KJ Jones Senior Technical Editor
January 1, 2008
Photos By: Paul Rosner, KJ Jones

Real Street
When speed is the force that's needed, Bruce Hemminger seems to always find a way to coax massive mile an hour with nitrous from his '86 Real Street coupe. Once again, his muscle (9.84/139.21 in the final) somehow overcame a huge holeshot by Tim Matherly (0.026 to Bruce's 0.080 at the Tree), and outlegged the supercharged competitor to the stripe. "We just try to be consistent with everything we do," says Bruce, citing his between-rounds maintenance routine as one of the keys to his success. "[My girlfriend] Deb has caught on quickly and has been a tremendous help. I've learned from Billy [Glidden] that you have to do the same thing every single time. By repetition, we've just gotten better and better at it. Hopefully it will all pay off with a championship this year."

After establishing yet another new Real Street e.t. record during qualifying and a points-lead-padding, top-qualifier spot with a super-quick (given the limited drivetrain/ power-adder combination, spec fuel, and weight package) 9.795, Tim Matherly spent his 20th wedding anniversary (happy anniversary, Mrs. Matherly) removing the Two-Valve bullet from his 'Stang at the request of NMRA's tech lord, Thom Bates. The engine proved to be compliant with rules and regs for the class, and Tim went on to finish Second in the final against Bruce Hemminger on Sunday in a race that was actually their second final of the weekend. The two also battled for a $2,000 bonus in the Nitto Tire Real Street Shootout.

While Jim Breese escaped qualifying without sustaining any engine damage-a feat he seemed pleased about when we spoke with him on Saturday night-the destruction bell rang for his '04 Mustang's supercharged 4.6 in eliminations. We didn't get the specifics on what went wrong, but Jim's 123.4-mph speed in his runoff against teammate Tim Matherly in round two is a sure sign that the engine is coming out before Columbus.

Mike Washington's Capri is finally showing signs of improvement after a slow start this season. He posted his first 9-second Real Street e.t. (9.91) during qualifying and proved it was no fluke in round two by lighting the scoreboard with a 9.96 in a losing effort against class winner Bruce Hemminger.

Although Don Bosley's '89 coupe left the line hard, a late light (0.122) dashed his hope of keeping up with Bruce Hemminger's old-school trunk in round one.