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Of all the Saturday night race tracks on the SRL tour, El Cajon ranks
as one of the best. The track is a racy 3/8 mile and the fans show up in force
when the Supers come to town.
The humid 100 degree
day had the teams scrambling for shade and the right set-up. Track publicist
Bob Gardner took a lot of good natured kidding about the weather conditions
from Troy and others.
qualified second, behind USAC sprint car star, Michael Lewis.
his heat race, Troy came from the back to win, going away. As the sun was
going down, waiting to be pushed off for the heat race, Troy was deep in his
thoughts, helmet on, ear plugs in, visor down. Then, all of a sudden, an all
encompassing other worldly voice started calling his name. “TROY, OH TROY” the voice boomed, and broke the silence of his
pre race concentration. The voice from beyond continued, “TROY IS THE WEATHER BETTER FOR
was Bob Gardner on the powerful PA system getting him back for his digs about
the temperature. This was obliviously not Bob’s first trip to the zoo when
it came to track side hijinks!
the main event, Troy started 7th and by lap 25, he had made his way
to 2nd. Michael Lewis, attempting what he said was a daring pass on
the outside in turn 2, was shocked to see the “baby blue dust bunny” (The
98’s new name after the Chaparral race) come around outside of him. At an
after race party, Michael told a gathering of crew and fans, “He drives that
thing like a slot car... how does he do that...? He really took me to school
last 15 laps were difficult for the #98. The car developed a push (tight
condition) that made the task of catching the #7 of AJ Russell impossible. The
two went neck and neck, thrilling the crowd, but Troy could not get around
crew chief Louie Gennuso’s perfect set-up on rookie Russell’s Super and
After the race, the
pits were packed with electrified fans. The most serious of American hot rods,
the Supermodified, had left a memory of “wickedly fast” ground shaking
racing for the Southern California fans to talk about for another year.