Category Archives: Dragway 42

Stevand Racing at Dragway 42

Weekend Update Aug 10-12

Alright Folks, This week is my turn to try to deliver you a weekly update. With Steve starting a new job this week things have been a little hectic for him so I’ll have to fill in this time.

This week’s event brought us the Night Under Fire at Summit Motorsports Park, Which is known as the biggest and baddest show around when it comes to drag racing. Unfortunately for us the festivities have to start on Thursday by pulling in the rigs to a holding area and back up to the track Friday morning to pull them in the track. So already Steve and Amanda have two partial days invested in just moving equipment around.

Soon enough Saturday comes around and we are scheduled to hit the track at 9AM but due to the early morning rain that was pushed back until almost 11AM. Never having a dull moment around our crew in that two hour grace period I managed to produce an oil spill in my pit space that would make BP oil spill look minimal (ok so it wasn’t that bad but a pain to deal with none the less)

By time we got the oil spill under control and did a quickie oil change in my car it was time for Steve and I to make our way up for our one and only time trail. We both laid down awesome runs with Steve being .018 on the tree and running 10.36 and myself being .003 on the tree and running a 10.62. We were set and ready to roll.

Come about five o’clock the track shut everything down in order to do the first part of their show. As always it was great to watch having every car involved perform pretty much flawlessly. Shortly after that things came to a soggy stop. Yep the rain was back and would not let up enough for us to finish anything that day and by 11PM we were starting to pack up for the day and head out.

So the quick review of that story is with a total of almost three days involved in one single race, Steve and myself got to make one stellar pass each down the track! But as always the Bader family put on a great show.

This coming Saturday currently doesn’t show anything on the schedule as far as racing but Sunday is another point’s race at Dragway42 in the home stretch of point’s races for the year and the battle for first place gets tighter every week there!

Week Update July 30th-Aug 5th

Lets change this up a little. This past week has been a challenge to say the least. I had phone issues, computer issues, and email issues. Matt has been sick since Thursday. They say food poisoning and I can only hope they are right. So with all that I’m doing the week review instead of a couple of blogs last week and a weekend review.

As I reported last week, Matt took a weekend off to support a friend tying the knot. They all had a blast! It was a wedding like no other. Just a few items off the beaten path; the wedding was in an old movie theatre and all the men in the bridal party – including the groom – wore Scottish Kilts. I’d say different but that’s whet you get from racers. Matt was also absent from this weekend’s race due to illness. I have not heard how he is this morning. I’m hoping well enough to return to work. Continue reading Week Update July 30th-Aug 5th

Weekend Update 7/28-7/29

Once again, Steve steal Josh’s thunder by writing his own Weekend Update. Josh spent the week basking in the Lake Erie Islands sun, though, so it’s not like he was paying any attention anyway.

All good things must come to an end I guess. I was able to take a nice vacation for the first time in a long time. I got to visit with family, go fishing, and hob nob a little with the rich and famous in the Hamptons. But all that is over now and I’m back to the old bump and grind. 

Saturday was my first day back at the track. but I don’t think I was fully recovered from my vacation bliss. I found it hard to get back to my routine starting with getting things ready to go. Like I have said in the past, everything that leads up to the race day affects how you do that day. When your head’s not in it, you’re vulnerable and that led to my early exit Saturday at Summit Motorsports Park. My car was not running consistent time runs due to wind and weather which had me guessing for 1st round. I was slightly off on my dial, which would be competitive for most runs, but as luck would have it my opponent only gave me .018 to weasel my way into . With a .029 light I was done at the start.(insert sad face here*). Hero to Zero @ the drop of a hat. LOL

 Saturday was Matt’s turn to miss a race day. Unfortunately we have had to miss a couple this month due to race conflicts or social events. Matt had a wedding of a close friend and fellow racer. Even with Matt’s no show and my barely showing I believe we stayed pretty close in our points standings due to many of the racers around us having troubles of their own.Gassers @ 42

 

There was no points event on Sunday at Dragway 42, but there was a special event held this weekend. The Rock & Race. This is one of 42’s biggest events of the year. It is three days of old cars, racing, bands playing, and fun! As a last minute decision I decided to go to the Sunday race to try and redeem my Saturday disappointment. Matt was still in Toledo enjoying time with his wedding friends but would not be able to attend the Rock & Race anyway due to the 1976 and older restriction. (His Spirit is 1980.) He could have raced the back up car but we still need to do some suspension work to get it to be a reliable back up.

