Well, we finally made it home and got everything unloaded. Sitting here with Kaitlyn and our sick dog reflecting on this crazy week I can’t believe it’s over. We only slept about 6 hours during UCC but I’d do it all again. We’ll be back next year in the main show and we plan to bring some fire. We wanted to go out and prove we could be competitive with a mechanical truck built in house. I feel we did that. I can’t believe the amount of people who came by to say hi, check the truck out, and most of all how many people were willing to help us.
Our UCC week started on Wednesday after cleaning and checking the truck over. We left Colorado in the snow. Drove to Kansas City in the rain. Then finished the drive Thursday. We pulled the truck out of the trailer at Lucas Oil Raceway and it sounded terrible. After a quick inspection we found the converter bolts had come loose. They ovaled the flexplate holes and without hesitation the Power Driven Diesel crew got us a flexplate out of their trailer. We pulled the trans and put in the new flexplate hoping we’d have smooth sailing the rest of the weekend. After a few hours of sleep we were ready to dyno. We were the first truck on the rollers and with almost no dyno experience I wasn’t sure what was required for a good number. I got on the dyno and made a pull. The first pull I didn’t turn the water/air pump on early enough and netted a lower number(1650ish hp). We made another pull and did 1736.9hp/2420.6ft/lbs. on that pull we cracked a fuel line on the Waterman and after running out of time we headed back to the pits. We also learned the little alternator doesn’t like 5000Rpm. We also learned we need to charge the battery between rounds for the nitrous solenoid to open properly. Unable to push it to its full potential or use nitrous hard we headed back to the pits to fix the fuel line. Truck Source Diesel & Off-Road got us setup with a -6AN hose end so we could fix the fuel leak. Quick fix and we’re ready to drag race the next day. We wanted to make an A-B pass so we decided to leave soft and make a low power pass to get a decent number on the board. The truck ran better than I expected and ended up going 5.72. The next pass we waited 4 hours in the staging lanes due to oil downs and a run order change. I tried to leave harder than the cold track would allow. We spun on and off down the track and ended up going slower. After heading back to the pits we noticed the head gasket was seeping. Chase Fleece was nice enough to go get us a fire ring head gasket. This was the first time I had ever met Chase and he was willing to help us get back into competition. We stayed up all night and changed the headgasket, put the sled pulling setup on the truck, and did a hot torque(if you were camping at the track and we woke you up around 4 I’m sorry 😂). We went into the sled pull knowing we needed to put 40ft on The Diesel Shop truck to win the overall. He was right in front of us in the run order. He broke and they told us he was out. The rules state you can fix the truck and re-pull if you shut it down within 75ft and immediatly pull again. The run order can’t be altered though. I pulled up and we decided to come out soft and pour the power to it down track in order to save potential driveline carnage since we only needed a 50ft pull to win. One of the UCC officials misunderstood their rules and told Mike if he got back within a few minutes of the last pull he could go again. This was a problem for myself along with many other competitors because we based our pulls, power management, etc. on the rules and current situation. I have absolutely nothing bad to say about Mike. He’s an awesome guy with a well rounded, monster of a truck. After the event Mike, James, and myself had a meeting and talked everything out. We both understood the other’s point of view and the UCC admitted full fault for the situation. If I were in Mikes shoes I would have done the same thing. The UCC decided the best solution was to give us both an invite to the main event next year and give us both first place overall. On top of that Mike and I each won one event. I had a ton of fun competing and I can’t wait for next year.
We could have never performed at the level we did without all the support from our sponsors. I can’t thank Seth Farrell at Farrell Diesel Service enough for teaching me how to sled pull, setting me up with a fuel system with killer manners and a huge power potential, and helping out with the truck all week. Power Driven Diesel for the flexplate, fluids, and support during such a stressful time. All while having 2 of their own trucks in the competition. Dave Goerend and James at Goerend Transmission Inc. for setting me up with a monster transmission that took a beating. We had a spare but it stayed in the trailer all weekend 😎. Trevor Manton at Manton Pushrods for a drivetrain that just laughed at us when we spun it to 6000rpm. Evan Booms and everyone at Diamond Pistons for setting me up with the best pistons on the market. Joe Frey for the slick fiberglass body panels. Eric Staab for building me a monster girdle setup and all the advice. Hamilton Diesel for the solid block. It was awesome to pull the head and see a block still intact. Chris Watkins for being willing to go outside the box and help me build a turbo setup that flows stupid amounts of air and spools great. Eric Bradley for helping deck the trailer out with the tools we’d need. Rudy Castillo for the help and killer pictures documenting a weekend of craziness.
I couldn’t have made it through the week without my dad Kyle Schirado and brother Jacob Schirado for pulling the truck out and all the help with it. My Wife Kaitlyn Schirado for all the help in the months leading up to this event, the shop dinners, road tripping with me, and lending a hand wherever possible. Dustin and Jayce Rhine, Josh St.Onge, Travis Lampinen, Bayard Mccue-Frazier, Ben Edmondson, Seth Farrell, and Rudy Castillo for making sure everything on the truck was 100% for every event and making my life easier. I’m sure I’m forgetting someone since I’m running on fumes so if you helped me out this weekend and I didn’t give you the credit you deserve shoot me a message. ~John Schirado