What’s one of the advantages for a team like yours to get funding like Force has?
Densham: If someone came in here tomorrow and said, ‘Here, Densham, here’s a million dollars,’ well, that’d be cool, but would we really be able to improve between this week and next week? Maybe, because of the fact that we’d have an attitude change—and that’s one of the biggest things they have going for them over in John’s pit, they know the car’s going to the line with the best parts and preparation for this run, the next run, next week, and every race from now on going up to the World Finals in Pomona, and they know they’re not going to run out of money. Your thinking gets a lot straighter when you’re in that position than when you’re thinking, ‘Gee whiz, if we tear up everything this week we don’t get to go next week.’
So, what will you spend to race this year?
Densham: Well, our budget
right now is probably 30 percent of what I just told you.
And yet it’s been so great.
are you getting your money for this season?
Densham: The Racebricks
guys have been a savior for me. A hundred percent of the profit
from the sales of our particular Racebrick (www.racebricks.com)
goes to our team to help fund us, so that’s a way for
the fans to directly help us big time.
I was also fortunate enough to know this is all I wanted
to do and I saved all the money I made when I worked for John
for four years. It allowed me to have some money in the bank
to be able to buy everything and put a team back together
again. Luckily we already had good cars, including one brand-new
car, and most of the clutch stuff was still current, and we
still had the truck and trailer and all the tools,…obviously,
since the last time I ran on my own we had rules changes so
I had to get new blocks, new bodies, the new setback blower
setup, new ignition systems, things like that.
money, what does it take to field a successful team?
Densham: To race one of
these cars at the professional level takes a lot of dedication.
It’s not only a lot of work, but a lot of dedication.
Our whole life revolves around this.
In fact, one of the stories I tell everybody is that I don’t
have much of an extended family and my wife has only one sister,
so we’re fairly tight with that little group. So her
sister’s daughter, my little niece, planned her wedding
all around my race schedule—in Hawaii, with all the
tickets bought, all the rooms bought, along with everything
else—and then it rained in Topeka. So, the next week
they all went to Hawaii and I went to Topeka. The Christmas
cards came addressed to my wife and son for the next five
years, but that’s the kind of dedication you have to
have in order to do this.
you enjoy having more hands-on responsibility for the car’s
Densham: Well, Greg Amaral,
my crew chief (Editor’s note: Rob Flynn joined Densham
in June as a tuning consultant), does a great job with what
he’s got to work with as far as budget goes, and it’s
nice that we can hash things over, but Jimmy (Prock) and I
discussed a lot over there, too. It was a situation where
we worked real well together as far as formulating a tune-up
to make the car run good.