Rough & Tumble GSA Pro Mods

Melanie Troxel won a crash-marred Pro Mod event during NHRA’s Ford Thunder Valley Nationals at Bristol TN….

Melanie’s win was her first victory of the season and the 2nd Pro Mod win of her career within the NHRA Get Screened America Pro Mod Drag Racing Series.

After defeating early-round opponents Mike Knowles, Mike Janis and teammate Leah Pruett-LeDuc, Troxel took the final-round win when Danny Rowe fouled at the start. It was Troxel’s first win in Pro Mod at Bristol Dragway and her second victory in the Pro Mod category.

Melanie Troxel wheeled the R2B2 "Silver Streak" to victory at Bristol

Troxel was consistently quick all day in her turbocharged ’53 Corvette, and the win moves her into a tie for seventh in the 2011 Get Screened America Pro Mod point standings.

“It’s great to be getting back to some winning,” Troxel said. “On top of it, this engine combination, this car is something that (team owner) Roger Burgess has been working on for several years. He knew this was going to be a great combination for the sport when a lot of other people laughed and didn’t believe this car would run good. He stuck with it. We’ve known this car could win races all year long. We just had to get some of the kinks worked out of it. I’m very proud to be the one who has been able to bring this car to the winner’s circle and show everybody what it’s capable of.”

Melanie’s win also included low ET of the event – the 5.928 secs which she charged to in the championship final round.

GSA Pro Mod class racing featured two nasty separate incidents involving series founder Roger Burgess and also veteran class competitor Rickie Smith.  Both racers destroyed their cars during the weekend action. 

Rickie Smith destroyed his Pro Mod Camaro during qualifying


Smith’s crash, driving his nitrous-injected Chevy Camaro, occurred during qualifying and the popular and skilled driver did suffer injuries to his leg which will require surgery.  That will likely keep him out of action for most of the summer. 

Burgess had only minor bumps and bruises during his crash during round one which wrecked his very cool and technological marvel turbocharged Firebird, which he had just debuted at NHRA Englishtown two weeks prior.

Both drivers cited track conditions which may have contributed to their accidents.

“We’ve all been fighting the bumps out there,” said Burgess.  “We’ve lost two Pro Mod cars this weekend and it’s due to the bumps that have formed over the (spectator) tunnels. These suspension cars just can’t get over them cleanly — something needs to be done.”

Winner: Melanie Troxel 5.928 250.83 2nd
R/UP: Danny Rowe 6.008 240.89  
Low ET: Melanie Troxel 5.928    
Top Speed: Brad Personett   252.80  
Bump Spot:   6.177    


Brad Personett set top speed in GSA Pro Mod at 252.80 mph

DragRaceCanada File Photos