Initial Spectator Drags a 'home run' at Berlin

Street legal cars navigated the course Wednesday
Berlin Raceway Spectator Drags
Posted at 1:38 PM, Jul 01, 2021
Spectator Drags a 'home run' at Berlin Raceway

Street legal cars racing at the Berlin Raceway?

It happened for the first time ever on Wednesday.

"I saw the post, it was on Facebook, and I had to jump," Dave Heinrich who won the event, said. "It was the first 20, I was lucky to get in, and this is fantastic, it was so much fun."

Berlin Raceway Spectator Drags
Berlin Raceway Spectator Drags

"I thought it was a home run, we had a great time," Berlin Raceway General Manager Jeff Striegle added. "Listening to the competitors, they had fun. The fact that we had the turnout in the grandstands like we did, I think they all had a wonderful time. I think they all came here not knowing exactly what to expect, but I think they all had a great time."

It was one car on the track at a time and the drivers had to navigate it in and out of several cones throughout the course with the fastest time being named the winner.

After a practice round and three official rounds, Dave Heinrich from Zeeland won with a time just under 43 seconds in his 2012 Ford Mustang.

"Those walls come up real fast on the outside, but as long as you maintain your speed and hit those marks between those gates it was fantastic," Heinrich said. "The braking is challenging, even at the cone and even at the 360 turnaround, but it was fun."

Berlin Raceway Spectator Drags
Berlin Raceway Spectator Drags

"I've seen it done in the past and we have a race track," Striegle said. "A lot of times these guys will do this in a parking lot somewhere and I was thinking if we are going to do it in a parking lot, why can't we do it at the Berlin Raceway and get them out here and put on a show?"

The competition was limited to the first 20 cars that registered.

Several were turned away and even some from out of state have shown interest.

The top three finishers from Wednesday advance to the finals which are scheduled for September, but Heinrich doesn't want to wait that long to run again.

"I hope to get in again," Henrich said. "There is going to be stiff competition. There was a lot of stiff competition this time and I'm sure there is going to be plenty more, I'd love to get in again."

There is another spectator drags scheduled for July 21st, but Striegle said after Wednesday's turnout they will look at adding more cars and dates.