HomeNews / Race ResultsMan Cup : MTC Nationals at Rockingham Coverage

Man Cup : MTC Nationals at Rockingham Coverage

Man Cup

Man Cup MTC Engineering Nationals
presented by Vance & Hines

Rockingham Dragway
September 16-18, 2016

MPS Racing
Weekend Coverage by Tom McCarthy and Chrissy Perry

MTC Nationals at Rockingham Coverage

Motorcycle drag racers are ready for their return to Rockingham Dragway on September, 17-18 for two days of Man Cup drag racing at the 22nd annual MTC Engineering Nationals. The race will feature some of the world’s fastest motorcycles including Larry “Spiderman” McBride, and Dave Vantine who gave motorcycle drag racing the sport’s first ever side-by-side five second, motorcycle drag race.

Sam Wills of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, who first blasted into the fives at the Man Cup World Finals in 2015, is currently in the Pingel Top Fuel points lead with 251 points, just a wheel ahead of number two man Larry McBride who owns 213 Man Cup points. The MTC Engineering Nationals at Rockingham is a vital race for these two cagey veterans. They both need strong showings heading into this year’s World Finals set for November at South Georgia Motorsports Park. At the moment either racer can vault ahead in the points race, so swords will clash between them at this Rockingham event. The battle between the Nitro Conspiracy team and Larry “Spiderman” McBride’s team alone is worth the price of admission to this drag race.

Read more of the Pre-Race report by clicking here.


Nitromethane or Bacon ?

I’m not sure which is more powerful, the smell of nitromethane mist, that yellow green mist from a cold motor freshly fired up, or bacon cackling in an electric griddle plugged into a generator that needs a better muffler. The scent of both is very powerful and attracts people from all over.

Fresh bacon and all the fixin’s for a good racer breakfast. No slimfast, we just go fast.

As Pro Fuel racer Tyler Wilson stands over his griddle cooking package after package of the Hormel’s finest, I was taken to wonder about this topic as the morning of the MANCUP MTC Nationals race takes shape. Larry “Flip-flops” McBride sauntered by just after 7 AM and shortly thereafter Janette Thornley wandered by with a “Hey” as she was walking her beautiful little Pitty dog – a dog with a smile you can see just as plain as day. Walter Halonski, ever the gentleman, politely stopped by too.

Nitromethane has a powerful allure like no other. It can completely consume both men and machine.

It was not the nitro this time that attracted them all, nor the lure of bacon, but the sense of community that is life in the pits at a drag race. Hard working people are the roots of drag racing and while the slackers will fall by the wayside as they should, its’ the hard-working men and women of drag racing that form the core community.

Funny how nitromethane and bacon bring all that together isn’t it? Paper plates and coffee cups, grease-stained paper towels and it’s all because of nitro and bacon. All of the aforementioned people are nitro racers and that bacon in the pan is a welcome calling card to all. A message of sorts that morning has broken and the race day has begun.

Nice jugs, the ones that hold CH3NO2, nitromethane for Larry “Spiderman” McBride’s beast.

It’s the nitromethane racing that brings the racers to the event and the bacon that calls them all together. In a few hours, their motors will be fired up, that yellow-green mist I mentioned will fill the air, everyone will forget about the bacon and the racing, complete with metal carnage, will begin.

I’m not sure which is more powerful, the smell of the bacon or the sounds and scents of the nitromethane, but either smells like life itself for drag racers here at the MTC Nationals. I feel bad for the folks who don’t get to wake up at a race track, see the full moon waning and the sun rising at the same time, as the bacon hits the pan.

Jim Doyle of Springfield, Massachusetts is a long Nitro Harley pilot that’s been there and done that. He’s back and he’s here to stay.

It’s a privileged person who can wake up in the pits, grab a coffee from an electric drip coffee machine with a paper towel for a filter and start their day. If you ask me, there’s no better place to be. Great people, great racing machines, what could be better?

For example Jim Doyle, a nitro Harley pilot who learned all he could from his good friend Jim McClure, was up and about today riding a pit bike. In a few hours he’ll be on Dan Grinde’s Top Fuel bike, he’s currently qualified fourth with a 7.35 @ 192 MPH, not bad for a bike that tossed a blower belt just after half-track. Today being September 18th, it was September 20th, just last year Jim was tossed off one of his fuel bikes and his foot did a Linda Blair, a 360 degree turn around. The EMT’s at New England Dragway picked up five of his bone fragments off the track and sent them to the hospital with him. Today, not even a year later, Jimmy is back on a Top Fuel Harley because that’s what nitro pilots do: they pilot nitro bikes.

