First-Time Champs Reign at Eastern Conference Finals
July 15, 2023

Connor Boyd (age 6-9), Jesse Varner (10), Easton Hodge (11), Joey Torchia (12), Dylan MacNicol (13), Jude Kersnason (14), Dexter Gomez (15), Logan Grayson (16-17), and Beech Bend Raceway Park (team) took top honors during the NHRA Right Trailers Eastern Conference Finals presented by MikeBosRacing.com. All are first-time winners of the national event for racers in the NHRA Summit Racing Jr. Drag Racing League.

Boyd, who hails from Bunker Hill, W.Va., got the automatic nod in the 6-9 class final when Grundy, Va., runner Carson Blankenship red-lighted. Boyd celebrated with a 12.039 (12.01 dial) victory pass.

A foul start also determined the outcome of the 10-year-old group title round. This time, Auburn, Ala.’s Braiten Britton left too soon, turning on the win light in the lane of Temple, Ga., racer Varner. After cutting a .012 light, Varner posted a 9.010 (9.03) en route to victory.

Newcastle, Okla.’s Camden Teel’s bid to win a second Eastern Conference Finals and third overall Conference Finals title ended when he fouled out in the 11-year-old bracket final. That turned on Franklin, Ky., driver Hodge’s win light. Hodge posted an 8.827 (8.92) on his winning run.

The red-light streak continued in the 12-year-old class final with Selma, Ind., competitor turning on the red bulb against Galloway, N.J., runner Torchia. Torchia finished with a 9.091 (9.06).

In 2021, MacNicol, who calls North Port, Fla., home, came up one win light short of winning an Eastern Conference Finals. This year, he was able to get it done, defeating New Tripoli, Pa.’s Ella Kershner for the 13-year-old age-group Wally. MacNicol got off the starting line first and used the more than six-hundredths advantage to best Kershner in a 7.988 (7.90) to 8.009 (7.96) contest.

Madison, Tenn.’s Hope Capley, a winner at the 2016 Eastern Conference Finals, had the reaction-time edge in the 14-year-old bracket tile round, but Kersnason, of Port Charlotte, Fla. was able to drive around her and win with an on-the-dial 8.119. Capley finished as runner-up with an 8.077 (8.04).

Amherst, Ohio’s Gomez was better on the Tree in the 15-year-old class final, and that proved key. Youngsville, N.C., racer Kamryn Love carried too much momentum at the top end while trying to catch Gomez, breaking out with a 7.950 (7.97). Gomez eased his entry to a safe 8.108 (8.08) to claim top honors.

The final final of the event was a thriller decided by .003-second. Murfreesboro, Tenn., competitor Grayson left the starting line .007-second ahead of Hanson, Ky.’s Hunter Davis, before easing his entry to an 8.249 (8.23) to best the slightly closer 8.035 (8.02) of Davis.

Led by 11-year-old class champion Hodge and 14-year-old bracket runner-up, Beech Bend Raceway Park Team 1 earned the team title, tallying 33 points. It’s the first team title for the Bowling Green, Ky., track. Mason-Dixon Dragway Team 2 and Bradenton Motorsports Park Team 1 tied for second with 27 points apiece. Mobile Dragway Team 5, Numidia Dragway Team 1, and Capital City Motorsports Park Team 2 finished another point back to tie for fourth.

Beech Bend also won the Team Spirit award. Other special-award winners were National Trail Raceway (Best Appearing Track), Gavin Roth (Best Engineered Car), and Kylie Varier (Best Appearing Car).


2023 EASTERN CONFERENCE FINALS RESULTS

6-9
Driver Hometown RT Dial E.T. MPH
QUARTERFINALS
Garrett Cramer New Market, Md. 0.082 12.10 12.136 52.52
Hunter Street Richlands, Va. 0.089 14.15 **14.118 43.33
 
Carson Blankenship Grundy, Va. 0.176 12.31 12.398 52.53
Gary Bogacki Carterville, Ill. 0.160 12.00 12.142 48.21
 
Connor Boyd Bunker Hill, W.Va. -0.008 11.96 12.033 53.78
bye
 
SEMIFINALS
Connor Boyd Bunker Hill, W.Va. 0.004 11.96 12.102 52.49
Garrett Cramer New Market, Md. 0.080 12.09 12.243 51.13
 
