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Murphy Out Early




Bakersfield, CA - November 03-05, 2006: After winning the 15th California Hot Rod Reunion a month before, the 8th Goodguys Fuel & Gas Finals was a disappointing way to end the 2006 season for Jim Murphy and the WW2 Racing team.

With only two qualifying sessions they were hoping the same set up that won them the CHRR would carry though here but there were enough changes, mostly in the weather, that the same performance wasn't there. After qualifying 10th - in the bottom half of the field - the car ran better in the first round but Murphy lost to eventual event winner Rick White.


Photos and full story below.



Friday morning things were still in laid back mode with the crew getting the car ready for the first of two qualifying session scheduled for 2:00 p.m.







First Qualifying Session - Friday

The first of two pro qualifying sessions went off at 1:47 PM (ahead of schedule). The weather was cool and the track tight.


Murphy was in the forth pair out matched with his old friend, Brendan Murry.







Murphy backing up with Dave Thornhill's directions from the burn-out.



It is crucial to stay in the "tracks" laid down during the burn-out procedure.





Both cars were soft at the hit and Murry called it off before half track to a 8.058 at 107.60.



Murphy ran a conservative 6.190 at 228.36. With only 19 cars entered they weren't worried about qualifying. The Murphy/Beebe combo were just making sure they had a solid baseline.




Murphy goes over the data collected by the on board computer.



Second Qualifying Session - Saturday

The second and last pro qualifying session went off right on time at 12:01 PM. The weather remained cool and the track excellent.


Unlike the first session, Saturday was filled with oil downs like the one just before Murphy was to run along side Rick White. This meant he had to stay in the car for much longer than normal.





After over 20 minutes they finally get the notice to get ready to fire-up.




Both cars left together but White had a better 60 foot time.




In what would prove to be a round one match up, White was starting to show why he was the 2005 Goodguys/VRA Top Fuel Champion with a 5.843 at 243.50. Murphy still couldn't find his CHRR winning form carding an off pace 5.990 at 228.25. Both cars ate up some pistons - oil down # 4 (but it was a short one).











Jim Murphy, Tim and Michael Beebe check out the track prior to round one.



First Round of Eliminations - Saturday

The first round of Top Fuel Eliminations kicked off at 3:50 PM. The weather remained cool and the track excellent.


Murphy gets focused prior to firing up.


Pair six of round one was a rematch of the second quaffing session earlier in the day. Jim Murphy and Rick White.




Murphy got a slight lead off the line but White caught him by the 60' clocks.




White held the lead through the traps taking the win with a 5.864 at 243.50 (his third straight 5.8 pass). Murphy carded a game 5.986 at 250.00.


And so ended the 2006 season. After the Finals the Goodguys/VRA made the decision to drop their West Coast Series of races which leaves the 2007 season looking somewhat unsure. The only races scheduled for sure are the March Meet and the CHRR. Like the fans, the race teams will have to see what develops for other events. No matter what, Jim Murphy and WW2 Racing will be ready to do battle when the time comes.



Related Link

AA/FD Inc. - Nostalgia Top Fuel Teams


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