Tom Caldwell/Old Guys Do Rule Racing takes the AHDRA Pro Stock Championship
October 31, 2012
Tom Caldwell wins the 2012 AHDRA Pro Stock Championship at the AHDRA Cajun Nationals at Belle Rose, Louisiana. It was a weird weekend as hurricane Sandy drove the temperatures down to the 30's at night and mid 60's during the days with gusting 20 mph cross winds. But despite the weather, Caldwell qualified #1 with a 8.004 at 162.72 mph, and ran two more 8.0's in qualifying. The air was at or below sea level but, the track was cold and Caldwell spun through 4th and 5th gear.
The conditions were right to go for the record. But it was not to be. Dana Eckhardt, my crew member asked me why; I kept making changes and not satisfied with the 8.00's? We are never satisfied and want more! That is the challenge of it! Searching, tuning, tweaking, and thrashing, etc.... If you want it YOU GO GIT IT!
We had a good trip down to the bayou, and met my cousin Cindy and husband Mel at Metairie, LA and went to Drago's for supper and had 2 dozen of Barbequed Oysters, plus the entree. MMMMMMMMMMMMMM, good! We spent the night with them and really enjoyed their hospitality. They joined us Sunday at the track and Dana and I wore shirts honoring Chelsea, Cindy's daughter, who they lost recently. This win is dedicated to Chelsea's memory.
Another of my cousins, Jeff, whom I haven't seen since we were very young attended, plus several of their family friends. Thank you, Cindy and Mel. I will be BACK!
I tested Friday evening in the 90 degree heat. I knew it would be different the next day as the approaching cold air was pushing the warm out to sea. I ran a 8.10 the first shot Friday evening, and made two more hits that did not improve. We broke down the setup and went to Hyman's Restaurant, north of the old muddy levy and had a fantastic meal.
Saturday was COLD as the Well Diggers, you know what! Man, what a drop! The first hit in qualifying it ran a 8.004 @ 162.72 and she was still pulling. Chopped the throttle and tried to coast to the end of the track. I almost made it as the track is some 4,000 feet long! I had to push for say, 20 feet. It is nice to not have to be concerned about stopping. We had 4 qualifying opportunities due to this being the final race of the year. I ran a 8.004, 8.04, 8.08, and a 8.18 finishing the day. Sunday, we set up, and did the #1 qualifiers' presentation and as the National Anthem finished; the sound and aroma of NITRO filled the air! Man that gives me cold chills!
Our time came to run, I got the bye run and the transmission went into 3rd and jumped out. That was my Lucky Dog award for the day, and I knew it would be my last. In the first round, OJ Marinelli ran a 8.10 against Bill Doherty and that was impressive. We went back to the pits and I adjusted the shifting mechanism and checked for metal in the trans. Went back out on an Exhibition pass during the second round and it shifted fine. I stop and find oil on my right leg? Get back to the pits and now find a crack in my billet cam cover?
I was weighing my options as to what to do. I checked the RacePak data and I had ample oil pressure at the end of the last pass. So, it was GO FOR IT or NOT! What do you think was the answer? We did not work all year to throw in the towel. I knew the OLD MAN had to step up and do the job. The motor sounded fine, I staged and the lights flashed and I threw the clutch and as I went by the tree, I looked down to make sure no RED was glowing. She sounded great and I had cut a .024 light and did not hear OJ on my left. The OLD MAN STILL HAS IT! Man there is NOTHING like winning!
2012 Results to date:
AHDRA Pro Stock Championship
Best E.T. of 7.967 @ 163 MPH
Again, I have to thank Robert Minge for his paying for the truck fuel, to make the trip!!!!!!!
HARRY’S DIVE SHOP, METAIRIE, LA
Oh, we brought 40 lbs. of fresh shrimp back with us, right off the boat Monday. OOOOOOOOOOOWEEEEEEEE!!!!!! Some good eating
From: Mary Lou Brewton