I went into Sunday’s race a little more prepared. I set everything up to my “42 Settings” and hit the track. The car picked up right where it left off; 7.25. It stayed glued to a 7.25 & 7.26 every pass. I wiggled my way through the field making it all the way to the finals against a stout competitor. He was in his street car but tough none the less. I was pretty confident I could take the race. Upon launch I had a .004 advantage. Small but still in my favor. I came on him pretty quick as I had a three second advantage over his dial. I was able to pass him then slow down not to break out but I must have been too hard on the brakes and let him back around me. I beg to differ but the computer is never wrong. It was a disappointing loss but still a runner up finish and that is nothing to be ashamed of.

This weekend will bring us to Quaker City Raceway in Salem, Ohio on Saturday for their Thunder & Lightning event, then back to Dragway 42 on Sunday for some more points racing. Come on out and spend some time at the track while we still have Summer to enjoy!

Rock & Race results @ Dragway 42

 

 

What a difference a day makes!!!!

This past week has been pretty fun filled & action packed to say the least. I’m a little late on a weekly blog only because I was having too much fun on vacation to set time aside. Can you blame me? LOL

I have to rewind to last Saturday @ Summit Motorsports Park. I had a feeling going into the weekend it was going to be a good one. I think it was because of how the “Test Session” went on the Wednesday before. When you feel hopeless going into a race it extremely diminishes you chances of winning anything. There is also a do or die point in the season if your not doing great where you have to make up some ground or you put yourself mathematically out of contention. That was this weekend!

It wasn’t looking great in time runs with a pair of .013 red lights. Not cool in the racing world. The car was reacting very quick due to another shock adjustment. I keep playing with the shocks to see what they will do in different situations so i know where to put them to overcome different track conditions. I try & go with something for the day rather than adjust as I go unless it is totally wrong. All season I was trying to get the car to react faster & now it was time to slow that down. That for me is a lot easier. I took some shims out of my button which puts more throw in it & in return it releases slower. It was just what I needed. It put me in the green but not too far that I would loose on a bad light. Of course unless I screwed it up. Which i tried a few times but my opponent tried to screw it up more than I did & that’s all it takes in Bracket Racing.

It seams surreal when it happens. You look around all of a sudden & there’s only a few race cars left around you, when you come back through the pits there’s no one walking around & the shades are pulled closed. You look @ the clock & wonder how it got to be midnight. Then you realize, you are in the finals!

Sometimes getting to a final round is harder than the final itself But when it’s your night, it’s your night. I was .011 on the tree & under my dial by .002. If my opponent was over his dial I was done but my luck continued & he broke out by more than I did handing me the win!!!!! The win @ SMP was not only well over due but it propelled me from 36th place in points all the way up to 6th place with only 4 more points meets left. I do believe that is the biggest jump I have ever made in points as a result of one race. That is exactly why you never give up!

 

Sunday was my big experiment day. I’m happy to say it was a successful change for me. I was able to cut good lights & the car did not spin a lick! I was way impressed with it’s performance. out of 6 runs 5 of them were 7.23. Even the test pass @ SMP on Wednesday was a 7.23. WOW. I was pretty confident after my win the night before & thought I was on another roll edging out my opponents in some close races the first 2 rounds. Then the 6th run came along where the car slowed .020 to a 7.25. My opponents light was better by .010 & that was the amount of my loss @ the finish line. I maintained my position in points which is a good thing. I am currently 5th in the Dragway 42 points standings with 6 more points races remaining.

 

There is no racing for us today @ SMP but there is @ Dragway 42 tomorrow. Unfortunately I will miss this race due to my vacation with the family. Sometimes it is worth missing racing. Not often but…….

Link to the Dragway 42 points standings (Mod Class)

Link to SMP Pro points standings

Weekly Update July 13th-15th: Winning!

What a weekend for Stevand Racing!

As everyone knows Matt made the long trip down to Bristol, Tennessee for the World Footbrake Challenge. (And if you didn’t know, you should check out Stevand Racing’s webpage more often) Matt double-entered Friday for the day and increase his chances at the big $10,000 purse. He would also get more practice at an unfamilliar track. He took some lumps and lost in the 2nd round with both entries, but gained valuble data.

