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K&N Sponsored Mike Mans Has a Successful 2011 Drag Racing Season

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Mike and his team in the winner's circle in Kansas.
Mike and his team in the winner's circle in Kansas.
With his parents having been into racing since the mid 70s, Mike Mans comes from a racing legacy. Having been around racing his entire life, Mike became interested in the racing lifestyle at a very young age. "I was that little kid playing in the dirt and racing toy cars on the trailer floor - it's all I ever wanted to be when I grew up," Mike said. By the age of nine, Mike began to race Jr. Dragsters; and by the age of 16, he made the transition to Super Stock.

Thirteen years later Mike continues to race Super Stock. Currently, he races a 2000 Pontiac Firebird with a 304 cubic inch Chevy engine. Mike gives credit to his father for his success and all engine work due to his strong attention to detail and a constant drive for more. "I have been very fortunate in my racing career, and I owe it all to my dad for all the work he does and the preparation he has ingrained into me," he says. This season, Mike was able to win the O'Reilly Auto Parts Nationals in Joliet, Illenois and two LODRS Divisional events. Overall, he ranked 8th nationally and 2nd divisionally making it a very successful season for Mike and his team.
Mike launching in a race at Brainerd Raceway.
Mike launching in a race at Brainerd Raceway.


Mike stated that his greatest moment this season was having his mother present for his victory at the Juliet National event. This was the first national event she had ever seen him win and her excitement meant a great deal to him. Mike's best run this season was 9.260 at the AAA Club Finals. His career best run is 9.220. In the next five years, Mike hopes to advance his career and move into the Comp Eliminator class. He believes that heads up format where building power and making the cars work on every track and in a multitude of conditions is something at which his team could be successful and excel.

When asked about his love for racing, Mike said it is the taste of success. "The competition and level of talent in our sport makes it so difficult to be successful, that when you are able to leave on Sunday with the trophy, it's a big reason to celebrate," he says. Outside of success, Mike also loves the behind the scene atmosphere. This includes the friendships and even the games of "corn hole" that take place after hours. He sees room for improvement as his greatest motivator. Being his own biggest critic, he always takes notes on different areas that can be improved upon and capitalizes on them. This is what has kept him going throughout his career. In order to prepare himself for a race, he has to shut down his mind and relax. Although this may sound like a simple task, this has proven to be a hurdle for Mike. Being a Mechanical Engineer he often has a lot on his mind. Mike stated, "My pre-race routine is all about staying calm and doing whatever I can to free myself from distractions."
Mike prepping for a race in the staging lanes.
Mike prepping for a race in the staging lanes.


Outside of racing, it is no surprise that Mike is an adrenaline junkie. He enjoys anything that involves a motor. When he was younger, he spent a lot of time riding snowmobiles and racing motocross. In recent years, he has been getting back into these activities.

Not only does Mike use K&N products in his Super Stock vehicle, but he also uses the products in all of his vehicles. In his race car he uses a K&N Wrench-Off Oil Filter as well as a custom K&N Air Filter. Off the track, he has a K&N Intake System installed in both his GMC Envoy and his Chevy 3500 Dually. Mike stated, "We use K&N products because they use quality components and have excellent quality control. Our motors run 10,000 rpms, and oil quality needs to be at its best to keep them running run after run. And since we started running a K&N Air Filter two years ago, we have noticed a significant improvement in the lifespan of our piston rings and hone finish on our blocks. They are second to none."

Find K&N products for your vehicle using the K&N application search then use the K&N dealer search to find a K&N dealer in your part of the world.

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