NMRA 2005 Silver Dollar Raceway In Reynolds, Georgia
Familiar Faces Kept The Winner's Circle Out Of Reach For The Challengers In Reynolds, Georgia
From the September, 2005 issue of 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords
By Michael Johnson
Photography by Michael Johnson
After we were dazzled at the NMRA's '05 Bradenton opener, it was time to head to Silver Dollar Raceway in Reynolds, Georgia, the land of non-existent cell phone service (unless you had Verizon). We wonder where everyone comes from to attend a race that is so far out in the middle of nowhere, but every year the stands-and the flatbed trailer on the opposite side of the track-are full of people looking for a piece of the action. The weather changed personalities more times than Sybill, and judging by the times from each class, a lot of people were trying their best to get a hold of the changing weather conditions and translate them into winning times. For who was hot and who was not, check out the captions.
Brent Weston has threatened...
Brent Weston has threatened to have his former Real Street car out again in EFI Renegade form for a couple years now. When we saw Brent at the '05 NMRA Bradenton opener, he said the car would be at Reynolds. Well, he didn't disappoint, but he didn't have his nine-second license, and the NMRA was hesitant to let him do his licensing runs during competition, which left Brent running eighth-mile passes all weekend. He was able to get most of the testing formalities out of the way at Reynolds, however, and he should be nine-second legal by Martin. Just like when the car ran in Real Street, nitrous is still the name of the game with tuning from BMF Racing teammate Chris Tuten.
The Pro 5.0 ride of Joe Morgan...
The Pro 5.0 ride of Joe Morgan finally eclipsed the 6-second barrier at Reynolds with a 6.93 at 198 mph, which sent the team into a series of vertical leaps high enough to make Allen Iverson quiver in his Reeboks. With Edelbrock's Steve Johnson in its corner, the team is looking to become a contender in Pro 5.0, and really make things interesting again-which we would all appreciate.
At Bradenton, we were happy...
At Bradenton, we were happy to see Victor Downs had stepped into the Pure Street heads-up class. With low 11s, we knew there was a lot of room for improvement, but when we found out an MV Performance-built Two-Valve modular was under the hood, we stood up and took notice. Plans are for a Four-Valve engine to be in place by the time you read this. At Reynolds, Victor was able to make it past Amy Sherman in Round 1, but Teddy Weaver ended Victor's weekend in Round 2.
Chris "Noodles" Hemmeter from...
Chris "Noodles" Hemmeter from Behind Bars Racecars came to Reynolds with his new Drag Radial Fox GT, boasting a Rich Groh powerplant under the hood and a Hellion Power Systems turbo for motivation. Look for Noodles to wiggle his way into the thick of the Drag Radial ranks.
Until he gets his modular-powered...
Until he gets his modular-powered EFI Renegade racer finished, the legendary Bart Tobener is behind the wheel of Randy Fish's ride. With 9.0s at Reynolds, the car shows promise, and with Bart at the wheel and wrenches, the car will surely get faster. At Reynolds, Mike Post put it on Bart with an 8.78 to a slower 9.23.
Pro 5.0 Before the racing...
Before the racing started, no one would ever have put their Pro 5.0 money on Carl Smart. But sometimes it's better to be lucky than good. Joe Morgan broke right off the line against Carl in Round 1, and then Dale Thaxton ran into problems in Round 2 against Carl. In the final, Michael Hauf's car wouldn't start, and Carl had an easy run to paydirt, which was good since his ride was hurt as well with two dead cylinders from the previous round.
Pro 5.0 Michael Hauf's performance...
Michael Hauf's performance has steadily improved since he entered the Pro 5.0 class. At Reynolds, he gave Donnie Walsh some company in the 6.80s with a 6.83 in Round 1, and then a 6.83 in Round 2. But just before the final round race involving Michael and Carl Smart, Michael's Pro 5.0 ride suffered a malfunctioning starter, which kept him from putting up a fight.
Super Street Outlaw Manny...
Super Street Outlaw
Manny Buginga has come out of the gate strong in 2005 by adding both the Bradenton opener and Reynolds to his race-winning resume. Manny's Turbo People-tuned coupe just barely missed the number-one qualifier spot, but the car ran like it was on cruise control during eliminations with consistent 7.60s each round. Sam Vincent was the closest competitor, but when the two met in the final, Manny was able to keep all the horses planted on the ground.
Super Street Outlaw Kentucky...
Super Street Outlaw
Kentucky Sam Vincent had a strong 2004 behind the wheel of his Nitrous Express-motivated coupe, and at Reynolds it looked as if he was ready to get on the winning wagon again. He took home the UPR Top Qualifier cash, and then he beat Super Street Outlaw superstars Jim Blair (again at the wheel of Zach Posey's ride) and our boy Don Burton. In the final against Manny Buginga, the race looked close, but Sam lost traction on the top end and had to abort the run, handing Manny the victory.
Drag Radial Phil Clemmons...
Phil Clemmons has been the racer to beat the last couple years in Drag Radial, but at the Bradenton opener, Dave Hopper proved to be up to the task of beating the defending champion. At Reynolds, Phil returned the favor to Dave and everyone else in Drag Radial. Phil continues to tweak his GT's tune-up to be able to leave with the throttle on the floor and gradually bring in the power. Judging by our launch photos, Phil was able to put the power to the ground off the starting line, and his 8.50s were too much for the rest of the Drag Radial class.
Drag Radial After destroying...
After destroying more pistons than John Force in 2004, Chris Tuten dumped his nitrous Real Street combo and stepped up to the Drag Radial class with his brother's single-turbo-motivated combo under the hood. We just wonder if he still thinks he's driving a dump truck down the track as he did when the car was in Real Street trim. Then again, if anyone knows of a dump truck that runs 8.70s like Chris' car in Drag Radial form, please call us. At Reynolds, Chris had it relatively easy against a couple Drag Radial newcomers, Gerald Fulton and 5.0&SF King of the Street competitor Donny Salem, but Phil Clemmons didn't roll out the welcome mat in the final.
EFI Renegade Brian Mitchell...
Brian Mitchell is still relying on the power of Cleveland Performance's Dan Rawls combined with a Vortech YSi-Trim supercharger and a Pro Formance C4 with a Frank Lupo Dynamic converter. At Reynolds, Brian qualified Second with an 8.67 at 158 mph, but he only needed 8.70s-8.80s to get past the rest of the EFI Renegade field. Helping Brian out even more was the fact that his final round opponent, Mike Post, was a spectator for the final with a hurt engine.