What an awesome weekend of ½ mile racing. I really don’t even know where to start so let’s just jump into it.
The September ½ mile event in GA is one of the best. It is a long standing event with wannaGOFAST and it is 2 hours away from my house. Leading up to the event, the weather looked like it was going to be near perfect with an even cooler day on Sunday. We did the normal prep on the car with an oil change and a general look over, but…other than that…the car remained unchanged from last event outside of having even more miles on the stock short block. It is now over 94,500 miles on the clock!
We arrived Friday night and I dropped the car off at the airstrip with the rest of the Vengeance customers ready for a Saturday full of racing.
Day #1 – Saturday
We arrived at Heaven’s Landing early Saturday morning ready to prep the car. I filled up the tank with 10 gallons of MS109 race fuel, filled the meth, topped off the C16 standalone and loaded up 2 full nitrous tanks into the trunk. After letting it idle a bit we were ready to go. A friend of mine and Vengeance Racing customer offered me a sponsor slot for this race so I would be able to run at the top of every hour without waiting in the long regular line. It does make staging for the passes much easier.
Run #1 – 154mph
This event I was going to do something different. Since I already make multiple boost only passes on this car a day, I thought it would be fun to go out on kill for the first run to set the bar. Common sense settled in right before the run and I decided to do a boost only pass just to get the fuel really running through the car. I had run the car down so far on fuel on Friday that I was actually worried about getting it up to the strip but it was still a good idea to get a good WOT pass in to really get it flowing. My car is not geared at all for boost passes with the 3.23 auto gear in it. I pass the traps no where near peak power. It’s really kind of boring but it has a purpose.
Run #2 – 150 mph
For this run we tried something new…and it didn’t work. We set up the nitrous progressive controller to skip 1st gear and come on strong in second. In theory, this was going to work perfectly as I get to 65 mph in 1st. 2nd gear traction was going to be there and ready for the 200 hit. One big problem. The syncros in my TR6060 trans are starting to let go on 2nd gear thanks to all of the abuse I give this car. When I went to shift into 2nd…I couldn’t get in. By the time I did, too much time had elapsed and I had double clutched so the progressive controller thought I was done. Another boost pass it was with a ton of lost time so I just drove to the Sunday grocery store run to the line.
Run #3 – 172mph
I came back in and we took off the 1st gear lockout. Now I just had to short shift and pedal first to get into second and hope that wheel spin could be kept at a minimum. Overall the car did great but I could feel that it was pulling timing up top. We put a data logger in the car and got ready for the next run. I also was in the left lane that had a bump in it close to my 2nd gear hit. The rear tires left the ground…pegged the limiter and the car took off with some wheel spin before I hit 3rd.
Run #4 – 174 mph
Run number 4 of the day went a lot like #3 except I got in the right lane. We pulled the data log and the car was getting too hot on the back end of the pull. I knew exactly why. In staging we were spending a ton of time at the end of the strip waiting for all of the sponsor cars to get in and the car was just heat soaking. I really needed to get IAT2’s down to keep the car pulling at the end of the run.
Day #2 – Sunday
We woke up to a really cool Sunday morning .The morning passes were going to be FAST. I got the car ready with full bottles looking to make a monster pass in the morning.
Run #1 – 0 mph
I took the first run and the car shot out of the hole like a bat out of hell. The cooler air was really working well. I was in the left lane that was known to have a big hump towards the beginning of the run like I had already experienced the day before. In all reality, it probably wasn’t as much of an issue for other cars as it was mine. It just happened that the hump in the runway was timed perfectly with where I needed the full boat of nitrous to hit. The car was squatting and taking off the hardest right where that point was. The nitrous hit hard thanks to a little over pressurized bottle right in the hump and sent the car air born (also pegged my 7500rpm rev limiter again!) While just trying to keep the car straight it also popped out of 2nd in the process. Cussing inside the car I just pulled it off the strip and went straight to the pits. I had just wasted probably the best pass I was going to have that day.
Run #2 – 173 mph
The air was still cool and the car was already ready to go so I pulled back around to go for another pass the next hour. The next sponsor run was full so I had to wait until 11am and the air was starting to get hotter. When the time came to make the run, I took the right lane and went first. The pass was clean and the car was fast but it was still pulling out timing up top. I pulled back in and went over options.
