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Fri, 16 Sep 2005, 04:03 PM

Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Session #1
By Jim Samuel

MOHNTON, Pa. - Notes from round 1 qualifying in Funny Car at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, 21st annual Toyo Tires NHRA Nationals listing lane, driver name, elapsed time, top speed, and position in order following run:
Left Lane: Mike Ashley Runs 4.973/268.22, Now #1
Right Lane: Paul Lee Runs 5.217/213.27, Now #2

3:23 p.m. - Weather conditions: air temperature 87 degrees, relative humidity 39 percent, barometer 29.88 inches, adjusted altitude 2,147 feet, track temperature 117 degrees.

Lee's car stared trailing smoke at mid track and he backed off the throttle. Ashley got off the throttle a little further down the track.

Right Lane: Jim Head Runs 5.000/296.57, Now #2

Head took his car right down the middle of his lane.

Left Lane: Frank Pedregon Runs 5.009/236.92, Now #3
Right Lane: Gary Densham Runs 7.899/108.90, Now #5

Densham smoked the tires at 330 feet, Pedregon smoked them a couple hundred feet later.

Left Lane: Bob Gilbertson Runs 10.366/92.68, Now #7
Right Lane: Tony Bartone Runs 4.912/299.66, Now #1

Gilbertson shook the tires and shut it down at 330 feet. Bartone had a strong run but started losing cylinders at 1,000 feet.

Left Lane: Phil Burkart Runs 4.869/0.00, Now #1
Right Lane: Tim Wilkerson Runs 4.974/299.73, Now #4

Wilkerson drifted out of the groove. Burkart was going 243.41 MPH at the eighth-mile mark but no top speed was recorded.

Left Lane: Tony Pedregon Runs 4.864/635.29, Now #1
Right Lane: Cruz Pedregon Runs 5.343/249.86, Now #9

Cruz drifted out of the groove. Pedregon had a strong run but the top speed that showed up on the scoreboard was obviously incorrect. His speed at the eighth mile was 248.57 MPH.

Left Lane: Del Worsham Runs 4.903/303.84, Now #3
Right Lane: Whit Bazemore Runs 5.152/282.01, Now #9

Both cars went right down the groove. Bazemore's car started trailing smoke just past the 1,000-foot marker, Worsham's did the same as he crossed the finish line.

Left Lane: Tommy Johnson Jr. Runs 4.861/311.85, Now #1
Right Lane: Eric Medlen Runs 5.530/205.01, Now #13

Medlen smoked the tires at mid track. He pedaled it and started smoking the tires again. Johnson took his car right down the groove to move into the top spot in the order for now.

Left Lane: John Force Runs 4.910/310.13, Now #5
Right Lane: Ron Capps Runs 5.081/251.86, Now #11

Both drivers looked as if they had good runs going right down the groove. Capps' car started trailing smoke just past the 1,000 foot marker, Force's car did the same as he crossed the finish line.

Left Lane: Robert Hight Runs 4.911/310.98, Now #7
Right Lane: Gary Scelzi Runs 4.862/316.82, Now #2

Scelzi had a smooth pass down the middle of his lane to move into the number two spot in the order. Hight had some tire shake but drove through it for a spot in the top half of the order. At the end of the first session, Tommy Johnson, Jr. is in the number one spot and Cruz Pedregon is on the bubble with a 5.343-second bump time.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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