On Saturday Steve rejoined the racing community with a points race at Summit Motorsports Park and Matt bought in for his second chance at the $10,000. Matt did much better by losing the 4th round in a huge 430 car field with drivers from all over the country.

Steve struggled in time trials after adjusting adjusting the shocks on his AMC Gremlin yet again. (If it sounds like Steve is never done tuning, it’s because he isn’t) The Gremlin picked way up in reaction time. In fact, the reaction time improved so drastically that Steve ended up -.019 red on both time runs. (That means that he ran better than his predicted time, which in bracket racing is not cool.) After tire pressure and button adjustments Steve smashed a solid first round win.  

With tons of luck and the right spot in line, Steve worked his way into the Winner’s Circle to post his first points race win of the year! It was an 8 round race which more than doubled his points total for the year! Saturday’s win vaulted Steve from 36th in yearly points to knocking on the door of the top ten! Never give up!

Sunday was Matt’s last chance to leave his mark at Thunder Valley. Steve was at Dragway 42, but he was glued to the text updates coming over his phone. Matt won the first roung. Then Matt won the second round. Then Steve got the text from Stevand Racing Co-Owner (and brother) Andy who was watching Matt live online at  www.1320go.com. Matt is down to 18 cars!

Matt had his next opponent covered on the starting line but could not cover the dial-in when his car slowed at the finish. It was a great accomplishment to get that far in a 430 car field of the best of the best.

Steve tried his new set up at Dragway 42 on Sunday, but lost in the 3rd round when my car slowed like Matt’s did at Bristol. Every pass was perfect until that one and we think Steve has his finger on a winning setup for the rest of the season.

This week Stevand Racing gets some time away. They are on thier way to a family home in the Hamptons (Long Island) to meet up with the whole family. There will be fishing, beaches, and some vacationing drivers celebrating a great weekend!

 

 

Testing, Testing, Is this thing on?

I made a decision last points race @ Dragway 42 to change some things drastically to help my car hook when track conditions are sub par. 42 re paved earlier this year & though the track is wicked smooth there seems to be an issue that is not working in my favor. I have never had an issue this bad & I tried all the small things with high hopes.

Last night I went to Summit Motorsports Park for their $7 fun night. I went to this a few weeks ago to see if an earlier problem was cured. This is an awesome night for anyone who would like to try their hand @ some racing. Even just for the experience of driving down a track where just a week before the NHRA professionals were going over 300mph. Just bring the old family sedan or SUV or even your Prius, pay $7 @ the gate & make runs all night long. There are 5 trophy classes to choose from including High School to get the younger (future) crowd involved.

This trip to SMP was going to be rather interesting. Any time you try radical changes things get exciting. They may work great or horribly wrong. Exciting! What I was trying to accomplish was to slow the car down for the first 60′ or so of the track. Sounds easy? Slowing a car down is just as hard as making them faster. For consistency reasons you cant just ease into it. You have to leave full bore. To stay within class rules I had 2 options. One was to Retard the timing to make the launch slower. Advancing timing makes a car go faster to a certain point & retarding will do the opposite. My ignition box has a feature where when activated will pull a predetermined amount of timing. I went to the max 9.9 degrees. I’m thinking it should leave like a mutt. 1st hit it goes a 1.44 6o’. that’s pretty much where it left off. A little disappointed but sometimes the electronic retards don’t seem to activate.  It was time for option 2. This was more of a mechanical approach. I normally shift the car @ 6500 rpm for optimum speed & consistency. This time I would try to make the car shift just after the staging beams so it would not affect my reaction times. I checked to see how many rpm it would take to shift just off the line, not too soon & not too late. The converter flashed to about 5200 rpm so I pit a 5800 rpm shift chip. That was way too high. Another 1.44 60′. It shifted after the 60′. Not where my problem was. My next & final pass I dropped the shift rpm down to 5200. Right where the converter locks up. Perfect! it shifted just after the stage beams. .007 reaction. The 60′ slowed to 1.76. It was good off the line, shifted perfect & it turned into the mutt I was looking for.

