Drag Illustrated Issue 169, June/July 2021 - Page 82

Five star drivers in Mountain Motor Pro Stock weigh in on the state of the class
DRAG ILLUSTRATED ROUNDTABLE

JOHNNY PLUCHINO

JR CARR

JUSTIN KIRK

JOHN MONTECALVO

CHRIS POWERS

Five star drivers in Mountain Motor Pro Stock weigh in on the state of the class
BY NATE VAN WAGNEN
PHOTOGRAPHS BY COLE ROKOSKY , JAMES SISK AND TARA BOWKER
OR AT LEAST the last 15 years or so , Mountain Motor Pro Stock has been in a state of flux . It ’ s bounced around from sanctioning body to sanctioning body , from quarter-mile competition to eighth-mile racing , from a nationally touring class to one with segments in different regions of the U . S .
Unlike its 500-cubic-inch cousin , NHRA Pro Stock , the mountain motor brand of Pro Stock has remained fairly consistent in technology and performance , though . A somewhat unspoken gentleman ’ s agreement among the teams and engine builders has kept the class at a relatively affordable competition level . Engine development is kept to a minimum , with cubic inches ranging from 822 to 843 depending on the block type . Electronic fuel injection is allowed , though carburetors remain the class standard . Eighth-mile performances that were earth-shattering in the early 2010s remain on the list of the top 10 quickest passes in Mountain Motor Pro Stock history in 2021 .
The class is in an interesting spot going into
the summer months of the 2021 season . The class has three different options to consider when it comes time to load up and head out to a race . The PDRA has offered Extreme Pro Stock as a class for all but one year since the all-eighthmile organization formed in 2014 . It ’ s served as a stable home for Mountain Motor Pro Stock racers , though the return of Kenny Nowling ’ s ADRL last year and the NHRA ’ s introduction of MMPS as an exhibition class in 2019 have divided the class again .
Fortunately , Mountain Motor Pro Stock drivers and teams are fiercely passionate about their class and its future . Teams have been known to field second cars at races to ensure a decent field , and drivers like John Montecalvo have even sent fill-in drivers to races they ’ re unable to personally attend .
Mountain Motor Pro Stock racers are an opinionated bunch , and they ’ re often quick to voice their opinions . Some opinions are polarizing , while others are shared across the class . For this
Drag IllustrateD Roundtable , we spoke with five different Mountain Motor Pro Stock drivers with varying backgrounds to get their thoughts on the state of the class .
After 2016 PDRA Extreme Pro Stock world champion John Pluchino decided to step away from driving in 2019 , his son , JOHNNY PLUCHINO , picked up right where he left off . He won an NHRA exhibition race at Indy and a handful of PDRA events before winning the 2020 PDRA Extreme Pro Stock world championship in his first full season in the class . He ’ s also a two-time PDRA Pro Outlaw 632 world champion .
JR CARR is a veteran of the class , though he also has experience racing NHRA Pro Stock . In 2020 , Carr and tuner Frank Gugliotta debuted a brandnew car that Carr promptly drove to his first two PDRA victories . He also broke the 6.10-second barrier in quarter-mile competition , recording a 6.179 at 228.23 MPH at the NHRA Midwest Nationals in St . Louis . The Washington native advocates for the class through the Mountain Motor Pro Stock Association , a group of racers that represents the class in dealings with NHRA .
As a third-generation driver , JUSTIN KIRK has known Pro Stock his whole life . Following in the footsteps of his grandfather , hall of famer Carl
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