MECHANICSVILLE, Md. – After the rain delayed action Saturday, race fans were treated to an incredible showdown as the stars of the X-DRL stayed through Sunday at Maryland Int’l Raceway to finish what they started and give the Budds Creek fans what they deserved.
Royce Miller, the legendary track operator of MIR led the combined track team from 4:00 am Sunday morning to replicate the incredible track surface from the previous two days of qualifying.
Racing action began under cloudy skies with a fast track. Fans hoped the conditions were good for some quick runs and Stupid Fast Racing’s Paul Taylor confirmed the numbers were favorable with 2100 foot air conditions.
The team kept turning screws on the Mesquite Logistics Corvette all weekend, doing everything they could to get into the 3.50’s. Despite their best effort the 50’s were not to be had, but the two 3.604 passes in qualifying were the fastest of the event and produced a new Pro X-Treme record for the X-DRL while capturing the track record for the famed Budds Creek facility.
“We changed our combination to pick up the 60-foot time – we thought it was enough to get us into the 3.50’s but the car shook in the middle. The track was phenomenal all week-end long. We just didn’t have enough in the car for the track,” said Taylor.
The fans were not disappointed as the drivers put on a great show with some close racing. Masters Entertainment was at Budd’s Creek to film for the X-DRL Velocity TV show and brought the “High Speed” photo-finish camera to shoot the 660”stripe producing awesome frame-by frame film for the show. The X-DRL racers put them to good use in the Pro X-Treme semi-finals when Frankie took the hole shot win over Todd Martin with a 0.033 reaction time to Martin’s 0.069. The elapsed times were close with Taylor going 3.641 to Martin’s 3.629.
Tim Tindle was hoping to make it to his second X-DRL Pro X-Treme final in a row but came up short against Terry “Legbone” Leggett who ran his career best 3.610 in qualifying Friday night and followed it up with impressive times all weekend long. His 3.693 in the semi-final round was just enough to edge out Tindle’s 3.712.
The action in the pits almost trumped the action on the track as the “Madman” broke a rocker arm in his 3.641 semi-final and needed a new set of lifters as well. The Lethal Threat team of Pesz and Martin along with his opponent in the final Terry Leggett came to his aid and helped him get the famed Corvette back on the track producing another close match.
“Legbone” ran 3.693 in the heat at 207.11 mph but it wasn’t enough as Taylor ran a blistering 3.613 at 207.59 mph. Frankie said he always wanted to win a close one and he certainly got his wish. He also got his first X-DRL trophy to go with his new X-DRL record of 3.604.
Pro X-Treme wasn’t the only close racing. Switzer Dynamics Pro Nitrous low qualifier Danny Perry ran great all week-end long, qualifying with a 3.847 but losing to the X-Treme Gateway Showdown winner Bob Rahaim in the final round with a 3.838. Bob qualified number three and kept working on the car making it faster as the event progressed.
“We tried some new things to make the car run the 60 foot better and they worked out. We’ve been good on the back half, so we knew if we could improve our performance early we were going to be tough to deal with,” said Rahaim.
No one was more surprised with the outcome in the X-Treme Pro Stock class than the winner.
“I thought we would win this year, but after last night I was ready to go fishing,” said Cary. “It’s like a hundred pound weight has been lifted from my shoulders.”
The Holdenville, Okla., resident had his work cut out for him, defeating his dad in the semi’s and then low qualifier John Deflorian in the final. It was rewarding for Cary to win one for the team. They had their patience tried this season and he was happy to bring the win home to Brian Self, Chuck Samuel, Chris Goforth, Jason Roberts, Keith Harr, Matt McKee and team owner, Dean Goforth (points leader) who has been supportive all season long as the team has worked to get things right. Cary’s winning time was 4.134 at 174.28 mph.