Manzo heads to Allstars on an historic hot streak

With 42 consecutive round wins in a bank and an undefeated season on the line, Frank Manzo will have a lot at stake as he heads to route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Ill., for this weekend’s highly anticipated JEGS Sportsman Allstars competition. Manzo, of Morganville, N.J., has not lost a round of Top Alcohol Funny Car competition since July 1, 2007, and he’s well on his way to a 12th national championship with five wins in five events thus far in 2008.

However, Manzo’s toughest test will likely come in the JEGS Allstars, a special event that features the best drivers from each of NHRA’s seven geographic divisions.

In addition to his current win streak, Manzo has also won nine-straight rounds of competition in the JEGS Allstars, claiming wins in each of the last three events. All told, Manzo has appeared in seven Allstars final rounds since 1995, winning six times and earning one runner-up finish. Last season, Manzo defeated arch rival Jay Payne in the final round to claim the $7,000 first place prize. He also went on to capture the title at the Torco Race Fuels Route 66 Nationals the following day, claiming an additional $7,000 as part of the JEGS double-up bonus, which is available to any Allstars champion who also wins on Sunday. Manzo’s 2007 victory helped the Northeast Division squad claim the overall team title, and the $20,000 bonus that accompanies it.

The driver most likely to end Manzo’s streak is Division 2 representative and current Top Alcohol Funny Car points leader Jay Payne. The winner of the 2002 JEGS Allstars, Payne, who resides in Upland, Calif., but races in the Southeast Division, also has a pair of runner-up finishes to his credit in 2004 and 2007. Payne is off to a great start this season, driving his Valvoline Mustang to three wins, including back-to-back victories at the national events in Houston and Las Vegas.

Manzo and Payne will be joined by Mick Snyder (Division 3), Brian Hough (Division 6) and Doug Gordon (Division 7), who are also returning from last year’s JEGS Allstars team. Steve Harker (Division 4) and Paul Anderson (Division 5) will be making their first appearance in the special event.

NOTE: Courtesy of Team Jeg's

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