Aspiring young racers from Virginia took home the bulk of the hardware Friday and Saturday before weather issues forced officials to halt racing in the second annual Holiday Junior Jam at Rockingham Dragway without determining a Main Event winner.
The purse for the uncompleted Main Event which featured junior racers from 18 states and Canada was divided among those still in competition when racing was suspended.
Virginia drivers won three of the seven preliminary races including the 10-13 Age Group in which Jorden Denny of Manassas, Va., forced favored Carson “Big Check” Emmett of Cedar Bluff, Ala., into a final round breakout foul.
Denny grabbed a narrow .017 of a second advantage at the start and was .044 off his target at the finish. Meanwhile, Emmett, a two-time winner of the NHRA’s Eastern Conference ET Finals (2015 and 2018) and two-time winner at Rockingham’s 2018 Midwest Super Series event, went under his target time by .010 of a second.
En route to the finals, Emmett beat Shelby Roy of Seward, Alaska in the fourth round. Roy, Cale Irvine of Anchorage and Braiden Owen of Palmer, Alaska, shared long distance honors, competing in the event for the first time.
In the 14-18 age group, Ben Spotts of Douglassville, Pa., beat Jenna Osborne of Fort Wayne, Ind., in the final, after Rockingham track champion Connor Caulder of St. Pauls was ousted in the round of five by Ryan Leasure of Niles, Ohio.
Carter Jackson of Cartersville, Va., won the 6-9 age group title on Friday and a day later Landon Palmer of Scottsville gave Virginia its third title when Gabe Roachford of California, Ky., was guilty of a foul start in the 7.90 Index final.
Zach Parlett of Charlotte Hall, Md., Jackson Summers of Franklin, Ky., and Zackary Case of Winder, Ga., won the other Index races. Parlett forced Brandon Gallderise of Powhatan, Va., into a breakout foul in the 8.90 final, Summers got a narrow .017 of a second win over Georgian Corey Reed in 11.90 and Case sped past Kole Paone of Galloway, N.J., in 13.90.
Logan Westmoreland of Greenwood, S.C., was the last survivor in the special Golf Cart Race that followed Friday’s regular program and attracted a field of 91 entrants including defending Main Event champion Samuel Peterson of Martin, Mich., who finished as the runner-up.