He’s no Rickie Smith, but for James Day he doesn’t need to be when it comes to slaying the giants in nitro racing.
Sunday in Bakersfield, Day put on a clinic of how to parlay the underdog role into the winner’s circle. He used a well-crafted routine of starting line prowess to chalk up another win at the Good Vibrations March Meet behind the wheel of the Hertzig Motorsports AA/Fuel Altered entry. This time Dan Hix, a multi-time winner was his victim.
“There’s always a strategy involved, man,” Day said. “With this (6.0-second index in the Fuel Altered class), I’ve never done index racing before so I was asking questions on what to do and this and that and that car is fast. I knew he was going to come around me, so I did everything I could to not break out and get there first and it worked out.”
Just five years earlier, he pulled off a similar feat while driving Gary Turner’s Pedaler Funny Car, strapping a .15 holeshot on No. 1 qualifier Dan Horan.
It’s the super secret, knee-knocker technique that Day is quickly making famous. Just like he did to Horan and threw him off the game years back, Day pulled off the same feat – he deep-staged.
This time Day was almost .08 off of the line before Hix responded.
Day clocked a 6.227-second elapsed time at 228.85 mph to defeat a quicker Hix, who came in at 6.165-second at 206.92 mph. He reached the final round by beating Mark Whynaught, and Anthony Lee Whitfield.
Day now has pulled off an enviable feat of winning March Meet titles in two different classes.
“Those were my two favorite classes as a kid, Funny Car and Fuel Altered,” Day said. “It really has not quite sunk in quite yet that I did when this again, but for Bryan Hall and (Hertzig Motorsports) and all the guys, they believed in me and gave me a great race car and it is just completely incredible, I can’t believe we did it.”
— Competition Plus (@competitionplus) January 4, 2019