2012-10-24 / Front Page

Jeff Adkinson's final round appearance clinches backt o-back championships

C/SA 69 Camaro is the winning stock eliminator. C/SA 69 Camaro is the winning stock eliminator. Reynolds, GA: Defending NHRA Division 2 Stock Eliminator champion Jeff Adkinson entered the final NHRA Division 2 LODRS event last weekend with a slim lead in the 2012 Stock Eliminator standings. Coming into the event, Adkinson led fellow Southeast Division standout and close friend Robbie Shaw by a mere 20 points (2 rounds) in his quest for a second consecutive division title.

Adkinson not only outlasted his friend and rival but drove his familiar C/ SA ’69 Camaro all the way to the final round before falling to Kyle Rizzoli. The runner-up finish clinched his second NHRA Division 2 Stock Eliminator Championship in as many years. Looking back on the past two seasons, Adkinson admits that the 2012 championship may be even more special than his first.

“Winning the championship last year was an honor; it really fulfilled a lifelong dream,” Adkinson said. “But to be honest, I felt like I almost backed into the title. I had the most points at the end of the season, but I didn’t really feel like I performed up to my potential. This season, Robbie really made me work for it and that makes it feel a little bit more special. To have so much riding on the last event, and to be able to put our best foot forward and make it to the final is a great feeling.”

To do so at Silver Dollar Raceway, a facility that holds a great deal of family history, was even more special.

“Most folks know that my father died in an ontrack accident here in Reynolds 13 years ago. Obviously, coming back to race here has been difficult ever since. It probably sounds crazy, but to have success here and seal the championship brings final closure. I’m finally at peace with this place.”

While Adkinson is done claiming NHRA divisional points, he can still earn points at one NHRA Full Throttle Series event. He and his team will make the trip to Las Vegas, NV, in late October for the Big O Tires NHRA nationals. There, Adkinson has an opportunity to improve his national score and earn a spot in the NHRA Lucas Oil Top Ten. He is currently ranked 11th in the nation, less than a round out of the top ten, and could advance as high as third with a victory in Las Vegas.

As an impressive side note to Adkinson’s NHRA Division 2 Stock title, his teammate and engine builder Jeff Taylor is currently leading the NHRA Division 3 Stock standings. For most of the season, the duo has competed within the LODRS series at different events throughout the country in the same race car; Adkinson’s ’69 Camaro.

“I don’t know if anyone has ever been crazy enough to try to do that; but I’m pretty confident that the same car has never won two division championships in one season,” Adkinson joked. “ Taylor hasn’t clinched the division yet; there are a couple of racers who could pass him if they go to Vegas and do well, but it would be quite an accomplishment if we could win both Division 2 and Division 3.”

Jeff Adkinson of Colquitt wished to recognize his wife Amy and their daughter Kaitlyn, along with teammate, engine builder, and longtime friend Jeff Taylor, and crew chief Willie Evans. In addition to Jeff Taylor Racing Engines, the Adkinson team relies on support from Comp Cams, Mickey Thompson Tires, JEGS, and ThisIsBracketRacing.com.

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