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Demke and Team Peen Taste Sweet Victory at the Winternationals

Chris Demke and his Peen Rite/801 Racing Top Alcohol Dragster Win the O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Winternationals in Pomona

Pomona, CA, February 17, 2012 --( Chris Demke and the Peen Rite Top Alcohol Dragster Team went to the 2012 NHRA race season opener with a hunger. Their Winternationals victory turned out to be a feast. The sugared treat at the end was Demke’s final round 5.281 @ 270.32. It was low ET of the event, and that has Demke and the Maddern Racing Team planning for the future.

“The win was so sweet, and the 5.28 was icing on the cake,” said Demke. “There is no better way to start a season than with a win, and we have high hopes.”

The race did not start out on such of a high point. Qualifying was a cat and mouse game with the weather related tune-up decisions. The short field and cooler temperatures was an invitation to turn the knobs up and go for the top time. The car was set on kill, but the track had other ideas. Ending up in the #4 qualifying position, the Peen Rite/801 Racing’s future was not set.

First round tire shake against Garrett Bateman made the run interesting. Demke traded the lead back and forth, but pulled out the win. In the second round of eliminations, Demke was paired against Brooks Brown, who was being tuned by former Maddern Racing crewmember and good friend Adam Rhoades. The decision was made to turn the screws up, and the resulting 5.31 @ 270.97 gave them the victory. Third round’s opponent, Megan McKernan, had the car to beat all weekend. After his burnout, Demke went to put the car in reverse and there was nothing. Demke started waving his hands as much as he could with the arm restraints. Crew members Ronald Mann, Kevin Watson, and Mike Demke got the car back to the starting line but time was running out. In their haste, the car was not lined up quite right in the groove. In the nick of time, the green light flashed and Demke was headed for the wall. A quick pedal job got the car back on track, but tire shake was also an issue. Once again Demke got on and off the throttle. Near the finish line Demke thought his day was over and got off the throttle. In a split second decision, he got back in it to make it a race. In the shutdown area, Demke thought he had lost because he had not seen the win light. When the Safety Safari crew waved him over to the ESPN cameras, only then did Demke realize he had won the round. Now it was on to the finals against Larry Miersch.

”Having been to eight finals without a win, I know to never take anyone lightly,” said Demke. “We had confidence, but the car started off with some tire shake.”

A close race at the start, Demke blasted down the quarter mile to a low elapsed time of 5.281 to take the Winternationals event win.

“It was a great win, and all what you hope for,” said crewchief and car owner Jerry Maddern. “I expect to win, but it was a tough fight.

The race victory was shared with a few honored guests. Tommy Parish and John Hill of associate sponsor 801 Racing were lucky enough to enjoy a “winner, winner, BBQ chicken dinner” celebration with the team.

“It was great to get to know the families after a fantastic win,” said Hill. “They are fun group and we are super happy to be part of the team.”

Chris Demke and his Peen Rite/801 Racing Team will savor this sweet victory only for a short time. Their next race will be February 23-24 in Phoenix, AZ at the regional event. Until then, the taste of chicken, sweet icing, and a Winternationals win be with them all.


About Peen Rite - Your source for quality shot peening, glass bead, and abrasive blasting services for over 45 years. We provide low cost solutions, high volume capacity, and a superior level of quality control. Equipped with many specialty machines designed to handle the cleaning and surface preparation for a wide variety of work pieces. Peen Rite gives you the ability to stay within your job cost estimation.

We believe true happiness comes from blazing down the blacktop with the pedal to the metal and our hair on fire. The whiter our knuckles get, the better. If it were up to us, cars wouldn't even have brakes, just two gas pedals. It's this never-ending need for speed that drives everything we do. We spend countless hours in the lab and lying awake at night plotting and planning how to get more speed by any means possible. After decades of research and innovation, we've developed a complete line of performance and car care products designed to ensure that your ride lives up to its potential on the street and on the track. We know what you want. We got what you need. We are 801 Racing. For more information on 801 racing, please visit:
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801 Racing
John Hill

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