Justin Picillo of Picillo Racing Wins
2015 NHRA Division 1
Stock Eliminator Championship
Justin Picillo, 32, of Warwick, Rhode Island has become the 2015 NHRA Division 1 Stock Eliminator Champion driving a 1972 Chevelle 350 small block.
Justin and his team worked very hard throughout the 2015 season traveling from New Hampshire to Reynolds, Georgia and a few tracks in-between.
The race season started with the intention of running only a few races. The team had taken 2013 and 2014 off, Justin and his wife Liz had gotten married and purchased a home. Those plans quickly changed when Justin won the first 2 races of the 2015 season.
The 1st race win was at New England Dragway in Epping, New Hampshire. Justin entered the Allstar Racing Association’s Race #1. Justin was previously crowned Allstar Champion in 2005 and 2012, placing 2nd in 2006 and 3rd in 2007.
The 2nd race win was also at New England Dragway. Justin entered the PC Richard and Son National Open Series running in the Stock Eliminator class.
After the second win the team knew they had to keep up the momentum and continue racing.
The 3rd race win was also his first NHRA Division 1 Stock Eliminator win this year. The race was held in West Lebanon, New York at Lebanon Valley Dragway. Running the Stock Eliminator Class, Justin once again came out on top beating some of the best racers in the country.
The 4th race win was at New England Dragway in the Pro Eliminator class.
The 5th race win (3rd NHRA Divisional Event) was held at Atco Raceway in Atco, New Jersey. Once again racing against some of the toughest racers in the US, Justin again came out on top.
The 4th NHRA Divisional (Cecil County, Maryland) and 5th NHRA Divisional (Englishtown, New Jersey) weren’t as successful as the first two. We lost 2nd round at both events. At this point we had moved into
a tie for 2nd place with multi-time champion Anthony Fetch from Colonia, New Jersey. Allison Smyth from Uxbridge, Massachusetts was in 1st place by 42 points.
From this point on until the very last race of the season it was a battle for 1st place between Justin, Allison and Anthony. Allison and Justin still had 2 races they could attend and get points for, where Anthony only had 1. With no more local tracks to race at for divisional points we were forced to race out-of-division.
So Justin and Allison headed to Bristol, Tennessee to attend an out-of-division race at Thunder Valley in Bristol, Tennessee. This is where things got really interesting. Allison was in 1st place at this point and she lost in the 2nd round as did Justin. The way the NHRA points system work Justin got 1 point at this race. Allison now had 382 points, Justin had 341 points and Anthony had 340 points. Justin needed 41 points to tie and 42 points to win the championship.
With the title still not wrapped up the Picillo Team, the Fetch Team and the Smyth Team journeyed down to Reynolds, Georgia for final local (well kinda local) race of the year. What a race it was!!! It was a nail bitter until the final round. Anthony lost in the 2nd round and Allison lost in the 3rd round. Racing at a track that Justin had never raced, he was runner-up, giving us a 2 point lead over Allison.
But then there was one more out-of-division divisional being held out in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Picillo Team decided not to go out to Las Vegas, but the Smyth Team went. The Picillo Team were at home watching live Las Vegas coverage on the internet where Allison lost in the first round. We’d be surprised if the whole state of Rhode Island didn’t hear us cheering about winning the championship!!!
Justin was officially the 2015 NHRA Division 1 Stock Eliminator Champion!!!
Justin is a 2nd generation racer. His Dad, John Picillo, started racing when he was 16 years old. Justin also started racing at 16 years old in a borrowed Jeep from Art Irwin. While Justin was still a senior in high school, he worked 2 part time jobs, played varsity basketball, and varsity baseball and still managed to make the honor roll. For his hard work and dedication his graduation present was his first REAL racecar.
Competing in the Pro Eliminator Class he proved what a great driver he was with hundreds of round wins and multiple championships. Justin was previously crowned Pro Eliminator Champion in 2004 and 2008, placing in the top 5 numerous times between 2001 and 2008.
In 2005 Justin decided to step up our game and run the NHRA Divisional circuit with the support and backing of his parents, John and Carol and brother Jason.
We wish to thank NHRA and the Division 1 staff, Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series, Burtonsville Performance Machine in Laurel, Maryland, Sepanek Racing Transmissions in Moosic, Pennsylvania, ATI , VP Fuels, Joe and Nancy Lombardo of New England Dragway and staff, Allstar Racing Association, Richard Carlow, Wheelz Up Radio and Brian Lohnes for being the NHRA announcer that always pronounces our last name correctly!
Picillo Racing: firstname.lastname@example.org * Justin Picillo: email@example.com * Liz Picillo: firstname.lastname@example.org