Harold Martin Grand Bend preview

Harold Martin Aims to Turn the Corner in Grand Bend Through the first three races of the 2005 Hooters Drag Racing season, Harold Martin and the ACDelco Pontiac Pro Modified Racing team have shown flashes of the performance that powered them...

Harold Martin Aims to Turn the Corner in Grand Bend

Through the first three races of the 2005 Hooters Drag Racing season, Harold Martin and the ACDelco Pontiac Pro Modified Racing team have shown flashes of the performance that powered them to an impressive third-place finish in last year's final standings. Having started the year with an entirely new car and engine combination, the Martin Motorsports crew knew there would be a learning curve in the first few events, and tested extensively to minimize its impact on their championship aspirations.

With every pass down the racetrack, information was gathered, and progress was made, with the ultimate goal being consistent, high performance. Having established a solid tuning foundation, Martin will enter this weekend's Canadian Nationals prepared to deliver a breakthrough performance and reassert their claim for the 2005 Pro Mod championship.

"The ACDelco Racing team is going into Grand Bend with some excitement as well as momentum," said Martin. "This past weekend, we raced in the Motown Showdown, which is an event in the WAR (World of Alcohol Racers) Series. It was a great outing for us in that we not only won the race, but we were also able to put six runs on our hot rod.

"The benefits from winning are twin-fold. The entire team will gain confidence from the win, and we gathered a ton of valuable information. This allowed us to narrow some of the variables in the tune-up, and even though the conditions this weekend may not be the same, we think we can build on the data and have a great outing.

"The Great Bend Motorplex is a great race track. It's right off of Lake Huron, which can give you some very favorable atmospheric conditions. As long as Mother Nature cooperates and gives us some consistency in those conditions, we should be fine. Last year, we had a runner-up finish there, and we can certainly utilize those notes. Hopefully, we can capitalize and improve on that performance by one position."

A Case of Mistaken Identity

Upon his return from the ACDelco Virginia Nationals in Richmond, VA, Martin was besieged with phone calls from fans and friends concerned about his well-being. In a terrible coincidence, the same weekend that the Michigan native was competing at Virginia Motorsports Park, a sportsman racer by the name of Harold Dean Martin (no relation) was fatally injured in an incident in South Carolina.

Although wanting to reassure everyone that he was indeed fine, Martin also wanted to make sure and offer his condolences to the family and friends of the fallen competitor, with whom he shared more than just a name.

"I didn't know Harold Dean Martin personally, but any loss in our motorsports community is a huge one," said Martin. "Our hearts go out to both he and his family. He will be sorely missed."

Harold Martin Fast Facts:

* Career best elapsed time: 6.183 seconds, Indianapolis, IN 9/04

* Career best top speed: 230.13 mph, Indianapolis, IN 9/04

* Currently ninth in the 2005 IHRA Pro Modified Championship Standings

* Won his first IHRA Pro Modified national event on July 4, 2004 at the Western RV Rocky Mountain Nationals in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

* Finished a career-best third in the 2004 Hooters Drag Racing Serie   s
Pro Modified Championship Standing                                     s

* Nicknamed the "EFI Wizard" for his expertise with electronic fuel injection, including the revolutionary system in his ACDelco Pro Mod Grand Am, which he designed.

* Former GM engineer and holder of 10 worldwide patents

-jgk-

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Series Drag
Drivers Dean Martin , Harold Martin