This is my story (with pics) of my experience at the Division 7 ET Finals in Bakersfield back in September.
After my best season yet running in Sportsman (2 wins), I went to my first ET Finals ever. And I made the Race of Champions or Summit Super Showdown. I had been racing since 2006.
I made the 4 hour tow with my 69 Chevy C10. It did very well. My brother decided to drive his 68 Pontiac Lemans down there. Little back story, earlier this year, my brother bought a dragster, sold his Mustang, and sold his open trailer (to me). So he finished the season in his Pontiac and also made the Race of Champions.
Getting to the track.
Thursday night we did the Gambler's race.
My brother won his round, but I lost to a 9 second Nova.
Round 2 was on Friday morning, so I settled back in the stands to root for my brother and other Team Sacramento cars. Well my brother's car broke on the launch, so I towed him back to the pit where the fun began... Note there's one person working, and other drivers providing moral support. We also had to borrow those jack stands from a neighbor.
Well there's what's left of his non-posi rearend.
Remember he drove down here, so getting both cars back will be a pain. Here we make the best decision for what to do, I offered to him the use of my truck to race, but we decided that if that broke, we would really be in a bind. So we loaded his car up on my trailer, and he towed his car back with my truck.
Unfortunately, that truck was my backup, so now I had to make sure my car held together, I was confident, but you never know....
But now with my brother driving, I was now by myself, so I spent the day talking to other people, and taking pictures, etc. Got a couple more runs in. My car was running great, with numbers in the 12.7s and low 12.8s, which is good especially because of the 100+ temps and high humidity.
Friday evening Team Sacramento had a BBQ, where we got our Team Sacramento shirts, and ET Finals shirts, hats, etc.
My brother got back to the track at around midnight.
Saturday morning we had one time run, and then first round of eliminations in the Team Race. My brother was racing his truck (06 silverado) We both dropped out in the first round with red lights. Oh well. So we spent the day watching our teammates race. And one of our guys won in the Sportsman class. Saturday evening was another BBQ/party at Team Sacramento's pit.
And apparantly I didn't take any pictures from Saturday...
Sunday morning we had one time run, then eliminations for the Summit Super Showdown (Race of Champions). My brother was racing a borrowed car, a Camaro that runs 13s.
The staging lanes..
My brother lost in the first round, but I went .011, and forced the other car to break out, giving me the win light. Three of our five team cars made it through the first round.
Second round comes along, and I am informed that my .011 gives me a bye run in the second round.
So with a nice single run, I go .050 and run a 12.809 on a 12.80 dial. Now there are only 2 Team Sacramento cars left.
that blue Nova is also Team Sacramento...
I raced the big Charger in this pic.
I went .003 and had a pretty easy win, I was able to get out of the throttle and take enough stripe. I ran a 12.899 on a 12.82 dial, and scrubbed 5mph. He actually broke out with a 12.063 on a 12.08, but he had a .138 light. It was all over at the tree.
Fourth Round (No pics), I raced a 60s Ranchero. He had the reaction advantage, .012 to .021, but he could not catch up to me, as I tapped the brakes (lost 1mph) and ran a 12.882 on a 12.84 dial to his all-out 12.483 on a 12.41 dial. the next pair of car to go was my Team Sacramento teammate in the blue Nova. Unfortunately, he red-lit but then scattered his motor downtrack. Short delay for a clean-up.
Now it's the Semi-Finals, I had gone farther than I had imagined I would, and now the Pomona trip is in grasp.
This was not our pairings, I raced the silver Nova, and the truck raced the Camaro.
I actually had my worst round of the weekend, with a terrible .094 light to his .019, so it was all over then, but then to top it off, I went almost a full tenth slower on the top end. It would have been all over for me regardless. I did better than I thought I would, and I went away happy.
Final round was the Nova vs. the Camaro, with the Camaro taking the win.
And a few weeks later, I had my picture in the National Dragster.