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Corn Arrives at NMRA Open Comp Championship

Posted By: Mary Lendzion
Written by Mary Lendzion
Photos by NMRA Staff
 
Dennis Corn is an accomplished and acknowledged racer.
 
He has amassed a number of wins through the years, and he had earned NMRA ARP Open Comp championships in 2016, 2017 and 2019 before entering 2022 with his heart set on earning another one.
 
So the Michigan resident, who works for Roush Engineering and Engine Build Operations, went through his 7.0L Ford engine which was built by the Roush Competition Engines Crew to ensure that everything was exceptional before heading to the NMRA Spring Break Shootout in March at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Florida. He qualified in the tenth spot out of 31 racers with a .009 reaction time and chose a 9.00 dial for the weekend. He won the first and second rounds of eliminations with a 9.02 and 9.03, and exited eliminations in the third round, with a 9.04, after a very close race.
 
Corn, who rows the gears of a manual transmission from G-Force Racing Transmissions, which is owned by 2022 NMCA Dart NA 10.5 champion Leonard Long, went on to qualify in the eleventh spot out of 31 cars with an .012 reaction time and dialed in at 9.02 at the Scoggin Dickey Parts Center NMRA/NMCA All-Star Nationals presented by MAHLE Motorsport in April at Rockingham Dragway in North Carolina. He got by the first round of eliminations with a 9.06, followed by the second and third rounds of eliminations with a pair of 9.03s. He lost in the semifinal round of eliminations with a breakout time of 9.01.


 
Gaining points and wanting to go far at the next race on the tour, Corn qualified in the seventeenth spot out of 30 cars with an .018 reaction time and chose a 9.10 dial at the NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Street Legal Drag Racing presented by Fuelab in May at World Wide Technology Raceway in Illinois. He won the first round of eliminations despite a breakout time of 9.08 as his opponent went red, and he advanced through the second and third rounds of eliminations with a 9.12 and 9.13. A -.005 red light ended his weekend in the semifinal round of eliminations.
 
“We broke a right rear shock at World Wide Technology Raceway, and we still managed to find adjustments in the car to go four rounds in eliminations,” said Corn. “It was not pretty. In fact, it was downright ugly at times.”
 
Corn proceeded to qualify in the sixteenth spot out of 34 cars with an .017 reaction time and chose a 9.12 dial at the NMRA Ford Performance Nationals in June at Summit Motorsports Park in Ohio. He was victorious in the first round of eliminations with a 9.19, and in the second round of eliminations, a double breakout, with a 9.10. With a great reaction time, he had room to ease out of the throttle to a 9.21 to avoid breaking out on his way to winning the third round of eliminations, and he repeated that feat with a 9.14 and 9.17 in the fourth and semifinal rounds of eliminations. That paired him with Charlie Atkinson for the final round of eliminations, and he went to the always-welcoming NMRA Winner’s Circle with a 9.13.


 
With just a few races remaining, Corn headed out for the Arrington Performance NMRA/NMCA Power Festival presented by TorqStorm Superchargers in July at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park in Michigan. There, at the race track in his home state, he qualified in the seventh spot out of 31 cars with a .005  reaction time and chose a 9.20 dial. He won the first and second rounds of eliminations with a 9.21 and 9.26, and he broke out by less than his opponent, with a 9.19, to win the third round of eliminations. When the rain rolled in, officials made the decision to finish the remaining rounds at the Whipple Superchargers NMRA Ford World Finals presented by Competition Clutch featuring the Holley Intergalactic Ford Festival in late September, early October at Beech Bend Raceway in Kentucky. Corn didn’t advance in the rain-delayed Michigan race which was completed during qualifying, but he was still focused on the Kentucky race, and he qualified in the eighth spot out of 47 cars with a .006 reaction time, chose a 9.06 dial and had room to lift to a 9.14 to win the first round of eliminations. While Corn lost in the second round of eliminations with a 9.11, he captured the 2022 NMRA ARP Open Comp championship.
 
“I’m a lucky man to be a part of something that I thought might never happen at this stage in my life, and I’m humbled, honored and enthused,” said Corn. “I’d like to give special thanks to my wife, Lisa, son, Trevor, daughter, Alyssa, mother, Nancy, father Bob, and my extended family and friends, including Mike, Linda, Mike Jr., Doug, Laurie, Dan, Kathy, John, Robin, Theo, Justin, George and Rich. I am forever in debt to the Roush family and Jack Roush for that they have presented me. I also want to thank the Roush Crew, including Ron, Ryan, Jay, Jim, Jeff, Bill, Ken, Leo, Matt, Opie, Gabriel, Julia, Jolivia, Fernando and Steve, and the Aftermarket Group, including Robin of Holley, Chris of ARP, Steve and Kyle of Dart, Robert of Eagle, Tim, Steve and Ron of AFR, Joe, John and Brian of MAHLE, Chris and Billy of Comp Cams and Chris of PAC.”
 
The NMRA will celebrate Corn and his fellow champions at the Holley NMRA Ford Nationals Awards Ceremony, held during the Performance Racing Industry Trade Show, Dec. 9, 2022, at the Indiana Convention Center.
 
Please watch for upcoming stories about each of our champions on NMRADigital.com and RacePagesDigital.com as well as in Fastest Street Car magazine.
 


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