This past weekend I attended Rich Christensens “Arm Drop Live” event at No Problem Raceway Park. Rich is the star, and starter, for the Speed Channels “Pinks All Out” events. At first take I did not want to attend, but several of my frie
The format is strange, but after reading the rules of the event, I got kind of interested (plus, you cannot lose your ride). They limited entries to 450 cars. This limit allows them to pick 128 cars that will race for $1000 for eight 16 car fields, plus a Quick-8 field. The field was to be picked from the time trial cars that ran on Friday and Sat. morning. The finals were to start on Sat. after the qualifying and selection of the 128 car field plus the one Quick-8 field. That comes out to 136 total positions out to the 450 entries. The reminding cars were entered in a regular bracket race.
Arm-Drop, means just that. No Christmas Tree. The host, Rich, is on a tall platform and he signals the start of each race like the old time drag races use to start (of present day street racing). He is also wearing a microphone and narrates each race. The No Problem speaker system is excellent and you could hear Rich all over the track.
So far this is not too much to be excited about. The fun starts when you find out that cars in the Arm-Drop event are not allowed to return to their pits between races, but must come directly back to the starting line, passing in front of the grandstands, to “hot lap” for the next race! They are allowed to bring gas and air to the front of the staging lanes and the track provided a generator to help get cars started.
From the standpoint of the drivers and cars, it is brutal. But from the fans point of view, it is great! Many of you that know me, know that I am the worse drag race spectator in the world. If I am not running my car, or taking photos, drag racing does not hold my attention. Not so for the Arm-Drop event! I enjoyed every second. The action is non-stop and because the cars come back so quick, as a spectator, you can keep up with who is who and who won what very easy. This is heads-up, no handicap racing. Cars, motorcycles, pro-mod’s and dragsters.
When they come back, I will be in the stands or have a car in the field (with a big radiator), so I can enjoy the action.
I would get into the qualifying and how the cars got picked, but I did not have a chance to attend the early morning time trials where the cars qualified. I think it is sort of discretionary, aided by the time slips, and in the hands of the host who runs the show. They try to get the 128 most competitive cars bunched around a certain number, such a 8.00, 8.50, 9.00 sec. and 10.00 sec. If you run much under your time slip qualifying time, you are kicked out. As I said, there were eight (8) sixteen car fields plus the Quick-8. That left over 300 cars for the bracket race. Arm-Drop Live was one Super Event! They should change the name to, “Arm-Drop, Hot-Lap!”
“Pinks” will be at No Problem Raceway Park, Belle Rose, LA on Feb, 27-28, 2009.