• Tag Archives Sonny Leonard Racing Engines
  • Hard Work Leading To Successful 2012 ADRL Season For Sonny’s Racing Engines

    The hard work has certainly proven to be worth it in what has been a successful 2012 American Drag Racing League (ADRL) season for ADRL sponsor Sonny’s Racing Engines.

    Of the last six winners in the ADRL’s highly-competitive Extreme Pro Stock class, five have used powerful Sonny’s Racing Engines to end up in the winner’s circle, while countless others have racked up impressive performances in what has already been a banner year for Sonny’s Racing Engines and its owner, Sonny Leonard.

    “This year has probably been one of my best years of performance in the ADRL and we are very excited about that,” Leonard said. “We’ve done a lot of research and development work, developing engine components and a lot of other stuff, and it’s paid off.

    “Of the 18 employees here, 10 have been here more than 20 years. We have a lot of good guys and a lot of good customers who believe in us.”

    The winner’s list of drivers who use Sonny’s Racing Engines in Extreme Pro Stock includes Cary Goforth (twice), Dean Goforth, Todd Hoerner and John DeFlorian, while other top drivers like Doug Kirk, Pro Modified’s Rickie Smith, Pat Musi and many others have seen immense success in the ADRL during its 10-race 2012 Tour using Sonny’s cylinder heads.

    In addition, Kevin Bealko will have a new engine and John Montecalvo will have a new car at the next ADRL race.

    Sonny’s also built a Ford Pro Nitrous engine for Robert Patrick, who won the Pro Nitrous class at the Northeast Drags at Maple Grove. Of course, Hoerner, who works at Sonny’s Racing Engines in Lynchburg, Va., had a notable win in June, becoming the first driver to win in Pro Stock using electronic fuel injection (EFI).

    Leonard praised Hoerner and has also wholeheartedly embraced Big Stuff EFI.

    “Todd’s a very good driver and tuner, and he just knows how to get the best out of what he’s got,” Leonard said. “The good thing about EFI is it’s easier to tune than a carburetor. When we sell an engine with EFI and give them a run map, they can crank it up and go racing.

    “They may have to finesse the run map, but after 3-4 passes down the track, the tune up is there. The drivability is good and it’s very user friendly as well. It accelerates well, it’s easier to tune, and the engine seems to be happier and live longer as well. It’s the way of the future any way you look at it.”

    Leonard also expects at least a couple of standout XPS racers to switch to an EFI setup before the 2012 ADRL season is finished.

    The company has also done well with selling cylinder heads and manifolds to different engine builders, using two different EFI systems: Big Stuff for XPS and Musi/Edelbrock for most of the PM applications.

    “Sonny’s 3-Second Club” in Extreme Pro Stock is up for grabs as well, and DeFlorian nearly became the first member after clocking an amazing 4.01 to set the world E.T. record in June.

    “There’s a lot of good people and racers in that class. There’s probably a minimum of six cars that could be the No. 1 qualifier at any given race,” Leonard said.

    It’s Leonard and his company’s ability to develop world-class racing engines and components that help make the class as good as it is.

    Offering everything from racing engines to cylinder heads to manifolds and much more, and operating out of a state-of-the-art 14,000-square foot facility that features two SuperFlow dynamometers, a porting room, two five axis CNC machining centers, digitizing and laser scan equipment, and a fabrication and welding shop, along with other racing machinery, Sonny’s Racing Engine has enjoyed working with drivers in a variety of ADRL classes.

    “I love going to all of the ADRL races, being part of it and helping all of the drivers. It’s just a great show,” Leonard said.

    For more information about Sonny’s Racing Engines, visit www.sonnysracingengines.com or call (434) 239-1009.

    The Memphis Drags III at Memphis International Raceway is the eighth stop on the 10-race 2012 ADRL Tour and takes place on Sept. 7-8. For ticket information, visit www.adrl.us/tickets.



    Based in O’Fallon, Missouri, the American Drag Racing League is the world’s premier sanctioning body for the sport of eighth-mile drag racing. The professional categories featured in the ADRL are Pro Junior Dragster, Summit Racing Equipment Top Sportsman, Aeromotive Fuel Systems Pro Modified, Extreme Pro Stock, Pro Extreme Motorcycle, Mickey Thompson Extreme 10.5, Pro Nitrous and Pro Extreme, the quickest doorslammer class in all of drag racing, as well as the revolutionary new SuperCar Showdown. The 2012 ADRL Tour consists of 10 national events run throughout the United States. For more information on the ADRL, visit www.ADRL.us.