Run #3 – 176.74 mph
Getting ready for the next run, we didn’t want to change anything with the car. Other than the heat issue it was running incredibly well so jetting up or getting more aggressive really didn’t make any sense on the high mileage stock short block. We made the decision that we were just going to ice down the car as much as possible to try to keep IAT2’s stable. The next run was supposed to be at 1pm so I spent the next hour putting ice in the HX tank and cycling it through the system. I have the pump hardwired to the accessory switch so I could turn on the pump without starting the car. I sat in the car at 5 until 1pm calming myself down ready to go…then they told us they weren’t going to do the sponsor cars until 2! I brought the cooler back and iced her down for another hour.
At 2pm we rolled out and started staging. I was about 12 cars back in line but my IAT2’s were 67 degrees!! By the time I pulled up to the line, they were sitting at 83 degrees but stable. I did my short burnout , turned on Rage Against the Machine on the sound system, took a deep breath and got ready to launch. 1st gear rollout was perfect. I short shifted 1st at 4,500 rpms and just flat out stabbed 2nd gear. Wheel spin!!!! Grabbed! I then shifted hard into third and the car was ROLLING. I shifted 3rd at 7k and slammed my right foot to the floor. I literally thought I might push the gas pedal straight through the floor. Come on baby! GOOOO! Top end of 4th was pulling like a damn freight train! Holy shit this is much faster than before! Crossed through the traps, clutched in, took a deep breath and looked down at my gauge. IAT2’s at 115 degrees and falling. The car didn’t pull anything…other than some massive g-forces.
I rolled around to the timing tent hoping for the best. I kept my helmet on and everything…I just wanted to see the slip. It felt freaking fast but you never really know until you get the slip. I pulled up and took a look…176.74mph!!!! Holy shit! I pulled down the ramp, revved the car up and purged the nitrous! We had done it. After giving Ron (the owner of Vengeance) a huge thanks I made my way up to my wife and gave her a huge hug. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t tearing up a little bit when I hugged her. She is as much a part of this process as I am and she is a mechanical engineer so she really gets it. I don’t know why she married me but I am glad she did (in all fairness…I did warn her to what she was getting into!!).
Another personal best and I reset the LSA record. At the time, I actually thought it was the world CTS-V overall record until I came home and found out that Brett had run a 176.77 in his Maggie powered built 427. .03 mph off some of the best built motor cars out there…I ‘ll take that for sure. It is probably a good thing I didn’t know that at the track as I had to leave after the run and I probably would have hurt something with one of those infamous “one last run” moves.
On a side note. My son was also at the event and he will be 4 next month. Apparently, he thought I could hear him cheering me on in the car so he was screaming “spray it! Spray it Daddy!” on my last pass. He really does think that he helped me on that last run which melts my heart. He also ran up and gave me a huge hug when he saw me yelling “Daddy you won!”. It doesn’t get much better than that. It was awesome to have him there to share the experience with.
So broken record time but it needs to be said…
It is unbelievable to me what Vengeance and myself have been able to accomplish with this car. A 94,500+ mile stock short block that is competing with the best of the best in the CTS-V world. Even better…we have not touched the tune at all during or in between these events. I just keeps running, winning and daily driving like a champ. The customer experience at Vengeance Racing is unlike anything else I have ever experienced in my long history of modifying cars and being a part of the tuning industry. It is simply insane what they are able to accomplish and I am glad to call them close friends and family. I might be starting to sound like an obsessed cheerleader but that really is the experience that this shop creates and I got to hang out with 30+ customers this weekend that feel the exact same way. It was an awesome weekend.
Once again, I drove my car to the event…raced it…drove it home…then work up the next day and drove it to daycare and the airport.
Next up is TX to take on the TX CTS-V Club boys. We will be bringing the heat for sure! It has been a bucket list item for me to make this trip and I can’t think of a cooler group of guys/cars to race against. It is going to be an incredible trip. It is also incredibly cool that the group of people on the CTSVOwners.com forum and the guys at the top of the respective ¼ and ½ mile lists are so close and fun to race with. It’s not everywhere that I can be racing with guys from TX and Canada that I also get to stay in close touch with over the year.
Until the next event…N0P0WER CTS-V will keep tearing up the streets of north Atlanta racking up even more miles all while rocking a Recaro baby seat. Damn I love this car.
It’s early in the week so I’ll add pictures and videos to this thread as I get them complete and get them in from friends that were taking shots there. I never even got my camera out of the car but I did get one of the 170+ runs from two GoPros. I left them off for my last shot at a glory pass that was the 176 run. Maybe I should have taped up the fog lights too to get that .03 extra!