As the 2018 NMRA ARP Open Comp champion, Gordon Harlow has what it takes to be successful in the once fierce category.
He follows a formula, plus it includes making only minimal adjustments to his Mustang, setting it up to become as consistent as possible from the beginning line to the finish line, plus doing everything exactly the same with every single pass, from belting in plus burnouts to launches and lead-footing.
And while the particular Kentuckian wanted to wrap up another tournament last year, his mind was in the mother and close friend and NMRA racer Wade Trammell, who each passed away last summer. As a result, this individual found himself having trouble focusing plus putting together the tight packages which he traditionally puts together.
“The first race we all went to after my mom and Sort died was pretty difficult, ” said Harlow. “Wade was an excellent friend in addition to a fellow racer, plus they were definitely in the back of my brain pretty much throughout the race season. ”
Harlow nevertheless managed to pull off a fifth-place complete in NMRA ARP Open Compensation points in his Mustang motivated with a 351 cubic-inch small-block Ford which usually Bennett Racing Engines built in the past and Harlow and his friend have got maintained through the years. It features a good SVO block, AFR 205 minds and an Edelbrock intake, and yes it sips fuel from a Quick Energy carburetor. Harlow has a TCI Powerglide and converter behind his motor, and the combination helps him regularly cruise to high 9s plus low 10s.
As fall turned to winter, started preparing for the 2020 race time of year, and one of the tasks on his to-do list was to replace the 12 volts battery in his car with a 16-volt system from Rock Batteries.
“It helped obtain a little weight out of the car, plus since I don’t run an alternator, I needed more voltage, ” said Harlow.
When he was done, this individual headed to the first NMRA event from the year, the well-attended Nitto NMRA Spring Break Shootout, in early Mar at Bradenton Motorsports Park within Florida. He ripped off an. 011 reaction time to qualify in the 12th spot, and advanced to the 2nd round of eliminations with a ten. 00 dial. Then, at the twelfth Annual Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center NMRA/NMCA All-Star Nationals, which was to be kept in April at Atlanta Dragway but was delayed because of the Coronavirus outbreak and held in June on Atlanta Dragway, Harlow had an. 020 reaction time to qualify in the 10th spot, and advanced to the 3rd round of eliminations with a ten. 20 dial.
“The air was so good within Florida, but then so bad within Georgia, ” said Harlow, having a laugh. “I had to dial up to 10. 20, and I had to generate jetting and timing changes generally there to try to run the number. ”
Now, he’s keeping down the ninth-place in NMRA ARP Open Comp points heading in to the Nitto Tire NMRA/NMCA Super Dish presented by HPJ Performance, Come july 1st 30-Aug. 2 at World Wide Technologies Raceway in Madison, Illinois, in which he hopes to get past the tough competition and also to the Aerospace Components Winner’s Group
“There really are a lot of good racers in ARP Open Comp, and you can win or even lose by a few thousandths of the second, so I need to stay focused, ” said Harlow. “That’s what is going to assist the most. ”
(Photos thanks to NMRA)