APD Member Spotlight Blog (June): Jeremy McKague (Part 1)
Back in Black
Memorial Day weekend is here and we basically have 3 options of places to race. We can go to Byron Illinois for $2500, $5000, and $2500 or Benton IL for $5000 and $2000 or the final option is Tulsa for $5000, $5000 and $5000. We choose Tulsa for a variety of reasons. #1 it was the most money, #2 there was hardly any chance of rain, and #3 they allow the bikes to run with the cars so Denny would be able to race as well. This is my opinion of our choice. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_IlNbsILLE
Denny and I left home with his van, trailer and bike late Friday afternoon. We unloaded his bike at Lowes in Rolla Mo. When Jason showed up we backed the Cavalier out of the trailer in order to get Denny’s bike in. This caused some unusual looks. We get this all done without incident and end up at our hotel in Tulsa around midnight. The next morning we pull into the track and buy two double super pro entries and a single no box entries and write a nice little $1125.00 check. What happened to digging up out of this hole? As we circle the pits looking for “the lucky spot” Jason says “where is everyone at.” There wasn’t many there and with the flyer saying 90 required for full payout it was looking like the purse may be cut. This will make it even harder to get out of the hole. Oh well we’re here and racing is awesome so we are going to have some fun. We do this for the fun right??? I got my decals on thanks to my decal guy. He really isn’t a pro but he works cheap!
I make 3 time trials in the Cavalier and go .010 3.709 5.830 (left 1.130 delay), .010 3.692 5.806(right 1.130 delay), and .010 3.700 5.811(left 1.130). I hope I keep hitting the tree this consistently all weekend. I was feeling optimistic as this is the first time I ran the car since Corey’s last 4 link adjustment and it was straight every run. Also Tulsa pulls cards to pair you with your opponent and your lane is random also so this makes it interesting.
R1 A (Right 1.132) I dial 5.81 and go .007 after one bump (-.010) and go dead on 7 after my opponent is 5 red. 330 = 3.705
R1 B (Right 1.132) I dial 5.81 and he is 4.74 I go .012 and he is .025. I kill a little and take .016 going 5.819 while he is one above. This is good as this race offers 1st or 2nd round buybacks so I know I am in round 3. The only question is will it be for free, $75 or $150. 330 = 3.708
R2 A (Left 1.128) I dial 5.82 and he is 5.78 I raise my dial as it is getting hotter as well as the similarity in our speed makes me more comfortable at the stripe. Plus I think that is all I could go last run. I go .005 and he is .031. A few rips later I take .006 to be a safe two above will he is dead on zero. 330= 3.712 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oJf8PpxYAbE
R2 B (Left 1.130) I dial 5.82 and go .003 and 5.811 after my 5.05 dialed opponent is red. 330 = 3.712 Notice this should not be a 811 with this 330. However there was a cross wind 15mph or greater that had a tendency to move around a little and turn to some tail or some head wind.
R3 A (Right 1.133) I dial 5.81 to Todd Knight’s 4.85. I miss it and go .017 I don’t know why I didn’t bump as I remember thinking I missed it. Luckily he missed it worse and was two over and I ripped it a few time to be one above taking a smooth .039 330 = 3.714
R3 B (Left 1.133) I dial 5.82 and he is 6.46 My last 330 says I’m going 5.81 but I’m scared the wind will quite pushing so and being faster it seemed better to dial up one. Plus with it being 2:30 now and the temp well over 90 I thought the track would go away. I go .10 to his .017 and rip it to take .014 (I thought I killed plenty and didn’t want to give it up) I am 5.836 and he is 2 above. 330 = 3.714 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lwpeDXZKWGE
R4 A (Right 1.133) I am on a 5.81 vs. the dragster on 4.96 I go .020 and didn’t know I missed it. Fortunately he was .055 and a tenth over. I lift and go 3 above. 330 = 3.715
R4 B (Left 1.132) I draw Travis Cannon. Little did I know that he was “on fire.” I dial 5.81 and he is 5.06 I go .006 and 5.822 lifting a little when he came around me. He gives me .012 change with a .005 dead on 1 run. 330 = 3.714
R5 A (Left 1.132) I get Travis again and go 3 red and run a 5.840 with a 3.727 330. The first bad run the car made since eliminations started but it didn’t matter as I and the car sucked together. Hey we’re a team. Travis was .015 and .016 above so I needed to be .010 or better. Travis went on to run himself in the final. Nice job Travis!
So I got down to 19 cars in one entry and 10 in the other but due to the smaller car count of just under 60 this didn’t pay. I am encouraged with the performance of the car due to several others comments of the track being slick.
Time for Sunday and historically on Sunday I do pretty well. I guess you could call me Jody Davies. J I make two time trials and go (1.132) .009 3.704 and 5.815 in the right and then (1.132) .004 3.695 and 5.790 in the left with a big speed of 116.69 which is 1mph higher than the first run and yesterday’s runs. The wind is 20 or more mph today.
