**Opinions and descriptions of the Team Demolition Derby Tournament of Destruction on MidwestMonsters.com are those of I, TDA Photographer Jason Twite, and do not necessarily represent those of the Team Demo Association, its affiliates or sponsors. All information has been presented as accurately as possible, with respect to race analysis and results. However, specific race details should not be considered as hard facts. If you have a correction, please email it to my attention. Thank You! **

All photos Copyright Team Demolition Derby Association/Creative One, Inc., 2007.

2007 Team Demolition Derby
Tournament of Destruction

Presented by series sponsor Speedway Auto Parts & Wreckers in Chicago Heights, IL
September 22nd: Round 4

-- National Champions Crowned! --
Killer Bee's fulfill dream; Havoc's shattered.

As corny as it may sounds, this final night was truly un-bee-lievable! The proverbial decked had been stacked, re-stacked, and stacked again against the Killer Bee's throughout the season; only to crumble under the pressure. Point violations, cheating accusations, tough draws, now, all a thing of the past. Killer Bee's ran the gauntlet one last time, which culminated in a fourth and final battle with the Junk Yard Dogs and walked away as the 2007 Team Demolition Derby Tournament of Destruction Champions!

*The pictures from this event are not to the quality I wanted and you're used to seeing. My camera encountered major problems right after the first race and there was nothing I could do about it. A lot of the shots came out blurred and out of focus. The camera was retired after this event and new gear is ready for the new season!*

Scenarios for winning the title:

Havoc: A first-round win would assure at least a tie for 1st place
JYD: Must win entire event & Havoc must lose first-round
Killer Bees: Must win entire event & Havoc must lose first-round

Round 1

Damage, Inc. vs. Havoc

All of the anticipation and drama could've been wiped out in just one race. 2-time race winners up against a win-less team. Havoc's title dreams were in sight and all they had to do was push through the meager Damage, Inc. But, Damage, Inc. did not just show up to be walked all over. Dave Swan stocked his lineup with some big iron and big hitters behind the wheels. Joe Tyrakowski returned and jumped into the #82 car, Joe Snow was back for more in the #83, Ryan Riley was in #85 and Swan rounded out the stocked up team in #86. Havoc countered with Milette, Jr, Wilson, Ryan & Anderson.

#42 Johnny Ryan sprinted his Havoc car to the lead on Lap 1, but was hammered up and into the wall by a gang of yellow cars. #83 Joe Snow took the lead for Damage, Inc. and pulled away into Lap 2. Havoc re-grouped and began to pummel any yellow car within reach. Havoc was still out-numbered 4-3 due to Ryan's car getting totaled on Lap 1, but they were about to get an assist. #44 Rich Wilson roared down the back stretch, but was a sitting duck for Dave Swan as he charged toward Wilson with visions of a killer T-bone blast. Swan narrowly missed and instead kissed the concrete at around 40mph and spilt the wall in half!! Unbelievable hit! The #86 was now twisted up in concrete and the sides were back even.
Wilson came around the slammed #85 with a big side shot, but the Havoc wagon stalled out. Riley in the #85 continued on and met up with the #4 in a hard head-on hit in Turn 3. At this point, no cars were left running and confusion erupted as to which team was in the lead. The #4 appeared to hit the #85 believing he was in the lead, but now all the cars were dead and Damage, Inc. was posted as the leader! No cars could get moving and a 10-second countdown was ordered! When it hit zero, Havoc's championship dreams were all but gone. Fans were shocked, Teams 3 & 7 were joyous, and Havoc was in disbelief; their fate no longer in their hands.

Accusations of incorrect lap counts and scoreboard errors spread in the pits and throughout the night and continue to rage on to this day. From my perspective, I honestly don't know who had how many laps, but it did seem to me Havoc was in the lead and then all of a sudden was not. Video evidence was supposedly reviewed after the event and revealed nothing. Regardless, these types of controversial finishes do not need to happen and measures need to be put in place to ensure a fair race and finish.

