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Five-time AMA/Prostar Top Fuel champion Larry McBride finished the 2004 season with a runner-up performance at the AMA/Prostar World Finals from Gainesville, FL Nov. 5th-7th, snapping his unprecedented 2-year-long, 17 event win streak.

“It was great being up on that pedestal for a while,” McBride said of the streak. “To be honest I’m kind of relieved it’s over. There was a lot of hype over us not losing. Now I’m just focused on starting another streak. I’m not quitting.”

McBride’s run of the weekend came in qualifying as he laid down Gainesville Raceway’s first ever 5-second motorcycle pass with a sensational 5.97 at 237 mph.

“It was a major relief,” McBride said. “I have a lot of friends on the Gainesville Raceway staff and it was nice to finally get it done for them.”

“I have a special bond with Gainesville Raceway,” McBride said. “In 1992 I crashed in the right lane at 205 mph. This weekend I ran the track’s first 5-second pass at 237 mph in that same right lane.”

McBride’s first defeat of the season occurred in the final as his bike fired on only three of the four cylinders. McBride attempted to make the pass but the raw fuel belching from the exhaust got on the giant rear tire causing McBride to smolder his drag slick at the 1/8th mile mark. In the end Harley-mounted Tommy Sloan’s 7.54 was enough to hold off McBride’s 9.07.

“Nobody likes to lose. If you like to lose you shouldn’t be racing. I’m upset but I’m not mad,” McBride said. “I’m very happy for Tommy Sloan. He supported this class all year long and he deserves the win.”

“It was a great year,” crew chief Steve McBride said. “Lady luck just flew out the window for us on this weekend. I’m proud of Tommy Sloan. Those guys work very hard.”

“We started having problems on Thursday. It was weird it was like the bike broke on the way here,” Larry McBride said. “Then Saturday we had some trouble that cost us a qualifying run. On Sunday we had an electrical problem in the ignition that we couldn’t get to the bottom of. We had a spark plug go bad in the final.”

McBride was overcome with pride for his team and sponsors when he finally had a chance to reflect on the win streak.

“It’s a very awesome feeling,” McBride said. “It makes me very proud of our team and everyone involved.”

“We just tried to be perfect every time,” co-crew chief Roland Stuart said. “We really paid attention to small details and everyone double checks behind each other.”
“All you can do is move on. The 2004 season is over,” McBride said. “It’s not too early to start focusing on 2005.”

McBride stressed that he would simply not be able to race if it were not for the support of these fine companies.

McBride thanked; Pingel Enterprise, Trim-Tex Drywall Products, Drag Specialties-Parts Unlimited, Red Line Synthetic Oil Corporation as well as his other sponsors:

Vance & Hines Motorsports, Muzzys Performance, Web-Cam, Kibblewhite Precision Machine, Vanson Leathers, Performance Machine, Kawasaki USA, Belt Drives Ltd, Street & Competition, Trac Dynamics, Simpson Race Products, Nitrous Express, APE, EK Chain, Arias Pistons, R&D Spring Corp, Autolite, MSD, Protect ALL, Whipple Industries, Cometic Gaskets, B&J Transmission, Carolina Cycle, L.A. Sleeve, PJ1 Nology Engineering, Mickey Thompson Tires, Corbin Seats, Stark Masonry, and Valco.


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