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Rodney Ward goes Undefeated in Impressive NMRA/NMCA Four-Race Rockingham Win Streak

Posted By: Evan J. Smith
Rodney Ward goes Undefeated in Impressive NMRA/NMCA Four-Race Rockingham Win Streak
By the FSC Staff
Sometimes, the best things in life are unexpected and Rodney Ward can certainly attest to that after a dream weekend at the NMRA/NMCA All-Star Nationals presented by Sipple’s Speed & Performance at Rockingham Dragway in North Carolina.
Driving his 2014 Mustang GT, Ward won the Circle D Specialties True Street class on Saturday, and on Sunday, he won again and again and again. By the time he was done, Ward had run the table collecting four wins in four very different classes.
In addition to his win in the 13.00 class in Circle D Specialties True Street, Ward won HP Tuners Super Stang and also emerged victorious in the NMCA Micro Strategies Stock Eliminator—in his first shot at the class. For an encore, Ward also collected win No. 4 in the Bracket Open class!
“That was a fantasy. It’s still hard to believe,” said Ward. “The closest thing I can remember is two years ago in Martin [Mich.] where I won in True Street and Super Stang and was runner-up in Ford Muscle and had a semifinal in the bracket class.”
On Saturday, Ward celebrated both his birthday and Mustang Day with the True Street title. His average of 13.143 seconds was not overly impressive, but it got the job done. “I really didn’t think my average was good enough,” said Ward. “Then, I noticed that there weren’t as many cars as we have at some events and that was my saving grace.”
Ward typically races in multiple eliminators including HP Tuners Super Stang, but he admits that Micro Strategies Stock was uncharted territory. In fact, he would not have entered the class at all if not for some not-so-gentile coaxing from a few friends.
“I never even knew about it,” Ward confessed. “Shane Williams came up and said, ‘Rodney, you need to get into this class,’ and David Morman said the same thing. I finally talked to [NMRA Tech official] Jim Bailey to ask him if my car was even legal. Finally, Danny Towe showed up and told me I needed to enter. I finally bought a tech card before the third qualifying run.”
All told, Ward made 23 runs down the Rockingham Dragway quarter mile including 15 during eliminations and 13 on Sunday alone. Because Ward runs his Mustang at full highway temperatures, he’s able to make consecutive runs with little time needed for cooling.
Ward was able to adjust to varying formats including changes from eighth mile to quarter mile racing and from Full Tree to Pro Tree.
“Once we got going it was one round to the next,” said Ward. “Thankfully, they kept the running order the same so I didn’t lose track of which class was which. I just needed time to wipe off one dial-in and put on the next one.”
When it was all said and done, Ward collected four trophies including three of the coveted NMRA/NMCA Victor awards and nearly $6,000 in cash and contingency awards. Ironically, the record-breaking weekend came exactly one year after Ward broke his hip in a pit area accident at Rockingham Dragway.
“How’s that for an anniversary,” Ward joked. “I guess this makes up for breaking my hip. Now, I’ve cleared my schedule so I can make both the NMRA and NMCA races because I’m leading the points in both Super Stang and [NMCA] Stock. That means I also get to race for two rings at the next race in St. Louis. I might never have another weekend like this, but I’ll sure try.”

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