Camden Teel (age 6-9), Emma Elliott (10), Tyler Wied (11), Kayden Salter (12), Cole Foster (13), Jada Sexton (14), William Craft (15), and Braiden Chesleigh (16-17) outlasted the field in their respective age groups to claim top honors at the NHRA Jr. Drag Racing Western Conference Finals at Osage Tulsa Raceway Park. All are first-time champions at the event, one of two national events in the NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League.
After finishing as the runner-up last year, Teel was able to go the distance this time around, defeating Revin Mosley in the 6-9 class final round. Mosley made Teel’s job a little easier when he red-lighted, turning on the win light in Teel’s lane. Teel clocked a 12.263 (12.10 dial) on his victory pass.
Elliott left the starting line first in the 10-year-old class final, .030 to .051, and used the advantage to eke out a narrow .007-second win against 2020 champion Jenna Chesleigh, who was trying to join older brother Braiden in the winner’s circle. Elliott ran a 9.390 (9.31) to edge Chesleigh’s 9.076 (9.01).
Wied never trailed in the 11-year-old group title round against Logan Atkins. Wied was better at the Tree, .021 to .055, then posted an 8.919 (8.90) to defeat Atkins’ 8.947 (8.90).
The 12-year-old bracket final was decided on the starting line when Colby Wattenbarger just missed the Tree, going red by .001-second. Salter proved she would have been tough to beat anyway, cutting a near-perfect .001 light before easing her dragster to a 9.169 (8.90).
Eli Hager had a .010 reaction-time edge in the 13-year-old age-group title round, but he carried too much momentum on the top end and broke out with a 7.767 (7.93). That opened the door for Foster, who turned the win light with a 7.937 (7.90).
A red-light start was the deciding factor in the 14-year-old class final. This time Conner Elliott, who was hoping to join sister Emma as a champion, left too soon against Sexton. With the win light already on in her lane, Sexton posted an 8.065 (7.90) on her victory pass.
Division 2 runner Craft put together one of the best runs of any final round, pairing a .001 light with an 8.021 (8.00) to defeat former Western Conference Finals champ Jonathan McClain in the 15-year-old bracket. McClain ran right on his 7.91 dial, but it wasn’t enough to overcome a starting-line deficit of more than seven hundredths.
A reaction-time lead of more than a tenth helped lift Braiden Chesleigh to victory in the 16-17 age group. Chesleigh eased his entry to an 8.325 (8.16) to turn on the win light against Hayden Trumble, who finished with an 8.024 (7.96).
Osage Tulsa Raceway Park Team 2 won the team championship, edging Houston Raceway Park Team 1, 29 to 28. Ardmore Dragway (24 points), Houston Raceway Park Team 2 (23), and Mid-America Dragway Team 1 (21) rounded out the top five.
Special awards winners were Tulsa Raceway Park (Team Spirit), Mid-America Dragway (Best Appearing Track), Brylea Tilson (Best Appearing Car), and Adalynn Atkinson (Best Engineered Car). The Best Reaction Time awards went to Haven Moberly (age 6-9), Kenzie Wells (10), Taylor Freeman (11), Colby Wattenbarger (12), Stephen Skelton (13), Conner Elliott (14), Ryker Cromwell (15), Trent Augustyn (16-17). Drivers earning the Closest to Dial awards were Camden McDonald (6-9), Jenna Chesleigh (10), Noah Peyton (11), Mason Acosta (12), Alex Karst (13), Emma Wyman (14), Rylie Trumble (15), and Dylan Moody (16-17).
Camden Teel, Newcastle, Okla., 0.100, 12.263 (12.10 dial) def.
Revin Mosley, Montgomery, Texas, -0.021, 12.079 (12.01)
Emma Elliott, Yale, Okla., 0.030, 9.390 (9.31) def.
Jenna Chesleigh, Claremont, Calif., 0.051, 9.076 (9.01)
Tyler Wied, Neenah, Wis., 0.021, 8.919 (8.90) def.
Logan Atkins, Lewisville, Texas, 0.055, 8.947 (8.90)
Kayden Salter, Baytown, Texas, 0.001, 9.169 (8.90) def.
Colby Wattenbarger, Wayne, Okla., -0.001, 8.945 (8.94)
Cole Foster, Conroe, Texas, 0.024, 7.937 (7.90) def.
Eli Hager, Noble, Okla., 0.014, 7.767 (7.93)
Jada Sexton, Camila, Ga., 0.055, 8.065 (7.90) def.
Conner Elliott, Yale, Okla., -0.026, 7.930 (7.95)
William Craft, Melbourne, Fla., 0.001, 8.021 (8.00) def.
Jonathan McClain, Bosier City, La., 0.073, 7.912 (7.91)
Braiden Chesleigh, Claremont, Calif., 0.044, 8.325 (8.16) def.
Hayden Trumble, Pasadena, Texas, 0.170, 8.024 (7.96)