  • Sonny’s Racing Engines Returns As Sponsor Adds To Impressive Contingency List

    Visible at nearly every American Drag Racing League (ADRL) event, Sonny Leonard and Sonny’s Racing Engines have enjoyed impressive results and a strong relationship with the ADRL.

    That partnership will continue on the 2012 ADRL Tour, as the world’s premier eighth-mile drag racing league announced on Monday that Sonny’s Racing Engines will return as a sponsor for the 2012 season.

    For Leonard, the longtime owner of the standout company, it’s a continued opportunity to work with many of the world’s top racers.

    “I enjoy being out at the ADRL racer. There are a lot of good people out there; some of the best people I’ve ever met. These are people who are serious about their racing,” Leonard said.

    “I look forward to working with the ADRL in 2012, and it’s a great way for me to give something back. I think the ADRL will have an even better year in 2012. There’s professional people running the ADRL and it seems like they will have an even better contingency program.”

    Sonny’s Racing Engines will offer contingency in every professional class (Pro Extreme, Pro Nitrous, Extreme 10.5, Pro Extreme Motorcycle, Extreme Pro Stock, Pro Modified and Top Sportsman) during the 2012 ADRL Tour, which begins on March 30-31 with CarSafe Dragpalooza VIII at Royal Purple Raceway in Houston.

    Sonny’s will also award the No. 1 qualifier in Extreme Pro Stock if the driver uses one of Sonny’s popular engines.

    It’s a top choice for many drivers, including the last two world champions in Extreme Pro Stock, Cary Goforth and John Montecalvo.

    Other customers include Dean Goforth, Doug Kirk, Kevin Bealko, who used a Sonny’s Racing Engine to become the quickest automatic XPS call (4.11), and several others.

    With the Extreme Pro Stock class continuing to make dramatic gains, Sonny’s Racing Engines will continue the “Sonny’s 3-Second Club,” which will honor the first five XPS drivers to reach the 3-second mark.

    Cary Goforth re-set his world record with a 4.03 in 2011, and Leonard believes he will honor the first recipients in the “Sonny’s 3-Second Club” in 2012.

    “There are a lot of people knocking on the door. Whoever does it first certainly deserves it,” Leonard said. “Like all the classes in the ADRL, it’s just so competitive and there’s so much talent. You have to be ready to race.”

    Montecalvo and the Goforth family have been customers with Sonny’s for more than a decade, a sign of the company’s strong status in drag racing.

    As Sonny’s Racing Engines, which is based out of Lynchburg, Va., continues to develop world-class racing engines and components, the company continues to become more involved with the ADRL.

    With extensive development and tuning leading to more power for engines, a number of drivers in the new Top Sportsman and Pro Modified classes will work with the company in 2012.

    “There’s a lot of good people and good customers in the ADRL, and it’s one of the best shows out there,” Leonard said.

    Offering everything from racing engines to cylinder heads to manifolds and much more, and operating out of a state-of-the-art 11,000-square foot facility that features two SuperFlow dynamometers, a porting room and a welding shop, Sonny’s Racing Engine has the capability to work with drivers in all ADRL classes.

    “The quality at Sonny’s Racing Engines is unmatched and the results speak for themselves,” ADRL Executive Vice President Jeff Fortune said. “We are thrilled to have them as a sponsor for the 2012 season and we can’t wait to get the first member of the ‘Sonny’s 3-Second Club.’”


  • John DeFlorian teams with Black Diamond Motorsports in a 2012 Jerry Haas Camaro


    (07-13-11) Fenton, MO – Long acknowledged as one of the most popular drivers in drag racing competition, John DeFlorian is making the move to the highly competitive Extreme Pro Stock Eliminator in the American Drag Racing League.

    After decades of remaining competitive in a variety of race cars despite often meager funding, DeFlorian has announced his association with one of the ADRL’s most innovative racing teams.

    For the 2012 season, DeFlorian will campaign a radical new Extreme Pro Stock entry in conjunction with the Black Diamond Motorsports operation of current ADRL Extreme Pro Stock star Kevin Bealko.

    John will debut one of the first “new generation” 2012 Chevrolet Camaro Extreme Pro Stockers and will battle side-by-side with teammate Bealko’s already-proven 2011 Pontiac GXP. Continue reading  Post ID 4985