NATA Skylines, December 2015

Reno By A Nose

by Dennis Buehn

Since I started back T-6 racing in 2005 I’ve always dreamed of ‘Six Cat’ (Nick Macy) and myself in #43 going tip-to-tip for a whole race when we are both running at our best.  Well, I qualified 3rd (a bad weather day pick :(  ), so our work was cut out for us in the two heat races before Sundays main event.

During the practice sessions the clocks showed us a few seconds better than ‘Radial Velocity’ #88 (John Lomar), and the ‘Six Cat’ team, hum…….well we managed to pass #88 in the first few laps of the starting heat race….whew…..was not so hard.

Well, one more heat race and another pass and #43 will be on the pole for Sunday’s Gold main. With this one more Gold win we will be tied with my racing ‘brother’ Nick and the Six Cat team. We are both racing to beat ‘Fast Eddies’ #27 Miss TNT’s 7 wins. Saturday’s race line up puts ‘Six Cat’ on the pole with me next to him and for the next 20 minutes all I see is the black ‘Six Cat’ on my left wing with Nick doing his best ever race line, you can depend on that. Our heat race starts and he beats me the first lap by 10-15’ at home pylon! What happened to all our speed? On the next lap I fly a tighter course, on his predictable great line, he is one tough guy to pass, and I only beat him by a few feet and its only lap 2!

We stay in our race lanes, because I didn’t have him by enough distance to call for a pass. How is this going to work out? On the very next lap he takes the lead back from me at the home pylon again….darn I better get with the game, or make some adjustments. This is that race I’ve dreamed about and it is the best, but it’s turned out to be a lot harder than in the dream and I have very little left to spare, Midnight Miss is running all out. Is there just a little more in her with only a lap to go? I squeeze the prop to the limit and adjust the mixture and the ‘Miss’ gives me just a tiny bit more speed, but will it be enough? Is it too late?

The lead has changed back and forth the last few laps as Nick just out fly’s me. He is the man I love to fly with, and trust totally. We are on our final lap now and the white flag is waving, so it’s now or never. We are on the back stretch and I’m pulling ahead so I call “43 has the lead” and he says “not yet”, which I acknowledge, so we’re going to have to fly tip-to-tip for the checkered flag. As we close in for home pylon, it’s maybe only the length of my cowling ahead of him!!!! our speeds at the finish were #43 @ 235.314mph and #6 @ 235.174mph I figured I was only 7-10’ ahead of him at the finish line! My previous heat race with Nick I lost to his speed of 234.149mph to my 234.012mph.

That’s Reno racing at its best. We’ve earned the pole position for Sunday’s Gold race and kept it to win. during that race ‘Baron’s Revenge’ (Chris Rushing #14) flew past the 5 racers behind me and passed Nick at the finish line by 1/10 of a mph. Chris has found the speed, so we’ll see what happens next year….should be interesting. “You all come back for some good T-6 close racing at Reno.”

Photos courtesy of Dennis BuehnRacing T-6 News Update

Eric Woelbing has purchased #27 seven time gold champion ‘Miss TNT and will be racing her at Reno in 2016. also, ‘Lickety Split’ #9 has been purchased by John King, owner of #94 ‘Midnight Express’, and will be campaigning it at Reno next year as well.

Reno Dates are September 14-18 2016

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