Dan Grinde’s blown, and injected nitromethane huffing Top Fuel Harley. A monster under development.

These are the kinds of people that make drag racing great. And I’m not sure which is the more powerful lure, the nitromethane or the bacon. But if you ask me, there’s simply no better place to be than where you can experience both with people like these.

RACING today at the Man Cup MTC Nationals: Professional eliminations is set to kick off at 11 AM today, EST. Sportsman racing will begin at about 9:30.



Sunday Closing

AT 6:45 PM, the sky opened up in very heavy fashion and that’s all for racing at the Man Cup MTC Nationals. Class Sheets will be up tonight and a full race wrap-up report will be forthcoming this week.


In the Pingel Top Fuel class, Sam Wills suffered tire shake that broke his rear tire loose about the 60’ clock and that was all for Sam’s run. Larry McBride thundered on for the win 6.20 to Sam’s 8.10.

In the Hawaya Racing Pro Fuel class, new guy Michael Ray stunned everyone by showing up on Johnny Vickers Terminator bike and he pretty much ran the table. Low qualifier and he won the race.

In Pro Mod, Shane Eperjesi defeated Bob McCoy with a 4.213 shot.

In the Nitrous Express Pro Open class, Mark Rendeluk continued his dominance of the class and is the first MANCUP pro class champion to clinch a championship title. This is not official as the actual points totals have not been officially released, but this man has it locked.

In the APE sponsored Pro Street class, Terence Angela who took out team mate Joey Gladstone in semis, was ready to lock horns with Rodney Williford in the final round when the sky fell hard and ended the race. This round of racing may be completed during the World Finals, but that determination is a work in progress.

In the APE Real Street Class, Marcus Hylton defeated Luis Hornedo in the final round, 8.034 to 8.068 for the win.

Many sportsman classes were still unfinished when the race ended. All remaining racers were summoned to the tower to determine what would be the best way to wrap up the competition and or monies to be paid out. It was announced that class racing might be completed at the MANCUP World Finals, or if the racers preferred some other way to finalize the race, all options were to be discussed on a class by class basis.

Look to DRAGBIKE.COM for race sheets later this day and a full race wrap-up report later in the week.

[spacer color=”336699″ icon=”fa-trophy” style=”1″]


Saturday Morning Fire Drill 

Pro ET racer Michael Mungi had a good launch in his round of Pro ET at the MANCUP MTC Nationals, but in seconds he was taking out cones and had to abort his run.  As his bike burst into flames, he thoughtfully parked it to the left of the left lane and exited the flaming drag bike.  The rapid response of the Rockingham Dragway track team was on him and they had the motorcycle out in seconds, literally less than a minute of burn time.


Event Sponsor MTC Engineering

Be sure to stop by the MTC Engineering booth for some great products and special event pricing!


3:00pm – School Bus Accident

At about 3pm the event had to go on hold. A charter bus was in a serious accident not far from the track. All first responders in the area called to help with this accident.  We are praying for everyone involved!


Qualifying Round 1 – Pro Classes 

Pro qualifying for the Man Cup  MTC Nationals kicked off at 12:50 PM due to delays in racing. Dave Vantine started things off in fine form for the Pingel Top Fuel class with a 6.02 @ 230 MPH and he currently sits in the #1 qualifying spot.


Larry McBride was up next but the bike did not sound right on the fire up and he chose wisely to shut it off and try and determine what was wrong. His team gave it their best shot, they re-fired the bike, and it sounded just as off-pace as it did on the initial fire up so they did not make a pass during this session.

Sam Wills and his team chose to sit out Q-1.

Jim Doyle, in his first race since his bad crash in Epping NH, on Sunday, September 20th, 2015, came to Rockingham to once again, get back into competition. Jim is piloting Dan Grinde’s new blown-fuel Nitro-Harley and they’ve come to the Man Cup, MTC Nationals to add to the fray.

The new bike did not sound crisp on the burnout and when Jim staged the bike, it somewhat limped off the line and completed a weak quarter mile pass of 10.98 @ 107 MPH.


