Story continues below this advertisement
|Darren Inman had the lone Beretta at the event.|
With a #3,000 bounty placed on Texas Raceway's 3.72 track record set by Frankie Taylor in 2011, the gloves came off as did the blower rule. It looked like a racing night from the Seventies with ‘57 Chevys, Studebaker, Camaro, Vegas, ‘63 Corvettes, and a lone Beretta at the eighth-mile Kennedale, Texas, track.
First round of qualifying was a shake, rattle, rock and roll as everyone tried to power their way down track. The “Texas Bounty Hunter” ’57 Chevy Bel-Air driven by Gaylen Smith showed the way with 4.195 seconds elapsed time at 162.78 mph followed by the Small Block Mafia ’63 Corvette driven by Gene Hector, Randell Reid's ’57 Chevy, and David Baldwin’s Butler-sponsored ’63 Corvette.
|Final Qualifying Order
1. Gaylen Smith 4.05 at 174.26
2. Gene Hector 4.28/138.22
3. Randell Reid 4.30/136.08
4. David Baldwin 4.30/161.92
5. Steve Wiley 4.62/107.66
6. Darren Inman 4.65/149.46
7. Ron Curley 4.74/151.51
8. Jim Brinkerhoff 4.84/112.06
Tim Cruce 4.87/110.22
Dennis Hendrix 5.48/127.91
Chris Shortridge 6.06/93.91
Kent Birkes broke
Other cars trying to make the show were the “Grim Reaper” ’63 Corvette driven by Steve Wiley, Darren Inman’s ’96 Beretta, Tim Cruce’s ’54 Studebaker, Dennis Hendrix’s ’86 Firebird, Jim Brinkerhoff’s ’69 Camaro, Chris Shortridge’s ’02 turbo Camaro, and Kent Birkes’s ’77 Vega.
With the temperatures getting better and everyone knowing what they could not throw at the track. Smith improved to a 4.05/174.26. Inman blew an intake gasket out filling the top end with smoke, while Hendrix got into a giant wheelstand and shut off. Birkes broke and was not able to return.
Curley broke and in a show of sportsmanship the drivers decided to wait for Inman to make repairs, but, with a midnight curfew, time ran out and Cruce and Hendrix were inserted into the field.
|Gene Hector||David Baldwin|
Baldwin cut a .070 light and ran 4.33 at 162 to defeat a tire-smoking Wiley; Hector cut a .276 light and ran 4.23/142 to defeat Hendrix’s 5.56/130.
|Jim Brinkerhoff||Chris Shortridge|
Smith cut a .154 and ran 4.03/172 to defeat Brinkerhoff’s better light of .115 and improved time of 4.29. Reid cut a .067 light and ran 4.20 at 150 to defeat Shortridge, who got crossed up and narrowly missed the wall.