Fernando Cuadra Jr., who is in his second season competing in NHRA’s Mello Yello Series class, is out indefinitely after injuring his back Sept. 1.
Fernando Cuadra Sr., Fernando’s father, said his son, who is 24, injured his back when he was moving an engine he was loading up in Boise, Idaho.
“Fernando (Jr.) hurt his back and (Sept. 2) he was having surgery in (Leon) Mexico,” Cuadra Sr. said. “The doctor said he needed to have surgery now because he might be paralyzed. The surgery went well and he’s good now. Instead of taking the 90 days to recuperate, he’s going to rehab for one year. The doctor said if he puts a lot of emphasis (into the rehab) by January or February of next year he can start doing a little bit of racing.”
Cuadra Jr. had competed in four events this season and was 14th in the points standings.
Fernando Sr. will be competing in the U.S. Nationals this weekend, driving Fernando Jr.’s Ford Mustang.
“I parked my green Mustang, and I’m driving Fernando Jr’s car with a Frank Iaconio Engine,” Cuadra Sr. “I have a good engine. I’m running (Fernando Jr.’s car) because that car is ready and running fast. My green (Mustang) just needs more laps.”
Cristian Cuadra, 21, Fernando’s younger brother, is driving the family’s orange Ford Mustang and Cristian’s car is running a Shane Gray motor.
“I was looking at this opportunity to get involved in Pro Stock and have my family be involved with me,” Cuadra Sr. said. “They love it. Both (Fernando Jr.) and Cristian have been driving better than me. I went to the finals twice last year and they are better than me. They are very consistent with shifting and they do their own clutch. They do their own back half and now they are servicing the engines.”
Cuadra Sr.’s third son, David is running in the Top Sportsman class.
“He’s running a huge 750-inch cubic engine, it is a real fast car,” Cuadra Sr. said. “It’s a goes 195 mph. David is going to the Division 4 race Sept. 17-18, in Dallas, and he’s going to get his Pro Stock license there. If everything goes well myself and my three sons will all be running Pro Stock next year.”
Cuadra Sr. is optimistic about what he can accomplish this weekend.
“The expectation is for me to qualify in the top eight,” he said. “I feel that I’m capable to drive the car good and I have the power. We are putting everything into (Friday’s) qualifying run. This is going to be our best qualifying session weather-wise.”
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