R1 A (Left 1.135) I draw a white Malibu for the first of many times this weekend. I dial 5.83 and he is 6.09 I want to hold here as I just picked up .02 on the time shot but yesterday it did that and fell right back off. I don’t want to go with the .81 as I won’t know if I’m holding so I go up 2 from that. I go .003 and he is .013 I take .009 and go dead on 4 while he is dead on 3. My 330 was 3.702 so it looks like it did fall back to the 5.81 pace. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uwqwgWogmVo
R1 B (Right 1.137) I dial 5.81 and Aaron Gee is on a 4.94 Once again I know it miss it and don’t bump and go .021 and he is .018 I leg it to go dead on 3 and Aaron is .004 behind out of it. I think the low slung nose of the Cavalier might have got him. 330 = 3.711
R2 A (Left 1.137) I dial 5.81 and my dragster opponent is 5.16 He is red and I’m .001 and dead on 1. 330 = 3.711 This ties my best package ever. There won’t be any money …..so I got that going for me, which is nice. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8x-nQ-vPw5k
about 1 min in.
R2 B (Right 1.137) Notice the delay. Normally I don’t set up on 1 but I went to the right lane which I have speculated to be about .005 slower on react plus I haven’t bought back yet so if I’m wrong I’m not out. I dial 5.81 vs. 4.75 I go .016, must have had mental delay, and he is .012 I rip it to 114.07 and take .011 I am one above and he is 2 above. 330 = 3.711 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_i3QZYXix8
R3 A (Right 1.137) I stick with the same delay bc I didn’t think I missed the last one that bad. I dial 5.81 and he is 5.10 in a super nice and fast GTO. He is .006 and I go .011 I am dead on six lifting to 115.00 and taking .005. He is one above. 330 = 3.709 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGFhqr6PF5o
R3 B Bye Run (Left 1.137) I pick the left as it had been a while and go .011 1.258 3.711 5.807 116.71
R4 A (Left) Looks like I didn’t write down the delay the rest of the day. I dial 5.81 and he is 5.16 I am .016 while he is .028 and this is what it looks like getting .001 behind and being 2 above to his one above. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WrabzTbJyuY
Also I couldn’t run the number anyway. 330 = 3.723
R4 B (Right) I dial 5.82 and he is 5.05 He is Travis Cannon again. He wacked me twice yesterday and after being a dummy the run before not who I really want to run. I go .020 and he is .033 I give it two little rips and look up and see 5.80 on my board. Shi……. What my light is on? Oh yeah his board says 5.02 I took .004 to be .009 less under. So far between us who ever has been in the right lane has won.
R5 Notice no A or B rounds anymore as I only have one bullet left. I am dialed in at 5.81 and Aaron Gee is 4.97 I just realized writing this that he had no chance (jk) as we made our run at 3:41pm which is my lucky number as my license number is 341A. I go .006 and once above I lifted but took .025 as he parked hard behind me to be .021 and 2 above.
R6 There are 5 cars left. I dial a 5.81 as I was going that last run but barely and it is getting later and cooler as the clouds have been blocking the sun for a while. Damian Landers who dominated last time here dials 4.86 I go .011 and 5.825 all out but thankfully for me he is .022 red. I talked to him later and he has no idea what happened. I think everyone that has ever raced can say that about a million times. “I have no clue what just happened.” 330= 3.720
R7 Semis 3 cars left. Todd Knight, Me and Travis Cannon. . What won’t he go away? Who is this guy the Terminator? I thought that Jimmie Barrett is the Terminator. I guess each track must have one. Travis has the bye also so I have to run Todd. Today’s purse is going to pay $3000 to win, $1000 to RU and $250 for semis. Todd and I agree to a $500 kick back if one of us would win the race. I dial 5.82 and Todd is on a 4.86 Todd shows me who is the boss of our pit area (he is pitted next to us) and goes .008 and .021 above way out of it to my .023 almost 2 over run. 330 = 3.729 I can’t be too mad at Todd as he got it done in the final to earn me an extra $500. Sorry Travis but I wasn’t pulling for you. J
They are having a gamblers race since they have been getting done so early. $100 to enter with an 80% payback. I went to enter when Denny told me he already put me in. I like gamblers races as you remember in the first edition of my blog that I won a small car gamblers at Gateway for my only win in the Cavalier. There are 11 cars entered in the race and I get Jason in the dragster in round one.
Jason has been having problems with the dragster all weekend. His lights were slow and all over the place as well as the car isn’t very consistent. I have been telling him it is broke but we were not sure. His lights are never all over like this. I dial 5.83 in the right and he is 4.82 He goes .030 and I bump mine once to .001, probably not a smart decision since he is all over the place and I lift early to go two above. 330 = 3.722
R2 Gamblers (Right) I dial 5.82 to Jeremy Maples 4.72 I go .009 to his .014 and lift early to 111mph to be almost two over and take .019 He parks it and was 3 above. 330 = 3.717
R3 Gamblers 3 cars left and my 9 light got me the bye. One the bye run I elect to run the left as the winner in the pair before won the right for all 3 rounds so I was sure he would want the right. Plus my previous two runs were in the right. I like my run as I dial 5.82 and go .000 and 5.825 330 = 3.717
R4 Final We decide to split the money up $500 to win and $380 runner up. When asked us what lane I want I tell them I want the right. I was confident in either lane as I had made a lot of runs in both lanes. I lose the flip and get the left. He is in a dragster dialed in at 5.42 and I dialed in at 5.83 I didn’t know if the track would be slower but since he wasn’t very fast I though why risk it? I go .011 and take .011 to be 5.850 and he is .026 and 5.436 My 330 was 3.729 so it looks like my dial was good. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_gaJJhvpfow
Unfortunately the photographers left so I had to take my own winners circle picture but I like it anyways. This one looks better than the Blair Witch looking one at CID.
