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Zinzilieta, Taylor, Schmall and Hawk Jr. Win Their Share of $110,000 Purse at SFG Big Fun at Tucson Dragway

In typical SFG fashion, the inaugural SFG Big Fun event presented by Summit Racing Equipment at Tucson Dragway ended in a major success. Despite rain delays and power outages pushing the finals of all four races to Saturday, four winners were crowned last night and took home a combined winners purse of $110,000. 

Curtis Zinzilieta took an impressive win with his footbrake entry in the FTI $50,000-to-win race, Chuck Hawk Jr. won the first $5,000-to-win No Box Shootout, Andy Schmall won the second No Box Shootout, and Jeff Taylor won the Summit Racing Equipment $50,000-to-win race.

FTI $50,000-To-Win Race One

In the quarterfinals of the first $50,000-to-win race, three door cars and four dragsters were left standing. In the round of 7:

  • Curtis Zinzilieta took out Brad Pierce. The two opponents were .084 and .082 on the tree respectively, and Zinzilieta capitalized on their near matching (albeit late) lights by going dead-on with a four to take the round win

  • Michael Pennington took a bye to the semi-final round 

  • Peeps Pennington (kin to Michael) went .005 red to give the round win to Duston Wurtz

  • Kris Whitfield was .002 red, giving the round win to Marko Perivolaris

In the semi-finals:

  • Zinzilieta was .013 on the tree and ran a 6.067 on his 6.06 dial-in to beat Michael Pennington’s .024 light, and .008 above the dial-in run

  • Wertz was .030 on the tree and .002 above for the win after Perivolaris turned it .002 red

Curtis Zinzilieta

In the finals, Zinzilieta took home the $50,000 payday after Wertz went .002 red on the tree.

“It feels awesome, this is the best win of my life,” said Zinzilleta in the winners circle. “I just made one pass at a time, and had a lot of people here to help who paid attention behind the scenes. She wasn’t able to make it this weekend, but [I’d like to thank] my wife who’s the most important thing, and is a big supporter of me in the car. I’ve got some good friends and a brother back home who made this car happen”, explains Zinzelleta with his $50,000 check in hand.

$5,000 No Box-Shootout Race One

Chuck Hawk Jr. was on kill in his footbrake machine as he won Friday’s No-Box Shootout before racing to a runner-up finish in Saturday’s No-Box Shootout. 

“This is awesome, I’m glad they brought this stuff out to the west coast. Big thanks to Kyle and SFG, we really appreciate it,” said Hawk while holding his winner and runner-up checks.

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Chuck Hawk Jr.

$5,000 No Box-Shootout Race Two

In the final of the second No-Box Shootout, Andy Schmall was .026 on the tree and went 6.182 on his 6.13 dial-in to take the $5,000 win over Hawk Jr. (who was .059 on the tree and .049 above his 7.37 dial-in).

“It feels pretty good, especially on a big stage like this,” said Schmall. “It’s awesome, anytime we can get big money on the west coast, we try to attend. I’d like to thank AJ [Ashe] and Kyle [Riley] and SFG for bringing big money out here, Summit [Racing Equipment] for supporting the event, Fastronics, Digital Delay, G&S Dyno in Minnesota, and my wife Jamie.”

Andy Schmall

Summit Racing Equipment $50,000 Race Two

As temperatures dropped to the 50s in the Arizona desert, quarterfinalist (round 7 contestants) of the second $50,000-to-win race included two doorcars and three dragsters. In the round of 5:

  • Hank Mulligan ran 5.287 on his 5.27 dial after an .018 light to defeat Alex Sanden who was .019 on the tree and ran 6.089 on his 6.05 dial

  • Val Torres Jr. took a bye into the semis

  • Taylor was .003 and dead on (.003 package) to defeat Chris Lindsay who was mathematically ineligible after a competitive .013 light

In the semi-finals:

  • Torres Jr. was .028 on the tree and ran 4.698 on his 4.69 dial to take the win over Mulligan who was .037 up front, and ran 5.279 on a 5.27 dial-in

  • Taylor took the bye-run to the finals

In the finals, at about 9:45pm, Taylor was .016 on the tree and .009 above his dial-in for the win over Torres Jr. who was .017 on the tree and .018 above his dial-in to close out the weekend.

This story was originally published on November 24, 2019. Drag Illustrated

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