Ennis, Texas (Pre-race) - In all forms of racing the key to winning and losing is having an advantage on the rest of the competition. A fraction of a second can mean the difference between going home on Saturday and racing on Sunday. In the Pro ...
Ennis, Texas (Pre-race) - In all forms of racing the key to winning and losing is having an advantage on the rest of the competition. A fraction of a second can mean the difference between going home on Saturday and racing on Sunday. In the Pro Stock Truck class, maybe more than any other class of drag racing, it is this difference calibrated in hundredths and thousandths of a second that can place a competitor in the top half of the field or on the trailer.
Going into this weekend 15th Annual O'Reilly Fall Nationals in Dallas, Texas, Brain "Lump" Self, driver of the Roof-Tec Chevrolet S-10, is well aware of this fact and has taken major steps to try to improve his times on the racetrack. He feels that improvement in the incremental times on the track will give him the extra advantage he needs on the rest of the field.
"We have done everything that we know how to do, to get ready for this race," said Self. "We have done a lot of work on the chassis of this truck in the last week, and I think it is about to pay off."
"Our problem for a while now has been that the truck will not run the back half of the racetrack like it will run on the front half. We have been consistently quick to about the 330-foot mark. After that, we fall off. We have been wracking our brains trying to figure out what's wrong.
"We found a problem with our chassis in testing after the Topeka race. We fixed it and the truck picked up a little in Memphis, but not as much as we want it to. We took that as a clue that maybe we should check the rest of the truck out.
"Last week we sent our S-10 back to our chassis builder, Bevis Built Racecars. They found a lot of stuff out of whack. The guys at Bevis went through the truck from bumper to bumper, and straightened and realigned everything.
"This last weekend we had an opportunity to attend a match race at Kennedale Raceway in Dallas. The racetrack there in Kennedale is very good. We felt that this match race would be a good opportunity to test the changes that we had made to the truck.
"I feel like we didn't waste our time. The results we saw proved that. We improved all our incremental times, and saw a difference in how the truck launched and ran down track. I really believe that the improvement we saw this weekend is a direct result of last week's chassis work.
"We did all this work to try and improve our numbers on the back half. Right now, we are killing them to the 60-foot clocks and are right there with the rest of the field to 330 feet. We have really been falling off on the top end. The truck just will not run from the 330 to the finish line. So far, by the looks of our numbers from this weekend, the chassis work we did has improved how the truck goes down the racetrack. Kennedale is an eighth-mile track, so I am anxious to see how it runs to the quarter mile."
Lump talked about what he feels his Roof-Tec team needs to do to be competitive, and what it will take him to win the O'Reilly Fall Nationals this weekend.
"I feel like if we can run within .010 of a second of the fast guys on the back half, we will easily qualifying in the top half of the field in Dallas. We need to be in the top half of the field for the lane choice advantage. We have seen in the last couple of races that lane choice is very critical to winning in this class. We have to concentrate on getting and keeping lane choice.
"If we can qualifying in the top half of the show, then on Sunday all I need to do is drive like I know I can. If we have picked up on the back half like I think we have, and I drive consistently, we will do the Texas two-step all the way to the winners circle on Sunday night."
Qualifying at the 15th Annual O'Reilly Fall Nationals in Ennis, Texas gets under way on Friday Oct. 20, and continues on Saturday