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Slick Racing moves up in class

Nevada Appeal Staff Report

Paul “Slick” Fontenot, a Douglas County resident, and owner of Slick Racing, a Drag Boat Race Team, based in Lake Tahoe, moved up in class after earning his Pro Eliminator license and competed in the Pro Eliminator class at the International Hot Boat Association’s 2008 World Finals.

Slick Racing was the reigning 2007 IHBA Top Eliminator Word Champion which is a 9 second liquid 1/4 mile bracket, where boats need to qualify between a 9.000 and a 9.999 second 1/4 mile run. Entering the 2008 season, Slick Racing’s goal was to gain back-to-back World Championships.

Winning the first race of the year last April in Phoenix, the team took over the points lead. Entering the second race of the year in Red Bluff, Calif., the team came in third place to stay No. 1 in points. Qualifying No. 1 at the third race of the year in Chowchilla, Calif., the team started experiencing major engine problems and left the race No. 2 in points. After the third race, the team replaced many parts on the engine and entered the fourth race in Dexter, Ore., and experienced some of the same engine problems.

After the fourth race, a decision was made to replace the motor which had been used off and on for 18 years. This same motor achieved a World Record at the Bonneville Salt Flats with a speed of 254.856 mph in 1991; a Land Speed Record at El Mirage, Calif., with a speed of 223.323 mph in 1993; and also many drag boat victories, including the 2007 World Championship.

Since it was going to take time to build a new motor, Slick Racing took the next two races off and planned to go to the World Finals and make its debut with a new blown-alcohol motor, which was machined by Rex Hutchison Racing Engines. The motor consists of a Dart 541 ci block, a Callies billet crank and rods, JE pistons, EPD Big Brodie heads, an Isky cam, The Blower Shop 871 billet blower, and a Weaver Brothers dry sump oil pump system.

After entering the IHBA 2008 World Finals, Slick Racing obtained its Pro license in the Pro Eliminator Class, which is an 8 second liquid 1/4 mile bracket, and qualified in the class of 29 boats, and also was the fastest boat in the class at 151 mph. Slick, with his boat, I’m Back Hot~n~Bothered, No. 669, drove his way into the third round of eliminations and said he was content with the performance of the boat.

Expectations are high for the 2009 IHBA season, which Slick Racing will enter with its sponsors: Percival Construction, Stateline; Hatch Electric, South Tahoe; Carson Valley Transmissions, Gardnerville; New World Painting, Tahoe Paradise, Calif.; Carson Valley Carquest, Gardnerville; and A Sign Shop, Gardnerville.