After a five week break, you would think everything on the car would be perfect for the final race of 2007, but I think we had just enough time to mess with some stuff we should have left alone - at least until the season was over. In any case, we were ready to go early in the week and were looking forward to a great ending to a pretty decent season. We were scheduled to run with the injected 410's ala the Vukovich, but aside from the usual squawking about how crazy an idea it is, we (the drivers) seemed comfortable with it. Of course, a race driver can just about justify any reason to be out on the track at any time...
When we ran on August 11th, we were just a tiny bit too tight during the day and made a few minor adjustments at the shop to fix up the issue and get us in a better position for qualifying. We suspected the starting lineup for the race would follow the format from the Vukovich, which meant a straight up start for the 360's behind all of the 410's (after all, who would want an ill-handling 800HP 410 Super behind them at the start of a race?). Without a doubt, our biggest concern for Saturday was how cool it was going to be and what we were going to do with the fuel system to keep up.
Practice was the usual - old rubber on the car on the first session and a lot of slipping and sliding. The motor appeared to be OK (once we made sure to prime the fuel pump so everything would work). Unfortunately, we were only able to run about 6 green laps because other guys were falling off the race track and stuff. No heating problems and all was well. For the second session, the officials put the 360's and 410's together so everyone could get a look at what was to come. Nothing too different from the Vuky, so it was no big deal... you can hear those guys coming up on you pretty easily. We ran a 13.8 just before Tim Elias, Willie N., and Grandpa T tangled sending Willie to the pits with a wiped out LF shock, spring, and pickup point - that was our first brake-check of the day.
We changed some carb settings for qualifying that turned out to be a big mess. The car was 'shooting ducks' down the front straight and making all manner of obnoxious noise, but we still timed in a 13.932 which was good enough for 6th. Lance T was quick again with a 13.230 followed by Mr. Tuey(13.403), Kenny Kinchen(13.504), and Kenny White(13.559). In the overall picture, there were 18 Supers (eight 360's and 10 410's) cross the line at qualifying.
We didn't make the dash (our second miss of the year), and spent the time trying to sort out what was fouled up on the car - float levels, fuel pressure, and any other kind of voodoo we could throw at the thing. And to add insult, the chassis was almost perfect. For the record, Kinchen won it over Tatro, White and Tuey.
For the heat race, we made a few minor chassis adjustments and took another shot at the fuel system. When we lined up, I could still hear us popping a bit but the gauges were OK so off we went. We were stuck on pole and were finally able to get off the bottom by about lap 4 or 5. The chassis was working good, but the driver was a little bit agitated about the skeet shoot going on in the mufflers. On the final lap we got a lot loose coming out of turn 2 and gave up 4th to Willie - we made the save, and didn't get hit by anyone behind us, so that was cool...lol
At the start of the main event we were in row 8 and got to see all kinds of amazing maneuvers (sort of) in the first 2 attempts to start the show. A few guys were starting to resemble pinballs before we even got one lap in the books. Anyhow, after two tries we ended up going single file and got under way. Unfortunately, the motor was still out to lunch and there is only so much you can do when the thing won't run over 7000 RPM. We stayed out and tried to have a fight with Donnie L (his car was all kinds of loose), but he pulled away after awhile. The 410's were having a pretty good battle and coming by about every 10 laps - we will definitely have video of it next year...truly amazing. The second, and final brake-check came courtesy of Mr. Large with about 10 or 15 laps to go. We were starting to catch back up and then Donnie got all kinds of sideways in turn 2. We were way too loose to make any kind of abrupt adjustment, so I just got on the brakes... HARD. I wish I could have seen Donnie's face as we were rolling up...lol. The car stopped about 6 or 8 inches short of his left nerf bar and everything was OK. We ended up 6th in the 360's and 12th overall, but at least it rolled back into the trailer.
I'd like to thank everyone who has supported us this year; our families, fans, marketing partners, and friends. Not to mention the commitment we have received from Madera Speedway. The Supermodifed universe is definitely looking better and before you know it, we will be known as "Oswego West" And again, a THANK YOU to all the fans for coming out to the races - without you, we would all be trying to figure out how to make a super into a jungle gym!
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