Huge news from the world of Professional Drag Racing. Here at LM Racing, we believe this is a step in the right direction to evolve the sport although it will definetly bring costs up to all the teams.
The ADRL’s announcement that it will now allow electronic fuel injection (EFI) for its Extreme Pro Stock class starting in the 2012 season was certainly a big one, as it became the first sanctioning body to allow it in Pro Stock.
As expected, it also brought a variety of responses from a number of the top drivers in the class.
Cary Goforth, the 2011 world champion in the class, was one who supported the move and the potential it could have.
“I’m for it. I think the class needs it. The fact is we need to change and get with the 21st century. We have to get with the times,” Goforth said. “You’ve got to think about the good of the class, and I’m for this and think it’s an awesome move.”
Goforth went on to say that he expects the announcement to modernize the class, and he also expects the introduction of EFI in the Pro Stock class will be a hit with the fans.
Longtime Pro Stock driver Pete Berner, who won one ADRL event in 2011, also was on board with the decision.
“You’re going to have pros and cons, but if you don’t do anything, you’re not going to grow the sport. I’m excited about the technology involved with it. This class is supposed to be the most technological in the sport,” Berner said.
“It will have pluses and minuses as far as what you can do with them, but it’s pretty neat that we’re the first pro stock class to have them. We’ve been kind of around it for a while, and there’s no time like the present to put it together.”
There were some concerns, though, about the decision regarding a class that enjoyed its finest season in the ADRL in 2011.
The XPS fields had record fields throughout the season, drawing upwards of 25 cars at select events for the first time in its short history.
John Montecalvo, the 2010 XPS world champion, hopes that momentum doesn’t disappear after the announcement.
“I’m really concerned about the stability of the class,” Montecalvo said. “We’re asking people to spend a lot of money. I think we’re asking people to spend unnecessarily in a bad economy.
“As a class, we can’t price ourselves out of business. I’m concerned about the lower-funded teams. I want everyone to be able to compete in Pro Stock.”
It certainly won’t be cheap for teams to transition to EFI, and Montecalvo expects everyone will need to have it in order to stay competitive.
“It really isn’t an option. I know it’s going to be faster,” Montecalvo said. “If you’re going to compete in Pro Stock, you’re going to have to have it. I’m confident we’ll hit the ground running, but I’m just concerned about the stability of the class.”
Among those smaller-budget teams is Cale Aronson, who has previous experience with EFI.
More than seven years ago, Aronson used it to become the first person to win a national event in Outlaw 10.5 with a naturally-aspirated car.
Still, Aronson was wary of a ruling that will go into effect in March for the first race of the 2012 ADRL season.
“It is going to cost a ton of money just to be there next year,” Aronson said. “I do think it will make traction control harder to police. I can tell you right now that that there is very little to gain with EFI, at least with the technology we have available right now.
“I personally have no problem with it at all, other than it probably should have been a more thought out and discussed decision. It seems like it was a snap decision and it was not discussed with the teams ahead of time.”
Beyond that and the budgetary concerns heading into the 2012 season, Aronson did believe that it could help to continue to propel the class in the right direction.
“It is one of those things that needs to be done, just simply to stay with modern technology,” Aronson said. “It has its advantages and I believe it is going to be something you need to work on immediately to stay up with the curve.
“It should present some interesting opportunities again. We did well with it once; I think we can do it again.”
Goforth doesn’t expect a huge performance difference right off the bat, and Berner agreed with that sentiment.
But staying ahead of the curve is one aspect that stood out to Goforth and others. Being the first major drag racing association to allow it could be something the ADRL can use to its advantage and he thinks the XPS class will benefit because of that.
“I think anybody who wants to see the class move forward would be for it,” Goforth said.
“It’s a bold move, but we need to embrace it as a collective group.
“I’m sure glad the ADRL decided to do it. We need to blaze the trail and we can be the guys that can be leaders in this movement.”
Original Article from Competition Plus Magazine: http://competitionplus.com/drag-racing/news/19761-adrls-xps-racers-prepare-for-efi