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Merick Pulls In Xtreme Pro Mod Championship

Posted By: Mary Lendzion
Written by Mary Lendzion
Photos by NMCA Staff

 
Randy Merick has been racing a Pro Mod for more than 25 years, and he has earned a lot of respect along the way.
 
He is dedicated and diligent, and canny and competitive. More important to him than doing well and winning, is doing well and winning with his team at his side.
 
That talented team includes Larry Jeffers, who built and maintains the chassis for Merick’s 1973 Corvette C3-bodied Pro Mod, Todd Tutterow of Wyo Motorsports, who put together his Tutterow-Noonan Hemi which is paired with a PSI screw charger and backed by a Liberty five-speed, and Ed Briggs, who tunes the combination with Tutterow.
 
When Merick began competing in NMCA VP Racing Lubricants Xtreme Pro Mod several years ago, his goal was to showcase what his car was capable of, and he has certainly done that, especially in 2022. 
 
After arriving at the series’ season opener, the NMCA Muscle Car Mayhem presented by Holbrook Racing Engines in March at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Florida, Merick qualified in the eighth spot with a 3.73 and won the first round of eliminations with a 3.66. Unfortunately, he then had a mechanical concern that prevented a full-power pass and he exited eliminations in the second round.


 
Merick wasn’t able to make the Scoggin Dickey Parts Center NMRA/NMCA All-Star Nationals presented by MAHLE Motorsport in April at Rockingham Dragway in North Carolina, but he turned his focus to the NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Street Legal Drag Racing presented by Fuelab in May at World Wide Technology Raceway in Illinois. There, he qualified in the fifth spot with a 3.75, picked up to a 3.69 to win the first and second rounds of eliminations and finally a 3.66 on his way to the NMCA Winner’s Circle after Derek Ward was forced to lift.
 
“Derek and I definitely would have had a good race if he hadn’t had to get out of it,” said Merick, whose car flies banners for Extreme Brand Products.
 
Gaining momentum, Merick qualified in the fourth spot with a 3.71 at the Arrington Performance NMRA/NMCA Power Festival presented by TorqStorm Superchargers in July at U.S. 131 Motorsports Park in Michigan, won the first round of eliminations with a 3.73 and later won the rain-delayed event, which was completed at the NMCA All-American Nationals presented by Sick the Magazine in August at Summit Motorsports Park in Ohio, with a 3.67 against Jason Hamstra, who was forced to get out of the throttle. For the actual NMCA All-American Nationals presented by Sick the Magazine in August at Summit Motorsports Park, Merick qualified in the third spot with a 3.67, won the first through third rounds of eliminations with 3.67, 3.69 and 3.70, and faced Hamstra again, and flew to the win with a 3.68 over Hamstra, who was right there with a 3.71.
 
“The Xtreme Pro Mod category is tough,” said Merick. “The competition is very good.”


 
Ready to put an exclamation mark on his exciting race season, Merick made his way to the NMCA World Street Finals presented by Chevrolet Performance in September at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park in Indiana. He set the pace in qualifying with a 3.63, and then stopped the clock at 3.66, 3.70 and a 3.609, a category record, to win the first through semifinal rounds of eliminations. In a battle of Corvettes, Merick muscled to the event win with a 3.62 against Jim Widener, who wheeled to a 3.66.
 
With that, Merick momentously captured the 2022 NMCA VP Racing Lubricants Xtreme Pro Mod championship.
 
“We were tweaking on the chassis a little and making a few changes here and there throughout the year, but we had great car, a great tune-up and a great team, and I’m happy we were able to achieve this championship together,” said Merick.  “I’m very proud of my team. They made this championship happen. They are the best, and they proved it.”
 
The NMCA is happy to celebrate Merick and his fellow champions at the Red Line Oil NMCA Muscle Car Nationals Awards Ceremony, held during the Performance Racing Industry Trade Show, Dec. 9, 2022, at the Indiana Convention Center.
 
Please watch for upcoming stories about each of our champions on NMCADigital.com and RacePagesDigital.com as well as in Fastest Street Car magazine.



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