How to drag race
I'm 19, a sophomore at Clemson, and I've had my 04 M6 IBM goat for going on a month now. Not a lot of manual driving experience before then, but I feel totally comfortable driving it out now, smoked a (modded? I think I heard a BOV...) Neon SRT4 outside campus, and now I have a buddy with a Civic Si wanting to drag me. There's an 1/8 mile strip in Greer, SC about 45 minutes away, and he wants me to go there with him on a Thursday evening. He's obviously been there quite a few times, and has been driving this Civic for a while now. He's totally convinced he can take me, and I know the only thing standing in my way is total inexperience. He's also the guy that would never let me live it down or forget it if I didn't win, even if I go back the next week and the week after and walk him from then on...
I'd like to go there once on my own before I take him, but I'd also like to not go alone the first time, seeing as how this would be my first drag event. I'm just looking for some advice on how to have a successful drag day. Here's what I've gotten down:
I know pretty well how staging works- pull up and prestage consecutively, then stage consecutively. 3 lights down the Christmas tree and we're off. I've yet to do a manual burnout... is that necessary?
I can shift reliably, but haven't done a real clutch drop yet. 3500 rpms in 1st and drop the clutch on go? Would you recommend power shifting or do I even need to bother next to a 200 hp fwd car?
Don't be afraid to tell me to wait a little while longer. Optimistically I'd hope to find someone there that would recognize a novice and help me out, but I think to some extent someone rolling up with an LS1 should know what they're doing.
Then again, I know a girl that works at MIR during the summers, knows her way around a drag strip... And I'm man enough to admit to her that I don't know what I'm doing.