In Modified, Humphries was on a collision course with class-dominator Paul Efantis and his Lucas Oil Solara. Efantis whiffed the qualifier but his 12.74 was still good enough for fifth in the eight-car field. A 7.317 in round one proved all was well with Efantis and the Toyota. Fortune soon turned on Humphries who had just ran a swift 7.377. At the big end, while Humphries was out of the car, the parachute of another car got caught in the Lexus' wheelie bars and pushed it nose-first into a pole.
Crew members from Titan Motorsports and a few other teams rallied to help Humphries and his RaceRedi Motorsports Team fix the car for the semifinals. The car pulled into the burnout box with a tape job that would make NASCAR crew chiefs proud. Looking like a survivor of the Big One at Talladega, the GS300 lined up with archrival Paul Efantis.
At the green it was a dead-heat off the line. At half-track Efantis was ahead by a few feet. About that time Humphries began to lose the handle on the Lexus and he hit the traps struggling for control. The car eventually went into Efantis' lane and clipped the wall. Humphries walked away unhurt but the Lexus is in need of repairs.
Efantis, with his 7.419 marched into the finals against Sean Glazar and the Extreme Motorsports Talon. Glazar's best run of the event was an 8.80 at 163 mph so his fate was sealed. Efantis dropped a 7.449 and collected the Wally.
Strangeness ensued in round one of eliminations for Pro RWD. First up was Matt Hartford against Stephan Papadakis. Steph rolled through the beams early and popped something in the driveline while Hartford got off the line but popped something in his driveline before passing the tree. The next pair was Carlos Montano and the Pepe Loco MX-6 against Brad Personett and the Titan Mail Order Celica. The Celica was a no-show so Pepe got the pass.
Adam Saruwatari was back in NHRA competition after an absence of more than a year. He made the most of his opportunity blasting a 7.040 at 197 mph which easily covered Manny Cruz's 7.94 in his "new for 2005" 1990 Nissan Sentra. Ara Arslanian got the crowd pumped by dropping a 6.805 at 202 mph on Matt Scranton. Arslanian followed that up with a 6.92 run to defeat Saruwatari and line up a money match-up against Hartford.
In the Wally race there was some staging lane shenanigans going down. Arslanian moved in first and Hartford took his time getting into position. The result was a .086 to .295 starting-line advantage for Hartford who never looked back in a close duel. The Summit Racing Cavalier broke the beams first with a 6.990 while Arslanian came home with a 7.066.
The action was rapid-fire and the E-Town crew earned their pay for the week as the last pair of cars went through the traps at 7:21 p.m. against a 7:30 curfew. The speed-freaked gypsy troupe that is the NHRA Xplod series is staying in the Garden State as the next stop on the pilgrimage is nearby Atco Raceway.