this season.”

The Martinos would like to thank the following associates for keeping their race program on the road to success throughout the year: NGK / NTK Performance, Salt Life, Lucas Oil Products, K&N Filters, Mickey Thompson Performance Wheels & Tires, Strange Engineering, Sonnax Performance, XS Power Batteries, Meguiar’s, DJ Safety, Fel-Pro Performance, CFM Performance Carburetors, Rossler Transmissions, Mac Sherrill Race Cars, PAR Racing Engines, Pier Graphics, Haus Auto Group, Applied Racing Components (ARC), and R&R Autobody.

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Since 2005, DI has informed, inspired and educated drag racers from every walk of the racing life - weekend warrior and street/strip enthusiasts to pro-level doorslammer and Top Fuel racers. From award-winning writing and photography to binge-worthy videos to electric live events, DI meets hundreds of thousands of racers where they live, creating the moments that create conversations.