By TJ Pruitt. Photos by Chris Sears, John Fore III, and Cole Photography.
Phenix City, AL — Two weeks later and Jamie Hancock is still celebrating his latest accomplishment; winning the biggest drag radial event in the world, No Mercy V, promoted by Donald Long. Several doubted Hancock’s ability to be competitive in the class when he first introduced the little tires on his ADRL Pro Nitrous Championship Corvette, but after a few laps, it was quickly evident that he would be a fierce competitor.
DragCoverage.com had the opportunity to sit down and interview Jamie Hancock, owner of the world’s fastest Drag Radial Nitrous car.
Jamie: It feels awesome. We are still on a climax. We worked hard and came out with a win. We changed a lot of things heading into this race and was unsure which direction we were actually heading in. But, we were pretty confident and it paid off.
DC: The world is watching the final round of No Mercy V onMotorManiaTV and thousands of people are at the event. What is going through your mind as you activate the pre-stage bulbs?
Jamie: I tried to tune everything out of my head and focus on my procedures. I try to get into a routine and do the same thing every time. I wanted to make sure that I did everything right before and during the race. It felt really good to see the win light.
DC: So Jamie, how did whole Drag Radial idea on the Corvette come about it?
Jamie: Well, when we wrecked the Firebird (PDRA Pro Nitrous Car), we ended up buying the Corvette back. One day we were sitting around and said hey, it wont cost us any money, so what the heck, let’s try it.
So, we bolted the little wheels and tires on and tried it. It was even the same converter that we used with the big tires. We really lucked up on this combination and have done really well with it.
On the very first pass, we ran a 4.44, right down through there. The very first pass was on 29×10.5. Everyone kept telling us that the drag radials were faster so we switched to drag radials and went 4.33 first pass out.
DC: At this point, would you have ever guessed that you would quickly become one of the fastest cars in the class?
Jamie: No, not really. We ran 30’s at first and 30’s was good, but we never thought that we could pick up another 2-3 tenths. But, every race we seemed to get faster and better.
DC: What are your thoughts on certain promters and racers trying to outlaw your car?
Jamie: I don’t know what their reasoning is. They say wheelbase and the body gives my car an advantage. Well, at No Mercy, the top 3 qualifiers were: No. 1 – a backhalf nitrous car, No.2 was a Nitous full chassis car (my car), and No. 3 was a full chassis turbo car with a stock body. That shows you that there is no performance advantage to having a car like mine. There’s stock suspension cars that are running right there with us.
My car just looks different than the rest. It has the big wing on the back and that’s really the only thing that they can argue.
DC: So I noticed that the firebird is nearly complete. What’s the plan from here?
Jamie: We plan to run drag radial races where we can and then put the motor back in the Firebird and run PDRA and local promod stuff also. We are not going to commit to any series at this point. Our schedule depends on our family’s schedule.
Jamie: I want to thank my mom and dad. Without them, none of this would be possible. Thanks to my dad, James, who is one of the best nitrous crew chiefs out there. I want to thank my wife, Sydney, for supporting me with everything that I do. And I have to thank my crew; Alex, Justin, Zach, Thomas, Mitch, Clifford, and everyone else that has helped out along the way.
I want to thank my sponsors, Nitrous Outlet, STT safety, Hancock Performance, DragCoverage.com, VP Race Fuels, ASA Performance, Pro Weld Chassis, Chris Patrick at North Henry Paint and body, and ATF for all their help. I think that’s about it.
DC: What is your favorite movie?
Jamie: Talladega Nights
DC: If I jumped in your truck, what would be playing?
Jamie: Country Music
DC: What is your favorite food:
Jamie: Gotta love the Chinese
DC: What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not racing?
Jamie: Hangout with friends and family. I enjoy the lake and tailgating at my house; War Eagle!
DC: No racer wants to answer this, but name one racer that you, I wouldn’t say fear, but think is the most challenging in the class?
Jamie: There’s a lot of them out there, but I think the toughest that I would face right now would be Dwayne Mills. He has a fast car weekend and weekend out and is very consistent.
DC: Thank you for your time, Jamie. Great job and thanks for representing DragCoverage.com
Jamie: Thanks. I really appreciate it.