 

 

This weekend brings Kids Night @ SMP. This is a huge event to bring all the kids to. It keeps the whole family involved. There are games, give aways, & even race car fun rides for the kids. If you want to introduce the family to racing this would be the night to do it. After a long night @ SMP I will be back @ Dragway 42 to test out my new secret weapon. LOL. As always you are more than welcome to come & see us.

A Break From The Breaks

It may have taken a month or so but things finally started to click and fall into place. I’d have to say this is the first weekend out of the year that something hasn’t broke or fallen apart (or gotten run over) and that can turn into great results on the track when you have nothing else to worry about and a clear mind on racing.

Last weeks No Box Bonanza race was a great opportunity to get a lot of runs down the track at SMP. That helped out a lot this weekend. That and along with not having to thrash on something to get it fixed made it an enjoyable day at the track. The short recap of the night is I ended up getting down to 6 cars were I miss judge the finish line driving behind .004 but it was a good race overall so there’s nothing to be mad about there.

Sunday we are back at it at Dragway42, Still feeling good from last night’s performance I carried that with me all the way to the final round were I fell just short of the win for the day. It was no easy task either, with the pleasant 90 degree days we’ve been having the track was doing everything but hooking so with a lot of luck a little driving strategy I was able to make it to the final round.

With two good showings back to back I substantially helped myself in the point’s standings at both SMP and Dragway42. Witch was greatly needed because in another week and a half I will be making a trip down to Bristol Dragway in Bristol Tennessee and will miss a point’s race at SMP. I intentionally left my weekend recap a little short winded just so I could give a little pre-cap to this race.

The World Footbrake Challenge is the “if you are going to go to one big race a year it better be this one” type of deal. It’s a great race that’s held once a year by none other than Steve Stites and Jared Pennington, two great guys who have turned this race into something great for us budget type bracket racers who like to get out and travel a little bit to chase some bigger money. When I say bigger money I mean three days of racing to the tune of ten thousand dollars a day to the winner. Out of the past three years I’ve been there I have been lucky enough to make it down to ten cars two of those years, which always feels good amongst that type of competition. Another great feature about the race is they offer live timing, the day of the race you can go to www.1320go.com and watch all the action from the comfort of your home! You can’t beat that.

With that being said I hope to continue this little streak I’ve put together. I will be at Pittsburgh Raceway Park this weekend due to not having any point’s races at SMP or D42. I always have had good luck at PRP and really enjoy going there so let’s hope this weekend doesn’t let me down!

Weekly Update June 30th & July 1st. Things are Looking Up!

Weekly update, my pleasure. Things seemed to start aligning this past weekend. More for Matt than myself but I did take some big strides in my own way.

 I know I keep pounding you on the beautiful weather but it’s hard not to say anything with as bad as it has been the past few years. Just think, if it rains 2 weekends in a row that means no racing for a month! How many women out there would want to put up with a grumpy husband for a month? Sunshine makes life so much easier!

We arrived Saturday @ Summit Motorsports Park to greet the heat of the day. It’s is always a welcome sight pulling in & seeing all of your friends wave to you on the way in. It makes you feel like you have done something right in your life & it shuts off any adversities you may have had all week . Kind of like the memory erasing burnout.

 Matts car seems to have founds it’s happy spot in the world & when that happens you can just relax & let things happen. Matt did extremely well making it down to 6 cars gaining valuable points in the year long chase. This keeps him well in the hunt to finish towards the top.

I still had some electrical Camaros? (If a guy with a Camaro can say he has an electrical Gremlin than why can’t I reciprocate?) Even with a new alternator & good battery I still had cranking issues. To make it any further in the day I would have to find this once & for all! I started @ the battery & worked my way forward. It didn’t take me long to realize the car needs an update! I found a loose connection @ the starter solenoid that may have been the root of all evil up to this point. I went into eliminations with a good attitude but could not make it past 2nd round. A poor finish line decision ended my night early.

 

Sunday was our day @ Dragway 42 for the half way point of the season. My how time flies! It was an interesting day to say the least. Both Matt & I have our cars set up pretty close to one another. The bigger difference being mine has a 401 & Matts a 360. That difference seemed to be huge on Sunday. My car had pretty bad traction issues. That made the car extremely hard to predict & a little scary down track. Matts car on the other hand handled the challenging conditions rather well. That smaller motor seemed to be a good advantage on that day. Matt scored the Runner Up spot & gaining a good amount of points along the way. I lost 2nd round AGAIN! Notice a bad pattern here? I’ll be getting out of that habit here pretty soon.

