Going into to the end of the 2022 race season, the Moduline racing team had one goal in mind: to finish top 5 in NHRA points. We’re typically more active on the East coast, commonly competing in races from New Hampshire to Florida, but if we wanted to prove ourselves to be one of the fastest top alcohol funny cars in the world, we would need to attend more races across the country to earn enough points. There were 4 races in the upcoming weeks surrounding the SEMA show in Las Vegas where Moduline would be exhibiting our custom aluminum cabinets; the “Stampede of Speed” at the Texas Motorplex, two races at The Strip in Las Vegas and then the NHRA Finals in Pomona, CA. We were going in ranked 7th in the country and would need solid finishes in these races to achieve our goal. So many races in quick succession would be a lot of hard work and many nights away from home, but our crew was up to the challenge. We packed the car and plenty of replacement parts into our race trailer and began our 3,000 mile journey out west.
First stop on our trip was the annual “Stampede of Speed” held at the Texas Motorplex. This is a huge event that takes place over the course of 10 days. The schedule includes multiple days of racing across the whole range of different drag racing classes, including pro, factory and mod stock, nitro, top fuel, and top alcohol. Besides racing, they also host live music, fan meet-and-greets, cigar rolling, whiskey tasting and other activities so there’s always something exciting to do. When you arrive at the Motorplex you’re greeted by Billy the Bull and we couldn’t resist taking a photo.
Last year Texas Motorplex renovated their viewing suites and chose Moduline to supply aluminum cabinets. We worked together to create custom layouts that would enhance the look and usability of the suites and this trip we finally got to see the finished product in person. The Motorplex staff were super gracious and respectful and gave us top notch treatment all week, including a complementary suite with food and drinks. Overall we had a great experience and if you love racing you should do yourself a favor and visit.
One great thing about traveling around to different parts of the country is that we can show off our custom aluminum cabinets to more people. Our race trailer is fully equipped with Moduline storage cabinets, and we love inviting people in to see the quality for themselves. Everyone agrees that pictures can’t do them justice, you really need to feel the superior build quality by opening the doors and drawers equipped with our patented QuikDraw® latch system.
On Wednesday we attended the National Champion’s Dinner. The food and drinks were wonderful and we got to meet and take pictures with all the champions, but what we were looking forward to most was seeing our west coast friends again. The alcohol funny car community is extremely competitive, but also extremely tight-knit. People aren’t shy to share knowledge and you naturally become good friends with the competition. It’s a shame we aren’t able to meet up more often.
After the celebration we set our focus on the race ahead. The team worked hard to tune the car to the Texas weather and track conditions. We were proud to race under the Moduline logo playing on the big digital billboard and displayed all around the track. With some more points secured, we were one step closer to our top 5 goal and it was time to prepare for the final races of the year.
Next stop on our road to the NHRA Finals was Las Vegas, Nevada. With two races and the SEMA show happening all in the span of two weeks, we were fortunate to find some time to visit Fremont Street in downtown Las Vegas on a few of the nights. It was good to spend some time as a team away from the car and see what Vegas has to offer. We visited some restaurants and bars, enjoyed the live music and took in the sights while walking the strip.
The NHRA Nevada Nationals was the first race at the Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, followed by the LODRS D7 Regional the next week. Small variations in temperature, humidity and the surface of the track make huge differences in how you have to tune the car, and the Nevada air is much drier than we’re used to. At least the weather for the Vegas races was perfect; clear skies and low 70’s all trip. In a field of tough competition we ended with a semifinals finish in the National and a quarterfinals finish in the Regional, setting us up for that top 5 overall finish if we did well in the Finals to come.
We also visited the SEMA exhibition going on at the same time. At the show our driver, Matt Gill, was interviewed by Fox for NHRA, which you can check out here. Moduline Cabinets always brings a display to SEMA to give people a chance to get their hands on our cabinets and experience the quality firsthand. This year we brought three ProII Series cabinet setups, a heavy duty QuikDraw® rolling toolbox and a standalone wash station. The new colors, including a textured dark gray, called “Gray Haze”, and a black anodize frame finish option were big hits with the crowd. Be sure to stop by if you’re going to be at SEMA next year! And if you’re interested in learning more about ProII Series cabinets by Moduline, click here.
Heading into the finals, the weather at Auto Club Raceway in Pomona was as bad as the weather at Vegas had been good. For two whole days we sat in the truck, stuck in torrential rain, waiting to park our race rig and start working on setting up and servicing the car. The rain was surely welcome to a California parched by drought, but cooped up and sitting in line for days, we couldn’t wait for it to end. Eventually the weather cleared and the staff at the Auto Club Raceway set to drying out the track and preparing it race.
This was the final race of the season and we were competing with the best cars in the country. We got to catch up with our friends, Tom Fox and Tom Fox Jr., another father and son race team who have been drag racing for decades, and take them out for dinner. We can’t say enough good things about the drag racing community, they really are some of the best people you’ll ever meet.
All during the trip people kept asking us to measure up their trailers for custom cabinets. Racers know the best way to setup a trailer and Paul Gill and son Mathew Gill have years of combined expert experience when designing cabinet layouts for race trailers. Our ProII™ Mobile series cabinets are lightweight yet heavy duty and we can customize them to solve specific storage challenges, like for odd-size or heavy equipment.
At the race we ultimately made it to the semifinal round losing to the current and previous world champions, which felt great considering the caliber of teams we had to beat out to get that far. Our hard work paid off and we ran one of our season best ET’s of 5.44 seconds, giving us enough points to finish the season in 5th place overall in the country!
After living out of a camper for 3 weeks and putting in long days of hard work, we decided to treat ourselves to a much needed night at a comfortable hotel and a celebratory dinner out with the team. Before leaving we visited the NHRA Motorsports Museum in Pomona. With our race season at an end it felt fitting to reflect on where it all began. It had been an amazing trip filled with challenges and triumphs, but we were all glad to pull out onto Route 160 East, headed toward home.