There is a huge difference in traction between bville and any asphalt track. 9 extra seconds of acceleration is worth a few miles per hour if you have the gear and the aero. Most expierienced lsr competitors should be able to show up with the correct gear ratio to optimize the top speed.
Im not saying that everone should be able to go out and run as fast as they can the first time out. But if you are an experienced land speed racer with the A lisence, I think 175mph is a resonable starting point. Given the conditons of the facility are much better the most other places.
just my .02
For what it is worth (kinda agree) ... I attended the World of Speed last year for my first time ever on the salt. I showed them my Class A license from ECTA. They asked "If I didn't mind, to keep the first pass under 150 mph and then I could go all out." Now personally, I wouldn't have run faster than 150 on the first pass no matter what they had told me. I'd rather be on the safe side and while car I drove was stable on the salt, I never had drove it.
Now, I also understand that the LTA is new and the volunteers need the "step up" speeds as well as drivers. Also, while the track maybe in better condition, I personally need to "feel" the weather conditions before attempting 200+ on my 'Busa. Starting runs at 150 or 175 for experience racers, don't hurt my feelings at all.