Wow, that was a long layoff. Five weeks is just too long to go without racing during the season. But we got alot of work done on the car, like getting our blocks repaired. I'll bet you didn't know that we can patch small areas of our aluminum engine blocks with JB Weld. Yep. But we got them fixed the right way in the down time.
The weather in Milan this weekend was great, and once again we came oh so close to having a great weekend. Friday night qualifying, our opponent had some issues at the line, causing a delay after the burnout, and we were on a very good run until we started to suck the tank dry at around 1000'. We managed to go 5.19 but we all knew as strong as the Nitro Funny Car fields are this year that a time like that wouldn't hold up.
The track was interesting. Most of the teams had their tunes backed off and most of the NFC racers had tire shake issues on Friday night because the track was GRABBING. Tim Wilkerson's son Dan ran a 4.83 in his Dad's car, so the track could hold a big run.
On Saturday afternoon we ran a 5.18 and my motor let go just before the finish line. We went lean in the #7 cyliner and burned through the head into the lifter valley. All that cylinder pressure entering the lifter valley caused the intake manifold to blow into about 20 pieces!
We got the car back together for Saturday night, had to replace all our wiring and replaced the motor, and really had to thrash to be ready to go. Came out on my last run and ran a great first 200' then I had some tire shake, I tried to pedal it real quick and when I got back on the gas the tires bit and I did a wheel stand with the front tires about 3 ft in the air. Our buddy Bob Szelag from Bob Z's photos got a great shot of the wheel stand that I hope to have up here soon. Luckily it didn't do any damage to my front end when it hit.
Then we had to sweat, because we didn't think a 5.18 was going to keep us in the field. But we got lucky and made the field on the bump spot.
On Sunday we faced Matt Hagan in round one. I had him by a couple hundreths off the tree, and another couple hundreths at 60 foot, and around 330' we were ahead by about half a car length but my blower belt broke and the motor went dead. And just as soon as that happened to me, his motor quit and we both coasted through the lights, but his extra few tenths of a second under power gave him the momentum to coast to the victory.
We have a match race next Friday night in Bristol, TN against Bob Gilbertson. If you're in the area come out and check us out. We'll run at 7PM and 8:30.