True Street competitor Randy Seward, who staked his claim as drag racing’s Ironman a year ago when he drove his 8-second Ford Mustang from his home in New Mexico to the NMRA season opener in Bradenton, Fla., (an epic 4,000 mile round-trip) has hit the road once again for the Sunshine State with his trusty twin-turbo steed. This time, however, the trip will be a much shorter one, given his new departure point in Tennessee, which puts the trip to Bradenton at around 12 hours each way (around 800 miles). Seward, along his girlfriend, Donna, who is following him down to Florida in another vehicle, have been providing us with photos and updates on their adventure thus far, and both Dragzine and it’s sister site, StangTV, will be bringing you on-track updates from the NMRA opener next weekend. Below are some updates and photos with commentary from Donna on this week’s adventure:
6:02 a.m.: Leaving now! Snow and icy conditions. Oh well, Randy's done this before.
8:45 a.m.: Top of Monteagle. Plenty of snow and icy mix coming down on the other side too - Jasper area.
Not far from the Georgia line. Getting breakfast at the Waffle House. Skies are clearing!
10:53 a.m.: Almost to Atlanta. Still snowing and just above freezing with 20-25 mph winds.
12:50 a.m.: South of Macon and the temperature is 38 degrees. We are ready to be in some Florida heat! Good trip, traffic has been minimal.
3:04 p.m.: Over halfway to Mom's in Orlando. Sun is out! Valdosta in 25 miles.
3:45 p.m.: Made it to the Florida line! Still blustery cold!
7:47 p.m.: We have arrived and unloaded. A whopping heat wave of 47 degrees!
Wednesday: Randy prepping for his photo-ops.
Wednesday: We are here! Just waiting for them to open the gates so the FUN can crank into high gear.
Wednesday: Ready to run her.
In testing at Orlando Speedworld, Randy made some adjustments and ran a best of 9.06 with the boost dialed back as he got tuned up for the weekend ahead at Bradenton. In the morning, it’s off to the track!
Thursday: We are here! Left Mom's at 6:29 a.m. First in line for the gate opening, so we thought. It turns out, it was the wrong gate. No. 100 in in line, but they plan to open soon. Beautiful sunshine with cold, brisk winds and 52 degrees this morning.
Thursday: Randy goofing off after check-in. The temperature is warming up nicely and lots of beautiful race cars are rolling in, too.
Thursday: Chilling and the resting the knees while the track is cleaned after a Mustang dumped his transmission fluid the length of the strip. Randy had just suited up for his first run.
Thursday: Excellent first run! 8.81 at 156 with more boost to come later.
Friday: Gorgeous day to go racing! Test-n-tune has begun, and Randy ran 8.58 at 160 mph. He is feeling great!
Randy made a strong second hit during the test-and-tune session, improving his time to an 8.58.
Randy Seward found a split silicone connector after his last hit and was able to fix it in time for the last True Street time trial. His 8.44 this afternoon is his best pass to date this weekend.
One of Randy's passes from today - he was the most consistent of anyone on the track.
Randy won the True Street portion of the event with an awesome 8.674 average over three passes. Cal Heyward was quicker through two runs but blew the tires off on the third pass, opening the door for Randy to take home the win.
When we caught up with Randy after the True Street portion of the event was completed, he was changing out the spark plugs, as he hadn't changed them since Drag Week (!) last year. One plug boot looked slightly burnt but after further inspection it was just the heat sleeving on top of the wire. He'll be ready to go for the Shootout portion of the event in the morning.
Check out Mr. Awesome! Not only did he drive the car all the way here from Tennessee, he won the True Street event yesterday and turned around to take out Mike Jovanis in the final round of the Spring Break Shootout today. After three runner-up finishes in this event in a row, Randy is the man this weekend. He's planning on making the trek home tonight and will be sending in some more photos from his drive. He told us he needs to be back by tomorrow afternoon - a true marathon man. Congratulations on your great showing this weekend, Randy!