In the Hawaya Racing Pro Fuel class, of the six entries that competed during the initial qualifying session, Janette Thornley is in the top spot with a 7.45 @ 175 MPH right out of the trailer. Rocky Jackson’s 7.48 is just a step ahead of Tyler Wilson’s 7.66 and they are in serious points contention, so for them, every round of racing is very important. Jordan Cruz, Michael Ray and Cliff Holley round out the entries. It’s interesting to note, NHRA Pro Stock motorcycle standout Michael Ray is on Johnny Vicker’s “Terminator” bike. Michael Ray’s dad, Paul Ray, is an old Top Fuel bike racer from the early 1980’s era.


In the Falicon Pro Mod class, Matt Prophit, is in the top spot with a 4.133 and he has a shadow named David Norris who also clocked a 4.133 during Q-1. Travis Davis (4.135), Brunson Grothus (4.145) and Shane Eperjesi are all on the heels of the two leaders. Thirteen bikes are entered in P/Mod, Q-2 and 3 will help better establish who’s ready for race day tomorrow.


In the Nitrous Express Pro Open class, four motorcycles entered the competition on Saturday morning. Mark Rendeluk, Mr. Pro Open his bad self-leads qualifying with a workable 6.70 elapsed time at 192 MPH. Tommy Saxon (6.77), Keith Browne (7.13) and Marc Inguerson round out the class.


In the APE Pro Street class of racing, Joey Gladstone leads the ten current entries to the class with a fine 6.82 @ 214 MPH. His racing team partner from DME, Terence Angela, with a 6.85 at 213, is right behind Joey after Q-1, and so is Rodney Williford with a 6.86. With a few more rounds of racing, this class will shape up nicely for good racing on Sunday.


In the Shinko Tires / WPS class sponsored Real Street – the all motor monster of DME racing piloted by Joey Gladstone is the beast to beat with a stout 7.64 elapsed time. David Stewart is in the number two spot for the moment with a 7.85 and Anibal Merced (7.98), Jason Herron (8.10) and Luis Hornedo trailing.


Racing was put on hold indefinitely here at the Rockingham Dragway due to circumstances completely beyond anyone’s control. At 3:01 PM, we received a report that an emergency mass-causality situation occurred in our area and all emergency medical staff were ordered into action. Because of this, without emergency medical staff at the track, racing is on hold until further notice.

Photo Gallery – Qualifying Round 1 


Qualifying Round 2 – Pro Classes 

After a long delay due to a medical emergency that required track medical staff to depart, racing, which was halted at 3:01PM resumed at 5:10 PM, with Q-2 for the professional classes stepping out first.


In the Pingel Top Fuel Class – Sam Wills made the presence of the Nitro Conspiracy Team known with an opening 5.98 @ 218 MPH blast into the #1 qualifier spot.  In the right lane next to him like a shadow was Larry McBride with a 6.00 @ 235 MPH.  Things are heating up in Top Fuel!


In the Hawaya Racing Pro Fuel class, the temperature was on the rise as well.  Michael Ray stunned everyone with a 7.27 pass for the top qualifying spot after Q-2.  Preston Bartlett also stepped in and we are now up to seven  bikes in Pro Fuel.  Jay Turner was also noted on the starting line and his presence can only help the class.


In the Falicon Pro Mod class, #1 qualifier Matt Profitt who held the top spot with a 4.13 in Q-1 improved to a 4.05 during Q-2 and he’s still the man to beat.  Paul Gast who was in the #9 spot improved to the #2 qualifier spot with a great 4.06 blast.

In the Nitrous Express Pro Open class, Mark Rendeluk, who clocked a 6.707 in the first session, repeated the deed with a 6.702 elapsed time to announce he’s ready for eliminations – anytime.  Tommy Saxon’s 6.71 in the #2 spot is quite capable of upsetting the apple cart here.


In the APE Pro Street class, Joey Gladstone continues to be the man to beat.  His 6.79 @ 214 are the top numbers in the class.  Rodney Williford improved to the #2 spot with a 6.81 and this class may be led by DME and Joey Gladstone, but it’s anyone’s race on race day.


In the Shinko / WPS Real Street class, Joey Gladstone continues to dominate.  His 7.73 is a stretch from second place David Stewart’s 7.85 and Anabal’s 7.88.


Darkness has fallen here at the Rock as of 7:30 PM, we will be racing until late tonight. 

