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Hoffman Hopes for Top-Ten Finish in Points at NMRA Ford World Finals

Posted By: Mary Lendzion
By Mary Lendzion
There is a magnificent mix of cars and trucks in the Holley NMRA Ford Nationals. 
Racers drive Mustangs, Mavericks, Thunderbirds, Rangers, Lightnings and other models, and among them is Tom Hoffman, who belts into his beautiful 1968 Mustang Fastback for ARP Open Comp.
Hoffman has held his own in the famously competitive category for several years, and has come very close to earning a championship a couple of times.
To be sure he was ready for the 2022 racing season, he reached out to friend and NMCA Dart NA 10.5 racer Rick Riccardi last winter to make plans to take his car from his home in Michigan to Riccardi’s shop in New Jersey for some work. 
With a fine-tooth comb, Riccardi went over the car, which is powered by a 351 Windsor stroked to 408 cubic-inches by Holbrook Racing Engines topped with AFR 220 heads and backed by a Turbo 400 by Sean’s Transmission. They replaced the brakes, brake lines and master cylinder. They also swapped oil pans and fuel pumps, and went with a forward-facing scoop, among other things.
When the work was wrapped up, Hoffman loaded his car and headed to the first NMRA race of the 2022 season, the NMRA Spring Break Shootout in March at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Florida. There, he recorded an .032 reaction time to qualify in the twenty-third spot out of 31 racers and made it to the third round of eliminations before exiting with a 9.87 on a 9.81 dial.

He followed that with an .077 reaction time to qualify in the thirtieth spot out of 31 racers — which shows just how quick you have to be on the tree to qualify well in the category — and lost in the first round of eliminations after breaking out with a 9.79 on a 9.82 at the Scoggin Dickey Parts Center NMRA/NMCA All-Star Nationals presented by MAHLE Motorsport in April at Rockingham Dragway in North Carolina.
A .003 reaction time helped him qualify in the fourth spot out of 30 racers, and he exited in the second round of eliminations after breaking out with a 9.83 on a 9.91 at the NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Street Legal Drag Racing presented by Fuelab in May at World Wide Technology Raceway in Illinois. From there, he qualified in the ninth spot out of 34 racers with an .012 reaction time and lost in the first round of eliminations with 9.79 on a 9.64 at the NMRA Ford Performance Nationals in June at Summit Motorsports Park in Ohio, and qualified in the sixth spot out of 31 racers with a .004 reaction time and lost in first round of eliminations with a 9.92 on a 9.84 at the Arrington Performance NMRA/NMCA Power Festival presented by TorqStorm Superchargers in July at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park in Michigan
“We know that when you make changes to your car, it may take some time to get it dialed-in, so we’re still in the process of figuring a few little things out,” said Hoffman. “One of the things we’re working with right now is timing, and getting it to where it needs to be, but we’ll get there.”
Hoffman, who is currently holding down the twelfth spot in ARP Open Comp points, is aiming for a top-ten finish at the last NMRA event of the season, the highly anticipated 24th Annual Whipple Superchargers NMRA Ford World Finals presented by Competition Clutch featuring the Holley Intergalactic Ford Festival, this weekend, Sept. 29-Oct. 2, 2022 at Beech Bend Raceway in Bowling Green, Kentucky. 
“I’m going to give it my best,” said Hoffman. “I like going to the Bowling Green race. It’s a lot of fun. I’m just going to take it one round at a time.”
In addition to seeing his classic and very cool car in action at that event, fans and fellow racers can read about it in a Spotlight interview with Hoffman in an upcoming issue of Fastest Street Car.


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