Vantine upsets McBride in ManCup Top Fuel Final

By: For the Daily Journal
Contributed photo Dave Vantine, pictured above, upset Larry “Superman” McBride to win his second consecutive ManCup title at the DME Nationals Rockingham Dragway on Sunday.

ROCKINGHAM — After winning his second straight ManCup event and extending his point lead over the biggest name in Top Fuel motorcycle racing, Dave Vantine might be rethinking his plan to sell the 240 mile-an-hour two-wheel hybrid he rode into the winners’ circle Sunday afternoon at Rockingham Dragway.

Vantine’s plan coming into the DME Nationals was to sell his current bike and move on to something a little fresher and faster in his bid to unseat Larry “Spiderman” McBride as ManCup Champion.

However, after beating McBride in Sunday’s final, just as he did in the season-opener, the Hamilton, New York native might not be quite as anxious to climb onto something brand new and unproven.

Although McBride qualified No. 1 at 6.085 and got the starting-line advantage in the Top Fuel final, Vantine ran him down at the finish line — stopping the quarter mile timers in 6.224 seconds.

McBride, the winnngest rider in the history of the unlimited category and winner of 18 series titles, trailed at 6.360 in his failed bid to win at The Rock for the third straight year.

On a day of upsets, Tyler Wilson (Walnut Cove) took down reigning AMRA and ADRL Pro Fuel champ Janette Thornley (Statesville) in the opening round and then beat current ManCup champion and 2018 point leader Preston Bartlett (St. Augustine, Fla.) in the final.

Other winners included veteran Paul Gast (Grand Island, N.Y.) in Pro Mod; Annibal Merced (Concord) in Real Street; Alan Fields (Climax) who upset Tony Mullen (Bradenton, Fla.) to win the Ultra 460 title; Ralph Medrano Jr. (Davie, Fla.) in Top Gas; and Dusty Brazel (Norman Park, Ga.), the weekend’s only double winner with triumphs in Crazy 8s and Street ET.

The ET bracket winners included Robin Procopio (Wake Forest), who turned back the bid of Chris Roeise with his perfect .000 reaction time in the final round. Roeise didn’t leave empty-handed, though, picking up a $500 bonus as the rider of the “no box” bike that advanced the furthest in eliminations.

Also picking up ManCup hardware were Brian Dale (Dalton, Ga.), Shaun Bizette (Ventress, La.), Keith Browne (Semora), Spencer Claycomb (Rockfort, Tenn.), Jason Herron (West Columbia, S.C.), “Smoken Joe” Peterson (Wilmington), Vance Houdyshell (Vero Beach, Fla.) and Chris Connell.

Among those who did not reach the winners’ circle was Ohio’s Jeremy Teasley who, coming in, had won more major motorcycle events at The Rock than anyone in history. This time, though, he had to settle for runner-up hoors — in three different classes, Pro Street, Top Gas and Super Comp.

Final-round results from Sunday’s BME Nationals at Rockingham Dragway:

TOP FUEL — Dave Vantine (.083, 6.224, 225.75 mph) def. Larry McBride (.034, 6.360, 237.17 mph)

PRO FUEL — Tyler Wilson (.107, 7.408, 168.16 mph) def. Preston Bartlett (.134, 7.464, 173.12 mph)

PRO MOD — Paul Gast (.028, 4.110, 171.08 mph) def. Shane Eperjesi (.049, 4.289, 164.11 mph)

PRO STREET — Chris Connell (.028, 6.945, 212.06 mph) def. Jeremy Teasley (.096, 6.916, 216.51 mph)

REAL STREET — Anibal Merced (.021, 8.083, 129.39 mph) def. Spencer Claycomb (.075, 8.519, 148.33 mph)

PRO OPEN — Keith Browne (.039, 8.473, 141.85 mph) def. Bobby Lovingood (.105, 8.431, 167.03 mph)

ULTRA 460 (4.60 target) — Alan Fields (.027, 4.615, 138.07 mph) def. Tony Mullen (.029, 4.653, 150.48 mph)

TOP GAS (8.20 target) — Ralph Medrano Jr. (.024, 8.271, 164.63 mph) def. Jeremy Teasley (.019, 8.277, 172.85 mph)

CRAZY 8S (8.880 target) — Dusty Brazel (.174, 8.857, 147.28 mph) def. Randy Day (.128, 8.822 breakout on a 148.53 mph)

SUPER COMP (8.900 target) — Spencer Claycomb (.007, 8.985, 144.83 mph) def. Jeremy Teasley (.029, 8.982, 150.08 mph)

STREET FIGHTER (9.500 target) — Jason Herron (.010, 9.508, 135.77 mph) def. Barry Pryer (.090, 9.474 breakout, 141.67 mph)

SUNDAY V-TWIN — “Smoken Joe” Peterson (.084, 10.191 on a 10.100, 118.11 mph) def. Brannon White (.139, 10.034 on a 9.700, 120.64 mph)

SATURDAY V-TWIN — Vance Houdyshell (.057, 9.911 on a 9.900, 133.80 mph) def. Brannon White (.089, 9.732 on a 9.700, 129.05 mph)

SATURDAY PRO ET — Brian Dale, Dalton (.025, 8.942 on an 8.970, 136.72 mph) def. Ralph Medrano Jr. (.017, 8.184 breakout on an 8.220, 162.35 mph)

SUNDAY STREET ET — Dusty Brazel (.043, 8.944 on an 8.880, 217.88 mph) def. Bob Burt (.066, 10.744 breakout on a 10.750, 119.67 mph)

SATURDAY STREET — Shaun Bizette (.063, 9.063 on a 9.020, 142.32 mph) def. Janrei Thompson (.003, 9.306 on a 9.200, 145.52 mph)

Contributed photo Dave Vantine, pictured above, upset Larry “Superman” McBride to win his second consecutive ManCup title at the DME Nationals Rockingham Dragway on Sunday.
https://www.yourdailyjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_dave.jpgContributed photo Dave Vantine, pictured above, upset Larry “Superman” McBride to win his second consecutive ManCup title at the DME Nationals Rockingham Dragway on Sunday.

For the Daily Journal