Up-to-the-Race Point Standings:
Havoc: 28 (final), JYD 20, Bees: 19


Team Xtreme vs. Junk Yard Dogs

Havoc’s loss meant nearly every race had vital importance the rest of the night. The Junk Yard Dogs squared off against the very challenging Team Xtreme and the Dogs were in a must-win spot. Xtreme jumped out front and had early hopes of the upset! The Dogs hunted down the leader and put #33 Ryan Bleuer out front. Bleuer’s car absolutely flew around the track and he went back and forth with teammate Gerritt Vanderbilt for the lead. On Lap 3, Trey Van Allen bashed Vanderbilt into the wall to end his threat. With all other cars out, #27 Josh Van Allen charged his sharp looking wagon around the tires and was poised to take over the lap lead! But, Bleuer’s car just wouldn’t stay down! Van Allen knew Bleuer was in the lead and needed to cut him off immediately. His first attempt failed on the back stretch and the JYDs were a half-lap from victory. Van Allen spun the wagon around and bolted towards Bleuer in Turn 4 and nailed the leader with a crushing head-on hit! Van Allen’s car went dead, Bleuer’s car survived the smash and he was able to cruise across the finish to keep the Championship within reach and put even more pressure on the Killer Bees. Great Race!

Up-to-the-Race Point Standings:
Havoc: 28 (final), JYD 26 (minimum), Bees: 19


Orange Crush vs. Mean Green Machines

The only first round race without championship implication was Orange Crush up against the Mean Green Machines. Even with no hope for a title, both teams left it all on the track in a hard-hitting fight. #17 and #65 collided in a sick wagon-to-wagon head-on crash which exploded the front end of both cars and rained debris all over the place! MGMs ran their best race of the season, but just could not stop Orange Crush’s quick maneuvers. #69 picked up the win with his #66 teammate right behind after he knocked out #1 Greg Meisch, the final MGM car running.


Stranglehold vs. Killer Bees

The first round concluded with the Killer Bees’ most important race of the year. They needed to win to survive and, as if the deck wasn’t stacked enough, had to beat the mighty Stranglehold to do it. #77 Robby Stahulak led the way early, but couldn’t hold the lead past Lap 1. #74 & #71 plowed the road for #7 Steven Scarbro to regain the Bees’ lead. #50 Chris McGuire was a constant threat and ran coast to coast multiple times trying to stop the onslaught. McGuire delivered some stiff punishment, but ultimately succumbed to the Bees’ power. He tried to block Scarbro’s route to the Finish line, but, instead, was physically pushed across the line! A defining display of raw power from Scarbro's car. The Bees kept pace with the JYD and were inching closer to the title match.

Up-to-the-Race Point Standings:
Havoc: 28 (final), JYD 26 (minimum), Bees: 25 (minimum)


Junk Yard Dogs vs. Damage, Inc.

Damage, Inc. could spoil another Championship dream as they looked to pounce all over the JYDs. #83 Joe Snow grabbed a quick lead, but was stopped in Turn 4 on Lap 1. #35 Gerritt Vanderbilt took over and had to fight off Snow with help from his #3X teammate. #33 Bleuer picked up the lead again but was stalked at every corner by #82 Joe Tyrakowski. Bleuer was bashed into a Damage, Inc. sandwich in Turn 3 of Lap 4, but both yellow cars stalled out from the impact! Bleuer’s car yet again refused to die and he charged through the traffic to take the win! With the win, JYD moved into a tie for 1st with Havoc and put pressure back on the Bees to keep pace.

Up-to-the-Race Point Standings:
JYD 28 (minimum), Havoc: 28 (final) Bees: 25 (minimum)


Orange Crush vs. Killer Bees

The see-saw final night continued and the Killer Bees needed to swing the power back even. #77 Stahulak burst to the lead and left the rest of the team to dismantle the opposition. But, Crush wasn’t going quietly! #66 Ron Tyrakowski went to war with Lewis & Vollbrecht multiple times. The #65 car was also a dominant force and clocked Stahulak on Lap 3 to halt the run. After watching his leader attacked, Vollbrecht locked on the #65 and nailed a monster head-on to eliminate his prey! Power steering fluid ignited a fireball underneath the #68, though did not stop the car from restarting and mauling the leader Stahulak with a last-ditch shot! Remaining Bees cleared the totaled Crush cars and allowed Stahulak time to get the car re-fired and he took the checkered flag, ending the intense showdown. Another wild, thrilling race!

Up-to-the-Race Point Standings:
JYD 28 (minimum), Havoc: 28 (final) Bees: 27 (minimum)


Fred Sibley's Lil' Red Beer Hauler was back again for another fiery car burn. Sibley was not at the controls this time and instead had a replacement behind the wheel who really didn't appear to know how to handle the jets properly. Sibley stood by the cockpit trying to give directions, but they didn't seem to be working. A very long burn, but not one with the same pop and power we're used to.


