In an event that included riders from Germany, Australia and Canada as well as from California and Colorado, it was local favorite Tommy Grimes who rode to victory Sunday in the featured Top Fuel category at the 22nd annual Jim McClure All-Harley Nitro Nationals at Rockingham Dragway.
Grimes, the veteran from Pfafftown, N.C., sped to a new national record of 6.197 seconds at 220.40 miles per hour in a final round victory over Mike Scott of Bling Bay, British Columbia in a field for which former IHRA All-Harley Champion Jay Turner of Julian, N.C., title contender Ricky House of Humble, Texas and international rider Joachim Riemer of Germany were able to qualify.
Astride the hybrid Harley he campaigns out of Ray Price Harley-Davidson in Raleigh, Grimes raced to a speed of 227.96 mph en route to the No. 1 qualifying position but wasn't able to satisfy criteria that would have made that the new American Motorcycle Racing Association speed record.
It was the only thing Grimes left on the table in a dominating performance. After qualifying No. 1 at 6.220, he stopped the quarter mile timers in 6.242 seconds to be Ray Cason in round one, at 6.198 to turn back points leader Randal Andras of Amelia, La., in the semifinals and 6.197 to beat Scott.
The Ray Price Motorsports team sends sincere thanks to all their sponsors for their support. They include our Primary Sponsors: Akea, Ray Price Harley-Davidson, with special thanks to our Associate Sponsor Raleigh H.O.G. and our Support Sponsors: Vanson Leathers, PJ1 Products, RC Components, CP Pistons, Barnett Clutches & Cables, Autolite Sparkplugs, Mickey Thompson Tires, Gates Belts, Nationwide Insurance, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, JIMS USA, Industrial Machine Solutions, Wiley X, LAT Racing Oils and Nitrolube. Additional thanks: Bill Hayes, Hargis Consulting, Ultra Pro Machining and Freddie Robbins.