Courtesy of Denise Ramsey
The 2011 Season was the best season ever for the Goforth Racing team. Cary Goforth took 4 #1 qualifier this year, went to 5 final rounds and won 3 races on his way to winning his first ADRL World Championship, and the first one based only on the points accrued through the year.
Dean Goforth also had an outstanding year after unveiling a new Jerry Haas Pontiac GXP at Houston and taking the #2 spot in qualifying on the first outing for the car. Dean would also have two #1 qualifiers as well as a win in Richmond. “This was such a big year for us; we started the 2011 season with a new crew chief in Brian Self, and a new group of crew guys. This could have been a big gamble for the team, changing not only the crew chief and the crew but also the cars. We changed everything but the drivers, and did so successfully,” Goforth said.
When the team showed up in Houston, they had already done some pre season testing and knew the group could work together smoothly, “I thank my team for all of our accomplishments this year, they make it happen, I am just the guy that drives the car for 4.0 seconds,” Cary said. “In the first race of the season we put both cars in the top 3 qualifiers and took the 2009 Cobalt in the winner’s circle. At that moment I knew that it was going to be a good season and we were on our way to a championship.”
West Palm Beach in April was a bit tougher for the team, when Cary took the #1 qualifier but found himself on the losing end of a holeshot from Bert Jackson. Dean qualified in the #4 spot but also found himself exiting early from competition.
Maple Grove Raceway would bring the team back to the top of the qualifying sheet, but with Dean taking the #1 spot and Cary taking #5, unfortunately for the competitive duo they would meet in the 3rd round where Cary would take the win, moving forward to the final round against Brian Gahm, The rain would come early and leave the competitors in a tie that found points and purses being divided without a winner being declared. “I’m not a big fan of it, but it’s the policy that they have set, it could really affect the points system, said Cary.
In Topeka Kansas, the team would be as close to their Oklahoma base as any ADRL event gets with tons of family and friend for the weekend and the weather hot and sticky the team would put Cary’s car in the #3 spot while Dean would qualify #4, “this was not the weekend we would have liked to have with all our friends and family, with in attendance with Dean losing in the 1st round and Cary losing in the 3rd round.”Sometimes we just have an off race and this was it.”
The team had a lot of history at the track in Martin Michigan, some good some not, as this was wear Dean broke his ankle in 2010. The team would return to winning form by putting Cary in the #1 spot with a 4.11 and Dean would be #2 qualifier, before a loss in the 2nd round of eliminations. Cary would take the brand new Jerry Haas 2010 GXP making its debut event to the Winners Circle, in what he would describe as “a perfect outing,” scoring the #1 spot, winning the race and running the fastest ET of the race.
The next stop on the ADRL tour would take the team to Virginia, home of Extreme Pro Stock Engine Builder Sonny Leonard. Cary would once again qualify in the 2nd spot, and Dean in eh 3rd spot. This would be an event that would be memorable for the team because Cary would have a rare holeshot loss, while Dean would go to the final round and take the win against John Montecalvo on a holeshot, for his first event win of the year. “I am more excited to see my Dad take this win than I have been for my own, he deserved this win and I am just a proud son tonight,” said Cary from the winners circle.
Rockingham has always been a favorite track for Cary, as it was the site of his first ever win, and has been the site of 2 more wins for the team. This year would not be the record setting race as in years past and would find Cary qualifying in the #2 spot, while Dean coming off of his win in Virginia would take the #1 spot. Early losses would leave the team even more motivated going into Norwalk. “Our goal is the Championship, we want that this year, and we are singe minded about our points, while wins are nice we want that point lead going into Dallas,” Crew chief Brian Self said. “This was a tough race for all of us in the Extreme Pro Stock field, losing Bert Jackson Friday night was one of our worst moments ever, Bert was not just another competitor, he was one of the best guys in racing and his loss will be felt by us for years,” Cary said.
The team would show their muscles coming into Norwalk where they would put Brian “Lump” Self in the Cobalt that was replaced with the GXP Cary is now driving. To have 3 Goforth cars attempting to make the field, would mean extra work for the team, “This team is not afraid to work, I can tell you that, we just want to win and get the championship at the end of the year, and we are all focused on that goal,” Cary said. While the plan would hit a bump when the GXP had a issue and was not able to qualify, and Cay would face Dean in the first round of eliminations, Cary would go to the final round against Doug Kirk and take the win, and more importantly giving Cary the point lead and making it virtually impossible for anyone to catch him, The team left Norwalk knowing that as long as Cary’s car appeared in Dallas and passed tech they would win the Championship, but Goforth Racing is not a team that wants to just get it done, fielding all 3 cars once again Cary would take his 4th #1 qualifier of the season, while Dean would be #3 and “Lump” would qualify in the 8th spot.
Dallas was also the site of the Battle for the Belts race on Saturday night and Cary would have a bye first round for being the point’s leader while Dean would be 4th and would have to race against Scott Hintz to move forward to run against Cary in the 2nd round. The junior Goforth would take the win and move into the final for The Battle for the Belts, where a rare holeshot loss would give the win to Richie Stevens. “I wanted to come in here and have a good event, we did that and we achieved our goal of the Championship, congratulations to Richie and his entire team on winning the Belt,” Dean said.
This year the awards banquet would be held on Sunday evening at the conclusion of the event, Cary would receive his Championship in front of his Daughter Mazlin, girlfriend Robin and his Proud parents and siblings, Thank you Dad for believing in me enough to spend your money so I can race, this championship means the world to me but getting to share it with all of my family and this group of guys on this team means more,” Cary said.
Cary Goforth would find himself on the stage once again on this night to accept the Driver of the year award, “I don’t know what to say, this was not even on my radar, I thought Dan would get this, Cary said with a laugh, “this one is special and I thank all who made the decision to give it to me, I am rarely speechless, but this one means a lot.”
Goforth Racing is supported by the following sponsors of our race family, and we need to thank them for having confidence in our team, Lithium Pro Batteries, Sonny’s Racing Engines, Access Employer Services, Mickey Thompson Tires, and Deans Casing Service. Without the support of these sponsors none of this would be possible
Goforth Racing consists of the following: Dean Goforth, Cary Goforth, Chris Goforth, Brian “Lump” Self, Jason Roberts, Keith Harr, Herb Bailey, Russ Van Pelt, and Scott Benham, and is supported by the employees of Deans Casing Service and members of the Goforth family.
Picture courtesy of Roger Richards ad Competitionplus.com