SPARCO Fall Fling 500 Results - Patton Scores "LARGE" - Martel Collects MVP
Bristol, TN
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Bright sunshine and hot temperatures greeted a long line of racers waiting to get in Bristol Dragway for Day 1 of the 10th anniversary of the Fling brand of bracket races. The largest paying and most exciting of the Fling brand, the Sparco Fall Fling 500K presented by Optima Batteries will award one winning racer a guaranteed $500,000 in Friday’s ATI main event. Three separate side races will be held FST Wednesday, Hansen Thursday and JEGS Saturday.

Schedule for today as has been the tradition for Day 1 at each of the Fling races included a Test & Tune session along with the American Race Cars/Race Tech Dragster Shootout with a limited field of 32 racers vying for a spot in the final round. Both finalists receive a new dragster with winner having first choice.

With eight cars left in the quarterfinals, the remaining competitors were Robert DiMino, Chad Axford, Shane Maddox, Tim Markoglu, Jason Lynch, Derek Denny, Chris Sons and Jake Woodring.

Once down to the quarterfinals, each were paired on a ladder according to their Reaction Times with the pairings re-laddered each round according to Fling rules. In the quarters, the remaining door car of Axford was defeated by Lynch despite Axford’s perfect Reaction Time. Next up was good friends DiMino and Markoglu with Markoglu moving i nto the semis. Denny and Maddox battled next with Maddox putting together a 0.013 package to move on. Last up was Woodring and Sons with Woodring joining the remaining racers in the semifinals.

Semifinal round and Markoglu and Woodring battles first with Markoglu turning on the red-light by -0.006 to advance Woodring. Lynch and Maddox then faced off with Maddox’s 0.009 package turning away Lynch.

For the final, Woodring used a dead-on the dial with a “0” and an 0.011 Reaction Time to turn away Maddox who had a better Reaction Time but was 0.015 off his dial. As such Woodring chose the Race Tech dragster and Maddox left with the American.

jake woodring 2019 fall fling 500

shane maddox fall fling 500


With first a “family photo” of the Fling and Bristol Dragway staff celebrating ten years of Fling racing in Bristol, FST Wednesday got underway for the Sparco Fall Fling 500K presented by Optima Batteries. The first big prize of the weekend, a $30,000-to-win day began with a single time trial; the only one of the week; for all competitors. From today forward, all competitors go directly to eliminations each day. With the pre-entered field in attendance, part of the Fling experience is ensuring the races are completed in a timely fashion.

In a somewhat unusual occurrence in bracket racing circles, Fling co-promoters Peter Biondo and Kyle Seipel chose to limit the event to single entries only, with no double-entering of drivers/cars. In what may possibly be the only big bracket racing in the country today, single entries dates back to the old Moroso 5-Day Bracket Championships. Obviously the bracket racing world embraced the concept as pre-entries were sold out in a matter of minutes when the pre-entry list opened back in March.

Round six and 13 cars remained; Danny Waters Jr., Justin Vickers, Phillip Pennington, David Davis, JR Lobner, Luke Bogacki, Aaron Gee, Shawn Langdon, Bryan Robinson, Colby Fuller, Tim Thomas, Don Hansen and Shane Carr. With each placed on the elimination ladder, the survivors were Thomas, Langdon, Bogacki, Robinson, Carr and the door cars of Vickers and Pennington.

Quarterfinal round and it was Thomas over Pennington. The door car of Vickers took out Carr. Bogacki overcame Robinson’s better Reaction Time for the win and Langdon soloed with the bye run to move into the semifinals.

Round eight, semifinals and former Fling winner Thomas used a 0.08 RT and 0.018 over his dial-in to turn back the last remaining door car of Vickers. In the other half, Bogacki had the reaction time advantage but ran -0.001 under his dial to move former NHRA World Champ and Funny Car driver Langdon to his first Fling final round.

Final round and Langdon had the RT advantage but it was Thomas who laid down a 0.016 package to add another Fling trophy to his collection.

tim thomas drag racer


Day 3, Hansen Thursday and one day closer to the biggest and most exciting payday of the Sparco Fall Fling 500K presented by Optima Batteries, ATI Friday where one racer will walk away with a half-million dollar prize. But before that happens, there was another $30,000-to-win race today.

New entries received a single time run and by 8:45, eliminations began. Yesterday due to the amount of cars, buy backs were eliminated. However today, redemption in the form of a buy back is available for those unfortunate to have not received a win light in the first round.

In addition to today’s race and as part of the Fling’s Bristol tenth anniversary celebration, any previous winners from any of the Fling brand events, will compete in a special Hoosier Tires King of the Flings race with free entry and the winner receiving an Ivey Hutto Golf Carts customized cart.

