Table of Contents DRO Store Classifieds Speed Connections Archives & Search Contact DRO

You obviously licensed and made some full passes in the car. Could you comment on that and then how you got the ride?

Hight: I licensed after the Topeka race, ran a 4.91, and then made some passes at Maple Grove and Las Vegas at their fall race. I made some 4.8 and 4.7 runs, and had a best of 4.75. However, there were no plans to put me in the driver’s seat like with Eric. Frankly, a lot of things, like sponsors, you know budget, were being worked out. It turned out that Gary would be leaving the team, and John told me if everything works out sponsor-wise, I’d get to drive the car.

Were there any changes you had to make in getting ready for a gig like being the third driver on Force’s team?

Hight: I still was working on the car, and again, I was happy to be doing that, but I was definitely excited to think that I’d be driving. Really, the only change I had to make was that
later last year, I was up to 204 pounds. John didn’t want that. He told me, “I want you to drop 30 and, without hesitation, I did it. John wants his guys in shape, certainly the drivers."

(At the Las Vegas tests, Hight really did well. On Saturday afternoon, he faced off with Force, and while it wasn’t like a real race, one suspects that the wily boss wanted to see what “the kid” could do from a side-by-side perspective. Hight actually had the edge off the line and beat Force to the lights, although in fairness to the champ, his car went nuts momentarily at the three-quarter point when it decided to shake hands with the wall. No problem, Force gathered it in and learned that the timers reported: 4.765, 327.98 for Hight … 4.77, 324.57 for him.

As most know, late Sunday, Hight dropped the hammer and got a 4.750, 330.55, which for the notekeepers was the best speed ever for a first-time Funny Car chauffeur. Great stuff, although there was one small incident. Earlier that Saturday, the blower farted just off the line in what might be described as Hight’s first mishap and he commented …. )

Hight: I knew right away that I lit the tires and I got off the throttle because I didn’t want to do something like get the blower. I’m not completely sure why, but my foot went back down after lifting, and I tagged it. It could’ve been momentum. Even with just a short hit on the throttle you’re really accelerating and maybe when the forward movement dropped, I put my foot down for balance, but I did bang it.


Copyright 1999-2005, Drag Racing Online and Racing Net Source