BENSON, NC — After a season-opening victory way back in January, it’s been four months since Musi Racing last competed at a PDRA drag race due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
But the team is back for this weekend’s Professional Drag Racers Association (PDRA) season opener, the East Coast Nationals at GALOT Motorsports Park in Benson, NC, and Pat and Lizzy Musi are ready to pick up where they left off.
Lizzy Musi last piloted the Frank Brandao-owned Edelbrock/Lucas Oil “King Kong 7” 2018 Dodge Dart to the winner’s circle at the U.S. Street Nationals at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Bradenton, FL, in January, and she’ll look to do the same to kick off the PDRA season — even if it has been a far longer wait than anyone expected.
“We’re excited to get rolling and we know we’ve got a good car,” Pat Musi said. “We had a fast car in Florida, and we learned a lot that hopefully we can keep going. We’ve got it set up to test some stuff, but if we can’t do that, we can put back in what we used in Florida. You saw the results there. We went fast and had a really good weekend.”
Lizzy Musi qualified No. 1 at the U.S. Street Nationals in Pro Mod with a run of 3.625-seconds at 206.67 mph, rolling to the win in impressive fashion.
It was the perfect start to what promised to be a big season before the public health crisis hit. It put racing on hold and this marks Musi’s first time in the Dart since then. The team tested the “Aftershock” Camaro, which runs on the Street Outlaws: No Prep Kings circuit, during the downtime, and Musi knows things are about to get really busy with both cars. The team also has an eye-catching new Edelbrock/Lucas Oil wrap on their new race trailer. Musi is confident the team will be ready for a busy schedule in the coming months.
“I can tell you one thing, once we get going it’s going to be wide open,” Musi said.
He hopes that includes this weekend at GALOT, where there is a threat of inclement weather. That may force Musi’s hand as far as strategy and prevent the team from trying different things during testing and qualifying.
But he knows he has a car capable of winning and setting records, and Musi is ready to have that on full display for the first time since January. It’s also the first PDRA race since last October and Musi wants a good showing, even if the weather might present a challenge.
“Hopefully we can get the race in and we’re going to try to go out there and win it,” Musi said. “That’s our focus, trying to make good runs and win the race. Lizzy is driving well, so we’re in good shape there. We may only get one or two qualifying runs, so you have to make them count and you have to make sure the car goes down the track. But we’ve been there before and we’ll be ready for anything.”
Competition at the PDRA East Coast Nationals begins Friday with three pro class qualifying sessions, followed by eliminations on Saturday. Sunday is available for a rain date if needed. Racing action will be streamed live at SpeedVideo.com.
About Pat Musi Racing Engines
Based in Mooresville, North Carolina, Pat Musi Racing Engines is a one-stop shop for sportsman engines with a Pro Mod pedigree. Pat Musi Racing Engines controls every component of the engine, from in-house manifolds to custom cylinder heads. Pat Musi has been at the forefront of electronic fuel injection (EFI) technology for over two decades, and that experience is available to every customer with custom-designed EFI systems, exclusive software and individualized tuning. Whether going rounds in Super Comp or setting records in Pro Nitrous, each customer receives the same quality and workmanship Pat Musi Racing Engines is known for worldwide. For more info, please visit www.musiracing.com.
Brian Hatano is a veteran automotive journalist and former editor of Car Craft, Petersen’s Drag Racing, Sport Compact Car and Motorcyclist magazines.