ENNIS, Texas - Life has it's highs and lows, and the same could be said about drag racing. NHRA Federal Mogul Dragster pilot Jay Meyer certainly ended an up and down year on a low note at this past weekend's O'Reilly Fall Nationals presented by ...
ENNIS, Texas - Life has it's highs and lows, and the same could be said about drag racing. NHRA Federal Mogul Dragster pilot Jay Meyer certainly ended an up and down year on a low note at this past weekend's O'Reilly Fall Nationals presented by Castrol Syntec at the Texas Motorplex just south of Dallas. Meyer experienced his fourth first round loss in five races, when his Blown Alcohol Dragster redlighted against Karl Brounkowski.
Meyer, from Freeport, Texas, qualified his Tom Conway tuned mount sixth in the quickest field in the history of the class with a 5.440 second elapsed time at 253.95 mph. In his first round matchup with Brounkowski, Meyer cites an odd reaction by the car as the reason for the foul start. Rather than the car making its usual initial move forward (rolling through the staging beams), the car abruptly jerked upward before moving forward, subsequently pulling the front tires out of the staging beams, and ultimately, the red light for his .328 reaction time (.400 is perfect). To add insult to injury, Meyer covered Brounkowski's 5.725 at 258.91 mph with an early shutoff 5.470 at 248.89 mph, the fourth quickest run of the round.
"I think the car redlighted," said Meyer. "It just picked the wheels up for whatever reason. We were trying to stay up with Rick [Santos], and we changed some stuff up. I guess the car was really more aggressive than we thought it was; we were trying to make the car go faster. When you start chasing your tail like that, and get out of your game, stuff like that happens. We had a few people watching the car, and they said it just picked the wheels up about eight inches, wadded up the back tire, and pulled the tires out of the beams. The 'boys' (Meyer's crew) are pretty upset at me, and I don't blame them, but a .328 redlight, I've made enough runs to tell that it wasn't anything I did. Its just the way the car reacted to the changes we made to it. Its one of those things that happens."
Even though the year ended on a down turn, Meyer is still happy with what his team accomplished this year. After a devastating crash in Houston at their first race, the team bounced back with four national event wins, three divisional wins and a runner up. Meyer finished second in Division 4 standings, and is currently in third place nationally.
"I have to thank all my sponsors that helped us have the year we did," cited Meyer. "InsideFMRacing.com, RacerPage.com, Warner Machine, Valvoline, LCB Performance, and VP Racing Fuels. Tom Conway, my tuning consultant, my crew chief Stacy McLemore, assistant crew chief Jim Morrison, crewmembers Bruce Meyer, Stu Herbst, Larry Reep, Dixie Meyer, and Ed and Deanna Anderson, I have to thank as well. We all worked so hard to get where we were, but it seems like the whole world fell in on us there at the end, at the last three races when we had all the pressure on us. With my niece Lindsay dying, we crashed the truck, then we got to Dallas, and ran into Randy Meyer's awning while parking, it just went on and on. You don't think it's bothering you at the time, but evidently it does. I hated to let all of our fans down, especially the ones back home that have been behind us all year. I thought for a while we had a chance to win it all, but we just didn't do very well. That's just life, you have to take it and go on."
"We can't cry in our beer," Meyer added. "We had a pretty good year."
Meyer cites that the economy will have a big role in how hard he is able to run next year.
"I just came back racing to go racing," explained Meyer. "I never really meant to get caught up in all of this points chase, it just happened that way. We worked hard, the 'boys' wanted it, I wanted it, but it takes it's toll trying to keep up. Our money situation will determine a lot on how hard we run next year. We really need to find some sponsorship over the offseason."
Betty Ruth Force died October 20, 2001
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