Carson Blankenship Grundy, Va. 0.172 12.35 12.392 52.00
bye
 
FINAL
Connor Boyd Bunker Hill, W.Va. 0.044 12.01 12.039 53.26
Carson Blankenship Grundy, Va. -0.029 12.35 *12.424 52.09
 
10
Driver Hometown RT Dial E.T. MPH
QUARTERFINALS
Braiten Britton Auburn, Ala. 0.031 8.97 8.993 71.67
Cameron Bauman Poolesville, Md. -0.035 8.99 *9.085 71.40
 
Maeson Summers Franklin, Ky. 0.016 8.93 8.906 72.42
Waylon Bennett Tyrone, Ga. 0.01 9.06 **9.011 72.78
 
Jesse Varner Temple, Ga. -0.029 8.98 9.049 71.07
bye
 
SEMIFINALS
Jesse Varner Temple, Ga. 0.011 8.99 9.057 70.86
Maeson Summers Franklin, Ky. -0.071 8.95 *8.931 71.48
 
Braiten Britton Auburn, Ala. 0.126 8.91 9.031 70.65
bye
 
FINAL
Jesse Varner Temple, Ga. 0.012 9.03 9.010 71.69
Braiten Britton Auburn, Ala. -0.035 8.99 *8.997 71.25
 
11
Driver Hometown RT Dial E.T. MPH
QUARTERFINALS
Camden Teel Newcastle, Okla. 0.001 8.90 8.984 70.56
Gage Hill Linden, Pa. 0.041 8.98 9.038 70.78
 
Easton Hodge Franklin, Ky. 0.016 8.92 9.081 63.33
Carson Murphrey Ellenton, Fla. 0.137 8.94 9.015 70.79
 
Lily Kersnason Port Charlotte, Fla. 0.065 9.14 9.197 70.33
bye
 
SEMIFINALS
Easton Hodge Franklin, Ky. 0.092 8.93 8.988 63.30
Lily Kersnason Port Charlotte, Fla. 0.033 9.19 **9.175 69.83
 
Camden Teel Newcastle, Okla. 0.015 8.90 8.992 71.45
bye
 
FINAL
Easton Hodge Franklin, Ky. 0.031 8.92 8.827 73.22
Camden Teel Newcastle, Okla. -0.018 8.97 *8.957 71.72
 
12
Driver Hometown RT Dial E.T. MPH
QUARTERFINALS
Joey Torchia Galloway, N.J. 0.064 8.96 9.011 71.74
Hunter Smith Oakwood, Va. -0.071 9.08 *9.131 71.20
 
Colton Farley Angleton, Texas 0.010 8.90 8.953 65.91
Kirsten Goddard Social Circle, Ga. 0.064 8.90 9.024 65.92
 
Korbin Bray Selma, Ind. 0.004 9.32 9.366 68.90
bye
 
SEMIFINALS
Korbin Bray Selma, Ind. 0.053 9.36 9.336 69.28
Colton Farley Angleton, Texas -0.021 8.90 *8.922 72.44
 
Joey Torchia Galloway, N.J. 0.097 8.96 9.099 71.00
bye
 
FINAL
Joey Torchia Galloway, N.J. 0.055 9.06 9.091 70.93
Korbin Bray Selma, Ind. -0.039 9.33 *9.296 69.56
 
13
Driver Hometown RT Dial E.T. MPH
QUARTERFINALS
Ella Kershner New Tripoli, Pa. 0.142 7.92 7.954 81.63
Cooper Hancock Commerce , GA. -0.016 7.97 *9.129 67.34
 
Tyler Wied Neenah, Wis. 0.045 8.16 8.172 77.33
Hayden Miller Mobile, Ala. 0.055 8.23 8.319 70.22
 
Tate Hildebrandt Pearland, Texas 0.023 8.04 8.077 77.47
Emma Freeman Mount Airy, N.C. 0.067 8.05 8.073 79.37
 
Dylan MacNicol North Port, Fla. 0.051 7.90 7.909 81.12
Cayden Keyes Abilene, Texas 0.077 7.90 **7.892 78.82
 
