Drag Racing Online: The Magazine

Volume VIII, Issue 2, Page

Would it not help Pro Stock cars to flatten their hoods and look more like their street counterparts, though, to return to their ‘factory hot rods’ roots?

REHER: I don’t feel that. I think they lost that recognition a long time ago. I think that to say they don’t have a hood scoop on and now you know what they are would be a moot point. I mean, if you’ve got a primered GTO sitting next to a primered Stratus there’s no way you can tell me which one’s which. I don’t think that’s a problem.

You know, I have to go back to Cup racing when I compare because I feel like that’s the benchmark. You can’t tell a Dodge Charger from a Monte Carlo or a Taurus; they’re all the same, so I don’t feel like that’s something that would fix Pro Stock. I don’t think Pro Stock really has problems in that respect. I think it just has to be promoted better. I hate to be redundant, but if you look at a Cup car, what’s it got? It’s got a Holley 750. They’re not even allowed to have a computer in the car to record data, and yet that’s a multi, multi-billion dollar sport.

So it’s not whether it’s got electronic fuel injection or a hood scoop or not, that’s not what is controlling where Pro Stock goes, it’s how it’s promoted. If you take a hood scoop off or put fuel injection in NHRA’s not going to promote it any differently. I mean, it’s still going to be the stepchild to fuel racing, the way the whole deal goes.

How do you feel about the increased use of electronics in other areas of Pro Stock, such as shock controls, timing controls, etc?

REHER: Well, we’ve had them for a long time. But no, they haven’t done anything for Pro Stock. I mean, they’re technology and they’re fun to work with, but does that affect the outcome of a race? Well, if you took shock control from every car and they had to go back out there with the old manual shocks, the same guys would win.

What about traction control? Do you think anyone is using it currently?

REHER: Oh, I don’t know, I have no idea. I don’t think there’s any way to know anything like that.

If that’s the case, should NHRA just legalize it and let everyone have it?

REHER: Well, that’s one way of looking at it. But the other way of looking at it is to say what’s wrong with having some rules and enforcing them? I understand the side of ‘Let it go, you can’t enforce it anyway,’ and that side comes from an organization’s commitment to enforcing rules because you know it costs money to enforce rules. You have to have people to do that and the more technology that gets into the cars, the harder rules are to enforce. But again, NASCAR didn’t take that attitude. They enforce the rules—and in fact they have very strict rules. In drag racing, right now the fuel cars have much stricter rules than Pro Stock does.

So, is NHRA doing a better job of policing the fuel classes than in Pro Stock?

REHER: Well, I think that there’s a better agreement among the racers. I mean, when NHRA put a moratorium on any changes, and they’ve got something like two accepted blocks and two accepted cylinder heads and that’s it, and they said ‘You will not change anything, and no, you cannot have a wider bore center like Pro Stock did, and no, you can’t put the valves any way you want them, they can only be here, and the camshaft can only be here,’ yeah, I think those were positive things that they did.

Would you support that kind of rule making for Pro Stock?

REHER: Yes, I would, but the fuel racers pretty well supported that. You wouldn’t get the same support in Pro Stock because there are too many people wanting to go in different directions. But I think that they’re not really looking for the longevity of it when they don’t because as I said, I think the Cup situation demonstrates what rules can do.

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