Buddy Perkinson Racing press release
Buddy Perkinson Pleased with NHRA U.S. Nationals Qualification
Kansas City, MO, September 8, 2011 – Young Buddy Perkinson is living proof dreams do come true. Perkinson qualified in his first-ever race weekend at the grand-daddy of all NHRA race events: the U.S. Nationals near Indianapolis, IN. “It's still really hasn't sunk in,” says the 19-year old racer from Prince George, VA. “It's always been one of my dreams to qualify for this race, the U.S. Nationals, and thanks to my crew, my sponsors and some awesome horsepower and support from Larry Morgan Racing, I made it to The Big Go at Indy!”
After picking up the car from owner Mark Wolfe just eight days before the race, Perkinson and the Larry Morgan crew pulled some very late nights getting the car ready for a scheduled pre-Indy test session in Michigan. “We struggled with the initial set up of the car,” explains Perkinson. “We learned right off the truck that we could not run the same set-up as Larry. We all had to put our heads together and come up with a completely different set-up for this new chassis and engine combination.”
After finally landing on an initial set-up, it was back to Indy and the first of five rounds of Pro Stock qualifications for the U.S. Nationals. “These guys never gave up,” says Perkinson, “we kept after it, getting better and better with each round. Finally, it was the fifth and final round of qualifying and we still had a ways to go to bump into the field of sixteen.”
And that's just what Perkinson did, bumping none other than multi-time Pro Stock Champion, Warren Johnson from the field. As a matter of fact, Perkinson and his TuffRail.com / Wealth Management Strategies / AXA Advisors Mustang was the only Ford to advance into Pro Stock eliminations at Indy. “Obviously, I was proud of what we did just to get into the Big Go,” notes Perkinson, “and I was proud to represent Ford, Ford Racing and all the Mustang faithful – that was a big honor too.”
It's every racer's dream to qualify for the U.S. Nationals, with the largest car count of the year and all of NHRA's “heavy hitters” looking to make the show. Perkinson was also honored by a visit from “The Professor” himself. “Wow...to have Warren Johnson come by, shake my hand and sit down and visit with me after qualifying for my first U.S Nationals... and here I am, getting kudos and encouragement from one of my racing heroes,” chuckles Perkinson. “That's an experience I'll never forget!”
With a best qualifying effort of 6.674, Perkinson secured the 16th and final qualifying spot. That also earned him a first-round match-up with number one qualifier, Jason Line, who had the field covered with a blazing 6.603 effort.
“Qualifying number 16 put us up against the pole winner,” notes Perkinson, “we knew we were going to have to pull out all the stops and that I had to attack the tree to advance to the next round.” Alas, Perkinson left just a little early, turning on the red light by scant .023, ending his first U.S. Nationals weekend.
“I can't thank Larry Morgan, his crew and my guys, Christian Thompson and Randy Perkinson enough,” says Perkinson. “Even after they didn't make the show, Larry and his team stuck around, left their rig set up and helped out anyway they could. This weekend simply wouldn't have been possible without their help, support and encouragement.” Perkinson and his team, complete with Larry Morgan Racing power, are now gearing up for the Sept 15-18 O'Reilly Auto Parts Nationals at zMax Dragway in Charlotte, NC.
“We qualified for our first every U.S. Nationals, but now it's time to go home, make some more changes and see if we can do even better at Charlotte,” says Perkinson. “We learned a lot at Indy and I know that this group can build on that for the next race. And of course, none of it would have been possible with the support of our sponsors, TuffRail.com, and Wealth Management Strategies / AXA Advisors. They helped make one of this racer's dreams come true at Indy.”