If you’ve been paying attention to the X275 wars over the last couple of seasons, you may have heard “nitrous cars don’t have a chance” and other such sayings. We’re here to tell you that the sentiment is untrue, as evidenced by Ron Rhodes’ insane 4.65 blast at nearly 152 MPH on March 30th in X275 at Maryland International Raceway. Big deal you say, right? Well, it is a big deal, especially once you hear some of the back story on the car and the combination.
Rhodes, who runs the ’68 Camaro out of his Rhodes Custom Auto shop in Delaware, explains, “We changed a couple of things recently, and I’ve been really learning on the progressive nitrous system. I went from two small systems to one big system and got rid of the timers, and we’ve been learning since then.” The nitrous system change alone would set many racers back a whole season or more as the testing time to figure the car out can be a killer.
Rhodes, though, has a great handle on how things need to be done. “It’s got a great BES engine from Tony Bischoff in it with Ross Pistons and All Pro 245 23-degree heads, with an Induction Solutions nitrous system and NLR Systems nitrous controller. Santhuff shocks are on the car, and Ron from Santhuff has been a big help to my program. We’ve worked together to design a shock valving for these small tire cars, especially on the rear for the leaf spring cars. That’s really helped my program in the last few years. The guys at TRZ Motorsports have been always been great to me, along with Hutch from Hutch Trans up in Canada.”
When asked why he sticks with the leaf spring setup in the car, he laughed, “I like being the oddball, man. It’s not the norm, and I really just like being the underdog, if you will. We’ve finally got it down. The leaf spring cars have really come along in the last few years, and John Calvert from Calvert Racing Suspensions has been a huge help to figuring it out. The best 60-foot so far has been a 1.121, and the car does that consistently. Who would have ever thought?”
Ronny, his son, does a great job of performing crew chief duties, and Ron says he wouldn’t be where he is without the legion of friends that show up to the track to assist him. X275 – be on the lookout for this East Coast machine.