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What if…

In reference to your brief note in the 1320 section about the Force/Thiel first-round matchup at Houston, thanks for filling us in.

Still, I have to wonder what would have happened had Thiel been the one to flicker the light and then stage at the last possible second, with Force getting counted out. After all, Force almost always stages last. My bet is NHRA would have done something for Force if that had happened, but hey, maybe I'm just a conspiracy theorist.

Anyway, thanks for the report. At least it clears up (sort of) what happened. Maybe NHRA should look at this and change how the auto-start timers work.

John Murnan II
Cottage Grove, Minnesota

Need a new software program

The deal with Force and the timing system at Houston is another embarrassment for NHRA. This is supposed to be PRO racing, not gamesmanship 101. Fix the computer software so that the staged bulb must be lit for one second not for a few tenths of a second. This will prevent the seven-second timing mistakes and games when bumping into the staged light.

Force did no wrong but Brian Thiel got hosed by NHRA's incompetence.

Jorge Meister
New York City, New York

A couple of suggestions

Kind of a double-edged sword for Brian Thiel,. Isn't there a rule against staging and then backing out? And if Force was "in" long enough to activate the tree, doesn't that mean he was in fact staged? There outta be a way to catch that too.

Having worked on the midway, in a t-shirt trailer, I understand NHRA's frustration, as well as the vendors. In my opinion, a flat fee of $5,000 and no commission might be a good fix. That way NHRA gets their money, and the vendors don't have to fudge at all. They could sell all they want. WIN-WIN.

Just wondering in Idaho.

Sammy Eubanks
Post Falls, Idaho