APD Presents ThisIsBracketRacing.com Member of the Year: Willie Burnett
2011 TIBR Member of the Year, Willie Burnett (Center)
Early in 2011, Advanced Product Design and ThisIsBracketRacing.com introduced a new program on the only sportsman drag racing driving school on the World Wide Web. Within the APD Member Spotlight, all ThisIsBracketRacing.com members were encouraged to submit a resume to participate in the program, and the TIBR staff was bombarded by nearly 100 subscribers who did just that. 
From those applicants, the field was narrowed to four yearlong participants: Jonathan Robin, Eric Bowling, Aaron Allison, and Willie Burnett. These sportsman racers from various corners of the United States participated by posting monthly blogs to ThisIsBracketRacing.com throughout the 2011 season. Their blogs presented TIBR members and visitors alike with useful, educational, and often amusing storylines from the trenches of sportsman drag racing. In return for their commitment, each of the four spotlighted members received a prize package courtesy of Nitroplate, K&N Engineering, J&J Engine Diapers, ThisIsBracketRacing.com, and of course Advanced Product Design. APD provided each of the spotlighted members with a carburetor conversion (converting their existing piece to a custom APD gas or alcohol carburetor).
Burnett's familiar Undercover Dragster
In addition, the four participants were eligible for a season ending bonus, in which TIBR members would vote one of them “Member of the Year.” That honor, in a close race separated by a mere 5 votes, went Willie Burnett of Olathe, KS. Burnett entertained readers throughout the season with his hilarious account of racing success (and often lack thereof). Burnett, or Ivan NoDrivin (his pen name), is a sportsman racer who takes great pride in promoting and recognizing the sportsman racing and racers of the Midwest. In 2011, he campaigned a pair of sportsman machines; an Undercover Dragster he lovingly refers to as the “Blue Beacon” and a Malibu door car that he recently sold. Burnett took part in local bracket events at a variety of Midwestern facilities, as well as big buck races, and a few NHRA divisional and national events throughout the season. His self-deprecating sense of humor made his stories the most read blogs of the program, and his popularity helped him win a close vote among TIBR members.
Burnett's "Blue Bu"
In response to earning the TIBR Member of the Year award, Burnett offered his typically humble and humorous insight:
“I am overly appreciative of Luke and www.ThisIsBracketRacing.com for giving me the opportunity to write about my travels this year.  I can’t thank the readers enough (especially those who voted for me) for all the support and kind words I have received throughout the season.  I enjoyed reading all the member spotlight articles from Jonathan, Eric, and Aaron; and feel like the four of us had a camaraderie that will continue for years to come.   It’s obvious that my supporters didn’t read the voting criteria very closely before placing their votes but I’ll take it however I can get it.”
“Vote for your favorite blogger based on their success (nope) and/or improvement (I had nowhere to go but up) on the race track throughout the season, as well as their ability to share racing techniques (maybe the reverse spot drop??) and tips (tip: pull up beside me the staging lanes) with the TIBR audience, and the overall enjoyment (wow, you folks must not get out much) you got from reading their blogs.”
“Well, I guess the saying ‘the bank doesn’t ask you if you actually earned the check when they cash it’ seems appropriate here.  Thank you again to all the sponsors of APD Members Spotlight and to all my friends (new and old) that kept me trudging thru the low times and helped me celebrate the (rare) successful ones.  I look forward to reading the excerpts from a new flock of TIBR Members Spotlight contestants next year.  Heck, maybe I’ll even get to make a guest appearance.  I hope to use www.IvanNoDrivin.com to continue my ramblings next season as well so feel free to stop in and see what disasters I create for myself on and off the track in 2012.”
For earning the 2011 Member of the Year crown, Willie will receive an incredible prize package that includes: a 3-Day entry to the 2012 JEGS U.S. Open Bracket Championship, courtesy of event promoters Mike Fuqua and Dave Szerlag; an FTI Torque converter, courtesy of Greg Samuel at FTI; a Milodon oil pan, pump, and pickup courtesy of the longtime performance manufacturer, and a $500 labor certificate courtesy of Huntsville Engine & Performance.
To look back on Willie Burnett’s award winning blogs, or any of the great contributions to the 2011 APD Member Spotlight on ThisIsBracketRacing.com, visit the site free of charge (click on APD Member Spotlight in the “Site Resources” menu on the home page).
ThisIsBracketRacing.com would like to congratulate Willie Burnett and thank Aaron Allison, Jonathan Robin, and Eric Bowling for their contributions throughout the 2011 season. The APD Member Spotlight program was made possible by Advanced Product Design, J&J Engine Diapers, K&N Engineering, Nitroplate, the JEGS U.S. Open Bracket Championships, FTI, Milodon, and Huntsville Engine & Performance. Look for details soon as the APD Member Spotlight on ThisIsBracketRacing.com enters its second season with a fresh group of participants!


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