Strong Finish for KonRodz Team at Joliet Regional

It was another good weekend at Route 66 Raceway for Cassie Simonton and the Kon Rodz Racing team, as Simonton reached her first Lucas Oil Series event final at the Burndown at Sundown. It was a redeeming finish for the Canadian team, who struggled at their last race, the Cavalcade of Stars at Norwalk…..
“The car ran well at Norwalk, we just had some bad luck with parts breaking first round. If we didn’t have parts break I think the car would’ve been consistent like it was this weekend. Randy definitely has a handle on the tune-up right now. The car is consistent again,” Cassie said.
 C_Simonton In Car
Consistent it was. Simonton qualified fourth, running 5.656, 5.634, and 5.639, respectively. The consistency followed throughout eliminations. First round saw Cassie beat Ray Drew, 5.64 to 5.74. That set up a semifinal pairing with Jay Payne, brother-in-law of Kon Rodz crew chief Randy Anderson. Simonton emerged victorious again, winning one of the closest races of the day – 5.628 to Payne’s 5.638. She went into the final with lane choice, taking it by just one thousandth of a second over Chris Foster.
The two Division 3 racers put on another close race in the finals, but it was Foster turning on the win light. Simonton clicked off a 5.66 to Foster’s 5.63.
Overall, the team was extremely pleased with the outcome of the weekend. Much praise went to crew chief Randy Anderson and the dedicated group of crew members who work under his direction. Their efforts resulted in a quick, consistent race car.
“It really helps to go to the starting line knowing that I have a car that can get down the race track every run. Randy and the team give me the confidence to focus on my job on the starting line – cutting a light and hitting the shift points,” Simonton said.
New team president Stefan Kontos concurred.
“I’m very happy with the car’s consistency right now. Cassie, Randy, and the crew members are all working flawlessly together, and it shows in the car’s performance. I’m really looking forward to coming back to Chicago in a few weeks for the Route 66 Nationals in a few weeks. We went to the finals last year. We want to turn on that final win light this time around,” said Stefan, the 18-year old son of Kon Rodz Racing team owner Spiro Kontos.
Simonton is also eager to get back to the Midwestern track where the team has enjoyed so much success.
“Chicago has been good to us lately. It’s becoming our favorite track. We got our first #1 qualifier at this race last year then came back and went to the finals at the national event. Reaching the final round this weekend gives us confidence going into the Route 66 Nationals in a few weeks.”
The Route 66 Nationals are scheduled for June 28-30 at Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Ill.
Kon Rodz Racing is a NHRA Top Alcohol Funny Car team owned by Canadian businessman Spiro Kontos. Minnesota native Cassie Simonton drives the team’s familiar orange and purple Monte Carlo Alcohol Funny Car in the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series. Spiro, Cassie, and the entire Kon Rodz team are grateful to the quality companies that support their racing program; Sadi, Lucas Oil, NGK Spark Plugs, Goodson, BAE, Goodyear, Clevite, Mac Tools, Artist ButchM, ithreesixty Music Infused Apparel, Flaming River Industries, and Sparco USA.
For more information on Kon Rodz Racing, please visit Keep up with Cassie and the team on Facebook ( and Twitter (  and
Posted by:  Nate Van Wagnen