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Sat, 5 Nov 2005, 04:49 PM

Funny Car Qualifying Notes, Session #3
By Larry Sullivan

POMONA, Calif. - Notes from round 3 qualifying in Funny Car at the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series, 41st annual Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals listing lane, driver name, elapsed time/top speed this round, position in order following run, best prior elapsed time/speed, and position in order prior to run:
Left Lane: Frank Pedregon Runs 5.437/200.47, Now #13; Best prior run: 4.816/278.23, Was #12
Right Lane: Tony Bartone Runs 4.815/312.21, Now #12; Best prior run: 6.364/138.02, Was #23

1:03 p.m. Weather conditions: air temperature 75 degrees, relative humidity 25 percent, barometer 29.34 inches, adjusted altitude 1,903 feet, track temperature 92 degrees.

Jack Wyatt is on the bump spot at 4.847. The just-completed Top Fuel session was "feast or famine," with several very quick runs and lots of tire smoke.

Bartone shook things up with a good run. Pedregon lost some ground early, then nosed over beyond half track. Now Bob Bode is on the bump spot at 4.845.

Left Lane: Ron Capps Runs 4.808/319.14, Now #9; Best prior run: 4.768/326.63, Was #9

This was a big run for Capps, who really would like to have lane choice in the first round as he pursues the POWERade championship, but he failed to improve on a run that didn't look all that bad and stayed ninth.

Left Lane: Phil Burkart Runs 6.538/134.43, Now #24; Best prior run: 11.137/81.50, Was #24
Right Lane: Tim Wilkerson Runs 5.716/171.16, Now #18; Best prior run: 4.874/315.12, Was #18

Burkart got out about 600 feet, started spinning the tires and fishtailing. Wilkerson lost traction at about the same point on the track, the two cars moving toward each other, but it was never a dangerous situation.

Left Lane: Whit Bazemore Runs 7.645/111.71, Now #11; Best prior run: 4.800/323.27, Was #11

Bazemore launched, the car was not in a hurry to go anywhere, and he lifted.

Left Lane: Dale Creasy Jr. Runs 11.777/78.36, Now #22; Best prior run: 5.381/220.62, Was #22
Right Lane: Bob Bode Runs 5.155/217.81, Now #16; Best prior run: 4.845/259.21, Was #16

Creasy lost traction immediately. Bode's car was very loose, fishtailing a few times before he gave up the chase.

Left Lane: Tommy Johnson Jr. Runs 4.848/317.79, Now #10; Best prior run: 4.795/321.81, Was #10
Right Lane: Terry Haddock Runs 5.678/175.00, Now #15; Best prior run: 4.840/310.48, Was #15

Haddock started smoking the tires around half track. TJ made one of the better runs we've seen so far this round.

Left Lane: Robert Hight Runs 10.987/82.86, Now #6; Best prior run: 4.745/323.66, Was #6
Right Lane: John Force Runs 5.681/170.41, Now #8; Best prior run: 4.761/325.53, Was #8

Force got to about half track, then lost traction and fishtailed once before lifting.Hight blistered the tires immediately.

Left Lane: Jim Head Runs 8.826/88.92, Now #14; Best prior run: 4.822/323.89, Was #14
Right Lane: Del Worsham Runs 5.484/186.51, Now #7; Best prior run: 4.750/302.35, Was #7

Head lost traction about 200 feet out. Worsham never did smoke the tires, but he shut it off just past half track.

Left Lane: Bob Gilbertson Runs 4.918/286.25, Now #19; Best prior run: 5.392/191.67, Was #23
Right Lane: Gary Densham Runs 4.761/324.20, Now #5; Best prior run: 4.735/317.87, Was #5

Both drivers made good-looking runs, but Gilbertson came up short when his car made a hard move toward the centerline on the top end. Densham is three-for-three this weekend, making his third strong pass in a row.

Left Lane: Grant Downing Runs 5.396/198.79, Now #21; Best prior run: 5.078/246.66, Was #21
Right Lane: Eric Medlen Runs 6.844/129.19, Now #4; Best prior run: 4.715/328.06, Was #4

Downing's car got very loose beyond half track, almost crossing the centerline, forcing him to lift. Medlen lost traction fairly early in the run.

Left Lane: Dale Pulde Runs 6.895/118.97, Now #20; Best prior run: 5.009/302.08, Was #20
Right Lane: Tony Pedregon Runs 4.770/323.04, Now #2; Best prior run: 4.710/329.99, Was #2

Pulde puffed the tires about 600 feet out and shut it off. Pedregon made a nice-looking run, second-best of the round so far (Densham is low for the round).

Left Lane: Cruz Pedregon Runs 6.179/147.94, Now #3; Best prior run: 4.714/328.94, Was #3
Right Lane: Gary Scelzi Runs 4.744/325.06, Now #1; Best prior run: 4.696/329.18, Was #1

Oh! Take that! Scelzi ran low ET of the round and that ought to "lay some smack down" in the championship chase. Pedregon started spinning the tires at half track and shut it off, but Scelzi's run was just about as smooth and straight as it could be.

With one qualifying session left, Scelzi remains atop the field and Bob Bode is on the bump spot at 4.845.

Timing data courtesy of CompuLink

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