 

This week I will make some drastic changes to help on the starting line when we have adverse conditions & have traction issues. Matt i’m sure isn’t going to open his trailer door till he has to race again. Don’t mess with perfection. The rest of the week has me possibly going to Thompson Raceway Park for their Independence Eve race & this Saturday I will either go to Quaker City Motorsports Park & make the trek to Pittspurgh Raceway Park & meet up with Matt. Matt took his rig with him to participate in Pittsburghs Saturday Program. There is no points for us @ Dragway 42 or Summit Motorsports Park this weekend. Summit has the Summit Racing Equipment Nationals to be held Thursday through Sunday.

Play it Again Sam…

I’m sure you have all read the weekly update & the most recent blog by Matt. For some reason the planets are misaligned & we can’t seem to get out of our own way this year.

My most recent issue was 2 separate dead batteries on the Gremlin this past weekend. A couple of years back I got a pretty good deal on 2 16 volt batteries, a charger & an alternator which is pretty awesome but how many people have 16 volt batteries laying around? Not too many as just about everything in the world other than your Prius maybe runs on 12 volts. With a few changes I was able to steal the battery out of AMX Dans motorhome & disconnect the 16 volt alternator & run like that for the rest of the weekend. My cheapest semi permanent repair is going to be to steal the battery out of the Javelin for now & purchase an alternator for the 12 volt system. It sure helps that Matt passes Summit Racing on his way to Ohio every weekend. It sure helps on those last minute parts runs.

I had a really fun time sitting in & getting to participate in the More Than a Fan podcast. It was definitely a learning experience. Josh & Ryan are pretty natural @ it. I was a bit nervous but it sounded pretty cool when I listened to it that night. We will be doing more podcasts together & will even do some from the track as well.

This weekend is going to be another hot one with temps above 90* in the forecast. Saturday we will be @ Summit Motorsports Park for the Mid Season Championship. This race will mark the half way point of the season @ SMP. There is a picnic for the racers & a bonus run off for King of the Track. The 4 class winners will run off for an NHRA “Wally”. The Wally is the coveted trophy given out for winning a NHRA natioal event. Kind of a big deal. The track will be full with some extra cars for the Oldsmobile race to be contested on Sunday. If your looking for something to do on a beautiful day head on out & come see us. Were @ the trailer with the www.morethanafan.net banner hanging up. If you can’t find that, look for a bunch of AMC’s parked together. for $15 you can watch racing all day & walk through the pits to see all the beautiful rides for no extra cost.

Sunday is another Summit Super Series points race. Matt & I are 5th & 6th in points. Not a bad place to be @ the half way point. Dragway 42 is a fun place to come to on a Sunday afternoon. It’s casual & there is some shade to beat the heat. The eliminations  @ 2:30 so you can still make it home for dinner. It’s about time for Matt & me to make a move on the points lead. We shall see?  

I also wanted to thank all of you for visiting our Blog & giving positive feedback. It has been a blast!

Weekly Update June 9th & 10th

Saturday 6/9

Since Summit Motorsports Park didn’t have a points event Saturday, the beginning of last weekend was slow for the Stevand boys.

Steve spent Friday night and Saturday morning out in Wooser, OH for the American Cancer Society Relay for Life fundraiser and car show. Last weekend was the first ever Relay car show in Wooster, and it kicked off a new ACS program called Road to Recovery. Special thanks to Alyssa Ferguson, who co-chaired the event, and all the other volunteers and organizers for putting in so much effort and hard work. Whatever you do, always take some time to give back. We all applaud Steve for taking the time to show off his AMC Gremlin for a good cause.

While Steve was off galavanting around Wooster, Matt was putting the finishing touches on his cam bearing fix to get the oil pressure in his AMC Spirit back to normal. After a morning of hard work, Matt shot out to Mt. Vernon, Ohio to Pacemaker’s Dragway to get a few passes in during their E.T. points session. The car was back to normal, and Matt did a great job adapting to the weather. When the track is hot and getting sun-baked, it’s very hard to keep rubber on the track. When there’s no rubber on the track, it’s very hard to keep the tires from spinning at the start.  Continue reading Weekly Update June 9th & 10th