If this guy can win anyone can!
Day 3 I actually cleaned the car this morning which is rare for me. I thought would give it a treat for treating me well yesterday. We get one time trial for a small $20 fee. (Left 1.137) I go -.009 and 1.262 3.734 5.845 115.98. This run confuses me. My quickest light of the weekend by far and my slowest run. It is hotter but it almost seems like a rollout thing. It better not be the car. I cleaned you!!!!
R1 A (Left 1.147) I got to run Todd Knight and decide to cover the red and also dial 5.83 I think that I ran early and the track will come back. I go .017 and 5.828 pedaling .005 behind. Todd has a nice .010 package .009 and dead on 1 to send me to the buyback window for my first trip this weekend. 330 = 3.719
R1 B (Left 1.140) I thought I hit the last one good so I’m going with it and ignoring my morning hit as it seems way far away from my other runs this weekend. I get a throttle stopped dragster dialed in at 6.05 I go with at 5.83 I am .006 to his .024 and go dead on 2 taking .022 and he is dead on six. My 330 was 3.723 so it looks like I could have been on another 5.82 run.
R2 A (Right 1.140) I dial 5.82 against Travis Cannon again and was surprised to see him on a 5.01 He is much quicker today. I leave and get one bump in to make me .009 to his .022 and it give it a tiny rip to be dead on six taking .003 He was .004 under. We run 4 times this weekend with each of us winning two and the winner being in the right lane all 4 times. 330 = 3.723 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmMlBiEZUV4&feature=youtu.be
R2 B (Left 1.140) I drag a quick dragster driven by Bob Murphy. Actually I’m not sure that is his name but that is what the dragster said on it. If I’m wrong I’m sorry but you are Bob Murphy to me. I dial 5.82 to his 4.59 I go .003 to his .011 and go 5.835 lifting taking .008 (don’t know why I’m getting so cute with a fast car when I’m dialed honest and it is heating up, sometime my legs and arms don’t listen to my brain) He was 1 over. My 330 was 3.727
R3 A (Right 1.140) I leave the box alone bc I still think the right is a few thou slower on react. I dial up to a 5.83 as that is about all I could run last time and my opponent Bob Gilmore is dialed in slower than me at 6.02 so if I do pick back up I should be able to drive the stripe ok. I go .008 to his .026 and take plenty of stripe, .017, to be 3 over and Bob’s Camaro spun to be almost 3 over. 330 = 3.724 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-3i-ExjUmNo&feature=youtu.be
R3 B (Right 1.140) I dial 5.83 and my opponent is at a 5.12 in that super nice GTO again. I go .004 to their .024 and go dead on 7 taking .009 lifting slightly. They were .004 under. 330 = 3.731 It slowed a little I’m glad I went with the 83 dial.
R4 A (Right 1.143) I roll a little in to set up on 7. I also raise my dial to a 5.84 even though I am running Bob Murphy and he is dialed in at a quick 4.63 I just seen Jason slow in the dragster after we set a while during some controversy about Jason getting a rerun. I go .021 and thankfully for me Bob missed it worse and I lift early to a 5.862 My 330 was 3.736 so it did slow a little but I was probably going dead on. It did go a little right when it left but my sixty actually picked up 3 thou.
R4 B (Right 1.143) I actually pulled 3 out but wimped out and put them back in the water. I get the right lane again against Aaron Gee again only this time it’s his wife Kari driving. I dial in 5.84 and she is 4.92 She trees me with a .004 to my .006 although the Cavy decides to bail us out as I give it two little rips to go dead on zero taking .010 and she is one above. This shows the luck of racing, making your good runs when you need them. I was .021 last run. If I do it this run I am toast. 330 = 3.734 I got pumped at the end of this run. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4IR5nFpwSI&feature=youtu.be
R5 A 8 cars left (Left 1.146) I put in 3 as I am moving back to the left lane. I still am double so I have 6 different people that could be my first opponent and who do I get. I get Jason. I dial 5.84 even though I just went it with a zero lifting as I haven’t been here in this lane forever and Jason is dialed 4.79 and unless something happens can go at least 4.77 I go .014 and rip it a tiny bit to be dead on zero again. My mph was my best of the day and 330 slow so maybe the car stuck the nose in the lights to save me. Maybe cleaning it is paying off. Jason is .013 and dead on 4 .003 behind and out of it 6 mph. This is when I thought it might be my day. Back to back ripping dead on zeros things are going my way. 330 = 3.743 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95-q7lscZg0
Jason and I agreed to do 30% kickback on my first entry if I won and on his entry if he won.
