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Jan 13, 2010

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Zappy Does the Winternationals Golf Cart Drags

By Zappy

Zappy and Daryl, AKA 23T.

OK, GANG. WARNING: This will be long because there’s LOTS to tell. So you can skip, or get a cold drink and enjoy.

First off, the cart was beautiful in person. Daryl, AKA 23T, turned me loose as if it was mine. So I started makin' time trials.

The blue Mercedes was super consistent with time trial ETs of: 6.68-6.63-6.66-6.65-6.66-6.65. So my crew chief (PJ) and I thru out the .68 & .63. We dialed a 6.65.

Now before Round 1, they had a practice tree contest. So I entered the 16 driver field. Well to keep it short... I was runner up.  I won a Jegs hat.

Next they had a “DIAL IN” contest on the strip. With the CCM Mercedes deadly consistent, YUP I entered. Now all thru time trials, I couldn’t get off the line. Linda wanted to put a hand grenade in my back pocket! PJ, my CC, said he was gonna use a sundial to record my reaction times.

The rules were that it didn't matter who won the race, and red lights didn’t matter, it was just closest to the dial without breaking out. One shot only.

Well the .374 reaction time (RT) was terrible, BUT the cart saved me with a stunning 6.66 on a 6.65 dial. I took first place, won $50 bucks.

Zappy on a hard launch!

OK, time for first round. We stuck with the .65 dial. The opponent had a .157 RT, enough to kill my .364 RT, but no matter -- I broke out at 6.645 on our 6.65.

After they finished Round 1, they let us buy back in. So I did. There were an odd number of buy-backs, so when they ran us they picked car numbers and I got the bye.  

On the bye run, I pulled a better, but still stinky .197 RT, and a 6.73 ET on a 6.64 dial. WHOA, where did the .73 come from???

OK. PJ & I though it was just a fluke; we kept the 6.64 dial for the next round.

BIG mistake: we went 6.73 AGAIN, on our 6.64 dial. Thank goodness the driver finally did his job. My .024 RT nailed his .182 RT so he broke out trying to catch me. I won, so on to the next round.

Zappy crosses the finish line!

By now the back to back 6.73's had us worried. We couldn’t figure where a tenth went??? Then it hit me... I had changed the routine. I have to back up now for this to make sense. Early in the day, I could see the announcer was a funny guy. I knew we were gonna play off each other. After I put on the "FLAME SUIT" he knew he could have fun with me. As I was about to make one of our time trials, he said to me, "YOU KNOW, WHAT WE NEED HERE IS SOME BACK-UP GIRLS."

I said, "YOU WANT BACK-UP GIRLS??? I'LL GET YOU BACK-UP GIRLS." (He thought I was kiddin'.) Little did he know, I had Lady Linda in the stands, and I just happen to have her “NITRO NUPS" blue flame top to match my suit. Well after a quick change, Linda & I pull thru the lanes and as we made the turn to go to the line he saw us. Well the announcer as well as everyone on the starting line was crackin’ up. And we went one better. Linda did a GREAT Austin Coil. I did a cross the line burn out and she backed me up. Complete with the TWO taps on the driver fender, then pointed at me thru the windshield. Well the whole place went nuts.

Folks were screamin' JUNGLE ZAP, but the announcer dubbed her "AUSTIN COILETTE." All she needed was a toothpick.

The view from the stands.

OK, back to the rounds. It was when we started doin' the dry-hops and backing up, that we lost the tenth. We decided to keep Linda & the dry-hop & back up thing goin', so we changed our dial to a 6.71. (After the 6.732 & 6.733).

It worked, another ROUND WIN with a so-so .096 RT. She ran a 6.72 on a 6.71. YES -- WE'RE BACK. 

The downtrack view from the starting line.

Now with all the excitement I didn’t realize how far we went. After the wins, I go back thru the lanes and the starter comes over to tell us we were the SEMI FINALISTS. If we lose, park in the pit and walk up to the line and get yer $50. COOL. If we win, come right back up for the final. 23T also had been killin' 'em and was one of the final four.

Ok, semi final run: with runs of .73 - .73 - .72, I felt safe with the .71 dial. So we left it. I was sure that unless I red lighted, there was NO way that guy was gonna beat the Mercedes. Well he ran a 7.94 on a 7.89 dial, 6 over, I should have had him... but alas, I broke out with a 6.706 on a 6.71. Yes it was THAT close -- I was 4 hundredths too quick. It was that close to being an ALL CCM final.

Daryl Arnold, winner of the Ohio Golf Cart Winternationals!

I had two goals for the day: (1) to represent CCM well, and (2) to have a great time and give some laughs. Well, unknown to 23T, I had two bottles of (fake) Champagne chillin' all day in the van. While they were takin' pics on the line of the WINNER 23T & the runner up, Linda got the bubbly out, Tony was passing out glasses to everyone. (AGAIN) they were laughing, "LOOK ZAPPY'S GOT CELEBRATORY CHAMPAGNE." The lady on the starting line thanked me for coming. She said I was just what they were lookin' for. Oops -- almost forgot. I also won long distance driver award... another $50.

It was one of the VERY BEST days I've ever had at the strip. A very heart felt thank you to 23T for makin' it happen.

A SPECIAL THANKS to my crew. I had my MICHIGAN MAFIA with me. PJ - crew chief, Tony Two Pockets, and Chris the Enforcer. My three sons. Thank you, Lady Linda AKA (Austin Coilette), 4 puttin' up with me. LOVE YA BABE.

Much more to tell, but it’s TOO long already.

Chassis - 91 Ezgo
Motor - GE 36 volt
Body - 1975 Mercedes 350 SL


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