With racer representation from 36 states and the country of Canada, the Sparco Spring Fling 500K presented by Optima Batteries has also become an international affair with fans checking in on the live feed sponsored by Mickey Thompson Tires and JEGS. Interested fans have checked in on the live feed chat room from as far away as Australia and a number of European countries. The live feed will continue for the final two days, ATI Friday and JEGS Saturday.

Fling rules regarding the ladder round begins at 16 cars or less and in round seven, there remained ten; Nick Hastings, Leon Robertson, Ernie Humes, Vegas Million winner Peeps Pennington, Matt Grayson, Cody McDaniel, Mike Novitsky, Camryn Frederickson, Billy Leber and Steve Law.

Round seven and Novitsky turned on the red-light to advance Robertson and his door car. Vegas Million Dollar winner Pennington dispatched Leber to the trailer. Law defeated Grayson. “Nasty Nick” Hastings defeated Frederickson to move his door car into the quarterfinals. And finally, Humes used a 0.001 RT with his door car to defeat McDaniel and with that earned the bye run in round eight with five cars left.

Five cars, and for possibly the first time in big time bracket racing, the door cars outnumbered the dragsters for $30,000-to-win. First up, “Nasty Nick” and another “nasty” racer, Peeps Pennington with his dragster. It was over before it got started when Hastings turned on the red-light while Pennington cut a perfect 0.000 RT which earned him the bye in the semifinals to move directly to another Fling final round. Law and Robertson faced off with the dragster of Law getting the win, while Humes took his bye run to move directly into the semifinals where he faced off with Law.

The semifinals weren’t kind to door cars as the last remaining door car of Humes turned on the red-light to advance Law and his dragster to face off with Pennington.

Two cars left for $30K and it was over rather quickly as Law turned it red by -0.003 to award Pennington with another Fling trophy, his second this year after his earlier win at the Vegas Million.

Still left to be decided was the Hoosier Tires King of the Fling. In all, there were 37 previous winners who made the first round. With some of the best racers in possibly the world, the final came down to Tommy Cable and Kevin Thorp with Thorp taking the win despite Cable’s two perfect Reaction Times in the semis and final.

peeps pennington drag racer

kevin thorp fall fling ivey hutto golf cart


This is the day everyone has waited for. The build-up has been phenomenal. Almost two years in the making and it was finally here. ATI Friday. In the biggest and most exciting race of the Fling brand of bracket racing, the Sparco Fall Fling 500K presented by Optima Batteries main event was set to take place.

More than ten years ago, co-promoters Peter Biondo and Kyle Seipel dreamt about the concept of the type of race they themselves would like to race at. That concept took hold at Bristol Dragway ten years ago with the first Fling race and as part of the ten year celebration, Biondo and Seipel chose to do something really special. Giving back to their customers was key and with that began what will be the biggest payday in Fling history when one lucky racer walked away with a half-million dollar check. A one-time happening that rocked the bracket racing world.

A third round win today earns not only the chance to continue on toward the largest payout in Fling history, but at the very least, a loss in the following round earns the racer $750. With the overall success of the event, Biondo and Seipel wanted to make it even that much more special and decided to add to the purse. “We could have easily added to the top prize of $500,000 but in an effort to affect the most people,” said Biondo, “we chose for today’s race to add to the purse by rewarding all second round winners with a $500 check. We have been so fortunate to have the support of so many and cannot thank all who have supported our brand of Fling events enough.”

Besides the many other decisions both promoters have made over the years, this one drives home the fact of their ego of making money is not in the way of doing the right thing. During the Impact Racer Appreciation Party held tonight, a special video presentation was played with appreciation and a rousing applauds from each of those in attendance for what Peter Biondo and Kyle Seipel have built.

As for the racing, the survivors of round six and those moving forward toward that possibly elusive $500,000, were Phillip Pennington, Matt Dadas, Keith Thomas, Aaron Vail, Tuesday’s Dragster Shootout runner-up Shane Maddox, Hunter Patton, Tuesday’s Dragster Shootout winner Jake Woodring, Scotty Bodmer, Ryan Mangus and Tim West.

On the ladder round with ten left, Mangus was late on the ‘Tree but pulled it out on the top end to take out West. Patton then defeated Thomas, Vail took out Bodmer and Dadas and his door car defeated Pennington. In the final race of the round, it was a repeat of Tuesday’s Dragster Shootout, Maddox got his revenge when Woodring turned on the red-light.

Two door cars and three dragsters remained for the quarterfinal round with Dadas’ 0.004 RT in the prior round earning him the bye run into the semis. First up was Patton and Mangus with Patton’s dead-on the dial with a “6” was too much for Mangus to overcome. Finally Maddox and Vail left the line with almost equal RT but it was Vail running under to hand the win to Maddox. Two dragsters and one door car left for the semifinals with Patton receiving the bye run to advance directly to the final.

