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But is it particularly hard to find sponsors for something like a Fun Ford or Super Chevy class, that may be very popular within its niche but doesn’t get a great deal of widespread attention in the overall drag racing scene?

Glidden: I’ve never even been to a street race in my life, in fact the fastest street car I’ve ever had is that truck (gestures to his tow rig), but I do know this much, once upon a time GM, Chevrolet with its Trans Ams, Camaros, whatever, that was the hot street vehicle. Those were the products that were hot, but today it’s the Ford Mustang, so it’s all these chip companies and after-market suspension makers, those are the people right now that could benefit. And they are to a certain degree; they’re here and in the [manufacturer’s] midway. Ford Motor Company could actually benefit if they maybe stepped up with a little bit of help for someone like us, but they spend it with the sanction. So, as for strongly searching for big sponsors, you just can’t get ‘em.

It’s tough enough to get [sponsorship] in NHRA. And the problem that you have if you do find something that is not really enough to offset what you’re doing—it’s just enough to get by if you don’t really have a lot of problems—is that if you run into a bad stretch where it’s not really paying your bills; they still expect you to keep going. And maybe we just couldn’t afford to do that. Right now where we’re at, if we just decide that it’s not the right thing to do, we just stay home. Whereas, if you’ve got someone expecting you to be there; you’re supposed to be there.

Do you have any significant sponsorship right now?

Glidden: I’ve worked with Edelbrock to design not just Ford racing parts, but racing parts and to try to help maintain the industry standard with what they’re doing. I’ve also got a few other companies that help me out and I test with. In fact, I’m running here tomorrow for a tire test for Mickey Thompson.

Will that be a 10-wide tire?

Glidden: Whatever they ask. I’ve run radials on this car; I’ve run 27-inch tires; I’ve run 33 by 17 tires, whatever they want. I’ve raced this car since ’97, so I generally can make pretty good guesses on what I need to do to make valid data information runs with an itty-bitty tire or a great big tire. A lot of time that also requires quite a bit of time changing the car around to do that. The companies that I’m involved with—even if I don’t personally run what they’re selling—I’m still able to see what they’re working with and what they’re trying to improve.

What about your engine building? Is being out here important to your own business?

Glidden: My business is just myself and to charge for the amount of hours that I have in it, you can’t do it. So, for the most part the customers that I have right now, which are very limited, are, first of all they’re all good friends, but they are also people with cars that we can use new products on from many of these companies that I’m working with.

You’re obviously a professional racer, but do you have much interest in high-performance cars away from the track?

Glidden: Not at all. Not even not that much; not at all. You can bring old cars and put them in front of me and I can’t tell you one thing about their past, nothing. I know this one [his racecar] and I know my customers’ cars.

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