'Fuel shortage' derails Massey's national debut in round one BAYTOWN, Texas - Over the years, certain fuel shortages have caused many problems across the globe. In the case of NHRA Top Alcohol Dragster rookie Spencer Massey a 'fuel shortage' ...
'Fuel shortage' derails Massey's national debut in round one
BAYTOWN, Texas - Over the years, certain fuel shortages have caused many problems across the globe. In the case of NHRA Top Alcohol Dragster rookie Spencer Massey a 'fuel shortage' ultimately lead to an early exit at this past weekend's O'Reilly Spring Nationals presented by Pennzoil at Houston Raceway Park. The new driver for drag race legend Gene Snow slowed when an ailing fuel pump failed to deliver the proper amount of fuel to keep the 4000 horsepower nitro methane engine at maximum output.
Massey, 23, of Fort Worth, Texas, entered the event hot off consecutive runner-up finishes on the Lucas Oil Divisional trail. In Houston, Massey qualified the Snow owned/tuned A/Fuel Dragster ninth with a 5.512 at 261.27 mph. In his first round matchup with Joe Windham , Massey, who is quickly gaining a reputation as a holeshot artist, Massey once again got the jump off the line, .024 to .063, but slowed to a 5.733 at 214 mph after dropping a cylinder off the line. The problem was traced to the fuel pump not delivering the proper flow rate to the engine.
"We just didn't have enough spinach for Popeye," said Massey. "It dropped a hole off the line, and that was the end of it. We hate to lose, but we're making runs down the track. I'm getting more and more comfortable in the car, and I wish I could go make some runs tomorrow if we could. It's a lot of fun, and I'm very fortunate Gene has given me this chance."
Snow explained the problem with the fuel pump.
"We were running a pump that I have had on the car for a while," explained Snow. "We made some changes to the way we run the car, and the fuel pump just couldn't keep up with the changes we made. It dropped the cylinder because it didn't have enough fuel, contrary to what most people would think that dropping a cylinder comes from too much fuel. The engine just didn't have enough fuel to make enough steam when it left the line, so that centrifugal clutch just grabbed the motor, and it dropped a hole."
Snow expects to have the problem cured by the next Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event at their home track, the Texas Motorplex just outside of Dallas, April 28-30.
"We'll have a new pump on the car for Dallas," said Snow. "We plan to do some testing before then, so hopefully we'll be ready to go."
"Hopefully we can pick up where we left off on the divisional level," added Massey. "It's our home race, so we'd like to do good for our friends and sponsors Amalie Oil and Rucker's Performance."