PROTORQUE racers had a truly outstanding outing at the 27th Annual Haltech World Cup Finals presented by Wiseco race with four major class wins and two new incredible world records.
Mark Benston Jr., Brett LaSala, Ronny Rhodes, Patrick Estevez Jr., Keith Rhea, and Martin Connelley all demonstrated what hard work and tenacity can do when coupled with ProTorque’s revolutionary converters and the unparalleled cool and dry atmospheric conditions found over the weekend of November 1-5 at Maryland International Raceway.
In the highly competitive Outlaw vs Extreme class, Mark Benston Jr. of Delaware reset the Outlaw Drag Radial elapsed time world record four separate times throughout the weekend with a ProTorque Pro EV1 converter on board. Qualified third with his turbocharged 2002 Chevrolet Camaro thanks to a record-setting 5.752 at 254.14 mph run, Benston was on a tear as he continued to improve throughout eliminations. After securing a first-round win, Benston clicked off a cool 5.733 at 254.76 mph hit in round two. In the semi-finals, his 5.713 at 252.00 mph blast put him through to the finals where Benston bested John Odom with a monumental 5.697 at 254.66 mph pass, finalizing not only his overall win but also obliterating the world record once more.
Brett LaSala, who has had a standout season with plenty of wins and records already collected, added yet another accolade with his performance in Warriors vs Tres Cuarto. Utilizing a ProTorque Pro EV1 converter, the Florida-based racer and his twin turbo “Snot Rocket” 2012 Ford Mustang qualified fifth in the 32-car field with a 6.510 at 224.88 mph trip. Next, LaSala earned five straight round wins in eliminations, capping things off with the final against Jamil Negron when the win light came on in LaSala’s lane next to an impressive posted run of 6.486 at 225.33 mph.
Keith Rhea, too, had a tremendous showing in Warriors vs Tres Cuarto as the Pennsylvania-based racer reset the Mod Motor non-Pro Mod elapsed time world record with his ProTorque EV1 converter-equipped and turbocharged Wonder Racing 2004 Ford Mustang twice in one run; in the eighth mile, Rhea ran 4.05 seconds and completed the quarter mile in 6.19 seconds at 225 mph all with a stock block and stock head-equipped 5.4-liter engine.
Meanwhile, with nearly forty entries, the Wild Street class was dominated by Ronny Rhodes. Running a ProTorque U9 converter, the Delaware native’s nitrous-infused 1968 Chevrolet Camaro went 7.388 at 163.53 mph during qualifying to land in the number four position. Rhodes went significantly quicker and faster in round one of eliminations as his 7.263 at 188.73 pass propelled him to round two. There, Rhodes advanced again and repeated his performance in the semi-finals. Finally, in the last pairing, Rhodes staged with Fran Schatz in the opposing lane. The lights came down and Rhodes delivered a huge 7.233 at 181.69 mph effort – his best of the weekend – and captured the win as well.
Maryland’s Patrick Estevez Jr. scored a win in Super Street with his ProTorque U9 converter along for the ride. Despite qualifying fourteenth of forty with a pass of 7.886 at 169.72 mph, Estevez’s Coyote-powered 2013 Ford Mustang ran flawlessly when it mattered most in eliminations. Five times in a row, Estevez not only turned the win light on in his lane but also improved his numbers until he dropped the mic with his best performance of the event, 7.689 at 167.84 mph, and took a well-deserved trip to the winner’s circle.
Finally, Martin Connelley wrapped things up with a strong runner-up finish in Street Fighter. Connelley, who hails from Kentucky and also trusts a ProTorque U9 converter, has been nearly unstoppable in the small tire radial racing world with his 1990 Ford Mustang. Connelley did quite well for himself in Maryland, too, translating his number four qualifier run into a final round appearance with a best effort of 6.864 at 199.58 mph along the way.
For racers wanting to win and set records, there’s simply no better choice than a torque converter from the ones who have been leading the way for decades… ProTorque!