R5 B Second run of the quarter final. (Left 1.144) I have the white Malibu again. I dial 5.85 even though I run 5.84 last run I think perhaps the nose aided it. Plus the track has slowed down as the day went on every other day. He is on a 6.13 I go .012 and he is .031 I lift quite a bit to go 5.861 taking .014 and his is dead on six. This is a good video but I left the camera on and it lasted 16 minutes and I’m too lazy to download it all on YouTube. 330 = 3.745 so the car did slow.
R6 Semi 1 We find that the payout today is $2500 to win, $1000 RU and $250 Semis. We agree to chop it $2000 to win, $1000 RU and $500 semis. I like this as it guarantees me to get at least $1000. Also the do random drawing so I may have to run myself. They draw and I have to run the same white Malibu again as he was in twice. (Left 1.143) I take .001 out and go .009 to his .003 I take .011 with him parking hard to be almost 3 over and I am one over. 330 = 3.751 so I slowed and was going to run on most likely. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=si2uAqi6Y7o
R6 Semi 2 I have Jeremy Maples. (Left 1.143) I leave the box alone. My strategy was to just make a decent run the first time and then if he beats me and we have to run again in the final to pull it out and set it up on kill. I dial 5.85 as I think that is what I’m going last run. Jeremy is on a 4.75 and I assume to be holding as I seen him run in the 60’s in the dial for dollars this morning. I leave and miss it but don’t have the sac to bump it. I have .018 and ecstatic to see my win light come on as he is nine red. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yKn7ODctuqU
Start at :57 seconds. NWS for profanity.
Those new decals are Lucky! or maybe it is the new helmet or maybe it is the helmet cam.
I think the helmet cam is lucky. Since I got it I won twice the first weekend out in the Prizm, then ru the next weekend in the Prizm and then this weekend and What a weekend! Two wins, a runner up, a semi and every entry to at least round 4 every day plus only one buy back. Now we’re digging up! On top of that the new converter from BTE really straightened the dragster out. It is more than 5 hundredths quicker and more consistent than other best converter. Thanks Bryan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I guess the dragster is ok also since some teeth broke off the winch and it fell about 5 feet in the trailer Monday morning. Maybe that is why it woke up and starting pulling its own weight. Maybe you didn’t do anything Bryan???
-$3340 beginning balance - $500 entries - $100 gamblers entries -$200 gas - $150 hotel - $75 buyback - $450 Jason’s cut - $200 battery in dragster a few weeks back.+$750 semi + $500 gamblers win + $3000 Monday win and ru = -$765. Hey I can see light at the top of this hole. Hope I don’t slip and fall back in.
The following weekend the Prizm wants to get back into the action so Denny and I head out to I-57 raceway in Benton Illinois. Benton is one of my favorite tracks to race at as they are great to the racers and run a program in which people without a ton of money invested in their cars can still race for money. I enter the Footbrake class and Pro class (transbrakes allowed) for the tune of $80. This week I decide to bite the bullet and run the car with the variable valve timing hooked up. I’m not going to give up on it like I have in the past unless it just does something stupid. I make four time runs and go .509 12.10, .459(dummy attack) 12.067, .504 12.058 and .507 12.060. I like this consistency and now that time runs are over there isn’t any going back.
R1 FB I dial a 12.06 to my opponents 8.07 I leave with a .512 and watch his light in the mirror. I realize he never leaves the line so I shut off for the easy win. My 330 says I’m going a 12.11
R1 Pro I get the bye run which is based on the best light in the final time trial and the printer doesn’t print a slip and it didn’t print in the tower either. All I know is I was red and it ran a 12.00 12.00??? Didn’t see that coming.
R2 FB Not much pressure here as I-57 offers 1st or 2nd round buybacks and since I won both first rounds I know I’m in round three with the only question being how much it will cost me. I dial a 12.02 as I don’t completely trust it to repeat the 12.00 However historically once this car picks up it usually stays quick but since I’m running with the VVT hooked up I don’t know if I can trust it. My opponent is on a 7.31 I leave with a .505 bulb and he is .508 We both are very slow I find some brake to go 12.09 for the win while he only can muster a 7.42 My 330 says I’m going 12.08 so much for that 12 flat run.
R2 Pro I dial a 12.06 to my opponents 6.14 I leave with a normally competitive .529 but my opponent leaves with a stellar .500 I get lucky and go one above on the floor while he breaks out by 3.
R3 FB I get the bye run and check out the right lane. Seems the prizm hooks just fine in this lane too. I go .501 and 12.099
R3 Pro I dial 12.06 as I expect the car to pick up it normally does this time of night and running this quick. My opponent is on a 6.75 I leave with a .521 and can only run a 12.18 or so but thankfully my opponents light began with a 7 so I survive. What happened to this thing picking up? Maybe the VVT wasn’t a good idea.
