- Published on Monday, 30 November -0001 00:00
It only took 26 years to see our first female win the University of Northwestern Ohio “High School Nationals” presented by Patriot 500 Racing, but it was well worth the wait for Desiree Oberg representing Brookside High School (Sheffield Lake OH). Desiree not only won a 6’ trophy, but a $10,000 scholarship to UNOH! Oberg driving a 99 Mustang had the advantage from the get go, but was sealed at the finish line when her opponent Randy Asvestas Western Reserve (Wakeman OH) ran faster than his predicted dial-in. Randy also received a trophy and a $5,000 scholarship to UNOH.
This year’s High School competition was the closest it has been in many years. The top 3 schools were separated by a point. Clay High School took the overall honors by scoring 16 points, followed by Carey High School and EHOVE Career Center with 15 points. Carey broke the tie by having their last racer go out in the 5th round. Upper Sandusky finished fourth and Brookside High School rounded out the top 5 by breaking the tie against Lorain County Joint Vocational School by having the overall winner on their team!
A new class was introduced this year just for alumni and it was well attended by recent graduates and by individuals who had received their diploma we’ll just say…a while ago! Our first alumni winner went to Andrew Taylor from Norwalk HS. He met up with Mike Maday from Black River HS in the final. Maday had the starting line advantage, but Taylor made ground going down the track. It was a close race at the finish line, as Taylor only beat Maday by 0.004!
There was also a class for the instructors who were in attendance on Sunday. It was a librarian facing off a tech adviser in the final. Tony Darr (Vanguard High School) had Joan Yarsa (Lorain High School) from the start. She made up ground, but her late start assisted in handing the win over to Darr.
The University of Northwestern Ohio and Patriot 500 Racing both had displays set up for the students to ask questions about their programs. UNOH also brought NHRA Top Fuel driver Terry McMillen to the High School Nationals. He mingled with the students and offered racing tips to a couple of UNOH students who were working towards their NHRA Super Comp licenses.
The High School Nationals is more than just racing. The Jostens off track games are just as popular as the racing. Mark Rapp representing EHOVE won the parade of ugliest working wreck. This year’s runner up went to Chase Snyder of Upper Sandusky. The Josten’s Car Cram allows the most students to participate. Upper Sandusky won the contest by squeezing 19 students into a Buick. Carey gave it their best by putting 14 students in a Pontiac Grand Prix.
There were 8 strong competitors in this year’s Jostens Smokey Burnout Contest. This year’s winner was Kyle Cantrell representing Vanguard and the runner-up went to Chevy Kromer of Carey High School. The crowd encouraged both competitors to go until they blown their ties apart. Cantrell did it first which brought on lots of cheers and gave him the advantage when the crowed voted him as having the best ‘smokey’ burnout!