Glory Days at Maple Grove
August 19-20, 2017: Maple Grove Raceway, Reading, PA
We rolled into Maple Grove Raceway on Friday evening just in time for a thunderstorm to narrowly miss the track and consequently us. Saturday morning was a gorgeous start to the day. We set up the car and pit area along with the Phone Fuel Up free phone charging station compliments of the Great Lakes Nostalgia Funny Car Circuit. Plenty of crew and family, friends and fans were on hand to help for this test and tune outing for the Quarter Pounder.
We need every pass down the track to get better and better as we’re shooting for the tune up to get the QP into the 7.30-40’s. Our goal all season long is to sneak up on the number and this weekend at the impeccable Maple Grove facility. We prepped the car by adding fuel, changing plugs, setting valves and more. Once the call was made we pulled into the lanes and got ready to run. We fired the car and the crew removes the body pole and lowers the fiberglass lid on the flopper. This run will be captured on video from inside the cockpit. See the video below.
Driver Kevin Johnson rolls into the burnout box and through under idle guided by the renown alcohol funny car driver and tuner Lou Sgro. Up on the tire and into a blaze of smoke goes the new Goodyear slicks needed to overcome tire shake and loss of traction in the last set of tires. Kevin pulls into the beams in a solo run. Pre-stage and then staged. The pro tree blinks and Kevin is off but double-steps the throttle once again catching it quickly but only running a soft 8 second pass. Frustrated, the team discussed what is needed to fix the issue off the line.
We prep the car between rounds cooling down the engine, checking the plugs and tweaking the tune up. Fuel up, check the tire pressures and we’re off to the lanes. We get the driver in the car and belted in place. The call is made to fire the beast. The body goes down and the burnout is big. Backing up Lisa Johnson guides her brother into the best spot for traction. Lou Sgro pulls Kevin into the beams after a few angry dry hops. The tree comes down and the reaction time is .023 and the pass is a season-best 7.64 at 177 mph! Now the team is moving forward.
Many thanks to the great driver and tuner Bobby Toth as always and special thanks to Lou Sgro for some help and guidance.