R4 FB 15 cars left. I dial a 12.11 as I hope the last run was just bad. I leave with a .508 light to my opponents .616 and find some break to by 2 above to his dead on 4 pass. Looks like I was on a 12.09 pass so hopefully things are looking up.
R4 Pro 8 cars left. I dial 12.09 to my guy’s 6.60 I choke on the tree to a .560 and he is .548 he is coming around me so I park it off to a 5 above and get lucky that he is 3 thou under. My 330 says I can only go a 12 or 13. I am living on luck in this pro class.
R5 FB 8 cars left. I dial a 12.12 to my guys 6.08 We ran 8 minutes after the last run and if my loyal readers remember what the prizm does with quick back to back runs we’ll you smarter than me. I didn’t matter as I am 4 red and run one tenth under my dial. Yes I said one tenth. I went a 12.02
R5 Pro Semis I draw Erik Lipka in his late model Camaro. I go with a 12.06 dial as I don’t think it will go that quick again so I was taking a stab in the dark. I leave and over compensate for my red and go .546 while he drills me with a .510 I am two over wand he is three over and I’m done. Can’t complain too much about the night as I made the money in both classes; however this was the first week with the helmet cam that I didn’t make the final. Oh well hopefully we can change that the next week at the Jeg’s US Open.
-$765 Beginning Balance - $80 entries -$46 gas + $125 winnings = -$766 I slipped back in the hole a tiny bit but a single dollar for a night fun can’t hardly be beat.
It’s time now for a weekend that can make my year or break my year. It’s time for the Jeg’s US Open. This race is a cool race. It has a warm up race on Thursday that pays 10k and an American Dragster (Jason has won this race in the past) for a $200 entry. Then the next three days all pay 20k for $600 total. I play to enter both cars as you can double enter and door cars run door cars at first. I will be in deep so I need to turn on a few blubs or back in the hold I go. There is no chance of rain and the race is being held at my favorite track of Beechbend Raceway Park in Bowling Green Ky. Jason and I once again will be staying the ever nice Motel 6. It costs us $176 for 4 nights. We can’t stay somewhere nice gotta save money for buybacks and extra races.
It ain’t pretty but sometime it gets the job done
Thursday is here and I get both cars entered for $400. First run in the roadster is .000(1.135 delay left) and 5.750 @ 117.50 After I return I here famous NHRA announcer Alan Reinhardt say anyone with a perfect (strange when I do spell check I misspelled perfect) light gets a shirt. BOOM! They ain’t gonna shut me out this weekend. I already won something! First run in the dragster was .001(1.140 left) and 4.756 @145.17 Nice start so far. Second time shots were .006(1.140 right) 4.763 @ 145.17 and .007(1.135 left) 5.759 @ 117.50 Amazing four good lights and nice consistent et’s and duplicate mph’s.
R1 Roadster (1.140 left) I dial 5.80 and my guy is 6.15 I am .033 (so much for my good lights) and he is .012 I see there isn’t near enough room in front and park to be .001 under. I didn’t really matter as I was .008 behind and he was one to the good. My last 330 was 3.675 and this one was 3.692 so I was right in thinking it would slow up. A small concession but at least I didn’t do everything wrong this run. It will still take a $100 bill to get me back in now.
R1 Dragster (1.144 Left) I draw the Pirate himself Lynn Ellison. I dial a 4.79 and he is 4.95 I am .040 wtf! And he is .013 I go down and park and give him .036 stripe. I am one under and he is two under. What! It actually worked. Glad I was holding. My last 330 was 3.069 and this one was 3.065 so that looks good. Parking saved me a hundo. I later over heard that Lynn sprayed me that run.
R2 Roadster (1.138 Right) I have to run Zach Schlumpf who has been in a final round here before at last year’s Jeg’s US Open. He is also a two time track champion at Chandler so I have my work cut out for me. I figure the slow down round is over and plan to dial what I think is fairly honest at a 5.78 I get lucky that Zach is red as I am .015 and run 5.750 I guess my last run was just a bad one. 330 = 3.670 This is actually my quickest run.
R2 Dragster (1.144 Left) I get a guy dialed 4.77 and I dial 4.76 which is close to honest. I don’t really want to leave first and have the first chance of red lighting. My plan kinda works as he is red but my .034 wasn’t very close to being red. I don’t know what has happened with my lights. The tree is long here so I don’t know if I’m missing these or else I met the first ones coming one.
R3 Roadster (1.138 right) Here we go round three winners get paid $200 each day. I have a nice silver Vega dialed in at 5.91 I go with an almost honest 5.76 He is .013 and I am .019 and not only is there no room in front I can barely get to his back bumper so I drop and he drops in a very nice dead on 3. I am two over and gave him two big of a window. Next round he was dialed a 5.87 so I assume he was going that when we ran. If I would have been holding I would have knocked him out bc I don’t think he knew he was going quick. Dummy attack, I lost that race twice. First I dialed honest and then didn’t execute for that dial. Either way hats off to my opponent as he treed me and dropped it in there perfect. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhnfOL0g7Hc&feature=youtu.be
R3 Dragster (1.140 Left) Last chance to get paid today. I draw Tracy Sons who not only is very good but I don’t think I have ever beaten him. He dials 4.92 (which I think is honest) and I am 4.75 I actually have an ok light of .015 but he is .007 I drop it to dead on 6 but he catches it and is dead on 6 also taking .008. Nice lap sir!