Can the Bees solve the endurance of the JYDs and especially Ryan Bleuer? Do the JYDs have a counter for the Bees fast-paced, high-powered offense? Find your answer. Find your champion.

**Battle for the National Championship**
Killer Bees vs. Junk Yard Dogs
--The Final Encounter--

Eight teams entered the Tournament of Destruction, and at the end of 5 grueling summer & weather-plagued months, 27 races come down to a 28th, where only 2 teams remain standing and one of them has to fall.

On one side you've got the Junk Yard Dogs. Consistent performers all season and responsible for some of the most memorable moments of the year. The emergence of Ryan Bleuer has also brought the team to the verge of their 2nd Championship. They made it to the final round only once in 2007 and fell to Bees back in July.
On the other side you've got the Killer Bees. The biggest hyped team of the pre-season. Even without winning the June event, the Bees became the talk of the track. Shedding their Road Rage image of 2006, they went from unrecognized to unstoppable. Winners of two events, but forced to scratch and claw back into the title hunt after two separate point penalties nearly ruined their chances.
The three previous battles between these two will go down in Team Demo history as some of the greatest duels ever. It is only fitting that they square off one last time in the final race on the final night for the Championship.

Stahulak darted out of the hole first and looked for an open path around Turn 2, but only found a head-on hit from the #3X car! Tom “Brickman” Lewis took over in the #71 and stuck to the outside route, avoiding the big hits. #33 Ryan Bleuer locked up with #7 Steve Scarbro for another big wreck, but #71 was still out front!
#77 and #3X went at it in a full speed slam on the front stretch, which knocked both cars out of the race. JYD had already lost the #30 wagon so it was down to 3 running cars on both sides! Scarbro went for a T-bone block on Vanderbilt, but completely missed and crashed hard into the concrete and eliminated himself! JYD had the numbers advantage, but Brickman was yet to be stopped. Bleuer attempted two separate shots on Brickman, but was bulldozed by Lewis on the first try. Bleuer waited in the middle of the track for the #71 to come around again and Bleuer scored with a huge reverse shot to the front of Lewis' car. But, the #71 absorbed the stiff shot and knocked the #33 fighter out of the path with victory only two turns away! He out-maneuvered Bleuer's final attempt in Turn 4, had a clear run to the finish and captured his second championship in a row and the first for the Killer Bees!!!


Speedway Auto Parts & Wreckers Point Standings
2007 Championship Results

Killer Bees 29
Junk Yard Dogs 28
Havoc 28
Orange Crush 22
Team Xtreme 20
Stranglehold 20
Damage, Inc. 18
Mean Green Machines 16


Congratulations to the Killer Bees for winning the 2007 Tournament of Destruction! Just an amazing year all around and this team lived up to the talk, proved they were the team to beat and walked away with all the gold.

From this fan's point of view, whom has only seen Team Demolition Derby full-time since 2003, this was without a doubt the greatest year I've witnessed and had the pleasure to cover. I can only hope there are more years to come and more incredible racing that somehow, maybe someway, could actually top this season.

Thank You to the crew of the TDA, specifically Jan & Teresa Gabriel for allowing me the privileged to bring all of this to you. Huge Thanks to the eight teams for everything you endure, sacrifice, and suffer through just to put on a show. It may only happen 4 nights a year, but those 4 nights require nearly an entire year's worth of devotion. I truly believe this sport is no where near it's full potential, but when, not if, when it reaches that point, the teams deserve to be first line for any rewards. Of course, thanks to all the fans for another strong year of attendance and we all hope that Route 66 Raceway & ISC realize the great following and passion for Team Demolition Derby and continue to support the track and the TDA for the 2008 season and beyond!

Thank you for following the 2007 season on MidwestMonsters.com! For 2008, an entirely new TeamDemo.com will be built and you will be able to follow the season in much greater detail than before. More content, more news, more photos and hopefully a site where all the content can easily be found in one place! The 2008 season is only 6 months away!!

**Opinions and descriptions of the Team Demolition Derby Tournament of Destruction on MidwestMonsters.com are those of I, TDA Photographer Jason Twite, and do not necessarily represent those of the Team Demo Association, its affiliates or sponsors. All information has been presented as accurately as possible, with respect to race analysis and results. However, specific race details should not be considered as hard facts. If you have a correction, please email it to my attention. Thank You! **

All photos Copyright Team Demolition Derby Association/Creative One, Inc., 2007.