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Dwight Ausmus Set to Unleash Some Upgrades

Posted By: Mary Lendzion
Written by Mary Lendzion
Dwight Ausmus was 17 years old when his father, David, purchased his 1972 Firebird.
It was supposed to be for Dwight’s brother, Aaron, but Dwight was far more interested in the car at the time. 
In the years that followed, Dwight and his father worked together to transform the car from a street car to a race car. Proud to have a Pontiac with a powerful Pontiac engine, Ausmus raced at tracks near his home in Tennessee before diving into NMCA Dart NA 10.5 for the first time in 2013. The competition was fierce, but Dwight was committed, and quite capable. 
The driver from LaFollette, Tennessee, finished in fifth place in points that year, and has had a solid showing every year since. 
At the first race of the 2023 season, the Scoggin Dickey Parts Center NMCA Muscle Car Mayhem presented by Holbrook Racing Engines in March at Orlando Speed World Dragway in Florida, he qualified in the third spot with a 7.89 and exited in the second round of eliminations with a 7.80. He then qualified in the fifth spot with a 7.96 and lost in the second round of eliminations with a 7.98 at the NMRA/NMCA All-Star Nationals Presented by MAHLE Motorsport in April at Rockingham Dragway in North Carolina, and qualified in the fourth spot with a 7.91 and lost in the second round of eliminations with a 7.98 at the 18th Annual NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Muscle Car Drag Racing in May at World Wide Technology Raceway in Illinois.
Dwight decided to sit out the TorqStorm Superchargers NMRA/NMCA Power Festival presented by Paul’s High Performance in July at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park in Michigan so that he could focus on enhancing his combination consisting of a 573 cubic-inch Pontiac engine built by Tony Bischoff of BES Racing Engines, Warp 6 heads, URE intake manifold designed by Chris Uratchko and Tony Bischoff, carburetor by Dale Cubic of CFM Performance Carburetors, ProFlite transmission by Sean Wiley of Pro-Formance Transmissions and an A-1 performance converter by Adam Bowdish.

“I saw that I had a deficit and needed to make up for it and pick up some ET with the components I have this season,” said Dwight. “We did work on my car to get more power, specifically a piston change and cam change, and the Ross pistons didn’t arrive until right before the race in Michigan. I didn’t want Tony Bischoff, who has also tweaked cams for me throughout this year, to have to swap pistons and dyno the engine in such a hurry, so I decided to sit out the race.”
Dwight, who is currently in the second place in points, is ready to see what he can coax from his combination with the mid-season changes at the second-to-last race on this year’s schedule, the 22nd Annual Mickey Thompson NMCA All-American Nationals presented by Sick the Mag, this weekend, August 25-27 at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio. 
“To continue optimizing your combination, and to get to the level we are racing at in Dart NA 10.5, you and the people who help you have to brainstorm and think outside of the box,” said Dwight, who plans to move from an automatic transmission to a Liberty’s five-speed over winter. “It really does take a village, and I’m fortunate I have the support I do from Tony Bischoff, Dale Cubic, Chris Uratchko, Steve Matukas, Curt Jamison, Keith McCormack, Charlie Campbell, Buck Vandergriff and my wife, Becky. I’m looking forward to making more improvements in off season taking my car to Matukas Motorsports for the chassis work needed for the new five-speed transmission. My confidence is back, and that is very helpful.”


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