Friday is now here and we are in a hole with yesterday’s performance. Time run number one in the dragster might be the most interesting time run in my life. We decided to hook the nitrous back up to see if it really came on buy itself in Tulsa or if Jason accidently hit the button. Well the car leaves, pops when it leaves, rattles the tires about 50 feet out, and then noses over before it shifts. I shut it off and coast but can’t make the turn off. I go to start it and let’s just say that was a mistake. See it here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LnngbvzDdxM&feature=plcp I’m pretty sure it must have been loud. I was running Shawn Langdon and he was at the far turn off and said it was loud. When a guy that runs top fuel tells you something was loud you can be pretty sure it was as their stuff has been known to make some noise once in a while. The carburetor butterflies were bent straight up and the starter was broke and the flexplate was missing a tooth. Thanks to Dave Schutte for bailing me out with a spare APD 1150 carb and starter. Also thanks to former APD spotlight member Ivan NoDrivin Willie Burnett for jumping right in and working on the dragster. The only other damage sustained was my neck and shoulder hurt for days. I think it is from when my head tried to go turtle into my body when the dragster sneezed at me. TT in roadster was much less eventful. .019 and 5.759 with 3.668 330
R1 Roadster (Left 1.133) I draw Mark McDonald in his quick Monte Carlo. I dial 5.77(expecting the mid day slow up as it is now noon) and he is 5.17 I am .012 and rip it to dead on 7. Unfortunately I give up the stripe by .008 but it didn’t much matter as Mark had me locked out with a nice .001 and 5.180 Once again I was mathematically ineligible. $150 buyback and I’m back in. I had planned to limit my buybacks but I figured I was spend my Folk Race entry money for tonight and try to win enough to recoup. Plus I figured I would have a better chance buying back now vs. racing tonight with no time run.
R1 Dragster (1.135 Left) I am 4.75 and he is 4.73 I am .068 and he is .012 I give him .086 stripe but he is save at one over zero. I am now definitely buying back bc I’m not sitting here all day being .068 so down another $150.
R2 Roadster (Left 1.130) I dial 5.82 against my throttle stopped opponent’s 6.98 dialed Camaro. Time to be the driver of course I need to actually cut a light. I get lucky and his .036 to my .014 and I take .008 to be safe by 2. At least I didn’t get skunked after a $150 buyback. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFIVB463DdE&feature=youtu.be
R2 Dragster (Right 1.135) I draw my buddy from home Steve Schneider. He is dialed in at 4.80 and I dial a 4.79. I decide to hold as I didn’t have a time run well a time run that didn’t end in a mushroom cloud and I was well out of my first round run. Steve misses it and I am .022 Mine sucked but at least it was better. I take .005 to be two above while he broke out. My 330 was 3.067 so I would guess I was on a mid 4.75 run.
R3 Roadster (Left 1.127) Both cars into round 3 and two chances to get paid. Round 3 winners get $200 so each round has a little cheese on it. I draw local Josh Woods. Josh is not one to take lightly seeing how he was the 2009 Beech bend Super Pro champion. I dial 5.80 thinking I was going 5.78 last run and Josh is on a 6.24 I get Josh on the tree .002 to his .023 and I take .006 to be 3 above. That was a lucky break getting by him. Plus I get paid! Hopefully a start to paying off the tab at the gate. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zPde9NoIpL8&feature=youtu.be
R3 Dragster (Right 1.133) I draw Steve Taylor and he makes me look stupid. He dials 4.79 and I am 4.77 He trees me .019 to .026 than sprays and dumps me to give me .038 and break me out by .006 It didn’t help that my car picked up a hundredth to the half track but it is a poor musician who blames his instrument. Fact is this was a race I could have won and I dummied it up. I am assuming Alan Reinhardt gave me the train whistle for this one. (He would blow a train whistle whenever anyone took a train length. Good Fun! Unless you were the one getting the whistle but then you couldn’t hear it anyways. So much for both of my entries getting paid.
R4 Roadster (Left 1.130) I draw my buddy Dave Angelly in his Cutlass. I know Dave is a serious threat as I race with him a lot at I-57 and also he won a Tenn tuck race in this car. I dial 5.80 which I think to be holding one. He dials a 6.03 I was .010 and he was .017 and one above. I take a sloppy .014 to be dead on 5. I knew I took too much but I thought I was safe however my 330 picked up .008 to 3.687. Now I got at least $400.