Qualifying Round 3 – Pro Classes 

Final round qualifying for the Man Cup, MTC Nationals kicked off at 7:57 PM with a great recovery by the Man Cup staff after a monster delay due to a bus accident in the local area that caused all medical staff to be devoted to that accident scene.  This caused a 2 hour delay between 3:10PM and 5:12 PM.  So Man Cup getting the Pro Classes back out for their 8PM Q-3 was really a great feat by the Man Cup team and the Rockingham staff.


Sam Wills cemented his hold on the Pingel Top Fuel top spot with a 6.05 @ 234 to hang on to his position at the top of the heap. 

In Hawaya Pro Fuel, surprise up-start Michael Ray is the low qualifier with his Jonny Vicker’s tuned “Terminator” bike.  Is this collaboration a vision of things to come? 

In the Falicon Pro Mod class, Matt Prophit is the man to beat with his 4.05 elapsed time. 

In the Nitrous Express Pro Open class, Mark Rendeluk with a 6.69 quickest pass so far, will lead the class tomorrow on race day. 

Keith Browne, and the Pete Browne turbo Harley turns heads. 

In the APE Pro Street class, Joey Gladstone continues to do the Gladstone Stomp on his opposition.  His 6.78 elapsed time is still the time to beat 

In the Shinko WPS Real Street class, Joey’s 7.73 is the low qualifying number. 

[spacer color=”336699″ icon=”fa-trophy” style=”1″]


Testing under Blue Skies in Progress

Mark Rendeluk of Oklahoma is testing today, at The Rock for the Man Cup MTC Engineering LLC Nationals this weekend. His new protégé, Niki Taube Zakrzewski, started off the day with a 7.0 pass. The skies are blue and the track is tight, ready for a weekend of drag racing at Rockingham Dragway.

 Testing Day Wrap up Photos

Friday testing for the Man CupMTC Engineering LLC Nationals is in the books. Over 100 racers made passes today including several professional teams. Larry “Spiderman” McBride made two hits and had a best of 6.04 @ 233.96 MPH on his new T/F bike.

Heavy hitters like Procopio, Gast, George Babor, Wilson, Vantine Racing and many others all gave the Rockingham Dragway surface a workout today. Come tomorrow morning: Game On!

Friday Test and Tune Gallery

[spacer color=”336699″ icon=”fa-trophy” style=”1″]


[spacer color=”336699″ icon=”fa-trophy” style=”1″]

Photo Galleries

[spacer color=”336699″ icon=”fa-trophy” style=”1″]


[spacer color=”336699″ icon=”fa-trophy” style=”1″]




Winner : Larry McBride – .080 6.201 228.46
Runner-up : Sam Wills – .099 8.120 144.94
#1 Qualifier : Sam Wills – 5.988 218.58



Winner : Shane Eperjesi – .030 4.213 168.91
Runner-up : Brad McCoy – .027 6.578 69.00
#1 Qualifier : Matt Prophit  – 4.059 174.59



Winner : Michael Ray  – .170 7.182 168.43
Runner-up : Rocky Jackson – .055 7.425 167.80
#1 Qualifier : Michael Ray  – 7.271 149.51



Winner : Mark Rendeluk – .119  6.771 189.60
Runner-up : Tommy Saxon  – No time
#1 Qualifier : Mark Rendeluk – 6.692 192.14



Semifinals – Angela, 6.814, 213.16 mph, def. Gladstone, 6.922, 211.00 mph; Williford, bye.
Winner :
Runner-up :
#1 Qualifier : Joey Gladstone – 6.781 214.89



Winner : Marcus Hylton – .048 8.304 166.46
Runner-up : Luis Hornedo – .048 8.034 166.46
#1 Qualifier : Joey Gladstone – 7.731



Winner : Michael Thyen – .002 5.997
Runner-up : George Babor –  -.006 4.682
#1 Qualifier : Allen Fields – 4.603 145.09



Semifinals – Otts, 8.233, 161.30 mph, def. Smith, no time; Marte, bye.
Winner :
Runner-up :
#1 Qualifier : S Semisch



Round 3 – Chad Otts, Olive Branch, Miss., 9.009, 141.22 mph, def. Charlie Bishop, Fairhope, Ala., 8.994, 138.26 mph; John Markham, Bowling Green, Ky., 8.896, 143.43 mph, def. Spencer Claycomb, Rockford, Tenn., 8.862 breakout 144.06 mph; Dusty Brazel, Norman Park, Ga., 8.968, 139.72 mph, def. Harvey Hubbard, Sedley, Va., 8.994, 143.80 mph; Matt Smith, Cordova, Tenn., bye.
Winner :
Runner-up :
#1 Qualifier : Luis Hornedo – 8.908 150.83