In the other half of the semis, Maddox left with a 0.024 and dead-on the dial with a “5,” but it was Dadas with a 0.005 RT and dead-on the dial with a “4” to turn on the win light. A door car and dragster for the largest payout in Fling history.

Final round for $500,000, and with the handicap in his favor, Dadas left first but turned on the red-light by 0.010. Seeing his win light on, Patton never even made it to the finish line, stopping halfway and backing up the track up to a giant cheering crowd, assuring his name in the annals of Fling brand history forever.

hunter patton winners circle fall fling

hunter patton drag racer 2019 fall fling 500


After a late night at the largest payout in Fling brand history; or actually early Saturday morning as the final round was run a little after midnight; there remained one more day, JEGS Saturday at the Sparco Fall Fling 500K presented by Optima Batteries.

While the ATI Friday’s main event winner Hunter Patton might still be celebrating what is little doubt his biggest payout, $500,000, the balance of the field set their sights on win lights in search of the $30,000-to-win prize.

First up this morning was the Fall Fling Reaction Time Challenge where 25 randomly selected drivers were given one hit at the ‘Tree where a 0.00X RT earned that person a $100 bill. A perfect RT earns $1,000 and the chance to do it one more time for $10,000. Unfortunately, no one recorded that perfect shot but Chris Borges, Jared Pennington, Jerry Brewer, Lannan Barrilleau, Mike Daugherty, Thomas Bell, Chris Weaver, Shelby Miles, Megan Lotts, Blaine Mayer and John Parks all receiving $100 for their 0.00X RT efforts.

And before eliminations began, was the Fling Family Photo, a gathering of some of the racers, crews and families who make up such a great event. It’s tradition which dates back to the very first Spring Fling in 2010, and one which has become such an important ritual of each Fling brand event.

The racing? Round six survivors were Jeremy Jensen, Brian Martel, Travis Colangelo, Amy Crosby, Ken Batchelor, Brad Gebhardt, Matt Schapiro, David Dean and Jeremy Han****. With nine cars left for round seven and each inserted on a ladder, a perfect Reaction Time in round six by Jensen earned him the bye run into round eight with five cars left.

As for round seven; the two door cars of Martel and Colangelo battled with Martel getting the nod. Han**** over Gebhardt; Schapiro over Crosby, Batchelor over Dean and finally Jensen and his door car took the bye run.

Quarterfinals with five left, Batchelor turned it red by -0.015 to advance Martel. Schapiro was 0.009 to Jensen’s almost equal 0.010, with the double run-out advancing Schapiro who was the least offender. Finally, Han**** took his bye run and faced Schapiro in the semifinals with Martel receiving the bye into the final due to his 0.005 RT in the quarters.

In the semifinals, Schapiro missed the ‘Tree with a 0.047 RT while Han**** stayed sharp with a 0.008 for the win to move to his first Fling final round. Martel simply took the ‘Tree to also move into his first Fling final round as well, where it was Commerce, Georgia (Han****) versus Fredericksburg, Virginia (Martel).

jeremy hancock drag racer

And after thousands of runs down the Bristol Dragway track since Tuesday, it came down to one more set to close out a remarkable week. Martel, who has been telepathic all week, and prior to the final was named as the Todd’s Extreme Paint MVP, turned on the red-light to hand the trophy and $30,000 to Han****. But in addition to his MVP award, Martel receives a custom-painted Todd’s Extreme Paint-ed helmet and $1,000.

brian martel fall fling 500 mvp 2019

“It’s been an amazing week,” said co-promoter Kyle Seipel, “and it’s all due to each one of the racers who chose to put their confidence in us that we would provide them with a great experience. I hope we succeeded in that effort and we’d like to give our sincere thank you to all who took part this week. We can’t wait to do it all again next year.”

fall fling 500 2019 racer

The 2020 Fling schedule was released earlier in the week with first up the K&N Spring Fling Million in Las Vegas, April 14-18. Next up on the east coast is the K&N Spring Fling at GALOT Motorsports Park, April 28-May 2 with pre-entries opening on February 5th. And finally the 2020 Sparco Fall Fling back in Bristol for the 11th year, September 29-October 3, with pre-entries opening June 24th. Both the GALOT and Bristol races will have a Wednesday Warm-up race worth $15,000-to-win, followed by a $25,000 on Thursday and Saturday with the main event Friday paying $100,000, all of the monies guaranteed. The Vegas Million will host the Triple $30Ks with the main event on Friday carrying a guaranteed $250,000-to-win with a graduated payout according to the entry count. For more info and results, continue to visit

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