WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — The International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) Summit SuperSeries program crowns Top (Box), Mod (No Box), Sportsman and Junior Dragster Champions at member tracks each year.
The two ways to qualify for the annual IHRA Summit World Finals held in October at Memphis International Raceway are to win the Summit SuperSeries track championship at one of the participating member tracks or by winning the IHRA Summit Team Finals in your division.
Tracks across North America held banquets to recognize their 2019 IHRA Summit SuperSeries track champions including the Top, Mod and Junior Dragster champions from St. Thomas Raceway Park, St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada.
Top champion Dave Cooper Jr., 46, from Sarnia, Ontario, works as an industrial mechanic when he’s not racing. At the track, Cooper races a 1976 Chevrolet Corvette with a cool flame paint design.
A family operation, his father Dave Sr. and wife Andrea serve as his race day crew. It was a memorable season for Cooper and a season of change.
“Winning my first year in Top after running Mod for several years, getting to know the box was something,” Cooper said. “Then going to Memphis for the IHRA Summit SuperSeries World Finals. From the time you arrive to the time you leave, they really treat you world-class and like a champion.”
Mod champion Drew Buchner, 48, from Aylmer, Ontario, is the owner and operator of Drew’s Auto Body. He races an orange 1985 Camaro with a 454 cubic-inch Chevrolet big block engine. His wife Vicki and kids Owen and Olivia serve as his crew. For him, racing is about the relationships and creating memories.
“My most memorable part of the season was winning the Mod championship for a second consecutive year and going to the World Finals in Memphis,” Buchner said. “And it’s the great times we had with our racing family.”
Mike Swick, a 15-year-old from London, Ontario, was the 2019 Junior Dragster champion. He races a 2008 Motivational Tubing car with the crew of Bryan and Kathy Swick. He recounted the tough competition he faced at the end of the season.
“My most memorable moment was the final race of the season and having to race the No. 2 driver in points in the first round to decide to track championship,” Swick said. “Beating my friend Arnold (Fox) and knowing I had won the points race was amazing. He is the hardest kid I ever raced against.”