Brian Tully posted his best finish ever in a Perris Auto Speedway main event September 20, taking second place in the Street Stocks race.
“I think we’ve worked all the bugs out of the car, and it’s handling the way I like to drive it,” Tully said.
Tully had been leading the two previous main events but had problems both times. During the June 28 race his fuel filter ceased to function properly, and he pulled off the track.
His carburetor troubles July 26 didn’t force him into the pits but relegated him to eighth place in the main event.
“We had been having some bad luck the last two times out,” Tully said. “We replaced the carburetor and that made a difference in the performance.”
Tully and his crew of Howard Bymark, Brandon Davis, Jerry Dodd, and Steve McCain also replaced the left front shock on the Nova, added two new tires, and put a bead lock on the rear end.
“It actually hooked up better. It was able to get more traction because I could run lower air in the right rear,” Tully said.
Tully began the heat race on the outside of the second row and finished the six-lap race in second place behind 2007 track champion Curtis Dietzsch. “I was actually chasing the champion,” Tully said.
Tully began the main event on the inside of the third row. “The track was really good,” he said.
“I was running the higher line,” Tully said. “The car really performed up there. I was able to get good jumps and traction.”
The jumps were necessary on the main event’s three restarts following yellow flags. “I got a really good spot on the start,” Tully said.
The three cars driven by Jim Coates, Tully, and Stephan Davies pulled away from the rest of the pack. Tully sought to pass Coates’ #29 car cleanly but was unable to obtain such an opportunity during the 20-lap race.
“I just couldn’t get around the 29 car without taking him out or taking myself out,” Tully said. “[Coates] drove a very good race.”
Tully went both to the outside and to the inside in an effort to pass Coates but opted for second place rather than a collision. “I didn’t take him out. I drove clean,” Tully said. “Even though they call me Tear ’em Up Tully, I didn’t tear anybody up this time.”
Tully earned the nickname in his early years at the Ascot track, when he pulled onto the oval and caused a 15-car collision.
Tully, who first began racing stock cars at Ascot in 1978, has also raced on the Speedway 605, Oildale, and Adelanto dirt tracks as well as the Irwindale asphalt oval.
He moved to Fallbrook seven years ago.
Tully, who began his racing career with go-karts at the age of 18, turned 65 on June 2. “You’re never too old to race,” he said.
Tully’s second-place finish made him subject to the post-race tech inspection, and his car was 34 pounds over the minimum weight. “I think a lot of that was mud,” he said.
The Nova was lighter than Tully thought, although the cars are weighed with the drivers inside. Tully has switched from eating three large meals to five small meals and has lost ten pounds since the July 26 race.
The post-race inspection disqualified Davies for an illegal distributor, giving Dietzsch third place in the main event and stripping Davies of his points for the night.
The denial of Davies’ points moved Tully to eighth in the season standings despite having missed the first race and his early June 28 exit.
Tully is sponsored by Brian Tully Insurance Agency, Maximum Signs, Pick-A-Part, and Poor Man Construction Company.
The Street Stocks are scheduled to race again November 8 and to conclude their season November 22, giving Tully two opportunities during the 2008 season to improve on his second-place main event finish.
“My goal is to finish first,” he said.
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