R5 Roadster (Left 1.130) I get Mark McDonald again. Mark already cost me $150 with the beating he laid on me in round one. Hopefully I can get my revenge. Jason and I decide that since the car was going around a 5.77 last run to dial 5.78. Mark is .011 and dead on 7 but it is not good enough as I actually make a good run of .005 dead on 2 with one little rip. Fortunately for me the car slowed a hundredth at the half track or else I would have been under. 330 = 3.699 my worst of the weekend. Now I am guaranteed $600 but that doesn’t seem like enough as I am starting to get a little confidence back.
R6 Roadster 13 cars remain (1.133 Left) I have to race Lynn Ellison in his dragster. This race is supposed to be door car vs. door car however no other door cars remain. All 3 days at Tulsa I was the last door car in and today at the Jeg’s US Open with 225 entries total I am the last one left. Maybe this car isn’t a piece of poop anymore. Sorry Cavalier for the song in the last blog! I dial 5.77 and he is 4.94 I have no clue if he is honest, holding or what. I’m going back to my old standby of being the dialer. I am going to try to put down a package and when he gets down there make sure the window is closed. I am .006 to his .029 he is one above zero and I rip it twice to be 5.789 and take .014 My 330 slowed two more thou to 3.701. When I return to the pits I hear Alan Reinhardt announce that I had the bye run at 7. Oh Yeah! Time to get paid.
R7 7 cars remain. When we get to the staging lanes only 6 car show up as someone has broke. Oh great now will I get my bye run. I should as the rules state that when the race gets down to 8 cars or less that it should go on the ladder. However I know if they pair us up with 6 there will only be on semi finalist and save the promoters $2000. However Dave Szerlag and Iron Mike Fuqua cost themselves $2000 and adhered to the rules and laddered us up. I got my bye run and someone else got an opponent broke single. We make a deal to kick back an extra $500 to the losers of this round. I didn’t have to do it as I was sitting on the bye run but I figured it would be good karma. We even make sure the guy that didn’t show got $500 as he was a competitor this round. I elected to not run the bye run and only stage for 2 reasons. 1. I have made many runs at this facility over the past years in both lanes and currently have seen no difference in the lanes and 2. I didn’t want to break on my bye run and then be left out of the split I suspected was coming. The only drawback to this plan is that I lane choice is determined by reaction time from the previous round and I hadn’t run the right lane since Friday but I was going to risk it.
R8 Semis 4 cars remain. After kicking back the $500 to each of the 3 losers of the last round. Our remaining purse looked like this $18500 to win, $6000 to runner up, and $2000 for semis. We negotiated a deal so that everyone was going home a winner this weekend and made it $10000 to win, $8000 runner up, and $5250 for semis. I draw who I think to be John Platt Jr. He had the opponent broke single last run and made a full pull in the left lane. He put me in the right. That sucks but at least I didn’t break in the bye run and I have $5250 guaranteed. I dial a 5.77 which looking bad was conservative as my last run was a 5.78 I was getting later and I thought the track may come back. He dials in at 4.76 This time of the day was like looking into a welder the sun was so bright and it was right behind the tree. I leave the box along and told Jason this morning I was not going to block the sun with my hand all day and now I am regretting that decision. I left it go and feel good and it was .014 I get down there and give it two quick rips and take the stripe by .008 and am pumped to see the win light on. He was .023 and 1 above zero killing 6 mph or so. My wife makes fun of me for the fist pumps we’ll let’s just say the crowd went wild on this one. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YVnZMJneWFk&feature=youtu.be
R9 Final Right lane. I take 3 out of the box to make the delay 1.130 I dial a 5.77 as I was going 5.778 or 5.779 last run. Conservative but I thought the track would be getting better as they just run the time trial for the Racecraft dragster race. My opponent is JR. Lobner driving his dad’s dragster. Jr. is a very tough racer and in fact beat me in a $5000 megabucks final at Gateway in 2010. He is also the Division 5 2011 Top Dragster Champion. He is dialed at a 4.71 Long story short I was .023 to his .019 and can only run 3 over as the car lost over one in the 330 and was moving around some the rest of the way. JR sailed by for the easy 2 above win way out of it and gets the $20,000 happy Gilmore check. Let’s break this down. I was racing Jr. driving one of my race cars on the 1/8th mile and can only put down a .059 package. Last year running JR in my 18 second prizm on the quarter mile I managed to put down a .007 package. I should learn to save my good runs for the big rounds. I can’t complain though as the Cavalier has been on a heater and my $8000 will guarantee I don’t fall back into that hole this week baring some major catastrophe. Don’t worry we almost had 2 after this.
Now it is time for the $150 to enter Folk benefit race. I entered the roadster and Jason entered the dragster. There is no time runs and it has been two hours since the last run. Not to mention my last run sucked and I have no clue what to dial. My opponent might be difficult to judge as he is dialing in at 4.45 I elect the 5.79 I am .013 to his .023 but then catastrophe one tries to strike. The car leaves and goes left and is out of the groove and I can’t get it back so I shut off. I’ve had a pretty good day and I figured sticking it into the way would probably ruin it. I think I staged it crooked but I am not sure. I also didn’t bring it back quick enough but we still need to address the problem of the car going crooked. Tomorrow I am going lower the launch back to 3600 so the front end doesn’t get up as much. That way if it goes crooked I can correct it sooner. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xBu3VtFbpKs&feature=plcp
Saturday is now here and we are going to try it again. Time runs go ok. Roadster in the left with 1.125 delay is .007 3.710 5.808 and the dragster in the right with 1.130 delay is .030 3.080 4.776 I cannot cut a light in the dragster.
