World champ DeFrank returns to Phoenix relaxed and ready PHOENIX (Feb. 19) -- Reigning Super Stock world champion Jimmy DeFrank will venture to the Valley of the Sun this weekend for the 26th annual Arizona NHRA Nationals near Phoenix primed for...
World champ DeFrank returns to Phoenix relaxed and ready
PHOENIX (Feb. 19) -- Reigning Super Stock world champion Jimmy DeFrank will venture to the Valley of the Sun this weekend for the 26th annual Arizona NHRA Nationals near Phoenix primed for success and with a calm approach that appears to already be working to his advantage.
DeFrank was on the ball at the season-opener in Pomona, Calif., last weekend, putting together a collection of excellent packages that led to his first final-round appearance of the season. The foundation was set for what will hopefully be another standout year for the aspiring multi-class racer.
"This season, I would just like to enjoy the time with my dad and the team again," said DeFrank, whose father, Jim Sr., has been a constant at the racetrack since his son began racing 15 years ago. The team, consisting of Jeff Taylor, Steve Decker, and Tom Kerr, were an integral part of the program last season and are on board again for mechanical and moral support as DeFrank pulls double-duty driving the California Car Cover Co. Chevy Cobalt in Super Stock and the family's '69 Camaro in Stock Eliminator.
"We laugh a lot, and try to be focused when we need to be," DeFrank said. "I see a lot of potential for us in Stock, and I'm really excited to try and win a few races in the category. I'm not sure if we'll chase the Super Stock championship this season, but I'm hoping and praying that we can win a national event in Super Stock, too."
DeFrank will compete in both categories this weekend at Firebird International Raceway, where his experience with the racing surface could work to his advantage. DeFrank took runner-up honors here in Super Stock last year and in 2005, and he won the event in 2008.
"I enjoy coming to Phoenix because it's fairly close to home and we've done well at this track the last couple of years," DeFrank said. "We run national and divisional races here and have been competing here since we started in 1995. That makes me feel slightly better, because we're familiar with a set-up for the track, and the weather usually stays fairly consistent throughout the race day.
"You never know if the person in the other lane is going to have a better package than you, but I think we will be prepared if we're focused. No matter what, it's going to be a fun weekend because our friend, Bo Butner, is racing my brother Tony's car in Super Stock GT/CA. Bo is just a blast, and he always keeps us in stitches."
The amiable group is sure to enjoy their time together this weekend off the track, but once the car pulls into the burnout box, it's go-time.
"It was great to start out in Pomona with a final-round finish," DeFrank said. "Of course you always want to win, but I was thankful to finish so well and knock off some of that off-season rust. We raced aggressively last weekend because we weren't under a lot of pressure after getting the monkey off our backs by winning the 2009 championship. If we can put similar packages together in Phoenix, I think we can go some more rounds, and I'm looking forward to that."
-source: defrank motorsports