UNDER BRIGHT LIGHTS ON A MASSIVE STAGE , HYDE PROVED THAT HE HAS WHAT IT TAKES TO COMPETE AGAINST THE BEST DRIVERS , CARS , AND TEAMS THAT PRO MOD HAS TO OFFER .
Billes ’ screw-blown ’ 69 Camaro for the second round , where things took a turn in the right direction for Hyde . “ I ’ ve raced Eric lots of times at home up in Canada , and I kind of know his starting line procedure . He had a little nap on the starting line there , and I caught a good one and drove around him . He outran us – he went . 699 to our . 719 , and the momentum started there , I guess ,” says Hyde , who had a . 035 light to Latino ’ s . 120 .
Another holeshot win followed in the third
THOUGH HE WAS A LONG WAY FROM HOME , HYDE WAS SURROUNDED BY FAMILY AND FRIENDS THROUGHOUT THE WEEKEND . HIS SIDE OF THE STARTING LINE ERUPTED IN CHEERS AND HAPPY TEARS WHEN HYDE ’ S WIN LIGHT TURNED ON IN THE FINAL ROUND . round , as Hyde left on Marcus “ The Axman ” Birt , who was tapped to fill in for Jose Gonzalez in his ProCharged Q80 Racing / El General Racing ’ 69 Camaro at the last minute .
“ That was probably the most nerve-racking round ,” Hyde says . “ I knew that car was fast . They qualified No . 2 and Marcus was really good on the tree . Thankfully he missed it a bit and I caught a good one and we were within a hundredth of them and got a holeshot win there .”
A third consecutive holeshot in the semifinals against Jason “ Party Time ” Harris sent Hyde into the final round . Harris , who was . 009 , . 022 , and . 022 off the line in prior rounds , slowed to a . 070 reaction time , allowing Hyde to stay ahead of his 3.646 with a 3.655 .
“ That car was flying too – they qualified No . 3 and it was printing 3.64 slips all weekend and he ’ s good on the tree ,” Hyde says . “ So it was just
another one , I caught it . 011 and it was enough to get around him .”
There was a buzz in the staging lanes as Hyde ’ s team and Kurt Steding ’ s Todd Tutterow-led P2 Contracting team made last-minute changes and helped their drivers prepare for one final run for all the marbles .
“ Honestly , I wasn ’ t nervous for the final at all ,” Hyde asserts . “ Everything felt like it was going our way . But whenever you ’ re running against Todd ’ s stuff , you know they ’ re going to run good . We went a . 65 in E4 , and so did Steding , and we got them by a couple thou . We had lane choice , and I said to Mark , ‘ We ’ re going to have to tune this thing up . Todd ’ s not going to go out there without swinging .’”
Both Hyde and Savage stepped up for the task at hand . Steding was first off the starting line with a . 033 light , but Hyde wasn ’ t far behind
100 | Drag Illustrated | DragIllustrated . com Issue 182