Sunday, October 12, 2008
Keep Your Eye On The Ball
Sorry its been two weeks since ive written. The past two weeks like almost every week in my life have been in turmoil. So ill take a few minutes to bring you guys up to date. We have re re re converted the hot rod back to the procharger. Man it was a bunch of work. But boy do i love to hear the old girl whine and whistle again. She sounds like a herd of ticked tweety birds. this past monday Me and Johnson were updating the chassis to 25.5 specs and i was tacking a plate to the bottom of the floorpan. When all the sudden somebody hollered and there was smoke and flames pouring out of the car. I climbed the lift like a chimpanzee and put the blaze out with a fire extinguisher. Talk about me being a dumb butt. A spark had caught the carpet on fire and smoked most of the interior of the car. It burnt the whole wiring harness, carpet, and a door panel. Well after thrashing all week to rewire the car and finish the cage we were pretty exhausted. We tested thursday night in Jackson, Sc. 5.20 @1.40. The fuel map was way off and i was drowning the motor in fuel. But have no fear i was on a mission to get the motor extra crispy by the weekend. So here we go. Yall sit down and buckle your seatbelts and put your tray tables in the upright position. This is gonna be a bumpy ride. I worked as long as i could possibly stand it friday. Yall know me and when its race day weekend i get all twitchy and excited like a kid on christmas morning. At 1pm i couldnt take it anymore. I pulled onto my and street and evidently Johnson was suffering from the same disease. Sitting there was the motorhome hooked to the trailer and him and fatboy sitting on my front porch. Boy i tell you one thing, I am EXTREMELY fortunate to have friends who share my love for racing. We have evolved from a bunch of illiterate rednecks to a well oiled machine. I dont even have to tell anyone what to do at the track. They know the car and what it needs. Which absolutely rocks. So we head west like nobodys business in search of greatness and some tire smoke. We got to Montgomery Motorsports park in Montgomery, Alabama at around 6pm. We set up shop and hauled the orange monster to staging for her fisrt shakedown run of the weekend. Staged and off we went. I knew she was toting the mail and boy it felt good. The about 400ft she laid over. 5.13 @141. What the heck? I spun the car over at the other end and she wouldnt fire. Turns out the ignition box was shot slap out. Whoever heard of a box going bad during a run?????? I guess if it can break ill find a way. After carousing around the pits begging and borrowing, Terry Elam ( a fellow EZ Street competitor, and the guy on my heels in the points) sold me his spare box. Now thats sportsmanship. Thats how we like to race. Friends before and after the race. All the Orsca guys are stand up guys. So hoping the worst was behind us, we hauled the heap around and went gangsta style with the tune up. BAAAAMMMMM 4.95 @148 . Im thinking we are rocking the boat......... Boy was I to be proven wrong. Saturday 1st round qualifying we went a 4.97 which normally i would be estatic about. But guess what????? Dustin Mewborn went a 4.91. Holy crap. talk about changing your outlook on things. It's crazy how competition breeds improvement. So i threw some power in the old girl. to no avail. 2nd round Qualifying we went another 4.97. Well im thinking at least we are consistent. I can race consistent. So last round i threw the kitchen sink and all the appliances in the tune up. I took off like a raped rinocerous. but smoked the tires in high gear. So we were qualified 4th with a 4.97. The top 5 cars were in the fours . Man this was the tightest EZ field ever. We were almost a tenth off the pace but we all got together and decided that in the case of the rabbitt and the turtle, the turtle won because he never gave up. So that being said we were gonna be the turtle in this race. I promised the boys that i would do my job on the tree. man would we need it. 1st round i knew was gonna be tight. I nailed the tree with a .008 light and barely nipped Pouncey at the traps going a 4.97 to his 5.01. Woooooohoooo . Thats 3 4.97's in a row. Bracket mania is here. But guess what, I knew that wasnt gonna outrun Mewborn. he was number one qualifyer with a 4.91 and had his car on a string. We cooled the car down and i had my usual sit down talk with her. i told her that i didnt want to hurt her feelings and i didnt wanna make her feel like she wasnt good enough but i needed a little more from her. She didnt take it well and shot out the water pump sittin in the pits. It just slap quit working. Like she was mad at me and said screw u. I told her like Harry Hog did in Days of Thunder when Cole Trickles engine was torn up before Daytona. I said "Thats not the answer i was lookin for outa you" But we had no spare pump and no time so we decided to hope for the best and run without it. I waited for Mewborn to burn in and almost get ready. I fired up and did a short burnout and immediately staged trying to keep the motor from heating up. He clicked in and I karate kid crane chopped the tree down and drug it with me. I had a .003 reaction time. Mewborn has the fastest radial 60 ft in the world. he went a 1.14 sixty to my 1.26. He had me by a car at half track, Thats when i heard the theme song from Bonanza. You know dun dun dun dun dun da da dun dun. I was gaining ground but would i have enough time to catch him. Barely. I nipped him at the traps with a 4.96 to his 4.98. What a race. I mean it was inches on the other end. i was estatic for about two seconds till i started slowing down and heard this god awful crazy whine coming from the rear end. What the heck again. We rushed back to the pits and snatched the rear end cover off. Two cracked teeth on the pinion. CRAP CRAP CRAP... I had spare gears but no pinion bearing on the new pinion and very little time. Well we ripped the rear end apart while Big Johnson ( AKA Mcgyver) heated up the pinion with a blow torch. He somehow got the bearing off with like a pocket knife and some duct tape of something. I used a nitrous bottle to freeze the new pinion and the bearing slipped rite on. Threw her back together as they were calling last call to the lanes. That was a 21 minute gear change. Boy we are good. or maybe just lucky. Who cares. We rushed to staging. i was still loading the tune up in the car while i was strapping in. I radioed to brian to calm down and lets go to work. Being in the hot grease is where i thrive. I love pressure. We burned in and staged. I chopped what was left of the tree from the round before down and drug with me. .014 reaction time. I carried the front tires 3 feet off the ground for 400 feet. sat them down and never looked back, buzzing the clocks with a 4.94. BOOOM DIGGITY thats five in a row. HolyCrap. I mean this is some story book stuff. I really wanna thanks the racers that helped me this weekend. As well as my die hard unwavering crew. Cheri, Chris Johnson, Brian, and Jason (aka Fatboy). We are living on cloud nine. Tomorrow we begin testing for the Outlaw race in Bradenton in two weeks. Im hoping we can give all those rich boys a dose of southern orange poison. Stay tuned for testing results. im finally getting to strap some power on the motor and cant wait to see if i can tame it.