DRO: Do you
think your Nitro and your drag racing program
with the VRA is in a growth position?
M: I think
it's kind of holding steady at this point, from
what I understand in talking to some of our
racers, there's guys building cars and there's
more guys that are supposedly coming out racing.
There's a couple of guys that got hurt, so I
think we'll see car counts continue to rise
and we'll just have to look at this year and
see what happens. It's not all about Nitro though,
we get about 400 cars and only 20 of them are
Nitro cars and that's what brings the fans.
Without the fans, that's where the money's made;
that's where you make a profit, that's how you
continue to do what we do.
DRO: Do you feel that the rules are under control
right now, for instance Allen Johnson cylinder
heads, are they still allowed in VRA?
M: Yeah. We
went down that road for safety, but performance
is another part of it. I guess you can lean
on them a little harder without hurting the
parts and the performance goes up. NHRA is very
closely involved with our rule making, so we're
dictated by them what we can run on their tracks
because all of our events are on NHRA tracks.
This year we've taken a little bit of blower
away, added some weight per cubic inch. I think
that's kind of it for this year. They've come
out with their guidelines so they can hand them
out at all their national tracks, every track
they sanction. So your average guys can come
and test a Top Fuel car and the track tech guys
know what to check the car for, as far as fuel
pump and tire size and blower overdrive and
blower size and that kind of stuff. They've
got some guidelines this year that will be on
a national basis so that people can run Top
Fuel dragsters everywhere.
DRO: Do you think the Top Fuel dragsters are
going too fast or too quick?
M: I think
they're at about the limit. I think 259 miles
an hour is about the safest and as fast as they
should be going. That's my personal mile per
hour, probably out there on an 11 - 12 inch
wide tire and I think that's what NHRA is thinking
too. You know it used to be special when a guy
would run in the 5's, now if you don't, you
don't even qualify. So it would be nice to tame
them down a little bit, bring it back a notch.
DRO: Have you seen growth in the other part
of VRA racing like the Junior Fuel, Nostalgia
Eliminator, or the gas and hot rod classes?
M: We've seen
enormous growth in the gasser classes and the
Nostalgia Eliminators, those are 32 car fields.
In our bracket classes, there are 100 cars that
crack into the bracket classes. So the other
side of the deal is growing like gang busters.
DRO: How is Nostalgia Funny Car received by
the fans and the racers?
M: Well, as
far as I can tell, it's going to be a good flavor,
a good mix to add another Nitro class. We worked
with the guys about our basic rules, on the
payout structure, on making it a champion points
deal, and on having an east verses west at our
Indy race in June. I think that it's going to
be the next hot spot at the Goodguys VRA, the
DRO: Does it
look like more Funny Cars are being built?
M: Sounds like
it. I don't know first hand, but from what I
hear and what I read, guys are interested.
DRO: Is that
a class you can run a Hemi 426 in?
M: That is.