Harold Martin Aims to Maximize His Opportunities in Maryland As the 2005 Hooters Drag Racing season enters its penultimate event, Harold Martin and his ACDelco Pro Mod Pontiac Racing team are looking to accomplish several goals. Naturally,...
Harold Martin Aims to Maximize His Opportunities in Maryland
As the 2005 Hooters Drag Racing season enters its penultimate event, Harold Martin and his ACDelco Pro Mod Pontiac Racing team are looking to accomplish several goals. Naturally, their top priority remains returning to the winner's circle and capturing their second "Ironman" winner's trophy.
In addition, the highly competitive Pro Modified category is experiencing a tremendous points battle throughout the Top Ten, and the Martin Motorsports crew is looking to gain as many positions as possible. Therefore, they enter this weekend's Torco Race Fuels President's Cup Nationals in Budds Creek, MD, determined to stay strong and capitalize on the opportunities available.
"This ACDelco Racing team continues to maintain its focus, energy and commitment to show what our capabilities are," said Martin. "We've had some bad luck this season with some unusual and unexpected component failures. Ironically, I recently happened to be reading a speech I had given on keeping a positive attitude and persistence over resistance, no matter what happens.
"It reinforced to me that no one is exempt from misfortune, no matter how hard you work, and that you simply have to maintain a positive attitude and stay focused, which is what we, as a team, have done. We have put that behind us and are looking to regain our momentum and finish with a high outcome."
Realizing that a near-perfect effort would be required to attain their objectives in these last two events, the Martin-led crew took their between-race preparation to an even higher level. Over the last week, they gave their 2,400-horsepower hot rod an intense going-over, ensuring it would be in optimum operating condition upon its arrival in Maryland, as exemplified by their resolution of an issue that plagued them at the last race.
"This team is committed to having a strong performance at Maryland International Raceway and our preparation prior to this race reflects our desire to win," detailed Martin. "For example, we had a small electrical problem at the last race. Throughout my career as an engineer and a professional racer, I've had my share of challenges where we had to diagnose a problem. There is nothing worse than an electrical problem, especially when it is intermittent, as this was, because you can't see it, unlike a mechanical problem, where you have wear patterns or other mechanical physics that you can observe.
"Therefore, not only did we diagnose it from every aspect possible, but we worked through the entire scenario on the race car. We then dismounted every component that was related to that circuitry, put it on our engine dyno, and went through an extensive test matrix. We put the components back in the car to make sure everything was happy, and, as a final test, reintroduced the faulty part just to make sure we had repeatability of the problem, making sure it was resolved once and for all. It is all part of the extensive preparation we will go through to put ourselves in a position to qualify well and win on Sunday."
Maryland International Raceway a Favorite with the Martin Crew
One factor working in Martin's favor is Maryland International Raceway, site of this weekend's event. Located near our nation's capital in Budd's Creek, Maryland, this venerable quarter-mile attracts a strong contingent of Harold Martin fans, who will do their part to help cheer their driver to victory. At the same time, the "EFI Wizard" will do his best to reward them for their support.
"Maryland International Raceway is always a fun track to race on because it has a really good fan base," said Martin. "We traditionally have a ton of Harold Martin fans that come out to support us, so we get excited and pumped to do well there.
"It's interesting in that Budds Creek usually leaves you with an optimistic outlook that you're going to run some stellar numbers because it has the potential of good atmospheric conditions. However, you have to balance that with never knowing what you're going to encounter until you get there, particularly at this time of the year. In addition, the racing surface is extremely sensitive to having sun on it, so you could have the combination of great air that produces power and a track that won't hold it, which is an interesting challenge.
"However, this ACDelco team is excited going in to this race because we have a pretty good notebook on what to do under multiple scenarios. Therefore, we will go in humbly, read what the scenario is, tune accordingly and look to have some fun with it."
ACDelco Crew Keeping Others in Their Thoughts
Once he arrives at Maryland International Raceway, Harold Martin will naturally concentrate on extracting the maximum performance from his ACDelco Pontiac. However, even as he and his team work to have a productive racing weekend, Martin will be mindful of others struggling in other parts of the country, as some continue to recover from the effects of Hurricane Katrina, while others brace for the landfall of Hurricane Rita. As Martin details, it is a powerful reality check.
"We will be keeping those people in our thoughts in a huge way," stated Martin. "This again tells us how exposed we all are, and what can truly happen to you. As much as I may have felt my world was falling apart earlier due to some misfortune, in the bigger scope of things, it wasn't even on the radar compared to other people who had their entire lives and families turned upside down. Certainly, our hearts are out to them and we hope this new storm is minimized in its impact, and allows those trying to recover a chance to keep returning to normalcy. We wish them all the very best."