Versatile Canadian drag racer Ike Maier has poised himself for some potentially bigger things in drag racing….
The popular Tottenham-Ontario based driver who has raced in both Pro Modified and Top Fuel eliminators over the past few seasons made a major move late last year when he personally acquired the entire Top Fuel operation formally owned by Bowmanville’s John LaPorte.
“At the end of last season John came to the tough decision that due to lack of major sponsorship he could not continue on,” said Maier, who was the driver of the LaPorte Racing team car. “So I bought out his program including all the parts and pieces. Now I own outright an entire Top Fuel operation and I’ll be making some decisions on how best to move forward.”
Ike was in fact in action during the NHRA’s recent Gatornationals at Gainesville, an event where he drove and qualified the Paton Racing Top Fuel dragster – making some very nice laps.
“That was rewarding for everyone,” Ike continued. “That team has a nice tune-up now which evolved from Torrence. They got some advice from John Stewart and both of the Lagana brothers (Bobby and Dom) who were a nice guiding light helping Barry Paton. I think everybody learned a lot — including me.”
Maier, who owns a successful trucking company (Maier Trucking) will next undertake reassembling his own race car – a task that he hopes to begin over the next month back in Toronto. His former crew chief, Jimbo Ermalovich, will assist with that process.
And during the meantime Ike will also be trying to set his own racing schedule for 2016.
“To be honest I don’t know what that is going to look like just yet,” he added. “Depending on how things go I would like to be able to race at (one or two of) the NHRA events this summer: Epping – Norwalk or Joliet. I will also be speaking to the IHRA, Grand Bend Motorplex and Cayuga Dragway about getting into their races.”
Post by: Bruce Biegler
Photos by Bruce Biegler & Phil Hutchison