The success of the East Coast Timing Association events at Maxton is mirrored in the twice-yearly events that used to be held at the Goliad County Airport in Goliad County, Texas (several miles east of Beeville). This was a one-mile drag race held on one of the runways of this former US Navy satellite airfield. All sorts of vehicles could be seen here: land speed cars, stock street machines, hotrods, motorcycles, and things that defy easy description. There are some ferociously fast rice rockets as well as more GT-40's than I've ever seen in one place. Check it out at Texas Mile.

We have had pretty dismal luck here. Blew an engine in March of 2005 -- after towing all the way out from California! I think my speed then still stood as the fastest D/PRO car to run there -- 143 mph -- until I ran again in 2008. Not very impressive. I've had poor luck with the new engine there as well. Made one pass but it didn't seem to run right. Took it home.

Then I blew the clutch up at the Texas Mile in October, 2008 while shifting from second to third. Replaced the clutch and tried again this past March (2009). Ran 178.217 on Saturday (with a tailwind). Forgot to turn on the datalogger so I didn't get any tuning info. Tried again on Sunday -- made two passes at 174 mph, into a slight headwind. Did get some data from the logger, at least. Then the transmission locked up. Back on the trailer, back on the lift. I took the transmission back home to David Kee's shop. He found second gear seized to the mainshaft. I'm hoping that accounted for the low speeds. I'd really like to take a crack at the existing record (182) at Maxton. The transmission is back in the Mustang now. I took it to a local car show put on by the South Texas Stangs club. Won a trophy as best Competition Car (in a field of 2!). Next stop is probably the Texas Mile next March, Maxton in April, and El Mirage in May.

My friend and neighbor, Jim Best, ran the 53 Studebaker he and his brother, Don, own. This isn't a great picture of his car but it's a good picture of Jim.
He intended to run nitrous this event (he'd gone 146 in it without nitrous in 2008). Made one pass without, did 152 or so. On the next pass, about the time he was ready to hit the switch ... the engine burbled, cleaned up, burbled again, and then started clattering. He managed to coast off the end of the course and around to the return road. On the trailer and home again. Turned out he broke the blower drive. This engine has a front-mounted blower using a drive assembly from Europe (we think). The crank gear lost some teeth and the cam drive chain came off and ... Well, we think the engine is still ok. Jim is in the hospital right now and will be in recovery for quite some time to come.

He and Don decided to rebuild the 383 in the car (after LOTS of discussion). They just had the trans re-built with the reverse-pattern shift kit that Jim likes. The plan was, as soon as Jim got some energy back, they would mate things up and install it. Jim had also mentioned Nitrous ...

He did get it together but, before he could run it at the mile, he had his accident. The Studie languished for a couple of years. Then his daughters caught the racing bug and prepped the car for the Texas Mile. They have had a lot of issues and the car has never performed the way we all had hoped but at least they have had a lot of fun trying. They also ran my old Mustang there in October 2014. Did 163 mph, almost exactly what I had predicted from my computer models. No issues with the car so it is hibernating until Speed Week 2015.

Meanwhile, the Mile itself moved from the relic airport in Goliad to an industrial park / prison / airstrip just outside Beeville TX. The physical layout of this location makes it impossible for spectators to watch from anywhere past the 1/2 mile marker. The pits were compressed into a square, from having previously been all along the return road, with spectator parking behind the pits. And the number of entries began to grow. And grow. And the entry fees grew. And grew. And the lines in pre-stage ... well, you get the idea.

And the Maxton Mile moved, all the way to Ohio. I believe part of the reason was the condition of the old runway and the cost to repair it.

And two new miles sprung up: a mile event in Mojave, CA and a mile event in Maine. Oh, and a 1/2 mile event in Houston. The flavor of the meets has changed a lot, as well. I can recall numerous home-built cars running in the early years. A big-block Model-A sedan with a see-through floor. A refrigerator-white four-door Mitsubishi that was way faster than me -- I was pretty confused until I spotted the huge inlet for the turbo. A skateboard/junior dragster hybrid driven by a young lady in leathers, laying on her back and shifting her weight to steer. She went 99 mph! An ex-NASCAR Thunderbird that pretty easily cracked 200 mph. And so on. Now the meet seems to be dominated by 'tuner' cars: Lambo's and Corvettes and new Camaros and Mustangs that have spent time at a tuner's shop and now run at speeds of 180-220 mph. I've even been within arm's length of a Maclaren F1. Just looked up pricing -- they sell for upwards of $5M! At the last event I counted four (4) cars that I would classify as race cars or hotrods. Out of 200 or more. Hmmm.