Drag Racing Online: The Magazine

Volume VIII, Issue 3, Page

What made you decide to go the EFI route in Pro Mod?
Martin: My interest really was more in Pro Stock, but what made me decide Pro Modified was that I spoke with IHRA and they seemed interested in allowing electronic fuel injection to become a legal class. So, that gave me the inroad to build something unique, something historic, something we could get involved with that could take the industry to another level.

Why do you think EFI still hasn’t been accepted by either sanctioning body for Pro Stock?

Martin:
I think fear of controllability, premature fear of managing the technology. It’s a sad thing. It’s been decades now since an automotive company has sold a carburetor, so it’s sad not to allow advancements in technology to prevail. It’s long overdue.

If a change was made to allow EFI would you be interested in making the switch to Pro Stock?

Martin: We certainly would have to look at it. I enjoy Pro Modified and all the different things that we do, but certainly without question with all the work that we currently do with professional race teams, whether we chose to own a team or drive with a team, we’d certainly have a good footprint of involvement with the teams that would be there. We’ve received lots of inquiries from folks that, if and when this ever happens, they want to be aligned with us. We have customers waiting.

What about your sponsor, ACDelco, do you think they would be interested in seeing a switch to EFI in Pro Stock?

Martin: I think they appreciate the fact that on our racecar there’s a strong correlation of the parts on there to the parts that they sell. So, they know that their end-consumers are very intelligent consumers who appreciate that. Funny story; there was a race we were at where literally a guy was telling me about this problem on his car in the parking lot so I asked him to go check for codes. Well, the codes said it was a failed map sensor. It was the end of the day and he was struggling to leave and I was able to say, ‘Hey, here’s one off my racecar, take it and plug it in and go.’ And he did.

Obviously, there’s considerable factory support from the car manufacturers in NHRA Pro Stock, but not all that much on the IHRA side. Any thoughts on why that may be? Is it only because of NHRA’s higher profile?

Martin: That’s a good question. I think there are some marketing opportunities that need further exposure and I think that IHRA—or the other sanctioning bodies—need to work a little harder at putting together a package that has the value-add perception to it. Clearly, there are automotive customers that come to an IHRA race, but I think the sanctioning bodies need to revisit their approach to attracting those corporate customers.