R1 Roadster (Left 1.128) I drag the Huntsville engines Chevy II. He is dialed in at 5.85 and I elect to go with a 5.82 as it is 12:30 and I am expecting a slowdown. I am .005 and he is .008 I take .011 and am dead on with a .003 as he is one over with a one. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6kTl2n3j7w&feature=youtu.be
R1 Dragster (Right 1.125) I draw Chad McKee who is dialed in on a 4.59 I dial in a 4.79 and plan to spot drop as my lights have been poor. I have never used the spot drop method by itself but it’s time to learn. Jason told me a quote he read on the way down and it make me think. It said “To be great, you have to let go of being good.” I think I can put down some good runs but I am far from a monster. I figured although I wouldn’t normally want to experiment here, my suckyness on the tree means I need to do something. I let it go and was .007 red and he was .005 red behind me. I run it out, even though I planned to drop, to make sure I didn’t get the mid day slow down and went 4.771 with a 3.074 330 time. Even though is cost me $150 in a buyback I was never more happy to see my red light come on. I had been struggling with the long tree and finally caught it.
R2 Roadster (Left 1.131) I have a pickup dialed in at 5.85 and I went with the 5.82 like last round. I was .013 to his .023 but get greedy at the finish line and take .020 which ends my day as I lose a double break out. Looks like the Cavalier is taking the rest of the day easy.
R2 Dragster (Right 1.135) I draw Jeryka Lobner who not only happens to be JR’s brother but also a national event winner in Super Comp. Not a good draw when I’m facing elimination for the rest of the day. I dial 4.79 to her 4.82 She welds me to the tree with a .005 to my .018 Jeryka is an excellent finish line driver and you can never be sure if she is holding, honest, spraying or what. We go down and both stop and I am one above while she is 3 above and only .006 behind. I get lucky here as Jeryka makes a mistake and gives it up. 330 = 3.081
R3 Dragster (Left 1.137) I put two in the box even though my last light was bad bc of the way the sun was behind the clouds making the tree very dark. I draw Ashley Gulley. Ashley I once again dial 4.78 as my lights have not been spectacular. Ashley dials 4.73 I leave and at half track I am only ahead by .014 and she is quicker than me by about 1 mph. This is an easy decision to go down and stop. I come close to hitting the spot and am 1 above with a zero at 135.14 (145 all out earlier) while Ashley breaks out and it two under. The stripe was .018 with me behind. I most likely would have been dead on but the 330 picked up to a 3.076 I was .023 on the tree and she was .035 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CpB4H11WVqk&feature=youtu.be
R4 Dragster (Left 1.133) I dial 4.78 again to my opponent who was dialed 4.77 When I picked my dial I was reading his dial board backwards and thought for some reason he was on a 4.99 If I had known that I probably would have dialed the 4.76 honest to give him the first chance to red light. He did go red by 4 thou and I actually cut a good light with a .008 and ran it out to a 4.767 at 145.17 My 330 was 3.079
R5 Dragster (Right 1.134) I am paired with Randy Folk. Before the run he shows me the new decal on his car that says “Do Not Crush.” I love it and promise not to crush him. I go with the 4.78 dial again as I’m going to dance with the one that brought me. Plus I still do not have faith in my lights. He dials a 4.81 which I am fairly confident that he is holding a couple. He is .018 and I am .011 and at half track I am .008 ahead so once again easy decision to drop and we both do. He is one above zero and I am dead on 7 taking the strip by .010 We both go 138.05 and my 330 was a consistent 3.076
R6 Dragster (Left 1.133) I have to run I believe Josh Baker who is dialed a 4.71 In the past I have seen him dial from honest to hold and I have not seen him make a pass today. When talking dial ins with Jason he said “just make the same run you just made” so I dial a 4.78 I’m .010 and he is .012 at the 330 I am .035 ahead so I can get there all out but I know I should be going about 2 under plus I expect him to drop. I drop and go dead on 5 at 134.74 while he is one over with a 2 killing a little. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OHgSshCXPc&feature=youtu.be
R7 Dragster 7 cars left (Left 1.135) I get paired with Racin’ Jason Lynch who is fresh off his dragster race win the night before. Long story short I dial 4.77 as I know he seen me drop last run and I don’t want him to think I am really holding only that I was breaking out the previous run and lifted to that 4.78 I still think I am holding but only about one hundredth. Doesn’t much matter as I am .040 and he is .008 He takes care of business to be one over and I drop to one over at 137mph. Today at 7 no one talked split so I get $800 and the losers the next round after dealing got $5000. That was a costly round.
Saturday night I took some friends out for a big steak to celebrate the night before and it was delicious.
This helped to get the taste of losing in the final out of my mouth
Read part two of Jeremy's Blog here.