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Southern Swing Kicks Off 2014


The Hanna Motorsports team started off the season down south this year in March.  Both funny cars were in Immokalee, FL for the IHRA Sonic Rush Tour event which also featured Richard Hutchins’ Chuck Wagon wheelstander and Mark Smith’s twin engine jet fire truck as well as fireworks.  The funny cars haven’t been out since their last race in Maryland last November.  Like riding a bike, they didn’t forget how to get it done.  Rich and Ken split the first two rounds setting up for a tie breaker final pass.  Rich got off the line first and never looked back posting a 3.93 best @ 202mph.  Ken was close behind with a 3.97 @ 204mph (high speed of the meet).  The rig was loaded up and headed across state for the next event.
  Palm Beach International Raceway (PBIR) hosted the Super Chevy Show April 5-6.  Rich’s GOJO machine was matched up with Sam Ives’ Tulsa Heat Wave jet f/c. Sam’s car was the 3rd center drive car built by Bob Jinkins back in the late 90’s, following the innovation of Al Hanna’s machine built in ’93.  Unfortunately, the Tulsa heat Wave found trouble all weekend.  Rich had four solid runs over 2 days posting a 5.83 @ 273mph best Saturday night.  The show was lined with a great swap meet, car show and certainly tons of race machines as well.  Definitely a successful weekend all around.   The final race of the “southern swing” was April 12-13 at Memphis International Raceway’s Super Chevy Event (PBIR’s sister track).  Like PBIR, the swap meet and car show were a huge success, and the racing action also included 8 pro mods and Danny O’Day’s Superwinch wheelstander. Ken was back in the other lane this time and we were also joined by teammate Jill Canuso for her first outing of the year in the Queen of Diamonds jet dragster. The funny cars put on a great display Saturday, splitting the two runs.  Ken posted a .011 r/t for a hole shot win rd. 2.  However, Sunday’s runs were to be unmatched!  Ken grabbed the first win of the day breaking the beam .0025 seconds before Rich.  If that wasn’t close enough, Rich came back to win the final run of the weekend.  Rich: .027 r/t 5.838@272, Ken: .024 r/t 5.842@276mph! Rich grabbed the stripe first by .0018.  Two awesome races.  Jill had a minor electrical problem her first run but it was quickly fixed by the team Saturday.  She made four runs total with a 5.48@289mph best.  A strong tailwind wasn’t enough to stop the 3 car team from wowing a huge crowd on hand!