SEMIFINALS
Ella Kershner New Tripoli, Pa. 0.059 7.94 8.011 79.88
Tyler Wied Neenah, Wis. 0.055 8.17 8.254 76.83
 
Dylan MacNicol North Port, Fla. 0.025 7.90 7.979 75.51
Tate Hildebrandt Pearland, Texas 0.029 8.07 8.158 73.06
 
FINAL
Dylan MacNicol North Port, Fla. 0.022 7.90 7.988 78.73
Ella Kershner New Tripoli, Pa. 0.084 7.96 8.009 79.41
 
14
Driver Hometown RT Dial E.T. MPH
QUARTERFINALS
Hope Capley Madison, Tenn. 0.054 8.02 8.075 80.54
Shawn Wilson Homer, Ga. 0.060 7.90 7.993 77.98
 
Jude Kersnason Port Charlotte, Fla. 0.031 8.10 8.110 79.66
Corbin Walker Denham Springs, La. -0.008 7.90 *8.912 51.79
 
James Libby Kingston, Mass. 0.075 7.90 7.935 81.14
bye
 
SEMIFINALS
Hope Capley Madison, Tenn. 0.015 8.04 8.057 80.55
James Libby Kingston, Mass. 0.028 7.90 7.910 81.47
 
Jude Kersnason Port Charlotte, Fla. -0.063 8.12 8.097 79.68
bye
 
FINAL
Jude Kersnason Port Charlotte, Fla. 0.064 8.11 8.119 79.58
Hope Capley Madison, Tenn. 0.044 8.04 8.077 80.85
 
15
Driver Hometown RT Dial E.T. MPH
QUARTERFINALS
Shelby Roy Kingsport, Tenn. 0.056 8.04 8.180 75.84
Lavar Lewis Jr Mechanicsville, Va. 0.092 8.01 8.119 78.89
 
Kamryn Love Youngsville, N.C. 0.087 8.00 7.975 81.62
Jamie Alexander Ii Grand Bay, Ala. -0.002 8.05 *8.132 73.82
 
Dexter Gomez Amherst, Ohio 0.086 8.09 8.125 76.71
Brendan Nuttall Rutledge, Tenn. 0.066 8.21 8.285 73.62
 
Maddie Chesne Simmesport, La. 0.036 8.01 8.039 81.91
Kade Renoll El Mirage AZ 0.015 7.93 7.986 81.66
 
SEMIFINALS
Kamryn Love Youngsville, N.C. 0.142 8.00 7.951 82.12
Shelby Roy Kingsport, Tenn. -0.005 8.10 *8.122 79.06
 
Dexter Gomez Amherst, Ohio 0.038 8.10 8.076 79.10
Maddie Chesne Simmesport, La. -0.009 8.03 *8.034 82.75
 
FINAL
Dexter Gomez Amherst, Ohio 0.043 8.08 8.108 77.63
Kamryn Love Youngsville, N.C. 0.060 7.97 **7.950 82.40
 
16-17
Driver Hometown RT Dial E.T. MPH
QUARTERFINALS
Emersyn Rose Pires Madera, Calif. 0.005 7.90 7.913 79.46
Jason Stewart St. Petersburg, Fla. 0.053 8.57 **8.565 74.38
 
Logan Grayson Murfreesboro, Tenn. 0.040 8.21 8.229 77.51
Jake Harvanek Cheswick, Pa. 0.021 8.08 **8.078 76.33
 
Hunter Davis Hanson, Ky. 0.017 8.04 8.114 76.44
Sebastian Hickey Ponchatoula, La. 0.044 7.96 8.021 79.71
 
Gavin Pine La Mirada, Calif. 0.024 7.99 8.020 80.34
bye
 
SEMIFINALS
Logan Grayson Murfreesboro, Tenn. 0.015 8.22 8.264 73.86
Gavin Pine La Mirada, Calif. 0.017 8.05 **8.039 78.41
 
Hunter Davis Hanson, Ky. 0.033 8.03 8.093 76.74
Emersyn Rose Pires Madera, Calif. 0.131 7.90 7.939 78.58
 
FINAL
Logan Grayson Murfreesboro, Tenn. 0.052 8.23 8.249 75.39
Hunter Davis Hanson, Ky. 0.059 8.02 8.035 78.32
 
* red-light **breakout