Round 3 – Danny Miller, Elizabethtown, Ky. 8.950, 132.62 mph, def. Eric Griffith, Riner, Va., 9.002, 145.06 mph; Wade Smith, Dudley, Ga., 8.761, 150.43 mph, def. Barry Pryer Sr., Chesapeake, Va., foul; Bob Carlson, Torrington, Conn., bye.
Winner :
Runner-up :
#1 Qualifier : John Loney – 8.85 155.79


Wade Smith, Dublin, Ga., versus Dustin Lee, Morristown, Tenn., canceled due to rain.
Winner :
Runner-up :
#1 Qualifier : Stephen Knight – 9.50 131.68




Winner : Vance Houdyshell – .061 10.30 10.445 125.15
Runner-up : Manny Carrasquillo – .029 9.90 10.117 131.41

Winner : Clint Riley – .197 10.84 10.921
Runner-up : E Knowles – .150 12.43 12.581
[/double_paragraph] [/row]




Winner : Chad Otts, Olive Branch, Miss., 027, 8.185 on an 8.200, 161.04 mph
Runner-up : Calvin Mason, Mobile, Ala., foul

Robin Procopio, Wake Forest, N.C., versus Ricardo Mante, San Juan, Puerto Rico, race canceled due to rain.
Winner :
Runner-up :
[/double_paragraph] [/row]




Winner : Eric Griffith, Riner, Va., .067, 9.054 on an 8.900
Runner-up : Roy Johnson, Keystone Heights, Fla., foul

Thomas Lagasse, Sarasota, Fla., Eric Griffith, Riner, Va., and Stanley Russell, Stanley, Ga., still in when competition was canceled due to rain.
Winner :
Runner-up :
[/double_paragraph] [/row]

[spacer color=”336699″ icon=”fa-trophy” style=”1″]



[spacer color=”336699″ icon=”fa-trophy” style=”1″]
About Man Cup Motorcycle Drag Racing : Headquartered in Safety Harbor, Florida, Man Cup motorcycle drag racing is North America’s largest professional motorcycle drag racing sanctioning body. Man Cup promotes motorcycle drag racing on a national event basis for professional, sportsman and ET bracket racers alike and is open to riders of all skill and experience levels. The Man Cup Series is the only national event style motorcycle drag racing series comprised of events throughout the eastern half of the United States. For marketing opportunities with the Man Cup as well as more information on Man Cup Motorcycle Drag Racing, please visit www.mancup.info on the web or 7 2 7 – 7 4 2 – 5 2 4 5 voice/text

The Man Cup Series is brought to you by our sponsors :  Adams Performance – APE – Bates Leathers – Brocks Performance – Carolina Cycle – Cometic – Cooper Performance – D&G Chassis – D.M.E. Racing – Daytona Senors – Dragbike.com – Exotic Cycle – Falicon Performance – Grothus Dragbike – Hawaya Racing – Hot Rod Chrissy Photos – HTP Performance – JRI Shocks – Lectron – McIntosh Machine and Fabrication – Memphis International Raceway – MoTec – MPS – MRE – MTC – Muzzys – Penske Shocks – Pingel Enterprises – Portable Shade – PR Factory Store – RCC Turbo – Roaring Toyz – Rob Bush Motorsports – Rockingham Dragway – S&S Cycle – Schnitz Racing – Shinko – Star Racing – Western Power Sports – South Georgia Motorsports Park – Trac Dynamics – Vance & Hines – Ward Performance – Web Cam – Wiseco Pistons – World Wide Bearing – Wossner Pistons

2016 Schedule

  • April 8 – 10  / South Georgia Motorsports Park
  • June 11 – 12 / Rockingham Dragway
  • July 23 – 24 / Memphis International Raceway
  • September 17 – 18 / Rockingham Dragway
  • November 11 – 13 /South Georgia Motorsports Park

2017 Schedule

  • April 7-9 / South Georgia Motorsports Park
  • November 16-18 /South Georgia Motorsports Park
Drag Racing Tshirts

Dragbike.com Partners

Support the companies that support motorcycle drag racing by shopping with the companies below.

- Advertisment -

Most Popular